T-Mobile iPhone

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by onthecouchagain, Mar 15, 2013.

  1. macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #1
    Does anyone know or can wager an educated guess whether or not the "T-Mobile iPhone" will be just an unlocked iPhone 5, or will it be a specially produced T-Mobile phone.

    No, right? It'll just be the unlocked GSM version since Tmobile is refarming to match the iPhone antennas, and not Apple to match Tmobile's air waves, right?

    Sorry if I got that all wrong.
     
  2. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2013
    #2
    If it's not it really should be since it will be retail price and not subsidized from what I have read. The one I run on tmobile was apple/factory unlocked and so were all my friends that switched over. I wonder if there will be some lock on the people who buy it with the installment plan.
     
  3. macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2012
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #3
    It will most likely be locked to T-Mobile like the other carriers. T-Mobile has no incentive to sell the phone unlocked out of the box.
     
  4. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2010
    #4
    Meaning that it would have to be tailored to T-Mobile's frequencies ;) :rolleyes:
     
  5. macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2012
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #5
    Not necessarily. With their refarmed network their frequencies will be identical to AT&T. Apple isn't making an AWS iPhone for Tmobile. So it will pretty much be exactly the same as the AT&T iPhone 5 but carrier locked to Tmobile instead of AT&T. It works kind of the same way that the CDMA carriers have identical iPhones but they are carrier locked to each carrier. The only exception is Verizon because they are required to sell the iPhone 5 unlocked.
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    #6
    However, if TMobile goes through with their plans to sell smart phones unsubsidized, then they don't have the argument of making up the subsidy as part of it.

    However, I could see them selling it locked, and unlocking once it is fully paid for. So, if they do a deal where you buy the phone on $25/month payments (like Walmart is doing with the ST iPhone), it would be locked until it is paid for. But if you went ahead and used a credit card, as far as TMobile is concerned, it is paid for. Even if you stretch the credit card payments for the phone for 10 years (and thousands of dollars in interest :)
     
  7. thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #7
    Interesting stuff, all. Thanks. I just picked up an unlocked iPh5 from Apple and activated it with Tmo. Was just wondering if I might "miss out" on anything.

    If being locked to Tmo is all I'll be missing out on, then it's all fine.

    Will the Apple unlocked iPh5 ever run HSPA+ or 4G on Tmobile, then?
     
  8. macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2012
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #8
    Unlocked iPhones already get HSPA+ on Tmobile in the areas where they have refarmed their network. You'll be able to get LTE once Apple issues the carrier update that allows it to connect to their LTE network.
     
  9. thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #9

    :O

    I hope that is true. Great to hear. Any timeframe on that?
     
  10. macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2012
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #10
    Tmobile says April for the iPhone so the carrier update has to be out around the same time.
     
  11. thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #11
    Do you know if the update will be from Apple themselves or Tmobile? And will it undo jailbreak?
     
  12. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2008
    #12
    It will most likely just be a carrier settings update file or inclouded in an iOS 6.x.x update. If the latter, then yes, the jailbreak will be rendered useless.

    Kevin
     
  13. thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #13
    I see. Thank you. I guess we'll see in April...
     
  14. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Location:
    Denver Colorado
    #14
    Actually, I see no reason why they would care if a phone is unlocked. I got a Nexus 4 with a two year contract on T-Mobile and that phone is unlocked and is no different than if I had bought it straight from Google. So yes, T-Mobile does sell at least one unlocked phone currently.

    I did cancel my two year contract after paying my first bill and went on a prepaid T-Mobile account. I just bought itfrom T-Mobile to get the phone for free and after the cancellation fee, was still cheaper than buying from Google.
     
  15. thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #15
  16. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Location:
    Denver Colorado
    #16
    About three weeks ago after getting my Nexus 4 activated on T-mobile, I tried using that sim in my iPhone 4S and only got 3G a few minutes before it changed back to edge.

