Dec 08 AT 1:32 PM Taylor Wimberly 41 Comments

T-Mobile ready to flip the switch on nation’s fastest 3G

We recently reported that T-Mobile’s rollout of HSPA 7.2 was still on track for 2009, but I was beginning to have my doubts they would meet that aggressive schedule. With only three weeks left in 2009, we have seen no official updates from T-Mobile.

One might think the 4th place carrier would begin to blow their own horn and promote the news of their pending 3G upgrade.

I reached out to T-Mobile to see if their HSPA 7.2 launch date had been adjusted and received the following response:

Thanks for checking in on this. HSPA 7.2 will be enabled across T-Mobile’s entire 3G network by year-end.

  • T-Mobile’s 3G network currently covers 250 U.S. cities, reaching approximately 180 million people. T-Mobile will continue to strengthen and grow its 3G network to reach approximately two-thirds of the U.S. population by the end of the year (more than 200 million POPs).
  • T-Mobile will integrate HSPA+ into its 3G network in the next several months with broad national deployment anticipate for mid-2010. With HSPA+, customers will experience network throughput speeds that are three to five times faster than today’s 3G networks — with theoretical peak download speeds of 21Mbps (depending on device and other factors).

So believe it or not, many T-Mobile customers with Android phones should be receiving a nice 3G speed boost by the end of the year.

We have known HSPA+ was the next update after HSPA 7.2, but I’m a little surprised to see it will begin in the “next several months”. I have not heard of any handsets that would support HSPA+ so maybe one of the rumored devices for Q1 2010 could receive this feature.

The devices on T-Mobile’s network which support HSPA 7.2 include:

  • HTC G1
  • HTC myTouch 3G
  • Motorola CLIQ
  • Samsung Behold II
  • Touch Pro 2 (Windows)
  • Dash 3G (Windows)

Even though all these devices support HSPA 7.2, it is still unclear if they will need a software update to enable this feature.

If I had to predict the exact date T-Mobile will turn on HSPA 7.2, I would say Christmas is looking pretty nice. How cool would it be to wake up to a free gift from your carrier?

I wonder what will become of AT&T’s campaign that proudly proclaims “The nation’s fastest 3G network“.

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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