Using SGH-i747 on T-Mobile

Drerunsit

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I recently went over to T-Mobile and bought a SIM card and subscribed to their $70 Unlimited everything plan. I recently moved to a T-Mobile LTE area and wanted to try out their service for a few days around town, but I'm still with AT&T (grandfathered unlimited data). Obviously, T-Mobile offers much more flexibility and is much cheaper. However, after just about 3 days, I quickly realized that AT&T was the better option in terms of network speed and availability. So, I went today to the T-Mobile store to cancel service. The representative asked me what the reason was for cancelling, especially after such a short time.

So, I explained to her that the LTE speeds were far inferior to what I was getting with AT&T. As an example, I managed to get 19-21 Mbps in 5-bar LTE zones with AT&T, compared to 4-7 Mbps with T-Mobile. Additionally, and probably most significantly, I noticed that when LTE was not available, I would get either 4g (HSPA) or Edge. Now, this is the significant point because I did not get Edge anywhere in town with AT&T, and often saw LTE where T-Mobile had Edge.

And finally, we get to my real question. Upon explaining my concerns to the representative, she told me that I was getting these mediocre LTE speeds was my phone. She said that an unlocked phone will never yield the same speeds as a T-Mobile phone. This seemed a little strange to me, but I figured I would come here and see if anyone can confirm or deny.
 

keyzlife

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I recently went over to T-Mobile and bought a SIM card and subscribed to their $70 Unlimited everything plan. I recently moved to a T-Mobile LTE area and wanted to try out their service for a few days around town, but I'm still with AT&T (grandfathered unlimited data). Obviously, T-Mobile offers much more flexibility and is much cheaper. However, after just about 3 days, I quickly realized that AT&T was the better option in terms of network speed and availability. So, I went today to the T-Mobile store to cancel service. The representative asked me what the reason was for cancelling, especially after such a short time.

So, I explained to her that the LTE speeds were far inferior to what I was getting with AT&T. As an example, I managed to get 19-21 Mbps in 5-bar LTE zones with AT&T, compared to 4-7 Mbps with T-Mobile. Additionally, and probably most significantly, I noticed that when LTE was not available, I would get either 4g (HSPA) or Edge. Now, this is the significant point because I did not get Edge anywhere in town with AT&T, and often saw LTE where T-Mobile had Edge.

And finally, we get to my real question. Upon explaining my concerns to the representative, she told me that I was getting these mediocre LTE speeds was my phone. She said that an unlocked phone will never yield the same speeds as a T-Mobile phone. This seemed a little strange to me, but I figured I would come here and see if anyone can confirm or deny.

I have a TMO GS4 as well and when I run speedtests side by side the LTE speeds are comparable. Hope that helps.
 
Aug 9, 2013
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No, this shouldn't be an issue with the phone. The AT&T version has gsm, and unlocked it's compatable with most of T-Mobile's bands just like a regular T-Mobile phone. The only band I believe that isn't compatible is the one that T-Mobile uses for standard 3g, but hey I'm no expert with networks. The T-Mobile lady was blaming the phone instead of the real problem, the service. It's not their fault, it's just not rolled out that well yet which is why you saw the speed and LTE location difference. I'd stick with AT&T for now, but once they get the network decent in your area definitely go for it and make the switch. Hope I helped!

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Drerunsit

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Awesome contribution Jeremy. I figured she was off about the subject, because I know about the bands as well. Just wasn't sure if maybe there was carrier restriction, though I think they would make that clear when you bring a phone over. Anyhow, seems that's not the case. I will be patient and wait until T-Mobile has more solid infrastructure in my area. Hopefully they won't follow suit and become greedy and overpriced like AT&T. I love their $70 unlimited everything.
 

anthony2558

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Yeah it's probably just the network in your area. I get decent speeds tho.


Sent from my HTC One using Tapatalk 2
 

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grenefroggie

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T-Mo, if I am not mistaken, does not use the same LTE bands as AT&T. Also, T-Mo has HSPA+ up to 42Mbps, but the AT&T version of the GS3 only supports HSPA+ up to 24Mbps. That is likely why you experience such poor speeds when doing speed tests.

AT&T GS3 supposedly supports 1700Mhz, which is a band that T-Mo uses for LTE, but might not be enabled in the software. Even if it is enabled, there is no promise it will work due to other configuration settings.


https://t-mobile.jive-mobile.com/#jive-document?content=/api/core/v2/documents/5627

4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) is an enhancement of T-Mobile?s nationwide 4G HSPA+ technology. LTE delivers faster speeds?especially for uploads?and more capacity.
T-Mobile?s 4G LTE network will operate on the same band as our 4G HSPA+ network, Band IV, which uses 1700 MHz and 2100 MHz frequencies to transmit data services.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 4
 

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