1. MRW1215's Avatar
    I'm waiting for my contract with Verizon to end in about three months, and I'm weighing my options for different services once that ends. I'm kind of taking a look at both T-Mobile alone, and Google's Project Fi. According to both's coverage maps, it looks like my area is showing to have great coverage, and I'm wondering how accurate that really is.

    For comparison sake, I also looked at Sprint's coverage map, and similarly, it shows having good coverage for my area, but I've known at least a couple of people (offline, in real life, of course) that said Sprint's service is absolutely terrible.

    I see T-Mobile has some kind of Test Drive program. I suppose I might give that a try, but the overly lazy person in me doesn't want to be bothered by carrying two phones around for a week and having to take the Test Drive phone back to a T-Mobile store, heh. But if worse comes to worse, I suppose I can give that a shot.
    04-23-2015 10:00 AM
  2. B. Diddy's Avatar
    T-Mobile's Test Drive program is probably the best way to really test out their network in a real world setting. I would highly recommend it. Their network coverage maps are supposed to be getting more accurate, since they said they were going to change it to actual crowdsourced information. But that still won't tell you if you get good reception inside your house or your office (which is important with T-Mobile, since their frequencies often don't penetrate into big buildings that well).

    Check out sensorly.com or rootmetrics.com to see crowdsourced information.
    R2D2 631 likes this.
    04-23-2015 11:18 AM
  3. Almeuit's Avatar
    I'd do the test drive. I personally never trust any carriers maps.
    04-23-2015 05:45 PM
  4. R2D2 631's Avatar
    Tmobile test drive sucks.. they give you an iphone 5..i lost interest really fast with that phone...betwewn the operating system, small dull screen with small keyboard it reminded me how much i hate iphones.. wasnt a good test drive @ all.. and you're not going to benefit t mo new 700mhz spectrum because the iPhone 5 to old and doesn't work with band 12

    Posted via the Android Central App
    04-24-2015 11:30 AM
  5. Almeuit's Avatar
    Tmobile test drive sucks.. they give you an iphone 5..i lost interest really fast with that phone...betwewn the operating system, small dull screen with small keyboard it reminded me how much i hate iphones.. wasnt a good test drive @ all.. and you're not going to benefit t mo new 700mhz spectrum because the iPhone 5 to old and doesn't work with band 12

    Posted via the Android Central App
    The test drive isn't meant for the phone though .. it is meant for the network. You won't get the 700 as you said but that isn't in a lot of places. The test drive is simply to call, txt, and test data speeds.. so the phone is irrelevant.

    I don't see other companies doing this so I beg to differ on the "it sucks" part since others won't even give you a free phone to try their network.
    B. Diddy likes this.
    04-24-2015 11:58 AM
  6. sulla1965's Avatar
    I'd do the test drive. I personally never trust any carriers maps.
    I've used t-mobile twice in last 5 years. Each time I've encounter sporadic, but very annoying dead zones.(Emergency calls only) This despite being in an excellent coverage area overall. On Verizon I've never seen a dead zone yet. Verizon is still king of coverage, but I can understand why many look to t-mobile. I just can't accept not always being able to make a call when I need to.
    StayFly likes this.
    04-24-2015 03:14 PM
  7. Almeuit's Avatar
    I've used t-mobile twice in last 5 years. Each time I've encounter sporadic, but very annoying dead zones.(Emergency calls only) This despite being in an excellent coverage area overall. On Verizon I've never seen a dead zone yet. Verizon is still king of coverage, but I can understand why many look to t-mobile. I just can't accept not always being able to make a call when I need to.
    Understandable but I still don't trust carrier maps. Verizon or not. There is a mall in my neck of the woods .. shows LTE .. inside many stores it would bounce LTE to 1x .. So no map is perfect. A test drive or 3rd party is what I trust more.

    And your story versus mine just goes to show how different places can be. On T-Mobile I haven't found a dead spot yet where I live. The most I run into is an area maybe giving me HSPA but that is usually on the outskirts of town.
    B. Diddy likes this.
    04-24-2015 04:08 PM
  8. B. Diddy's Avatar
    I used to have Verizon, and in the heart of the Silicon Valley, there would be pockets of very poor signal and even dead spots--most notably in Cupertino (right near Apple!) and near Stanford University. You'd think that in the tech capital of the world, cell coverage would be flawless, but no. T-Mobile actually has better coverage in those areas. So yes, it's very dependent on your area.
    Almeuit likes this.
    04-24-2015 04:46 PM
  9. DLK1's Avatar
    I myself have had good coverage with AT&T been with them for 8 or 9 years. I live in remote areas all the time, because I live in a RV and travel the US from corner to corner. Verizon says, they have the claims to have the best coverage, however may time I have had coverage and the guy in the site next to me on Verizon had none. I guess if you want coverage everywhere you should carry two phone on two different networks. I guess that is why phones with dual SIM's are out there.
    B. Diddy likes this.
    04-24-2015 05:28 PM
  10. mdk32014's Avatar
    I have found them to be truthfull. Give them a try i say. I got a cheep phone at walmart to test with.

