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Everything posted by CrossedSignals

  1. CrossedSignals

    Anatomy of a Sprint Triband Hexadecaport (16 port) Antenna Setup

    Thanks. Informative video in the link.
  2. CrossedSignals

    Anatomy of a Sprint Triband Hexadecaport (16 port) Antenna Setup

    Is this setup a prelude to massive MIMO in that they would add multiple antennas/RRUs to get to the 64T64R or will there be hexecontatetraport (64 port ) setup at some point?
  3. I just returned from a business trip to Japan and have some interesting things to report regarding Sprint international roaming on SoftBank. I'm a BYOD customer (aka 1 year free) and therefore my expectations were that I would receive throttled (2G speed data) with the option to purchase 'high speed' data on a daily or weekly basis as needed. On landing and turning on my phone, I received the usual SMS messages welcoming me to Japan and noting rates for calls and texts. However, I also received a message "High-speed data included at no additional cost on this trip!" Hmm... exciting. My trip kept me in downtown Tokyo with a diversion to Yokohama for lunch one day. I definitely did not venture outside urban areas and therefore my experience is not representative as a testimony for the network throughout Japan. In both cities I can attest the network is very dense and I don't recall having a low signal situation anywhere. I was able to use the service just as I use Sprint in the U.S. On my iPhone 6, the hotspot worked great and the speeds were excellent. Towards the end of my trip, I did some speedtests (photos attached) at my hotel and at Haneda airport, connecting to Band 1 and 3. I never did see an instance where I connected to band 41 (but then again I don't have the benefit of SCP and wasn't running around with the field test mode going all the time). I was surprised at the ping times and played around with the servers on speedtest to try and see if there were any changes (nothing) and as you can see whether it was band 1 or 3, downtown Tokyo or the airport, pings were consistently in the ~300ms range (by way of reference the hotel wifi was ~4ms (assume fiber)). Overall it was impressive and considering the usual cost of roaming, the experience was excellent.
  4. CrossedSignals

    Recent (12/2017) Japan roaming experience

    Calls are $ .20/min (free on wifi), texts are free and as far as I know there isn't a limitation on data. It's somewhat confusing given the $5/Month Japan roaming option. It would appear that the roaming option would net you free voice calls and not sure what else.
  5. CrossedSignals

    Recent (12/2017) Japan roaming experience

    Speed test and field test information available at: http://lithcustomer.imgur.com
  6. CrossedSignals

    Recent (12/2017) Japan roaming experience

    I would have purchased the high speed data as my company would have reimbursed me for the charge. I do think that with AT&T and VZW doing the $10/day to use home rate plan undercuts the value of the $5/day or $25/week offerings from Sprint (and I think T-Mo). As it was, I used about 850Mb of data (mainly for the speed tests) while I was there. The other nice service was Wi-fi calling. I was on a boatload of conference calls back to the U.S. and as of today I had one minute ($.20) of international calling. That was probably more valuable than the high speed data in my case.
  7. CrossedSignals

    Recent (12/2017) Japan roaming experience

    Thanks for the reminder. I forgot about the fact that the connection is a quasi VPN back to Sprint and therefore pings suffer.
  8. CrossedSignals

    Recent (12/2017) Japan roaming experience

    I'll try that.
  9. CrossedSignals

    Recent (12/2017) Japan roaming experience

    I have the speedtest screen shots but am not able to upload due to size. To save you the agony of knowing the speeds: Test 1: Tokyo 6:16am: Ping 347ms; DL 18.2Mbps UL 18.31Mbps Test 2: 8:54am Haneda Airport: Ping 358ms; DL: 48.05Mbps; UL: 24.01Mbps Test 3: 5:48AM Tokyo: Ping: 328; DL29.35; UL19.32
  10. CrossedSignals

