Jul 22 AT 5:54 PM Taylor Wimberly 118 Comments

3 simple reasons why T-Mobile 3G is better than Sprint 4G

T-Mobile might be smallest of the big four national carriers, but their upgraded 3G network is going to top anything that their larger competitors have to offer this year. Sprint’s launch of the first 4G phone, the HTC EVO, has generated a lot of buzz (which is deserved) but I wanted to take a moment and cover a few simple reasons why I think T-Mobile deserves some more attention.

1. More coverage

T-Mobile HSPA+

What good is a super fast network if you can’t access it? Sprint is gradually expanding their WiMAX network and plans to cover 120 million people this year, but T-Mobile has already surpassed them in coverage area and will provide 4G speeds to 185 million people by the end of 2010.

T-Mobile has an advantage in coverage thanks to their late transition to 3G. They were the last major carrier to roll out a nationwide 3G network so their equipment was newer and able to support HSPA+ after a software update (and upgraded backhaul to their towers).

Sprint on the other hand chose WiMAX for their 4G strategy and this requires new network equipment to be installed in each market. Their 4G network will continue to grow, but it will be at a slower pace than T-Mobile’s HSPA+.

2. More devices

T-Mobile phones

One of the major benefits of T-Mobile’s new HSPA+ network is that it is fully backwards compatible with existing devices. This means that current T-Mobile customers with older Android phones can take advantage of advanced speeds when HSPA+ comes to their city.

T-Mobile currently offers 16 devices that support HSPA 7.2 Mbps, which includes their entire Android lineup. Many of our readers are already taking advantage of the network upgrade and have reported impressive speeds. Best of all, these faster speeds are available to existing customers with no changes to their calling plans or additional fees.

In the coming weeks, T-Mobile is expected to unveil their first HSPA+ handset which should launch later this summer.

3. Faster speeds

HSPA+ speedtest

There are many different types of WiMAX and HSPA+ that are capable of a wide range of speeds, but the implementation of HSPA+ that T-Mobile is using offers twice the theoretical speeds of Sprint’s WiMAX network. Sprint’s current theoretical max is 10 Mbps and T-Mobile is offering 21 Mbps.

Sprint advertises their 4G network is 10x faster than existing 3G networks and claims download speeds of 3-6 Mbps while capping uploads at 1 Mbps. I tested their network using the HTC EVO 4G and found it was extremely reliable, but I was unable to surpass 3 Mbps downloads.

When I tested my Nexus One on T-Mobile’s HSPA+ network in Houston, I found I was able to hit 5 Mbps down and over 1 Mbps up. Those speeds are impressive and they will only improve once a HSPA+ handset is available later this year.

Theoretical maxes and real world speeds can vary by quite a bit, but after spending hands-on time with both networks I have found that T-Mobile can be twice as fast as Sprint. Comments from our readers have also confirmed that people in HSPA+ markets are seeing faster speeds than those in 4G WiMAX areas.

If you need some more evidence, here are just a few hands-on reports from T-Mobile’s HSPA+ network. Kevin Tofel of jkOnTheRun was able to acheive speeds of 9 Mbps down and nearly 3 Mbps up when he performed his latest round of testing.

Closing thoughts

This post wasn’t meant to bash on Sprint, but I wanted to show that “4G” is not always better than 3G. Sprint offers some great calling plans, but they are limited to a single 4G handset that is currently sold out online.

While we are talking about carrier networks, we might as well mention AT&T and Verizon too. AT&T is also upgrading to HSPA+ in 2010, but they have a slower implementation (14.4 Mbps) than what T-Mobile is using. Their network could rival T-Mobile, but we don’t have any detailed timelines on the rollout or handset launches yet.

Verizon will roll out 4G LTE to 25-30 markets in 2010, but they are not expected to have any LTE handsets till the summer of 2011. There is a good chance they could eventually have the fastest 4G handset, but we won’t know that for another year.

The carrier landscape is always changing, but if you want an Android handset on the fastest network (this summer), keep an eye on T-Mobile. Of course I could eat my words several months from now, but another reason I stick with T-Mobile is because they don’t force me to. T-Mobile is one of the few major carriers to offer no-contract plans and I’ve saved quite a bit of money since I switched to their Even More Plus plan last year.

Which network do you think will be the best at the end of 2010?

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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  • themetatron

    Four: no premium charge for access to faster speeds

    • http://Website WrlsFanatic

      While I respect what you’re getting at, let’s be fair about the comparison. Let’s go piece by piece (and stick to handsets… Clear’s $30 4G plans for connection cards can’t be beat):

      1) More coverage. No argument there. However, HAVING that speed boost means nothing if you don’t have a device that supports it… which brings me to…

      2) More devices. Not even close. First off, the EVO is an incredible device – according to most reviewers it is still a better device than the Droid X – and it is available now. You will have to wait, but you’ll still get one sooner than you would ever get the currently-nonexistent HSPA+ phone on T-Mobile. Plus, by the time T-Mobile gets an HSPA+ device, Sprint will have launched the Epic, which is the best of the Galaxy S phones getting launched this year in the US (the Vibrant and Captivate are getting good reviews, and the Epic is significantly better than both).

      3) Faster network. I agree with this as well. However, there are MANY caveats to this. First, Sprint’s coverage is generally believed to be better nationwide than T-Mobile’s, and it can’t be argued that Sprint covers more square miles than T-Mobile.

      A few people have also talked about prices, so let’s talk about them. Sprint’s best plan is clearly their $69.99 plan (which is $79.99 with the $10 data add-on). You get 450 minutes (nights start at 7PM), unlimited text, unlimited data, and unlimited calls to any mobile phone number. That gives you basically unlimited calls if you’re like me and you mostly call wireless phones. T-Mobile, for the same price, gives you 500 minutes (nights start at 9PM), unlimited text and data. You can argue that T-Mobile is cheaper because of their off-contract plans, but that’s stupid. You have to pay $200 more up front for the phone to save $240 over the 2-year life of the contract. I would MUCH rather pay slightly more over the course of 2 years than pay more up front. Plus, anyone reading this is interested in the latest and greatest, and I don’t see them wanting to wait 2 years for a new device. With Sprint, anyone on their $69 plan also can upgrade a phone every year with a full refund… something nobody else does.

      I wouldn’t have brought that last piece in, but so many made the comment… T-Mobile has a nice offering, but if you live in a 4G area, I think it’s a no-brainer to go with Sprint. (Can’t wait for an Epic!!)

      • http://Website carmex

        Just wanted to correct your math. On a no-contract plan with T-Mobile, you are paying $20 / month less. Over a 2 year contract that is $480 saved (24 months * $20), NOT $240 like you said. That means the total cost of your phone (let’s use the Vibrant, $199 on contract, $499 off contract) would be $199 + $480 = $679. Or you could pay for the phone up front and save a total of $180 over the course of the contract. I can’t speak for everyone, but that’s certainly worth it to me.

