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  1. 24 points
    Josh HillSprint 4G Rollout UpdatesFriday, April 5, 2019 - 3:06 AM PDT Now that VoLTE is actually rolling out on Sprint, it's a good time to dive into what exactly is VoLTE, and how is it different from Calling+ and VoWiFi (Wifi Calling). Background Terms E-UTRA or EUTRA: Stands for Evolved Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) Terrestrial Radio Access. This is the technical name for the actual LTE airlink. QoS: Quality of Service. This is a way of tagging / flagging certain types of traffic to have priority above or below other traffic. When traffic has a QoS tag higher than other traffic, network equipment (the tower, routers, etc) will drop or ignore lower priority traffic to ensure that this traffic goes through instead. The equipment can also be configured to reserve a certain amount of bandwidth to only be used by traffic with a particular QoS tag. For example, if a router has 10 Mbps available, it can allocate 1 Mbps for a certain QoS tag. Normal traffic will only be able to use 9 Mbps, with 1 Mbps reserved for that QoS tag. The number of QoS priorities / tags varies between equipment vendors, but can be in excess of 256 priority levels. QCI: QoS Class Identifier. This is a value that an LTE / E-UTRA session can be assigned that corresponds to a particular QoS tag and specific attributes of that particular QoS queue. For example, it may or may not specify a guaranteed/dedicated bandwidth allocation (GBR). APN: The APN is the name of the gateway on a mobile network. It identifies the packet data network that should be used for that E-UTRA session. IMS: IP Multimedia Subsystem. It is a method for sending SMS over LTE, along with setting up VoLTE calls and other signaling. eCSFB: Circuit Switched Fall Back. For phones / UEs that can only listen on either LTE or CDMA rather than both simultaneously, it is a method for the LTE network to tell the device that a call is coming in, and to switch over to CDMA to process it. SRLTE: Single Radio LTE. This is a capability of newer devices that allows them to listen on both CDMA and LTE at the same time, but only transmit on one at a time. This replaces the need for eCSFB, allowing the device to see a call coming in over CDMA while it’s using LTE. It is also more reliable and reduces the number of missed calls due to failed fallback. When a call is active, the LTE session is stopped / paused. SIP: Session Initialization Protocol. This is the standard protocol for VoIP in telecom networks. How VoLTE Works While we typically think of LTE as a single connection, multiple E-UTRA “sessions” can actually be established, creating what are essentially virtual/multiple LTE interfaces, each with their own IP address, QoS level, APN, etc. Each session has a numerical QCI assigned that dictates the actual QoS priority and whether or not it has a GBR (Guaranteed Bitrate). QCI Resource Type QoS Priority Packet Delay Budget Packet Error Loss Rate Example Services 1 GBR 2 100ms 10−2 Conversational Voice 2 GBR 4 150ms 10−3 Conversational Video (Live Streaming) 3 GBR 3 50ms 10−3 Real Time Gaming, V2X messages 4 GBR 5 300ms 10−6 Non-Conversational Video (Buffered Streaming) 65 GBR 0.7 75ms 10−2 Mission Critical user plane Push To Talk voice (e.g., MCPTT) 66 GBR 2 100ms 10−2 Non-Mission-Critical user plane Push To Talk voice 75 GBR 2.5 50ms 10−2 V2X messages 5 non-GBR 1 100ms 10−6 IMS Signalling 6 non-GBR 6 300ms 10−6 Video (Buffered Streaming) TCP-Based (for example, www, email, chat, ftp, p2p and the like) 7 non-GBR 7 100ms 10−3 Voice, Video (Live Streaming), Interactive Gaming 8 non-GBR 8 300ms 10−6 Video (Buffered Streaming) TCP-Based (for example, www, email, chat, ftp, p2p and the like) 9 non-GBR 9 300ms 10−6 Video (Buffered Streaming) TCP-Based (for example, www, email, chat, ftp, p2p and the like). Typically used as default bearer 69 non-GBR 0.5 60ms 10−6 Mission Critical delay sensitive signalling (e.g., MC-PTT signalling) 70 non-GBR 5.5 200ms 10−6 Mission Critical Data (e.g. example services are the same as QCI 6/8/9) 79 non-GBR 6.5 50ms 10−2 V2X messages (source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QoS_Class_Identifier) As you can see in the above table, the QCI does not necessarily correspond to the QoS level. For example, QCI 1 has a QoS priority of 2, but QCI 5 has a QoS priority of 1, making it actually higher priority traffic. On Sprint, traditionally one E-UTRA session was used, with a QCI of 9 and QoS priority of 9. This is the lowest QoS