    Today I decided to try again and this time, my 4S has stayed on 3G for the past twelve hours and my speeds range anywhere from 1.5Mbps to 12Mbps. I live in a dead area for most providers. there is about a mile range where data just stops depending on where you are in that one mile area. There is a radio station tower a few miles west if here and I think it is so string that it wipes out cell phone reception. I kind of confirmed that more or less by using an XM radio that had a built in FM transmitter. Certain areas near that tower would wipe out the signal and this happened nowhere else in the city.

    Strangely enough, after putting up with 0.00 - 50Kbps on AT&T for all these years that I had an iPhone, I realized that it is the iPhones configuration that was never allowing me to get better 3G speeds. I put the iPhone AT&T sim into my Nexus 4 and configured the APN to one that I found on a website and surprisingly would get on average 1.5-3Mbps on average on up to just under 10Mbps.

    T-Mobile is the only network that works perfectly in my house to where I average 17-21Mbps on my Nexus 4. Wish I could get those speeds on the iPhone using that same sim.
     
  17. macrumors 601

    darricksailo

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2012
    #17
    It's not the SIM's fault. It's more so the network. The 3G/4G (whatever you want to call it) that the iPhone is compatible with is different from the 3G/4G your nexus is connecting to.

    Long story short, Your nexus is connecting to the 1700/2100 MHz 3G (which is more widely availiable; I should mention the nexus has the radio chip to support 1900 MHz 3G too) while your iPhone connects to the 1900 MHz 3G (which is currently very scarce and is still rolling out; should mention the iPhone has no radio chip to support 1700/2100 MHz 3G)

    I hope I didn't get my info wrong
     
  18. thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #18
    Still not seeing my unlocked iPhone 5 get HSPA+ or anything beyond 3G as of yet in NYC.

    And honestly, mostly I see "E". :T

    Call quality is great though.
     
  19. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2012
    #19
    Tmobile's refarmed network shows up as 3G on the iphone 5 from what I can tell. I believe only AT&T carrier files are programmed to have it say "4G" when its on HSPA+ and LTE when its on LTE.

    So if your phone says "3g" when you have a tmobile sim in, you're already connecting to HSPA+ 21. You must be in an area that isn't completely refarmed or has the typical weak tmobile inside building problem if you're still seeing "E"
     
  20. macrumors 68030

    aziatiklover

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2011
    Location:
    8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4
    #20
    It is all about the carrier bundle brah! Even if you get 4G aka HSPA+ it will still show 3G on tmobile!

    Unless Apple and tmobile working together to get the carrier bundle update like AT&T did.
     
  21. thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #21
    Really? That's very interesting. So when I see 3G it is really hspa? So will the speeds ever get better? Will 3G ever mean lte? And if so when would that be?

    Thanks for the info.
     
  22. macrumors 68030

    osofast240sx

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    #22
    I'm in NYC I'm getting HSPA+ average 10Mbs in Manhattan, 13.5Mbs in queens. Keep in mind HSPA+ is 3G, you will not see a 4G icon.
     
  23. thread starter macrumors 604

    onthecouchagain

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2011
    #23
    By golly you guys are right. I just did a speed test and I got over 8mbs. Wish it was even higher but that's certainly not 3G. I just wish it would maintain signal better. I often see it switch to edge. Unless E means 3G?

    So my question is: when tmobile rolls put lte will we get even faster speeds?
     
  24. macrumors 604

    wordoflife

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2009
    #24
    LTE is suppose to be faster, but it all depends on a number of factors. Implementation, area, capacity, etc.

    I've been in areas where you're better off using Edge instead of 3G, even though 3G is suppose to be better.

    Granted, LTE would be pretty useless if it didn't work properly - so yes, it should be faster.
     
  25. macrumors 603

    scaredpoet

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    #25
    My guess is there won't be an official T-Mobile iPhone 5, but rather the 5S. And it'll use a different chipset that can accommodate more global frequencies on the same model, including T-Mobile US's spectrum.
     

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