      • http://Website jereny

        The epic is better than the vibrant? LOL r u dumb or blind I had the evo and got rid of that piece of sh%t phone sprints network and customer service is a joke also the evo is touch lag king the Samsung galaxy s IS THE BEST ANDROID PHN TO DATE PERIOD the epic is an OK phone but deft not the best anyway I returned my evos and got back with T-Mobile

        • http://Website Joel

          The Epic and the Vibrant are the Same phones except the Epic has a keyboard and 4G

          • http://Website John

            Joel is correct. The Epic is a Samsung Galaxy specifically for Sprint – it has a slide out keyboard where the Vibrant (T-Mo); Captivate (ATT); and Fascinate (VZ) do not have the slide out keyboard.

            It appears you have firmly planted you foot in your mouth Jereny. Are you blind or just stupid?

            I purchased a Vibrant from T-Mo. Great phone. Lighning fast service. Held it next to a Motorola Droid X today. Even though the screen is .3″ smaller than the Droid X, it is far brighter and way thinner. Amazingly nice device.

            Now, Jereny, perhaps you should do your homework before spouting off about something you appear to have no knowledge of. Idiot!

          • http://www.youtube.com/emogamer Christopher Chavez

            And front facing cam. =)

      • http://Website Say What?

        Congrats on achieving the oblivion rating for not being a T-Mo fanboy!

        Seriously though, Sprint has hidden discounts that can get applied. The easiest is creating a free AOL account & telling Sprint your an AOL customer. That discount gets you 10% off your entire bill (minus insurance) . And if you can get a larger discount, then its even better.

        Usually Sprint does not go thru extreme measures to verify discounts, like T-Mobile does. In fact, T-Mobile has a whole dept devoted to verifying discounts before they get applied to accounts. Why? Thats just ridiculous. Total waste of money/salaries.

        So, with my discount, I can get insurance added, the very handy Roadside assistance (not offered by T-Mobile), and my service plan ($69.99), plus taxes & fees all for around $65.00 per month. But wait, I added for $5. more per month the “Pick 3″ (My Faves) feature, so I can add 3 non-mobile numbers to my account, including my Google Voice number (for even more free calls) and am still about $70. per month with little chance of going over my Minutes.

        Adding my Google Voice number to my PICK 3 on SPRINT was a great idea. I was pushing my 450 minutes about 3 weeks into my billing cycle, and now I find I am about 375 at the end of the month. People call my GV number, and I have an app where I can have GV call me back when I dial out, so it takes even less minutes. Who needs a truely UNLIMITED minute plan when basically, this way it already is.

      • http://Website dude

        Do the math again. Its not stupid to have a no contract plan.

        T-mobile is 59.99 a month for unlimited data, 500 min and unlimited text. Thats $1439.76 for 2 years of service plus $499.99 for a Vibrant is a total of $1939.75. That averages $80.82 a month for 24 months. T-mobile also offers 0% financing for 20 months if you don’t want to throw down the $499.99 up front.

        Sprint is 79.99 a month for unlimited data, 450 min and unlimited text. Thats $1919.76 for 2 years of service (under a contract that is NOT optional) plus the epic discounted from 499.99 to 349.99 for a total of $2269.75. That averages $94.57 a month for 24 months. Not sure if financing is available.

        So there you have it. T-mobile is $13.75 cheaper a month with comparative service and phones

  • http://chicagolandandroid.blogspot.com Quest Graves

    I totally agree and with our true unlimited data plans, we are treated like royalty. I got my cake, my fastly delicious, audio streaming goodness topped with a little unstuttery YouTube while riding the train, and I’m going to consume it too:p

    • Snafu77

      The plans aren’t totally unlimited. There is a 5gb limit after which they will throttle your bandwidth according to what I’ve read. I don’t know how many people have actually tested that out. Many people use Sprint for their only broadband connection without having their accounts throttled or disconnected but they have some sort of extreme usage clause too.
      Even with heavy usage I can’t crack 1gb per month on T-mo. Next time I go out of town I will try to make some huge downloads via tether and see what they do.

      • http://Website Galen20K

        Actually Snafu, they allow you to surpass 5gig even tho they list that, they won’t even bother you until you start to break the 10gig barrier usually.

        • Snafu77

          Cool. Good to know! T-mo just keeps getting better and better. I wish I could pay a little more and use them for my broadband provider.

          • http://Website Raptor

            Read this (from T-mo forum):

            “If you are using T-Mobile service while tethering we currently do not charge for that service. However, if you are using 3G or HSPA+ you can use the faster network up to 10GB a billing cycle. If you surpass that 10GB limit, which happens most often while tethering, you will still be able to use data but will be throttled to our 2G EDGE service.”

        • http://Website plainbrad

          I’ve had my data throttled by T-moblie for half a month. It is no fun. I would pay a premium fee to not have data throttled and have truly unlimited data.

      • http://Website WrlsFanatic

        Snafu, that is not right. Both carriers (T-Mobile and Sprint) are unlimited with data on the handset, and both carriers have 5GB caps on their data cards. Clear is the only carrier with unlimited data on laptop cards, but they only work on their 4G network (good if you are in a 4G market and don’t travel much… otherwise not so much).

  • http://Website jamerson90

    Well said taylor, and nice reasons to back it up. Doesn’t really do much for me, I’m with verizon, but I can at least pass on the info

  • http://plankhead.com Zacqary Adam Green

    Isn’t calling the option to get the Behold II an “advantage” a bit of a stretch?

  • http://Website Brantyr

    It consumes less power than 4G too – apparently EVOs go flat fairly fast if you leave the 4G radio on. The positive of WiMax is that it should give you much better pings than 3G in case you plan on gaming with it, other than that it seems like a bad idea.

    Probably worth noting that almost no phones support 21MBit HSPDA, we’ve had it here (Australia) for years but the only devices that go that fast are USB modems.

  • http://Website mark

    while i smile and fist pump with joy that i have tmobile, i have one question to ask you:

    what about latency?

    for my experience with tmobile in michigan at best i have 300ms latency (500+ in worse reception areas). a friend of mine was doing some traveling and his 4g sprint overdrive had consistent pings of ~200ms. a bad ping can make this high speed connection seem crappy. i hope the latency improves as the bandwidth does.

    • http://Website JoonatanO

      Latency doesn’t really matter unless you’re playing a videogame online…

      • http://Website mark

        well now see you’re wrong. latency does matter because it can make the browsing experience seem much worse than it actually is. a 300ms ping on a 7mbps connection can seem like a 50ms ping on a 500kbps connection. having a high ping adds up and makes the whole browsing experience feel sluggish and slower.

    • http://Website watbetch

      HSPA+ Latency is below 100MS under optimal conditions and below 200MS during other times..

    • http://Website B

      As with all cell networks, results spill vary depending on where you are. I get less than 100ms in NYC, north Jersey, and Tampa Florida, and average 4mb down on my Nexus One in Jersey and NYC.

  • http://Website swazedahustla

    This article is dumb by so many standards. T-mobile has fast speeds for 30% of their network, yet the majority of the posters constantly complain about barely getting edge. WTF! I consistently get 8-9 mbps down, and 10-12 peak. Yea I want to get rid of my 4g, lol

    • http://Website Derek

      Stop lying, 1010mbps is the theoretical max, no way you get 10-12. Liar.