priority, and does not have a guaranteed bitrate. On devices which use eCSFB or VoLTE, another E-UTRA session is established for the IMS APN using a QCI of 5 and QoS priority of 1, and is used for IMS. This session also does not have a guaranteed bitrate, but it has the highest QoS priority. IMS is used for SMS over LTE, along with setting up VoLTE calls. eCSFB devices use it for SMS, and likely also for triggering eCSFB. On newer device which instead use SRLTE, IMS is not used unless VoLTE is enabled, and they instead use CDMA 1x for SMS, so an IMS E-UTRA session is often not setup. When a VoLTE call is initiated, a third E-UTRA session is established, also using the IMS APN. This session has a QCI of 1 and QoS priority of 2. Unlike the other two sessions, this one does have a guaranteed bitrate. For Sprint, this bitrate is 39 Kbps. The screenshot below shows all 3 sessions: VoLTE E-UTRA sessions This is how VoLTE calls are prioritized over regular data. Normal data usage, such as loading a web page or watching a video, will still use the lower, default QoS (QCI of 9), while the data for the VoLTE call will be at the second highest priority (QCI 1), just after IMS signaling (QCI 5). The tower / eNB will ensure that the VoIP session always is able to use up to 39 Kbps by reserving that bandwidth and dedicating it to the call. This is in contrast to “Calling+”, which does not establish a separate E-UTRA session, and instead uses the normal QCI 9 session. The below screenshot shows an active Calling+ call. Note the presence of only a single E-UTRA session. Calling+ E-UTRA sessions So now that we have the airlink for VoLTE, what happens? VoLTE, Calling+, and VoWiFi are essentially standard SIP VoIP calls. The below screenshots show the SIP details for an active call, and the LTE Signaling messages that setup and then end the SIP call. VoLTE SIP details VoLTE Signaling For VoLTE, the traffic for the SIP call goes over the QCI 1 E-UTRA session instead of the normal QCI 9 session. This means that the eNB (tower) will reserve and guarantee 39 kbps for the call, but other traffic from the same device will not be prioritized and will use the normal session. So starting a VoLTE call will not make the rest of your traffic prioritized, it will apply only to the VoLTE call. So as a recap, when VoLTE is enabled, the UE / phone establishes multiple E-UTRA sessions. One is used for normal usage, one is used for texting and signaling, and one is used for the VoLTE call. Think of these like separate virtual ethernet cables. On the QoS prioritized and guaranteed bitrate VoLTE session, the UE establishes a SIP VoIP connection for a call. On Calling+ devices, the same SIP connection is used, however it runs over the default QCI 9 session instead, and therefore isn’t prioritized and doesn't have a guaranteed bandwidth. This is why Calling+ calls are more likely to cut out or not sound as good. VoLTE call Calling+ call VoWiFi (Wifi calling) operates almost the same way. Like VoLTE and Calling+, it also uses the same SIP connection for calls and presumably IMS for signaling, but instead of using an LTE E-UTRA session, the phone establishes an IKEv2 IPsec VPN connection to Sprint. This is an encrypted connection that allows data to be tunneled directly into Sprint’s network. The SIP and IMS traffic are then routed over this VPN to Sprint, but not other, normal traffic. From a QoS perspective, VoWiFi is identical to Calling+, in that neither are prioritized above other traffic. VoWiFi call Because VoLTE, Calling+, and VoWiFi all use the same SIP servers and connections, under normal conditions they sound the same and can technically hand off to one another. They can all take advantage of HD Voice codecs and should sound the same, since the call itself is identical across all three. The difference is how the data for that call makes it to Sprint. VoLTE is able to use a dedicated, guaranteed airlink to ensure that congestion on the network (LTE or WiFi) won’t adversely affect the call. One final performance benefit is that VoLTE is able to take advantage of something called RoHC (Robust Header Compression), seen in the above 3 screenshots. This compresses the IP, TCP, UDP, and RTP headers from 60 bytes to 1-3 bytes, resulting in up to 60% bandwidth savings. It’s only possible on a dedicated link, which is why VoLTE has it but Calling+ and VoWiFi do not. So not only does VoLTE have guaranteed, dedicated bandwidth, it will use potentially half as much, which matters a lot for maintaining the call in edge of cell scenarios.