    The Magic Box 6 months later

    Is the doubling of the ping time coincidence or a consequence of using the Magic Box?
  11. CrossedSignals

    iPhone 8, 8+, X announced

    Thanks. That might be it. I noticed this morning that PhoneScoop lists the FCC ID's as BCG-E3161A and BCG-E3175A. Clicking the hyperlink to the FCC's website returns a not found error. I was able to find a couple of variants of the iPhone 8, including Model NumberA1897 (no CDMA) and (BCG-E3160) Model Number A1864 (CDMA) /A1899 (same test report).
  12. CrossedSignals

    iPhone 8, 8+, X announced

    I'm struggling to find the filings on the FCC's OET website for the iPhone X. I've attempted to search under Grantee Code (BCG) and what I think is the Product Code A1865. I've also scanned through every filing with a Final Action Date of today, looking for listings with lower / upper frequency ranges that correspond to B41. It appears that they've changed the naming convention of the suffix of the FCC IDs which makes it more challenging: Some are BCG-(Apple Model Number); Some are BCG-ExxxxA. Can anyone please lead me to the filing for the iPhone X? Thank you
  13. CrossedSignals

    HPUE in iPhone 7s/7s Plus/8?

    I could well be incorrect with my logic but given that the iPhone 6 and 6S (and I assume the 7 has and the 7S will continue this trend) both had Band 41 EIRP levels that were >26dBm (HPUE Power Class 2), is it really a relevant point as to whether the iPhone 7S has or doesn't have HPUE? It appears that the iPhone is already providing band 41 uplink performance that is superior to HPUE through positive antenna gain.
  14. Exciting news in all respects and thanks to Robert for bringing this to light, especially the project details (that are lacking in the FW story). My takeaway is that network expansion will be done to largely accomplish 2 things: comply with buildout requirements (as AJ has noted in past reports) and, as Robert's story reports, eliminate roaming costs in strategic areas. While I hope that they eliminate some 'bad actors' (i.e. Swiftel as Robert mentions and nTelos as others have commented on), I believe that capital constraints will economically restrict what they can to and Masa's commitments to work with CCA/RRRP program will politically limit what they can do. (as an aside, I'll be intently looking for statements from Sprint on how these efforts reconcile with the CCA/RRRP program and hope that they have a very synergistic message regarding their expansion and continued commitment to working with smaller carriers in rural areas.) The other interesting point that could be debated in this announcement is whether these actions signal any sentiment on the probability of the 600MHz auction. I feel that the buildout requirements and the inevitable delays in the auction are driving action more than anything but it could be seen as pessimism that the 600MHz auction will occur, that Sprint will participate, or that Sprint will have the economic means to garner a significant enough portion of spectrum to make a difference. The balance of the effort in my opinion really comes down to service reliability through densification: adding sites to make the LTE airlink and Sprint's band classes work with PCS/CDMA site spacing. While that's certainly important (especially for RootMetrics, et al, rankings), I'm more keen on Sprint achieving overall network size parity with the duopoly. Overall, its a continuation of the 'build it and they will come' strategy. Unfortunately, there are 4 companies building ballparks in cornfields right now. I just hope that Sprint's field is [insert your favorite MLB ballpark analogue here], not my neighborhood vacant lot where kids play stickball.
  15. CrossedSignals

    T-Mobile LTE & Network Discussion

    Thanks for the replies to moderate my cynicism. I really have a hard time believing that T-Mobile will be able to meet their timelines if they follow a similar development path to what Sprint has done. We know the challenges in getting new backhaul in place (microwave is certainly one way to reduce this risk and as mentioned seems to be key). We know that permitting takes time. We know there are unforeseen supply chain events that affect hardware deliveries. There's weather and crew availability. It just seems that with all of those pacing items/contingencies causing potential schedule risk. The other challenge is likely that going from 260ish M POPs to 300M POPs will likely require far more than a linear/proportional number of cell sites. So I assume that they're going to have to find space on a bunch of new sites simply to expand the footprint. I guess my mind just drifts to 'slap up some panels to replace what's there' (don't change the number or general physical shape to facilitate an easy permitting process), keep the existing backhaul (so you don't have to worry about backhaul driving LTE availability), and market the crap out of your urban/exurban speeds. Voila, a Nation-wide LTE network. That said, I hope they do meet their POP target with a legitimate, sufficiently dense LTE network as I think that is key to creating a competitive alternative to the duopoly. Now if Sprint would take some of that 'Google balloon technology' and cover the Dakotas with a 3 or 4 balloons' worth of 25/26/41, we'd really have something interesting (I make no claims to the technical merits or feasibility of this idea). lol
  16. CrossedSignals