      • http://Website swazedahustla


        All day and during peak its higher………….HATER

        • http://Website ian

          good thing pictures cant be faked… stop trying to justify your purchase i highly doubt that your getting 8-9 mbps with a 10 mb limit

          • http://Website swazedahustla

            Bitch i live in the middle of the very first 4g location. I could care less what you doubt.

          • http://Website Steven

            The 10 Mb limit is software actually. WiMax is capable of theoretical speeds above 80 Mb/s but Sprint has temporarily turned it down while the network stabalizes. Its easily possible to average near 10 then, as long as you have good signal and the network isn’t too bottled up. I live outside of 4G, so can’t actually give any solid numbers, but what he says is very possible. Sounds like you need to do more research before you bash.

          • Droideka
      • http://Website Steven

        I wish it was 1010Mb/s! Shoot if it was that fast, you would really be bashing the wrong guy. Trouble is, 10 Mb/s is the real world limit, not theoretical. Theoretical is closer to 80 Mb/s, Sprint just has it turned down while they continue to grow and test the network. All it takes is a little software upgrade, and the speeds could double or triple overnight! T-mobile looks good now, but just wait until Sprint gets their network going at full speed. Right now, they are getting above 3G, but not quite 4G. When they turn on true 4G, look out! Love to see your HSPA+ do anywhere near 80!

        • http://Website Pupitmiser

          What you said is true, but just FYI there’s very very good reasons for that. The nature of any wireless technology is that the longer the range of coverage; the lower the theoretical bandwidth. Sprint is going for coverage right now. They can’t simply crank their towers up to 80mb/s unless they wanna cover 8 times smaller the area. Does that make sense?

  • Rubbinz

    Completely agree with the post. Since Monday when they hit the switch on HSPA+ for me, I’ve been getting an average of 6.25Mbps download speeds. Combine that with the no-fee tethering for my Nexus One, I’m one super happy dude.

    @mark, my latency last speed test was 80ms. I’m not trying to connect to Xbox Live on this thing, so it doesn’t matter that much to me.

  • http://Website mark

    really, 80ms? maybe my towers haven’t been upgraded yet, i thought my rooted N1 was saying “H” and not “3G” but i may be wrong.

    while im not doing anythign heavy when tethering it is still awesome that i can do it when hotel wifi is broken :D.

  • http://Website mZimm

    I am a long time T-Mobile customer, and I love that they are getting publicity because I do feel like they are a great carrier and will a half-way decent marketing team could be more competitive, but I have to point out a major flaw in the article.

    T-Mobile does not currently offer ANY HSPA+ handsets…so all of this coverage is mostly pointless. Even the brand new Samsung Vibrant, according to T-Mobile’s own forums “benefits from enhanced speeds with T-Mobile’s HSPA+ network, but it’s not an HSPA+ device.” That’s like if Sprint had 4G but none of their phones could take advantage of it. Its pointless, and the only way that you can actually get HSPA+ speeds is if you purchase the laptop connect rocket that is being released this week.

    Major fail on reporting, IMO. I love you guys and read you daily, but this is a major flaw in your argument.

    • http://Website Usman

      You must be challenged when it comes to reading comprehension. The author clearly stated that the first HSPA+ handset is coming later this summer. He only said that existing handsets, which are capable of HSPA 7.2mbps, will see a significant performance increase.

    • http://Website Steven

      You do bring up a really good point. Even with the upgrade, speeds are enhanced on their phones, but don’t get anywhere near the max. I heard the theoretical max for non HSPA+ phones is around 14 Mb/s, but that’s theoretical max. Still, its about as fast as WiMax on Sprint, but that won’t take long to change since Sprint has only temporarily capped WiMax at 10 Mb/s. WiMax is capable of over 80 Mb/s, but is turned down until the network is stable enough to handle the increased speed.

  • http://Website Monster

    One reason I want to switch from T-Mobile to Sprint is the fact that where I live in central California, I CONSTANTLY am in deadzones or drop calls because there randomly won’t be service. Most of all my house is literally one giany deadzone which makes calling one giant mess.

    Otherwise im mostly happy with Tmobile. WHEN I have good coverage I get great data speeds and there aren’t any data caps on my usage unlike AT&T or soon to be Verizon. Ive checked and my city and the majority of the cites around me will be getting the HSPA UPGRADE with tmobile. But will that change their coverage? I dont really think so.

    Right now I have the NexusOne on tmobile, which is probably making my situation worse because of the poor attenna in the N1, but there simply ISNT any high end phones availble to T-Mo which is the breaking point for me.

    • http://Website Jimmy13

      The new samsung phone looks pretty nice and it’s a high end phone. There is more nexus one aftermarket development but The samsung seems to have way better base stats. After 2.2 it will be ridiculously fast. If they decide to update this phone lol. I can’t imagine they wouldn’t after the behold II uproar.

  • SliestDragon

    I’m getting 3Mbps+ down here in Mesa, but T-Mobile is having connection problems here, and has been for a few weeks, which sucks. Sometimes it takes a few seconds to actually connect to 3G. Hopefully it will be fixed once they are done Rolling out Hspa+ in my area.

  • http://Website 138

    tmobile has the best customer service hands down. Been with them 10 years and very happy. Great article.

  • http://Website Pauldak

    There IS a cap on Tmobile. Its 5GB. I went over that two weeks into my last bill and got a text saying my DL speeds will be slower for the remaining time left on my bill.

    • http://Website R0b

      There’s a cap on the speed siir. Let’s be realistic here. What national career have u walked into where they are offering unlimited data? Not to mention existings cust. with mobile lines get a special discount rate thats cheaper on the monthly. I dare you to walk in to At&t or Verizon and request these services…theyll laugh right in your face. Second, if ur downloading more than 5 Gbs worth of data in two weeks…u need to return it. Can u imagine how clogged the network would be if everyone could have the same speeds with unlimited access? Id rather have my speeds slowed down then to reciieve a huge bill in the mail for going over the allowed amount. C’mon man, be realistic..sheesh.

    • http://Website Usman

      There’s no hard and fast rule, per se. I’ve gone over 5gb once and my speeds weren’t throttled at all. I have heard that they’re quicker to throttle if a customer routinely goes over 5gb more than a couple months within a certain period of time.

  • http://Website rick

    As much as I like tmobile … their coverage is terrible. Their 3g map makes att look much better. Coverage is great in major cities but don’t leave! I wouldn’t b surprised if the wimax network covers more people in 18 months than tmobiles 3g.

    That being said I’m happy enough with my service

  • http://Website Gomez

    Gee, Taylor, I’m really disappointed in you. Any halfway decent blogger would have given this article a title like “T-Mo’s 3G vs. Sprint’s 4G: Fight!” and let the reader decide for themselves. Not you. No. You took the prejudicially biased stance of a struggling T-Mo user and rode your G1 right into the sunset. Enjoy your shortening fan-base. You just lost a reader.