  2. 13 points
    Tim YuSprint 4G Rollout UpdatesWednesday, September 12, 2018 - 12:45 PM PDT [Edit] It has come to the attention of S4GRU that the Magic Box also supports CDMA Voice Today, Sprint announced the newest Magic Box™ to the world. This Magic Box was first spotted in early summer and S4GRU did a quick write up on it here. Today's announcement formally revealed what new technologies this 3rd Generation public release will give to us. The highlights: This is some huge stuff here especially for technology nerds! Previous Magic Box's only utilized LTE UE Relay for backhaul up to 2 carrier aggregation at 2x2 MIMO at 64 QAM modulation. With 3 CA, 256 QAM, and 4x4 MIMO, this new Magic Box has the same capability as a Gigabit Class device on the Sprint™ network! In addition the notes about Wi-FI connection working for backhaul are huge. Sprint Band 25 or Band 41 may not reach indoors or even in some neighborhoods due to macro coverage patterns even though a Magic Box is available to use in a region. By having the option to use locally supplied internet via WiFi as backhaul, this allows Magic Boxes to enter locations where LTE UE Relay does not work. In addition, the ethernet port tidbit may also be a hint that using ethernet backhaul could also be an option. If so, this Magic Box would potentially support 3 choices of backhaul all in one unit; LTE UE Relay, WiFi, and Ethernet! Wow! With the coming arrival of VoLTE opt in in the near future, LTE coverage indoors is a huge concern. The now expanded reach of this new Magic Box into places previously unreachable is a huge step forward. Exciting! Sprint and Airspan sure loves Magic!
  3. 10 points
    Dave YeagerSprint 4G Rollout UpdatesFriday, February 8, 2019 - 8:00 AM PST Sprint’s tribanding project has reached a new phase -- former Clear LTE 2500 only sites are getting new equipment as reported by nowerlater in Cincinnati, Joski1624 in Cleveland, and here in Columbus. Converting sites from LTE 2500 only to triband LTE 800 MHz, LTE 1900 MHz, and LTE 2500 will significantly improve network performance in the traditional metropolitan areas of markets where Clear sites reside. Adding LTE 1900, LTE 800, CDMA 1x1900, and 1x800 will mean stronger signal with improved building penetration that will allow surrounding sites to better serve their more immediate coverage areas. This added site density will be a key factor in performance improvements needed for high quality VoLTE (Voice over LTE) service. Upon completion, site density for the non-LTE 2500 bands will increase an astonishing 57% in Franklin County (Columbus) Ohio. There are currently 162 macro sites not counting factory and private office building sites. There are 93 stand-alone Clear sites. Hamilton County (Cincinnati) will show a 61% increase in site density for the non-LTE 2500 bands. Additional Clear sites lie outside these counties in both markets. The level of increase will vary from market to market. Market wide LTE 1900 performance will improve if this increased site density allows for fewer 1x1900 CDMA carriers per site. This would allow refarming of spectrum to increase the bandwidth for LTE 1900. Minimum LTE bandwidth allowed by many of Sprint’s Remote Radio Units has been increased in recent months according to the FCC. This will be market dependent. There will be a 50% or more LTE 2500 capacity improvement at most Clear sites. Mini Macro Clear sites broadcast only one or two carriers, while most metropolitan areas triband sites broadcast three carriers with up to five carriers at some sites. The tribanded Clear sites go from having Mini Macros to 8T8R remote radio units at most sites, but some sites may retain existing Mini Macros in some markets. With 8T8R, these tribanded Clear sites will also get improved performance and coverage. Samsung