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Old 11-20-2020, 09:46 AM   #1
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T-Mobile 5G coverage map

I tend to be suspicious of marketing information like cell service coverage maps as I seldom seem to have the signal strength they show, but I was intrigued enough by an email that I got from T-Mobile concerning their free service trial to check their 5G coverage map.

I live in the Phoenix area, but on the fringe of what is normally thought of as the metro area and the Verizon service I have is OK, but not usually very consistent. Sometimes at home I have 3 bars, sometimes 2 bars and sometimes I can not even make a phone call, so the idea that I would have 5G coverage from T-Mobile seems odd, especially since I have not seen a 5G tower in this area. Still, the T-Mobile map is quite clear in showing 5G coverage in this area. In fact it shows 5G coverage in some of the rural communities that we camp in so I am both puzzled and surprised.

Does anyone on this forum use T-Mobile? And, if so, have they found the coverage maps to be accurate? While I don't have a 5G phone and had no plans to buy one I might do that if there really is 5G coverage in this area and decent coverage where we camp. Some of their "unlimited" plans are less expensive than the current Verizon plan we are on, less expensive than the Google Fi plans and I think even less than the Visible plans, especially for a veteran.
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Old 11-20-2020, 03:34 PM   #2
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Does anyone on this forum use T-Mobile? And, if so, have they found the coverage maps to be accurate?
The coverage maps for both AT&T and T-Mobile also show 5G in my semi-rural home location. I'm currently thrilled that my AT&T 4G service occasionally reaches ~20 Mbps and, as for T-Mobile, the last time I checked it was down around 5Mpbs. I seriously doubt we're due to get 5G anytime soon!
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Old 11-20-2020, 03:41 PM   #3
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5G ???

No matter the carrier, all 5G networks are still building out the network. You are right to be skeptical of the proposed maps. Before buying into any new 5G equipment myself, I plan to wait until at least version two or three. There is still to much incompatibility between the carriers and the systems they are each pushing. The only thing for Shure is that 5G will use the RF slot for TV channel two. What ever data format and mode the IEEE decides is the best will make and break companies (VHS vs Beta).
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Old 11-20-2020, 03:51 PM   #4
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Beware coverage maps.
AT&T map indicates we have 4G. To get ANY signal we have to drive to the interstate or hop in the 4-wheeler and climb to the top of the ridge behind us.
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Old 11-20-2020, 04:14 PM   #5
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Most of T-mobile recent expansion seems to be on the 600mhz band(71). That signal carries much better than higher frequencies.
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Old 11-21-2020, 06:04 AM   #6
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Some maps allow you to switch views and ZOOM... In my rural area..ATT and T MOBILE maps are spot on well within a few hundred feet,, MY property is on a knoll.. 1340ft.elev maybe 150 acres share this area with another 200+ tapering off into a hollow on 3 sides N,E,W south we flow into more of a long valley 5-6 miles..

Any way my Property is dead red or Blue on maps, expand mad and around by north east side it goes white for a large area with spots.. YEP that is how it looks..

T Mobile shows 5G, CellTower mapper shows the tower very close to have the %G Low band... Last Saturday a yound lady visited and had to take video and send from my living room (adopting/rescue a dog). I said it may be spotty. She said now I am live with ...rescue.. She said it is a new 5g Iphone, Tmobile.. here boy friend said his is up and it was ATT.. same phone... BLAH BLAH.
Almost wants be to grab one LOL..

I just grabbed a Mint/TMobile plan for $90-3month + 3 months free, 35g per month.. I have to plans like this, after promos and family poop.. over 400 gigs for 6 months for < 180.. I get 15-23DL all day , use the place up country 12-16 days a month so it is plenty with my personal Visible phone as a back up. at 7-16DL depending on sun/wind and chance.. LOL
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Old 11-28-2020, 03:01 PM   #7
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5G due to its higher frequency signal is going to have at best half the range of 4G. 5G is designed for use in cities and it is never going to be effective in rural areas.

The telecom companies know that it is cheaper to put a 5G or equivalent repeater in everyone's home than to build cell towers for 4G to cover an area. Where I live there are hills and only one of five cell towers within a 20 mile radius is able to provide a 2-bar signal to my house.
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Old 11-28-2020, 06:44 PM   #8
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5G due to its higher frequency signal is going to have at best half the range of 4G. 5G is designed for use in cities and it is never going to be effective in rural areas.
With all due respect, in the past couple of months all three major carriers have redefined what they mean by 5G by using Dynamic Spectrum Sharing (DSS) to enable them to share 4G and 5G band in the sub-6GHz region.

Although this "5G Lite" won't have the very high speed capabilities of the mm wave 5G you are describing, it's going to be somewhat faster than the 4G we currently have. And it won't have the installation issues that you raise.

https://www.fiercewireless.com/opera...ss-performance

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Old 11-29-2020, 07:59 AM   #9
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With all due respect, in the past couple of months all three major carriers have redefined what they mean by 5G by using Dynamic Spectrum Sharing (DSS) to enable them to share 4G and 5G band in the sub-6GHz region.