    BTW, I’m working on an article myself. It’s called: “1 simple reason why Android Central is better than Android and Me.” But I think you already know why that is. :-)

    • http://Website LaNsLyDe

      lulz android blog site beef? come on now

      article does comee off as biased though, but it isn’t bashing Sprint, nor is it telling lies.

    • http://Website R0b

      Lol, WOW GOMEZ. Your childiish baby rant comment made me laugh. =3

    • http://Website Jimmy13

      Facts are facts man. He just stated the numbers of the high end of this technology. He didn’t really seem to leave anything out from either side.

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      Android Central is one of my favorite blogs and I read it daily. I think Phil Nickinson is one of the best Android bloggers around.

    • http://clarklab.net Clark Wimberly

      You must have missed the poll he took on Twitter that T-mobile won by embarrassing margins.

    • http://Website Guest

      It is interesting how this site seems to be filled with pro-TMo, pro-HTC fanboys. I used to be under the impression that Android was an all inclusive tent. Through time, however, I’ve noticed that you can’t say anything negative about HTC or T-Mobile on this website. It’s sad, because as a very happy Verizon customer for 7 years and an extremely satisfied Droid owner since 2009 I have enjoyed being a part of this community. The problem is that I feel almost like an outcast by loving my Verizon service and my Motorola device on this website. I don’t really understand it, as Moto/VZW helped catapult Android to where it is today. I suppose since it wasn’t the first Android device, it can go to hell. I dunno, I thought the Android/Apple fanboyism was annoying, but now I’ve got provider/manufacturer fanboyism to deal with.

      • http://Website ari-free

        I am bothered by HTC because they continue to use snapdragons which are slower than anything else. Droid and SGS can compete with iPhone’s cpu but HTC doesn’t seem to care.
        The nvidias are coming and HTC will be even further behind.

      • http://Website TMO User – but a realist.

        I don’t know that it is hating on VZW, or just defending TMO. I see so many press and bloggers bashing TMO (and Sprint for that matter), that when there is an area where I can point out TMO’s strengths, I like to do it. I have nothing against VZW or ATT, I just get very tired of hearing about how they are the ONLY real carrier. It’s pretty obvious that TMO and Sprint are very capable, and in many cases better.

    • http://Website Nicholas Turner

      What a childish way to act :p

      Aren’t you doing the exact same thing in your “article” that your “writing” by having the title like this one?

      Also, no one really cares if you stop reading this blog, actually I’d like you to leave, then I don’t have to read your comments that annoy me.

  • http://Website Mista2x

    I love T-Mobile and they have awesome customer service! Just got HSPA+ boost last night here in Austin, so that should keep me happywith my Nexus One until Project Emerald is released! I had Sprint as my first mobile carrier around 8 years ago and it was a nightmare.

    • http://Website Steven

      Funny, I’ve had the exact opposite experience. I think it really depends on where you are.

  • PatrickHuey

    How do you know If you are getting hspa speeds? I’m over here in the Austin area. I’ve Maxed out at 3.5 mbs. Can someone please inform me?

  • http://Website LipGloss712

    I am the only one with an EVO at work and I am the only one with service bars in this old brick building as well. I am very happy with Sprint.

  • http://Website dylan

    I currently carry the evo and sprint has been very good for the last 7 yrs except for a couple of times. When i met NY wife she had tmo and was barley picking up edge and were just 15 miles outside of Wichita KS tmo fails period

  • http://Website jdog

    I’m not leaving T-mobile anytime soon and it has nothing to do with me having a T-mobile tower on my property with 3G+ speeds in west Houston ;)

  • http://coreyharris.me Corey Harris

    Calling it Sprint’s 4G is really not accurate. The 4G that sprint is using is Clearwire, which is a completely separate company. It is also the same 4G that Time Warner cable is using for their Mobile Internet that they have started selling. The reason there is a $10 fee for the ability to run a 4G phone is because of the 4G being that of Clearwire.

    Usage wise, sprints 3G is limited to 5GB a month, However 4G is truly unlimited and will remain that way unless Clearwire changes their mind and decides to start tiering their service, which they have gone on record saying that they have no plans to do so.

    • mnm

      Sprint owns the majority of clear.

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      Sprint owns 51% of Clearwire. Look it up if you don’t believe me. Other investors include Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Intel, Google, and Bright House Networks

  • http://Website watbetch

    I live in Vegas and Sprint 4G blows chunks. 2Mbps on a good day and at a good TIME during the day and the signal is absolutely pitiful. NO coverage half the time. T-Mobile’s HSPA+ network offers far better signal and tower handoffs. WiMAX drops often when you’re in a moving car.

    Sprint coverage isn’t all that great either (T-Mobile’s is better in a number of places) but it’s not nearly as bad as their pathetic “4G” network.

  • http://Website DaveC

    I heading to San Antonio for the weekend. I’ll be anxious to see how much faster my Nexus One is there than here in Corpus.

  • http://Website Joel

    Why is it that Everyone saying Sprint has its benifites and advantages vs T-mobs 3G network gets ranked Down. Seems like some of us are more than Android fanboys

    • http://Website Anonymous

      You, I will totally agree with!

      If you’re on any other network besides T-Mobile, you automatically get ranked down.

      And heaven forbid you’re not using a T-Mobile HTC Android device (ie the G1), bc then you’re ranked down into oblivion, a hidden status.

      I have noticed this on this site for sometime now.

      Aren’t we all Android users alike?
      Don’t we all have a common enemy here? The evil vile Apple?
      Can’t we all just get along as 1 big happy Android family, regardless of our choice of carriers & devices?

      What works for you, may not work for me. There are no 1 size fits all in the Cellular world.

      I may want a slide out Keyboard device like my Droid, or I may love my huge touch screen on my Evo.

      I don’t get good data coverage on T-Mobile where I live, only Edge, so should I dump my Sprint & move into the city so I can get T-Mobile? Heck no! Especially after they double charged me for my final bill on my credit card, which they deny & now I have to dispute.

  • http://Website Faith

    I had tmobile for 5 years and just recently left for sprint. I like tmobile and would have loved to see the hspa+ speeds, but I do feel that sprint values there existing customers a little more or at least in the wayI want to be. Of course every one has there bad experience with either company, but I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about customer perks, which ( correct me if in wrong) sprint offers little bit more of with their premier customer program. I do agree though, I believe it would have been wiser for sprint to upgrade their current network before switching, or at least if that was possible. 4g is not even in my area yet, but I’m sure in time it will all pan out.

  • http://Website Eric

    I left my N1 and T-Mobile for 30 days after an Evo impulse buy. Sprints coverage map showed me in the meat of their best 4G coverage and when I got home I found I had no 4G at all. Two weeks later T-Mobile turned on HSPA+ so I returned the Evo, bought a Vibrant and never looked back. HSPA+ gives me consistently 2mbps more than I could get on the Evo when I had an excellent 4G signal. Vibrant + HSAP+ = the best combination in the market right now.

    • http://Website Nicholas Turner

      I had a similar experience with sprint, their coverage map showed good 4G coverage at my house. I went a borrowed a friends new EVO and when I got home I took it out and tried it. I had no 4G or 3G signal at all, anywhere within 2 miles of my house.