Clear equipment used in portions of the south and east often have three carriers thus will primarily gain benefits from the improved coverage of the 8T8Rs. Tribanding the Clear Mini Macro sites will also improve the LTE 2500 performance of surrounding triband sites. If your phone is on the third carrier and you currently drive into an area primarily served by a Clear site your triband site signal will get weaker and weaker until it drops. The LTE 2500 at these existing Triband sites currently carries an extra burden. Permit Foreshadowing Let’s dive further into the details. We have been watching for these site builds for many months. Permits were first seen in the early fall in Columbus, for example: ALTC1800834: ANTENNA UPGRADE TO AN EXISTING CELL SITE OF SPRINT. REMOVE (3) ANTENNAS, (3) MM RRUS, AND (3) 15/64" COAX. INSTALL (3) ANTENNAS, (9) RRHS, (3) 1-1/16" HYBRID CABLES, GC SUPPLIED RET CABLES, (3) OPTIC FIBER JUNCTION CYLINDERS, (3) POWER JUNCTION CYLINDERS, (1) SITEPRO SNP-12NP SECTOR MOUNT AND HANDRAIL KIT. REMOVE EXISTING CLEARWIRE GROUND CABINETS AND INSTALL ALL NEW SPRINT ECAB & ICAB COMBINATION CABINET AND PPC ON NEW CONCRETE PAD. REMOVE ALL POWER AND FIBER CABLING TO RRHS. Permits and drawings were also found in Sacramento by our resident staff Tim (lilotimz), with one site even going from CA to Massive MIMO: The Network Vision plus LTE 2500 using 8T8R LTE 2500, LTE 1900, and Four Port LTE 800,and the much rarer Massive MIMO LTE 2500/5G future, LTE 1900 and Four PORT LTE 800. A big question was whether the sites would have CDMA or just be VoLTE. Most Sprint phones in use today can only use CDMA. OceanDave picked up the first Clear Triband Conversion signal in his logs recorded on 11/30/2018. Joski1624 found and confirmed CDMA 1x1900 and 8T8R LTE 2500 at the site once the logs were analyzed in early January. Here is a screenshot from Joski1624 showing LTE 800 and 1x800 from the same Clear conversion site: Cleveland has confirmed other sites. Nowerlater has reported similar results covering bands 25 and 26 from other Clear sites converted to Triband in the Cincinnati Market Here is a photo of a Columbus Clear site being converted to Triband. You can see that the Clear Band 41(inside red outline) is still wired and was quite functional at the time of the photo. 1) Clear antenna (remove), 2) Mini Macro (remove for most sites), 3) Microwave antenna for redundant backhaul (will likely remain if present). This is becoming a Triband Hexadeacport 16 port Antenna Setup outlined in yellow with 1) 8T8R LTE 2500 Remote Radio Unit, 2) LTE 1900 Remote Radio Unit, 3) LTE 800 four port Remote Radio Unit, 4) 16-Port Triband Antenna. In this next photo you can see the old cabinet on its metal grate and the new cabinet on new concrete. The underground conduit needs to be placed then the concrete poured before you will see cabinets. Some of the sites will have double cabinets (permits say Eltek, but observed cabinets do not match catalog). Note that they are pre-assembled, in this case by Stonecrop Technologies. These sites are also getting new Purcell cable boxes. In Columbus, 86% of the Clear sites have permits. New permits are still being filed. We began finding permits for Clear conversions last October. Permits are active for one year. They can be extended, but typically the work will be done in that time period. It is quite possible the FCC will not approve the merger into T-Mobile until December or later based on the Shentel – nTelos merger. This merger could finish sooner or not at all. If the merger is approved this work would likely stop, but any completed site work would benefit existing Sprint customers during the estimated two to three year transition period (market dependent). If all Clear sites were converted to triband, here is an image of roughly