    Posted via the Android Central App
    04-24-2015 09:05 PM
  11. raino's Avatar
    When you are doing a test drive....the phone indeed does matter. I PHONES are trash....
    Yet TMO has chosen them for the Test Drive program. So what does that tell you?
    04-27-2015 09:22 AM
  12. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Using an iPhone makes sense, given its popularity in the US. iPhones have never been known for poor reception (Antennagate notwithstanding). The Test Drive is intended for the prospective customer to test the network, not the phone​.
    04-27-2015 10:35 AM
  13. anon(5719825)'s Avatar
    When you are doing a test drive....the phone indeed does matter. I PHONES are trash....

    Posted via the Android Central App
    Let this be a warning, do not start this tired old argument here. Just let it go.
    B. Diddy likes this.
    04-27-2015 10:36 AM
  14. MRW1215's Avatar
    Well, day one with my Test Drive phone, and my signal in my house seems very spotty. Every time I turn the screen on to play with the iPhone, I start out on "T-Mobile 4G", then after a few minutes, it changes to "T-Mobile E", then just to "T-Mobile". When it's on "4G" it seems to work fine, but anything less than that, it becomes super sluggish. Though, I suppose I wouldn't be using cell data in my home much, anyway. I guess I'll try taking the phone to work with my today, and see how the signal holds up there.

    I'm really annoyed that Apple requires you to add a method of payment in order to download anything from the app store. I really want to run some speed tests to compare speeds between them and Verizon, but I don't want to add my method of payment to a phone I'll be returning to T-Mobile in a few days, even if I can restore the phone to factory settings before doing so (I'm always super paranoid that someone could restore my info somehow and gain access to my method of payment).
    04-29-2015 09:39 AM
  15. anon(5719825)'s Avatar
    Well, day one with my Test Drive phone, and my signal in my house seems very spotty. Every time I turn the screen on to play with the iPhone, I start out on "T-Mobile 4G", then after a few minutes, it changes to "T-Mobile E", then just to "T-Mobile". When it's on "4G" it seems to work fine, but anything less than that, it becomes super sluggish. Though, I suppose I wouldn't be using cell data in my home much, anyway. I guess I'll try taking the phone to work with my today, and see how the signal holds up there.

    I'm really annoyed that Apple requires you to add a method of payment in order to download anything from the app store. I really want to run some speed tests to compare speeds between them and Verizon, but I don't want to add my method of payment to a phone I'll be returning to T-Mobile in a few days, even if I can restore the phone to factory settings before doing so (I'm always super paranoid that someone could restore my info somehow and gain access to my method of payment).
    As far as iTunes security goes, as long as you enabled Touch ID for iTunes purchases, you really have nothing to worry about. To be even more secure, you can change your password after returning the phone.

    Try an Android phone on T-Mobile before making a decision about the carrier. I have several Android phones and two iPhones. In areas that I have poor LTE coverage on the iPhone, I can get a good fast data connection on an Android phone. I never ever have trouble making phone calls where I am but the data connection seems to suffer the most on my 6+ and 5S.
    04-29-2015 09:57 AM
  16. MRW1215's Avatar
    True. So, T-Mobile's signal seems okay while I'm here at work. Paying around with it next to my Verizon phone. Seems like my Verizon phone is loading pages faster, but I'm sure that probably also has to do with the iPhone versus my Nexus 6, rather than the networks.

    Still feeling a bit undecided, though. Kinda feel like Verizon has better coverage "just in case", but I like the idea of T-Mobile's unlimited plan, and I'd also be interested in Project Fi which uses T-Mobile, so... Hm.
    04-29-2015 03:44 PM
  17. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Keep in mind that for your house, you could get a signal booster from T-Mobile for free (you just have to return it to them if you ever leave them). That signal booster can either be a Cel-Fi, which boosts the actual cell signal, or a Wi-Fi Cellspot Router, which is primarily for wi-fi calling (but is also quite a nice router in itself). See this site: https://support.t-mobile.com/communi...sonal-cellspot.
    04-29-2015 03:50 PM

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