      I double checked by heading back to his house and it did have a 3G signal but no 4G still, even though the map said 4G available.

      Sprint couldn’t tell me anything other than “the map isn’t perfect” which is certainly true, but I live near Denver, co which is a large city and you would think they would update the map a bit.

      I did pick up 4G in Denver, it was pretty fast, averaging about 3mbps. But still far slower than my T-Mo N1 which gets around 7mbps in the same area.

  • http://Website Steven

    Actually, Sprint has theoretical speeds above 10, but practical speeds are capped at ten. It’s temporary too. WiMax has theoretical speeds above 80 Mb/second. T-mobile can say they have 4g speeds for now, but that’s only because Sprint has turned down the speed while they work on the network. Also, Sprint has a lot more bandwidth, and wimax can support more bandwidth than hspa+, meaning more people can access it without decreasing the speed. For now, t-mobile does have a nicer looking network, but as Sprint continues, they will be in better shape in the future. Again, WiMax will have much higher practical speeds in the near future and with all that bandwidth, its going to be able to handle unlimited data much better. Also, Sprint is the only one with a truly unlimited plan on 4g, while t-mobile will handicap you after 5 GB.

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      Quoted from muniwireless.com:

      “Now take the case of WiMAX. WiMAX seems headed to the graveyard. Yota, the Russian WiMAX operator, is switching to LTE. WorldMax, one of two Dutch WiMAX operators, shut down and Freedom4, a UK WiMAX operator was sold for a paltry sum of money. Intel Capital will have to write off millions of dollars. Intel itself has closed its WiMAX program office in Taiwan. WiMAX went from the promise of “WiFi on steroids” to a dying patient.”

      Current speculation seems to suggest that Clearwire might eventually transition to LTE as well.

      • http://Website Steven

        Yeah, some people have lost faith in WiMax, but even if it does go away, Sprint has said it will be easy for them to convert things from WiMax to LTE or even run both simultaneously. They have enough bandwidth to do it too. Currently, it doesn’t seem like Sprint will leave WiMax anytime soon, same for Clearwire. At any rate, it doesn’t really matter. Sprint is the only 4G ready operator, and will probably stay ahead of the game for a while. Plus, I hear that LTE has its issues that makes it less than desirable. It still has nothing to do with Tmobile using a 3.75 G service and marketing it as a 4G one, one that is supposed to be better than WiMax. I have a lot of respect for what T-Mobile is doing, but in the end, Sprint is in a much better position, since it has more flexibility and speed in the near future.

        Also, to the people complaining about battery life. You need to keep WiMax off when not in range. It eats up battery because its constantly trying to find signal. No different than leaving your 3G on when out of 3G range. Its a little more power hungry, but then, so is 3G when compared to Edge. The technologies will get better. For this instant, T-Mobile has a slight advantage, but it won’t take long for Sprint to surpass it, given what their technology is capable of, not to mention more people are on their network.

        • http://Website watbetch

          With the WiMAX radio ON and ON the Clearwire network, battery life is pitiful. Far worse than 3G.

          T-Mobile is already considering HSPA+ at 42Mbps next year. Blows WiMAX out of the water and it’s backwards compatible with other 3G devices.

          Sprint has no flexibility. The reason why they didn’t build their own 4G network is because they couldn’t afford to. Their own CEO said they didn’t get as much of a head start on “4G” than they would have liked. T-Mobile’s 3G+ and Verizon’s LTE will both be better in more than one way.

        • http://Website Raptor

          If i have 4 cores processor, do i have to switch them manually when not in use?

          EVO has a faulty 4G radio or power management or both. Even in 4G network you will not get less then 4% per hour battery drainage with completely idle cell phone. That means 4G idle time is … 1 day !!!

          One month after the EVO launch Sprint/HTC do not care to fix that.
          Can’t ?

          So far EVO is complete failure in 4G

      • http://Website carol

        the reason wimax doesnt lift off is because wimax was supposed to be a customer only thing,like wifi etc.but network company are trying to pass it as the 4 g network thing when in fact its a user feature people buy.the fact network company are trying to bank on a feature that was supposed to be the replacement of 811 n or other feature made it die before it ever started.wimax is a good techno yes as long as its free or very inexpensive if people have to pay to use it they ll stick to cellphone service instead.but i highly doubt intel will let wimax die .intel rarelly put money in techno for no reason.the word is obama is supposed to push a bill to force wimax to be free .we ll see what the plan is .there is wimax in canada from bell, they charge for it .funny it was develloped to replace wifi .but internet corp are afraid wimax pickup! imagine at full power average city would need 1 or 2 tower to cover the whole city .do you honestly believe network company would let user do .hell no
        but i bet it will happen anyway be it trough google upcoming fiber/wimax network or from obama either way everybody will be able to connect inexpensivly with their smartphone within 2 years.

  • http://Website SF_User

    I recently tried to get a vibrant with Tmo. As a current Tmo customer, I waited a week to get my old number transferred to the new phone, and it never happened! After a string of calls, store visits and emails, I ended up having to return the vibrant after customizing it for a week, getting back my old number which was temporarily deactivated, and now I am on a plan where I am paying MORE than I used to.

    I feel like I got screwed over by Tmo and am looking at alternatives.

    • http://Website AndroidRocks!!!!

      If you are a current T-Mobile user why would you wait for your number to be transferred? It’s SIM based. You take the SIM out of your old phone and put it in your new phone than just have the services need for the Vibrant added to your existing service plan. The number moves with the SIM. It’s that simple.

    • http://Website Anonymous

      I feel your pain.

      I also tried T-Mobile, not once, but twice in the past 4 months.

      First with my Telus Canadian Moto Milestone, the secondly with the MyTouch 3G Slide when it 1st released.

      I was supposed to be getting a discount on T-Mo, yet, they never even applied it to my account.

      Thankfully, I was on their Even More Plus plan, so I could cancel at anytime, bc on the 14th day I turned off my T-Mobile service on my Milestone, and they said it was 15th day, just so I would be forced into the then Non-Refundable Activation Fee.

      I went called, they said the retail store would have to fix that. The store told me different 3 times, “oh sorry, well, we will get it fixed.” After the 3rd time, I complained to the store manager. Finally, it got removed, and I could pay my remaining final bill.

      Figuring it was just the store issue, I tried again with the MT3GS. Didnt get 3G where I lived, even with an official T-Mo device. Not to mention, the battery life, how was it put by another user? Oh yes, “Blew chunks”! about 7-9 hours worth of battery life.

      So, I went to a Radio Shack the morning of the Evo release, about 2 days later and got with Sprint. They applied my 25% discount, already in effect, and credited my Activation fee back to the account.

      I had both phones for about a week and a half.

      The MT3GS was a beautiful device, customizable, colour themes, etc. just stunk with battery life & no 3G in my area, about 10 miles south of a major metro city (and not covered by HSPA+ yet).