where the sites would strongly benefit in the traditional Columbus metro area: Please note that actual site coverage areas are not circular but are shaped between a three bladed airplane propeller and a three leaf clover. There would be significant variations from the heat map above. Of course Columbus overall has Network Vision and other Next Generation triband sites. These Ohio markets mentioned have active S4GRU signal hunters, thus are likely a proxy for what is happening or will happen in other markets with active former Clear LTE 2500 only sites (for clarity we will now refer to them as Clear sites). Indeed lilotimz has found permits and drawing in Sacramento. Reddit user Marley3456 has confirmed triband Clear sites in Salt Lake City Utah, thus they very likely exist in other parts of the country. The following cities in state order all had more than 10 Clear sites with LTE in 2014 thus are likely prospects for this type of change: If your city is listed above, how will you know if you will benefit? Start looking looking at the Clear sites in your city today and be observant of any changes. Help is available here at S4GRU.com if needed. Online guides can help: Nokia Mini Macros on Macro Sites, Samsung LTE 2500 Remote Radio Units and Antennas. It will be worth knowing if your market will benefit from the significant capacity improvements of the Clear site Triband conversions! Edited 2/8/19 to better cover Samsung Clear Sites.
  4. 10 points
    Tim YuSprint 4G Rollout UpdatesWednesday, October 2, 2018 - 9:00 PM PDT Starting right now, October 3,2018 12:01 AM EST, Samsung Galaxy S8, 8+, and S8 Active users can manually download the firmware to remove Calling Plus from their devices and bring forth the VoLTE Opt-In toggle. Oh yeah. VoLTE is live on the Sprint Network™ as part of the VoLTE Soft Launch in the select markets. The roll out to the soft launch markets will be gradual over the next weeks. So have at it you folks in the first soft launch markets that are going live! Here are the first 15 initial soft launch markets with more following in the next few weeks. Atlanta-Athens Chicago Dallas-Ft.Worth Houston Indianapolis Kansas Missouri New York City Oregon-West Washington Philadelphia Pittsburgh San Francisco Bay South Bay Southern Jersey Washington DC And if you're in a soft launch market... Source: /u/TheButlershrsmn Discuss Sprint VoLTE on on the forums.
  5. 9 points
    Tim YuSprint 4G Rollout UpdatesFriday, September 28, 2018 - 8:10 PM PDT In the past few day, Sprint began informing its staff and partners that the VOIP application used for LTE Calling on Sprint devices, Calling Plus, will be starting to be decommissioned beginning with software updates to Android devices on the 29th of September. Sprint updated the Calling Plus FAQ to note this upcoming change to android devices via software updates yet to be rolled out. The following is allegedly what the UI screen will resemble when the devices are updated to remove Calling Plus. Photo Credit: Sean Yes. That's right. Don't avert your eyes! The removal of Calling Plus heralds the arrival of the Opt-In VoLTE toggle. Magic Box Connections Enhanced In addition to the removal Calling Plus, existing Magic Box's have already began and will continue to receive firmware updates that will enable the support of VoLTE in the soft launch regions. This firmware update, currently 15.15.50.514 / 60.7.46.0, also has additional "enhancements" that will improve uplink performance and device handoffs between Magic Box's to and from other Magic Box's or Macro / Micro cells. This is what the screen appears to be when updated. Photo Credits: Jim So with all this work going on it's all on you Galaxy S8 generation users to tell us on your experiences with the the slightly delayed VoLTE soft launch in the coming days!