    T-Mobile LTE & Network Discussion

    I'm probably too cynical but I suspect that T-Mo will be doing some 'dressing of a pig' at rural sites to meet the buildout timeline. Something tells me those LTE sites in BFE will be connected to the same old backhaul. A crappy speedtest in the middle of nowhere isn't going to make much of a wave to the 'YouTube jury' and the average consumer will be content just seeing 'LTE' on their phone.
  17. CrossedSignals

    VoIP Telephone Services

    Obitalk and Google Voice. Find the ata adapter at newegg or Amazon. E911 service from callcentric, anveo or anothe obihai approved vendor. Been using it for 3 years for an initial hardware purchase ($49 and up) and about $1/month for e911.
  18. Recently, Neville Ray made a comment about T-Mo getting to a network size of 300M PoPs in 2015 which would put their network size generally on par with AT&T and Verizon. While there wasn't much talk of how they're going to achieve this milestone (i.e. through native buildout or through roaming, etc.), it seems like a new dimension of 'network wars' (or deja vu if one counts the tussle between T-mo and AT&T in 2012 over '4G' coverage) and such parity would really put pressure on the duopoly by taking away one of their key talking points/differentiators. I've always assumed that completion of Network Vision wouldn't result in appreciable increases in network size (+/- 280M PoPs) but the above concerns me that Sprint might end up at a competitive disadvantage relative to the others. Is there any insight into whether Sprint is planning to respond with a 300M PoP coverage target of their own?
  19. CrossedSignals

    Final network size

    LOL. My cyber Monday won't be complete until I know... I do not have patience, grasshopper.
  20. CrossedSignals

    Sprint CEO says he may drop phone subsidies in 2015

    Agreed. Simply looking at the iPhone: Its initial retail price was $599 and in 2007, they reduced it to $399 for the holidays (see costs below; even at $399 they were still generating attractive margins): On or around the release of the second generation, they reduced the price to an 'on contract' price of $199 With the release of the iPhone 6/6+, they have created an interesting frame of reference by not releasing a 32GB version. This may have the effect of pushing more people to spend the extra $100 for the 64GB vs. settling for the 16GB through a fear aversion (fear of running out of space). Note below that the marginal cost increase of the 6 to 6 plus is about $15 yet they charge $100. The same is likely true on the marginal cost of memory going from 16 to 64GB Under the shroud of the contract subsidy, Apple was able to increase the retail price of the entry level phone from $599 (first generation) to $649 (current generation) and was able to increase it's warranty adjusted gross margins up over the last several quarters from circa 35% to above 40% (Linked Google Docs is creation of Forbes Author Chuck Jones and is referenced in this article). implying that they were able to offset increased supplier costs by passing it along to the consumer. In fact iSuppli estimated the BOM cost of each generation of base iPhone as the following: Original: $217.73 3G: $166.31 3GS: $178.96 4: $187.51 4S: $188 5: $199 5S: $199 6: $196.10 BOM parts only ($4 for manufacturing): $200.10 6+: $211.10 BOM parts only ($4 for manufacturing): $215.60 Source: IHS iSuppli press releases Bear in mind these are initial manufacturing cost estimates. Apple has famously described their ability to 'ride the cost curve down' on component parts to increase margins over time. That, compounded with increasing volumes of every subsequent generation, likely means that margins increase over the product's lifecycle. Bottom line is that Apple's phone business is hugely profitable and they are taking steps all the time to make sure it stays that way.
  21. CrossedSignals

    Motorola Nexus 6 (Was "Nexus X talk leaked?")

    The Moto X does have a Motorola-designed antenna tuning system that measures capacitance across the antenna/antennae. My understanding is that their implementation has twin benefits: first to optimize the antenna's Standing Wave Ratio (SWR) over a wide range of bands and secondly to counteract "death grip". See: http://anandtech.com/show/8491/the-new-moto-x-intial-impressions-and-hands-on/2 http://anandtech.com/show/8523/the-new-motorola-moto-x-2014-review Whether or not the same is implemented on the nexus 6 will likely have to wait for a tear down. Because the N6 and X(2014) share antenna designs, my bet is that it too will have a similar tuning system.
  22. CrossedSignals