Although this "5G Lite" won't have the very high speed capabilities of the mm wave 5G you are describing, it's going to be somewhat faster than the 4G we currently have. And it won't have the installation issues that you raise.

https://www.fiercewireless.com/opera...ss-performance

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My current carrier is Verizon and their coverage map now shows 5G where we live out in the suburbs of the Phoenix area where previously it showed the area as 4G only. In fact their US coverage map is now almost completely 5G but I am not sure what actual service on a 5G capable phone would be.

T-Mobile is going to regular 5G but, based on what I was told on their tech line, the phone will compare the 5G and 4G signals and switch to the one that is stronger and since pretty much everywhere I look on the T-Mobile map they have a stronger 4G signal than 5G signal that means 4G speed only. What has surprised me about T-Mobile is that they have very strong 5G signals in some really out of the way low population places - Dateland, Arizona, which is a very small community about 60 miles from Yuma, but a place that we stop for a date shake when we travel through that area - Duncan, Arizona, which is a very small community in south eastern Arizona - Quartzsite, Arizona, which you are probably aware of, and where they show 5G all the way out at the boondocking sites - Salina, Kansas, which is a community of about 40,000 people in the middle of Kansas (I used to teach college there so I checked) and other places. They are not restricted to large population centers only.

Verizon is talking up their 5G but when I stopped at a Verizon store in one of the large shopping areas they told me that the Verizon signal does not make it into the store, which is a bit depressing for someone who has Verizon service.

It all seems to be a crapshoot and there is no way to tell who really has the faster service without a 5G capable phone. I don't know if the market is going to be stable for the next couple of years in term of which company will provide the best service for people who travel a lot, but a comment about DSS in the article you posted a link to was:

Most of the time, itís on par, and every once and a while, you get a little bit less, but in general, itís surpassing our expectations and weíre still optimizing.

That is not terribly encouraging to someone who has Verizon coverage. Fortunately the carriers no longer impose a long lock on the phones that they sell and it is easy enough to change from one carrier to another. After perhaps 7 or 8 years with Verizon I am seriously considering changing to T-Mobile, provided the service is good enough. Their 55+ plans are pretty inviting.
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Old 11-29-2020, 10:32 AM   #10
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It all seems to be a crapshoot and there is no way to tell who really has the faster service without a 5G capable phone. I don't know if the market is going to be stable for the next couple of years in term of which company will provide the best service for people who travel a lot, but a comment about DSS in the article you posted a link to was:

Most of the time, it’s on par, and every once and a while, you get a little bit less, but in general, it’s surpassing our expectations and we’re still optimizing.

That is not terribly encouraging to someone who has Verizon coverage. .
I agree that was a rather ridiculous statement for the Verizon CTO have made. He might have well have said that "we're sorry that some of our customers have invested in 5G phones because, at present, that investment was a waste!"

One thing that is clear is that the 5G that most of us will be able to receive in the next ~5 years will be this sort of "5G Lite" which will be, at best, a bit faster than the 4G most of us have today. Any major increase in speed through mm wave (or other) technology is a ways off.

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Old 11-29-2020, 04:28 PM   #11
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I agree that was a rather ridiculous statement for the Verizon CTO have made. He might have well have said that "we're sorry that some of our customers have invested in 5G phones because, at present, that investment was a waste!"

One thing that is clear is that the 5G that most of us will be able to receive in the next ~5 years will be this sort of "5G Lite" which will be, at best, a bit faster than the 4G most of us have today. Any major increase in speed through mm wave (or other) technology is a ways off.

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agree...

I am just puzzled that all the hype into 5G when the limits had to be known.. I guess all this push to LTE by sister companies and large discounts to reseller partners if to sustain cash flow as %G deploy cannot be turning good numbers as expected...
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Old 11-29-2020, 05:57 PM   #12
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I am just puzzled that all the hype into 5G when the limits had to be known.. .
Maybe some of the tech guys got "ahead of their headlights" with respect to the enormous investment it would take to bring mm wave 5G to the entire US. DSS 5G won't be nearly as exciting but it will be a lot less expensive to implement.
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Old 11-30-2020, 08:01 AM   #13
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I am just puzzled that all the hype into 5G when the limits had to be known.. I guess all this push to LTE by sister companies and large discounts to reseller partners if to sustain cash flow as %G deploy cannot be turning good numbers as expected...
At this point I assume all of the hype is largely marketing inspired. While I was thankfully never a marketing guy it seems to me that there are only 2 ways to improve smartphone sales - size and speed of the phone.

The new foldable phones do not seem to have big sellers so the companies are forced to try to improve download speeds and since most urban areas are reasonably well covered they are left with 5G.

But that is all guess work on my part.
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Old 11-30-2020, 09:24 AM   #14
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You cannot believe the coverage maps. We have been in the fringe are several times that have the maps showing data coverage for 4G. The signal was barely usable. The mpas are a best and hopeful coverage.

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