  6. 5 points
    Tim YuSprint 4G Rollout UpdatesTuesday, May 7, 2019 - 12:00 PM PDT For weeks, rumors have been circulating that Verizon's carrier exclusivity deal to sell Google Pixel devices was ending and other carriers, such as Sprint, will offer them in addition to direct sales from Google. S4GRU has been able to attain information that this is indeed correct and that Sprint will soon be selling Pixel 3, Pixel 3XL, Pixel 3a, and Pixel 3a XL devices. [Google has has announced that Sprint, in addition to other carriers, are selling the device. Source.] Sprint's internal systems have been updated with the devices information and retail stores are receiving shipping information notifying them of the imminent arrival of the Pixel devices. Pricing 1. Pixel 3: $799 2. Pixel 3 XL: $929 3. Pixel 3a: $399 4. Pixel 3a XL: $479 Modem Specifications Pixel 3 GSM 850 / 1900 WCDMA Bands: 2 / 4 / 5 CDMA Band Class: 0 / 1 / 10 LTE Bands: 2 / 4 / 5 / 7 / 12 / 13 / 17 / 25 / 26 / 29 / 30 / 38 / 41 / 48 / 66 / 71 Carrier Aggregation Combinations 2xCA B41 2xCA B25 3xCA B41 4xCA B41 B25 + B26 B25 + B41 Pixel 3 XL GSM 850 / 1900 WCDMA Bands: 2 / 4 / 5 CDMA Band Class: 0 / 1 / 10 LTE Bands: 2 / 4 / 5 / 7 / 12 / 13 / 17 / 25 / 26 / 29 / 30 / 38 / 41 / 48 / 66 / 71 Carrier Aggregation Combinations 2xCA B41 2xCA B25 3xCA B41 4xCA B41 B25 + B26 B25 + B41 Pixel 3a GSM 850 / 1900 WCDMA Bands: 2 / 4 / 5 CDMA Band Class: 0 / 1 / 10 LTE Bands: 2 / 4 / 5 / 7 / 12 / 13 / 14 / 17 / 25 / 26 / 29 / 30 / 38 / 41 / 48 / 66 / 71 Carrier Aggregation Combinations 2xCA 41 3xCA 41 2xCA B25 B25 + B26 2xCA B25 + B26 B25 + B41 B26 + B41 Pixel 3a XL GSM 850 / 1900 WCDMA Bands: 2 / 4 / 5 CDMA Band Class: 0 / 1 / 10 LTE Bands: 2 / 4 / 5 / 7 / 12 / 13 / 14 / 17 / 25 / 26 / 29 / 30 / 38 / 41 / 48 / 66 / 71 Carrier Aggregation Combinations 2xCA 41 3xCA 41 2xCA B25 B25 + B26 2xCA B25 + B26 B25+ B41 B26 +B41 In addition, Sprint has also recently enabled Pixel 3's eSIM support which is likely to be also true with the Pixel 3a devices when it launches. This means there is no need to seek out the correct SIM card for the device to activate it, though a physical sim card is still an alternate option and the S4GRU SIM Card spreadsheet has been updated to include the 3a and 3a XL devices. Pixel ESIM activation guide 1. Connect device to WiFi 2. Go to Settings, Network & internet, Mobile network, Advanced, Carrier. Alternatively search "carrier" in settings 3. Tap "Add Carrier" 4. Login to Sprint Account and select device to receive one time activation code to continue. Select line to activate Pixel on. 5. Pixel should now be activated. ** If ESIM capable Pixel is already activated on line with a SIM card, you may have to activate another Sprint device in its place before you can undergo the ESIM activation steps ** Credit to ingenium for the ESIM guide Pixel 3 G013A, Pixel 3 XL G013C, Pixel 3a G020A, Pixel 3a XL G020G
  7. 5 points
    Tim YuSprint 4G Rollout UpdatesFriday, December 14, 2018 - 11:00 PM PDT Beginning today on the Sprint subreddit, individuals can begin submitting questions in this thread that will be forwarded to Ms. Schnellbacher to answer at his leisure in a few days time. Who is Mr. Jason Schnellbacher you may ask? So go forth and submit all your questions about Sprint Magic Box's, small cells, and other Sprint related stuff!