      So, I went back to the retail store to return that phone. T-Mo has been harrassing me now to pay them again for this line. $68. for 13 days? Huh? Thats a pricey 13 days. Finally talked to a rep whom reviewed the bill & said there were many billing errors, and credited me back some. Gave my credit card to pay it, then they double charged it. They are denying such, and refuse to credit my card. In fact, they still said, its not paid bc it didnt go thru? BULL!

      Now, if I were you, I would find a provider you can do business with. If it’s not T-Mo, then perhaps Sprint, Verizon, AT&T, Cricket (using a flashed Sprint/Verizon device), even Boost has an Android device now. What ever has best coverage & a sound device.

      But thats just my thoughts…

      • http://Website Nicholas Turner

        Sounds like a pretty bad experience, all I can say about the battery life is it totally depends what someone thinks is “good” battery life. My N1 gets 10 hours or so and I think that’s pretty good based on what the phone does and how useful it is.

  • http://Website Maury

    I live in Austin and have T-mobile but am now switching. At the exact same time the backhaul was underway here in Austin, my cel phone coverage degraded considerably. It got to the point where in 6 calls to customer support, 5 of them dropped.

    I’m not sure what they did with their coverage out near 620/71/Bee Caves, but it went from adequate to unusable. They have received enough complaints they have agreed to let me out of my contract.

    It’s too bad as I really liked T-mobile, but the upgrade in Austin has made the service unusable for me. I’m sure others have had better results.

  • http://Website Diordna

    SFuser – What are you talking about? If you were already a TM customer why wasn’t it as simple as pulling your SIM out and plugging it in the Vibrant?

    • http://Website Rigelian

      That’s my thought. When I switched phones on T-Mobile all I did was switch SIM cards. New number switched with the SIM Card.

  • http://Website Miguel


    What do you mean by no contract plans? You mentioned something about the “even more plus” plan? Please share the details. Me and my wife are looking to buy new phones and we believe T-Mo is the way to go but I haven’t heard anything about this plan? or the things which you speak. :) Thanks!


    • http://jd.stankosky.com JDStankosky

      My wife and I are on the even more plus plan. We have unlimited talk and text for $50 each and unlimited internet for $25 more. All with no contract. :)

  • http://Website Alankrut

    Here in dallas im getting 4.5 , up .5

  • http://Website Chancy

    And they say you can’t eat your cake and have it! Thanks T-Mo!

  • http://Website Gee

    This article should be renamed: 3 simple reasons why T-Mobile 3G is better than Sprint 4g NOW.

    So I’m going to give 3 reasons why Sprint 4G will be eventually better.

    1. WiMax is faster than HSPA+. There’s a reason why HSPA+ is 3G and WiMax is technically 4G. The theoretical speed limits of both are around the tune of 70Mbps (WiMax, and 140Mbps w/ IEEE 802.16m) and 55Mbps (HSPA+).

    So why is HSPA+ currently twice as fast as WiMax? Probably because Sprint/Clear are building their network from the ground up while T-Mobile only has to upgrade existing 3G networks. These current limits of 10 and 21 Mbps are only software limits set by the carriers. Furthermore, Sprint WiMax current implementation can be upgraded to support 802.16m which brings theoretical limits of over 100Mbps.Eitherway, as the networks get more coverage/towers, the speed caps will go up. Which brings me to my next point.

    2. T-Mobile 3G coverage is weak. Everyone knows that T-Mobile has the weakest 3G coverage out of the big 4 carriers. Since HSPA+ are just upgrades to their existing 3G networks, this is unlikely to change with HSPA+. On top of that, Sprint has two times more WiMax spectrum than both AT&T and Verizon have combined for LTE. Once Sprint gets their network fully up, they’ll be a major player in the 4G game.

    3. WiMax is more flexible and scales better than HSPA+. HSPA+, like 3G, gets bogged down once more users get on the network. Since it will share the network with 3G users, expect it to get HEAVILY bogged down. This will result in slower speeds and T-Mo capping bandwidth and data limits. WiMax however does not have this problem which is why Sprint/Clear offer unlimited use. From the beginning I knew that the new $10 fee was a 1) 4G development tax, and 2) unlimited data tax.

    Finally, where as a 4G solution would require networking building for T-Mobile, if WiMax doesn’t work out, LTE is a simple software upgrade for Clear/Sprint.

    In the end though, once you start hitting a certain point, speed doesn’t really matter. Give me 10Mbps with amazing coverage and I’l be happy. Out of of Sprint and T-Mobile, Sprint will be the best option for that (and that’s not even including that they’ll eventually roll out faster speeds).

    • NT_

      Well, that’s interesting information. Didn’t think you deserved downvoting for that.

      A few comments:

      First, I think it’s encouraging that everything that I’ve seen recently (following this blog and several others intermittently) suggests that the network service that T-Mobile & Sprint provide to their customers is the best value and likely to become a better value…since, after all, they are the relative “little-guys”. Good, because I know the likes of AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, et al., CERTAINLY need some competition in something other than how to bilk their customers out of more money for nuthin’.

      Second, put some stock in coverage but not TOO much stock. T-Mobile works *where I go*, and in those places has better coverage than Sprint in all respects. Fine, call me a sheep, but I basically USE my phone in the same three places, week after week. And, T-Mobile’s data access rocks every other phone I’ve seen *in those locations*. So, today, what would you buy? Fine, call me an American, but I want the best phone and service that I can get right now, TODAY, and that’s what I bought. The next time I’m looking for a phone, I’ll consider Sprint if they’re the best…then.

  • http://Website Nick

    Out of all the carriers I’ve been on (including Sprint), I’ve been the happiest with T-Mobile. I’ve been holding off on getting a Vibrant in hopes that they come out with an HTC Android phone that supports HSPA+ by the end of the year. Right now, Sprint has better phones (between the EVO and the Epic), but hopefully TMo will release a high end Android phone that they can really get behind, and with it I can take full advantage of the speeds.

  • Reverse

    I have a Nexus One on T-Mobile, and also have a Clear WiMax account, so I feel qualified to comment on both.

    - First, the elephant in the room that the article doesn’t discuss: data caps. No caps on WiMax, 5GB on T-Mobile.

    - Second: cost. Unlimited data usage WiMax (10MBit/1MBit) (which I can redistribute through WiFi or otherwise at will) effectively costs me $25/month (two usb sticks @ $50/month total). T-mobile is limited AND more expensive.

    - Coverage: I just traveled the midwest and western US, and can safely say that T-Mobile’s coverage (3G, we won’t even mention HSPA+ speeds) sucks. Sure WiMax is few and far between, but at least when you’re in the coverage area you get good speeds. T-Mobile can’t even get me regular 3G speeds most of the time (including at home in the ATL area).

    - Speeds: I regularly get 10 MBit/s on Clear/Sprint. Average download speed I get is probably 6MBit/s. Top speed so far: 15MBit/s – an exception, sure.

    This whole article (the second T-Mobile fawning article in the last few days, mmmm) is based on a wrong assumption anyway: it compares apples to oranges: WiMax 4G is meant to be a replacement for DSL/Cable, 3G on T-Mobile is supposed to be phone-based data.

    4G data is better suited for non-phone devices, 3G (because of its usage caps) is the choice for mobile phone-based data.