    Marcelo declares A New Day For Sprint and changes Band 41 priorities

    Probably both. I think there are a lot of elements at play in this decision: 1. The speed at which Sprint has been able to roll out roaming agreements through the CCA/RRRP is probably driving some 'lets see how much rural coverage we can pick up through agreements rather that buildout'. This is really a discussion of capital efficiency, which is timely and appropriate for Sprint. 2. The upcoming 600Mhz auction. Softbank appeared to be the money behind the proposed T-Mo/Sprint joint bid. I doubt that money evaporated when the FCC sidelined the joint bidding strategy. I speculate they will go in aggressively and if possible acquire as much of a nation-wide footprint as is possible. 3. Marketing: Sprint needs some marquee markets where the application of B41 can put up some headlines. In other words, Sprint needs to put the ball over the fence in a couple of RootMetrics, PC Magazine, etc. network evaluations to quell the doubters. To do that requires a concentrated effort: concentration on key markets (i.e. big cities, cities that are dominant for one player or another, etc.) 4. Turning up the offense: I can foresee certain markets being selected to 'bring the fight to the competition'. What about building up B41 in NYC (VZW's home town), Dallas (AT&T's home town) and Bellvue/Seattle (T-Mo's home town) so has to put up huge performance numbers in the competition's back yard. 5. Key markets, based on subscriber numbers: At the end of the day, the network should be built around the customer and where they are/where they are using the network, etc. That will turn the tide on customer frustration and the 'pardon our dust' excuse. This Bloomberg article clarifies some of Marcelo's comments today
  23. Apple's LTE band information for 3 model number variants of the iPhone 6 (and the 3 model variants for the iPhone 6 Plus) now showing on Apple's website do not show support for band 12. All three model number variants support bands 2,4,5,17,25 & 26; variants A1586 (iPhone 6) and A1524 (iPhone 6 Plus) also supports band 41 (and is marketed as the C Spire, Sprint, USCC version). I assume the biggest loser in the band 12 ommission is T-Mobile. Regarding the moto X, there is an illuminating article on anandtech.com describing some of the engineering features embodied into the phone. Of particular note to me, and likely to the S4GRU community, are the efforts made in the area of dynamic antenna tuning to improve real-world performance. See: http://www.apple.com/iphone/LTE/ http://anandtech.com/show/8491/the-new-moto-x-intial-impressions-and-hands-on
  24. Some interesting information on how they plan to harmonize device acquisition: http://www.wirelessweek.com/news/2014/03/apkudo-cca-partner-device-hub-rural-carriers http://blog.apkudo.com/
  25. I'm curious how the members of the hub will reconcile roaming usage on partner networks. Since the networks are of differing sizes, the small network partners might enjoy a larger benefit than larger network partners. In other words, I suspect there is some level of correlation between network size and the probability of roaming and therefore the roaming benefit received. Will the partners simply keep tally and reconcile on some system like 'USCC: your customers used x mins and x GB of data on my (sprint) network and my customers used y mins and y GB of data, you owe me z/min and z/GB of data used over what my customers used? Will they simply say 'it's not the incremental network load or cost that matters and therefore I'm not going to meter the data/minutes between partners'? Will they come up with some amount of 'free roaming' (that mirrors what customers receive) that partners agree to? There are also a lot of intangible benefits for smaller operators: * Possibility of increased device selection * Increased coverage, particularly if it's done in a way where the consumer isn't worried about roaming *Access to additional sprint's spectrum to add or build out LTE where the small operator is spectrum constrained or needs access to a core network. I think there's also a reality that's being addressed: Sprint is unlikely to have an LTE roaming agreement with VZW (just as Tmo will unlikely have an LTE roaming agreement with T) because, quite simply, the big guys now have networks big enough not to need a reciprocal roaming agreement and therefore have created 'walled garden' LTE networks as a means of differentiation and competitive strategy. Maybe I'm stating the obvious, but it would be a boon for everyone if they could configure this to work in a way where it appeared to the consumer to be a single network. I think that it would also offer small independent wireless Telco's a way to remain independent. Son speaks about the size gap between S/Tmo and T and VZW but compare that to Cricket, USCC, and some of the others and Tmo. This is truly an alternative to marginalization and consolidation for smaller operators.