  8. 1 point
    by Tim Yu Sprint 4G Rollout Updates Friday, April 8, 2016 - 3:40 PM MDT Over the past week, S4GRU members in multiple Sprint markets have discovered new EARFCNs and corresponding GCI endings that identify new Band 41 LTE carriers. The EARFCN is the center frequency of an LTE carrier that, along with the carrier bandwidth, identifies the carrier placement and occupied spectrum. As Sprint is doing intraband contiguous/adjacent carrier aggregation -- 20 MHz TDD Band 41 carriers are lined up right next to one another with no gaps -- Band 41 EARFCNs are highly predictable in a given market by knowing the location of at least one carrier. Say the ever popular EARFCN 40978 is the first carrier. You add 198 (19.8 MHz) to it to get EARFCN 41176, which is the second Band 41 carrier. Thus, it stands to reason if you add 198 to that EARFCN, you will get the third Band 41 carrier so 41176 + 198 = 41374, the EARFCN for the third Band 41 carrier. Or, in some other markets, 41078 is the first Band 41 carrier. In this case, it goes like this: 41078 + 198 = 41276 + 198 = 41474 Alternatively, say a market has EARFCNs 40056 and 40254. Adding 198 would bring us to EARFCN 40452, but that is not possible due to the BRS/EBS 2500-2600 MHz band plan -- there are spectrum gaps around 2570 MHz and 2610 MHz that Sprint cannot utilize. See the band plan: Thus, in the case of EARFCNs 40056 and 40254, not addition, but use subtraction: 40056 - 198 = 39858, which would be the third Band 41 carrier. The GCI is the unique cell sector identifier of a LTE carrier. Generally speaking, Sprint's GCI patterns are standardized market by market and network wide, making for an easy method to identify each LTE carrier within a given band. In the case of Band 41, GCIs ending in 00/01/02 (Samsung) or x1/x2/x3 (ALU/NSN) indicate a connection to the original and first Band 41 carrier. GCIs ending in 03/04/05 (STA) or x9/xA/xB (ALU/NSN) denote the second Band 41 carrier. It stands to reason that -- if this second carrier pattern were to continue to the third Band 41 carrier in Samsung markets -- we would expect to see GCIs possibly ending in 06/07/08. Long story short, this theory is supported by evidence. See below SignalCheck Pro logs and numerous in app screenshots: This log is from my Nexus 5x. I traveled for a hour around Sacramento, searching for the third Band 41 carrier. Note the GCI endings for the Sprint Band 41 entries: The following is from site member bmoses in Des Moines. Note the 07 GCI ending and EARFCN: Below is from a S4GRU member in the Colorado market: One more from the Cincinnati, Ohio Market: The following is from yours truly in Sacramento: And these below are from Fremont, CA, near San Jose: See those EARFCNs and GCI endings? Look at the calculations from the top of this PSA. Everything is as we would have predicted for a third carrier. With the end of the WiMAX injunction and the decomissioning of the last active Clearwire WiMAX markets that held up huge swaths of leased EBS and licensed BRS spectrum, Sprint finally has the capability to show off its deep spectrum pockets in numerous markets. This has been long awaited and should definitely give a huge boost to Sprint data speeds in numerous markets where spectrum for additional Band 41 carriers now is available. Of course, there still is the issue of actually connecting to and using this third Band 41 carrier. From firsthand reports and personal use, this third Band 41 carrier is not currently carrier aggregation enabled. Thus, 2x/3x CA devices may not connect to it to use data right now. By default, these devices will have CA enabled, causing them to utilize only the first and second carriers that they can aggregate. For the time being, in order to reliably connect to this third carrier, a non CA triband device or a 2x/3x CA setting disabled triband device may be required. Regardless, this appears to be just a minor issue from the initial rollouts that should be resolved soon. Source: S4GRU member reports
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