  • http://Website Anonymous

    I agree that T-Mobile is a great service provider with lower package costs.
    The main reason I did not stay with T-Mobile was because they only get Edge in my area, just south of a major city with 3G.
    I had a Motorola Milestone (Droid) which i found to use HSPA on AT&T when I used them, but was only able to use Edge on T-Mobile with that also. Switched to the MyTouch 3G Slide, and still only got Edge down here.
    Im sure they will expand and we will get 3G, eventually.

    But their lack of high end Android devices is what made me switch to Sprint for their Evo 4G device. In that major city, i barely got a 4G signal, yet, Sprint hasnt announced a rollout there yet.

    As for T-Mobile being the only major provider to not do contracts, I found when I traded my Samsung Behold 2 I won thru their hourly contest on their website for my Motorola Droid, I could get onto Verizon without a contract. And when I went to AT&T with my Milestone, there was no contract.
    It all depends on if you own your own equipment or not. If you do, no contract, if you dont & you get a phone at a discount, you are under a contract. However, Sprint is the exception here, they make you do a contract if you own your phone or not. So…

    #4 – The Extra $10. 4G Data usage cost (as mentioned above)
    #5 – Contract if you own equipment or not!

    I get a 25% discount each month thru Sprint, so its cheapest for me, but can you really put a price tag on happiness?

    • NT_

      The difference with T-Mobile no-contract plans (Even More Plus) is that they are around $20 cheaper per month compared to their typical individual smartphone plan with contract. So, if you can afford to buy a phone outright — particularly a few months after release when it’s cheaper — you can save a pretty good chunk of change over a 2-yr period.

  • http://Website Jaz

    I agree with the article to a certain extent. But the issue is does it work for you. Currently in my town tmobile is horrible and I have friends in different parts of florida that got rid of tmobile because their coverage wasn’t that good. Their hsdpa+ theoretically may be faster but there are no phones out yet and you have to have coverage to even get it. At this point your better off with sprint. Plus sprint even with 3g doesn’t cap the usage on cell phones. The only cap of 5gb is on aircards. Also sprint is not throttling any speeds on phones yet.

    So even though tmobile is a good competitor, for most people it just doesn’t cut it.

  • Cheesmo

    I am on T-mobile, and I love their customer service. I have been with them for about 8 years, and I have no intention of ever switching. I just got the samsung Vibrant for myself and my wife, and they are fantastic! I am pleased to read that their network is so good, but I’ve never had a problem with coverage to date, so it’s no surprise.

  • http://www.androidcommunity.com simms22

    i regularly see these huge speeds in brooklyn on my nexus. thanks tmobile http://twitgoo.com/195b91 :p

    • http://www.androidcommunity.com simms22

      oh, i average 15-16gb data a month ;)

  • http://Website samdaddy

    mytouch3g in tampa, fl T-MOBILE

    download speed: 8.9 mbps
    Upload Speed: 1.9 mbps
    via speed test.

    Couldn’t believe it.

  • http://Website JERRY

    Nobody mentions that Sprint is the only carrier with no DATA CAP …. so their Tmobile plan is not truly unlimited..

  • http://Website Name (required)

    Its so great to see Tmobile actually investing in their infrastructure. It proves that they have a long term commitment to their customers in providing a solid network and great handsets.

  • http://Website manly man

    apples or oranges

  • http://seriouslyguys... dave

    ok, obviously there are fanboys out there whose girl parts are bleeding and require the immediate attention of a “sanitary female napkin”, heres the deal guys. all 4 carriers have their pros and cons. i have used all 4 personally. i used cingular ( before att bought them), verizon, sprint , and now tmobile. heres a little list of pros and cons i found for each carrier

    att- pro: amazing coverage…..period. i felt as though i could have gotten service in balad iraq on my deployment, except that the cell phone signal could have set off I.E.D’s n crap…

    att- pro: at the time, android wasnt even out yet when i used them, 9 the razor 1 had just released for christs sake) the phones were alright. never really had an issue until it came time to call cust service…

    att- con: expensive as crap….over 100 dollars every month, and that was even on a simple plan.

    att con: they totally screwed me over on my deployment….lets just say they had their fingers crossed when they said they set my account up for cancellation the day i left for iraq….yea….came home 2 years later to a healthy 1200 dollar att bill…yay.

    verizon pro: again impressive coverage… if i ever needed coverage while mountain biking down mount olympus on mars…this would be the carrier to use….lol

    verizon pro: phone quality, customer service….all a great thumbs up in my book. i still dont know why exactly i left them for sprint…

    verizon con: the plans….there wasnt exactly a 1 size fits all plan when i had them… i couldnt get a 500 minute, unlim text and data…i had to have a talk plan, then add the other features which built up an expensive bill each month…

    verizon con: well……um……haha…..not really sure what to say….they treated me pretty fair…so nothing here.

    sprint pro…….. : um………pehaps the unlimited plan was pretty sweet when i had them….total bullcrap i HAD to have the plan to buy a few particular phones….I;E the palm pre, the instinct, the htc phones…..geez…

    sprint pro: coverage was very meaty in places….but others not so much, i travel around the country every now and then for work, and it was weird…i had 4 bars of signal on wolf creek summit pass in colorado mountains…..but crap for coverage in downtown L.A.

    sprint con: lol two words….CUSTOMER…..and SERVICE…..need i say more…

    sprint con: unfortunately the price for every little thing you wanted changed in your plan required some I.T guy to write a new kernel program them test it with NASA to 2 weeks then beta test with people around the country, and then get back to you with the details just so you could add handset protection of your account…. good lord…..the price people….sprint is one thing very well…expensive.

    now for tmobile….everyone always dogs the little guy….yes tmobile is the smallest carrier, but dont for one second think that size represents the status of ones qualities…
    tmobile pro: no deposit fee……you want a tmobile account….if you have the phone already, you only pay for the plan. huge thumbs up in my book

    tmobile pro: customer service, yes, when i call tmobile, i get person that speaks fluent english, without an accent, that seems to know the answers to my questions before i even ask….i cant even begin to describe how thankful i am for that.

    tmobile con: coverage…when in the cities, you may have absolutely great coverage…i know i do, but we dont all live in the city now do we. i live in a small quiet town maybe 26 miles away from the capitol of my state, and i get terrible coverage in my house….

    tmobile con: payment options…..sprint has a spending limit…i miss that lol, tmobile has the dreaded FLEX PAY….which if you have it then you realize just how unflexible it is. thats like describing the marines as highly intelligent death machines instead of the super egotistical bullet magnets most of them are ( army man myself so a little branch flogging is always fun…lol)

    now you will probably say things like thats total BS, well go ahead, this is my opinion. its mine not yours. so nana nana boo boo. lol go cry to your mom that the mean army guy was making fun of your carrier online. you guys need to grow up, and stop acting so childish about cell phones… they ( the carriers) all have their niche in the field. and they all deserve respect. besides…i remember when cell phones were black lcd screens running snake and cheesy ringtones lol….

  • http://Website snowbdr89

    i could careless how much tmo has with their hspa+, they forgot to mention dropped calls with tmo compared to sprint!! i switched from verizon to sprint but tried out tmo for a month, cant tell you how many dropped calls i had in that month, so i decided on sprint and i love it. 3megs compared to 5 megs? blah blah blah who cares about that small of a difference im totally happy with 3megs on my phone and 80 a month for unlimited everything.. : )

  • http://Website stan t

    I’ve being with T-mobile for about about 5 years. I hate this company. They just have no coverage. They are worse than AT&T (yes, I’ve being with ATT as well). OK, maybe I don’t really hate them, T-mobile is nice and customer friendly company, I really like their plans and the way they behave… but they still have no coverage. They had no coverage in my house, in my office, indoor, outdoor. West coast, east cost (while being with T-mobile I moved from CA to NH/NJ and back) – no coverage. Constant dropped calls, terrible reception, no reception at all.
    Now I’m with Verizon. You know, I forgot what is drop call is! I forgot what is no coverage. I have coverage everywhere, literally. In my house, office, campsite in the middle of the woods, mountain peak… It’s just works. And it’s 3G. Well ,maybe it’s not that fast as HSPA+. But it;s there. It works. I would prefer having a slow connection to not having a connection at all.
    I think that CDMA is simply superior to GSM. Why both CDMA carries are better than GSM carries in US? There must be a reason for it…
    I never had Sprint. But I’m sure it can’t be worse than T-mobile.

  • http://Website Anon Y Mouse

    Let’s be clear (no pun intended):

    Clear/WiMax/Sprint reserves the right to throttle speeds when usage climbs above 5 GB/mo. It doesn’t mean that they necessarily WILL do it, just that the company reserves to right to so do if it senses abuse of bandwidth by a subscriber.

    T-mobile has essentially the same restriction on the 5 GB plans. To say one or the other has “no cap” is erroneous.

    To say that a “no cap” plan on Sprint is “cheaper” than an Even More plan on T-mobile with HSPA+ is wrong because (A) both have caps, and (B) the Sprint 4G has a built-in $10/mo surcharge for using the 4G phone, regardless of whether or not you’re able to use 4G service in your location.

    Furthermore, if any of you is going over 5 GB/mo, then you are part of a minuscule fraction of the overall cellphone public. Companies like Sprint and T-mobile want every subscriber, but most rarely use the enough talk, text or data to make an “unlimited” plan a losing proposition for the carrier.

    I am continually amused by the wireheads who are so enamored of their cellphone/carrier that they begin to believe that what THEY want should be the norm. In reality, a 5 GB cap is not only quite fair, it discourages the sort of abuse of mobile broadband that can bring a carrier’s service for ALL its customers to its knees. AT&T learned the hard way that the iPhone can overwhelm service in metro areas, and now Verizon is learning that DroidX users consumer 5X the bandwidth of its other smartphones–if Verizon ever gets the iPhone too, then you can expect Verizon customers begin whining about slow 3G service in metro areas like AT&T customers do now.

    I have T-Mobile, have had it for almost a decade. I have traveled with it around the US, and relocated from SoCal to the South during that time. For the majority of the time I’ve used their service, it has rocked. If I lived in a more remote area, I might feel differently. In that case, I would use a different carrier. But this “my dad can beat up your dad” back and forth is too comical for words.

    For me, T-mobile represents a huge bargain over what I would get from switching carriers. I get fast data service for an economical rate. If it doesn’t work as a solution for you, don’t use it. But don’t likewise take the attitude that the company “sucks”. That is as juvenile as it is flat wrong. Open a window and let a little fresh air in.

  • http://Website jbn

    I really dont believe tmo 3g gets up to 7mbps, when i tried them here in slc i would never get above 500kbps

  • http://Website Trucker

    I’ve had all 4 of them

    1. Verizon – best coverage hands down, expensive, (then) crappy phones
    2. AT&T – very good coverage, expensive as hell
    3. T-Mobile – I’m trucker and I drive all across the country and unless I was in major city, no 3G and I was roaming A LOT! You can forget Pandora.
    4. Sprint – almost all interstates covered with 3G and I’m paying ~$50 less for 3(!) phones with unlimited data than I paid for ONE (iPhone) with AT&T.

    I red the contract with Sprint very carefully and I asked also techsupp people and there is no data cap on PHONE data plans. What I’ve been told by 2nd lev tech supp was that 5Gb cap is ONLY for data cards.

    Only thing that sucks is that if you roaming data with Sprint, it takes up your minutes.

    • http://Website Nicholas Turner

      Just like to put this out there. T-Mobile has no roaming in the sense that you get billed or otherwise charged more if your roaming, everything stays the same on your bill.

      Roaming is just slower usually, depending where you are.

      I also went to Michigan recently with my parents and brother, we watched netflix and hulu the whole way using a sprint 3G card, there was about 20% of the trip when I had absolutely no coverage and another 10% that was 2G or roaming.

      Sprint does limit your data usage if your roaming, they don’t charge you for it though.

    • http://Website Ben

      Just wanted to let you know your information is wrong. Data Roaming is crazy expensive(no matter the carrier)

      It doesn’t use your “talk time” minutes.

      Might be useful information for you :)

      • http://Website munky

        Data roaming isn’t “crazy expensive” if you have an everything data plan like the one Sprint offers. No roaming charges for anything, not even data. All for $69.99. That’s one of the advantages Sprint has over the other major carriers. Of course the other carriers their advantages over Sprint too.

        • http://Website munky

          Sorry, that should have said “the other carriers *have* their advantages over Sprint too.”

  • http://Website ken

    Well written article bit I can’t agree with you about sprints 4g flash speeds. I am in Pittsburgh which is a market that isn’t officially live yet but there is places where the towers are live already. I was able to get about 7mb down on average and had a peek of 11.2mb down.

  • http://Website Ben

    Wrong. Sprint’s 4g markets is tremendously faster then the 3G service offered by TMOBILE. I am sick and tired of this damn commericials claming 4 of tmobile. Understand Sprint is still creating its 4g network and spreading. Only certain markets have it at the moment. They do have the LARGEST 4G network.

    Now as far as handsets go, go to http://www.phonescoop.com (most respected cellphone site out there) and check ratings on phones. Sprint dominates TMOBILE there as well.

    Your article was well written if you like one sided arguements based on opinion.

    PS. Sprint has a larger coverage network. (DATA Coverage isn’t even close) Thank you for your time

  • http://Website Gi

    Sounds like a lot of tension brewing up here! Anyway, I have both and they serve my purpose depending on what area I am in. But from what I know, the prepaid T-Mobile service does not offer unlimited data. you either get 30mb, 100mb or 2gb. And I couldn’t help but notice that the writer of this article said T-Mobile offers a “theoretical 21 Mbps”. Now whether or not if this is false advertisement is not important. Location makes all the difference and I have gotten 4.4 Mbps Dl speed on 4g. But T-Mobile’s 3.5g is accessible in more places and it is available to prepaid customers unlike every other major provider out there.

  • http://Website tony

    dream on !!!!!!!! t mobile is joke next to sprint .

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