Considering moving from AT&T to T-Mobile

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by mashinhead, Aug 23, 2013.

  1. mashinhead macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2003
    #1
    I have been an AT&T customer since the original iphone. I can't say that I love them. T-Mobile new moves has me considering them. I wouldn't mind hearing other people's experiences regarding this. I definitely want simultaneous voice and data, tethering would be nice, (i know this is extra on AT&T, don't know if it's as easy with T-Mobile as it is with Verizon). I don't know how T-Mobile's LTE is though. I do have the grandfathered unlimited data with AT&T and corporate discount.

    I do have a Verizon iPad mini because of tethering, I would like to switch to a single plan for both at some point.
     
  2. Menel macrumors 603

    Menel

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2011
    Location:
    ATL
    #2
    TMo has tethering built in.

    TMo coverage outside metro areas quickly drops to edge or even nothing.

    e.g. Around Atlanta and even far into suburbia have LTE and seriously fast 4G. At least 30 miles out side Atl.
     
  3. lordofthereef macrumors G5

    lordofthereef

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2011
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #3
    I had terrible experiences with TMO a few months back in the Boston area. But many people have had great experiences. My advice: pick up a TMO sim card and try their service around your area before you buy. This way you aren't giving up what you already have with AT&T, but if you like the service it's an easy switch. Don't trust coverage maps! Boston is blanketed... that was not the case with my experience!
     
  4. madsci954 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    Location:
    Ohio
    #4
    T-mobile's downside is spotty coverage and a lot of Edge areas. Check to see how their coverage is in the area the phone will be primarily used.

    Some areas where I live get LTE and the speeds are really good. But where I work, it's not just Edge but borderlines roaming on AT&T.
     
  5. PsstGreek macrumors 68040

    PsstGreek

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2010
    Location:
    Tampa Bay
    #5
    For tethering on T-Mobile you only get 500MB as a starter on any one of their $50, $60, $70 plans. If you want extra amounts of tethering you need to pay per GB, I believe.

    I made the switch from AT&T to T-Mobile as well back in April when the iPhone 5 released for T-Mobile. So far it's been great and service is pretty much awesome since LTE has been on since June (Tampa/St.Pete).

    T-Mobile does do corporate discounts although they're pretty much hush hush about it. I have a 15% discount (added my mother to my account since she works for Khol's).

    4G is almost every where for me, along with LTE (spotty in some areas). T-Mobile's LTE continues to grow on a daily basis.
     

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  6. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #6
    Unless you want super spotty coverage and EDGE when you travel, don't bother. Whatever savings you may get is overshadowed by mediocre service.
     
  7. gretafour macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2006
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    #7
    I had T-Mo for about a month before going back to Net10 (prepaid MVNO) on AT&T. Not sure if it's to do with the higher frequency bands used, but the signal on T-mobile seemed to have very poor building penetration. Obviously it varies by exact location.
     
  8. mashinhead thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2003
    #8
    Thanks guys. I'm mostly in metro areas. I live in LA. And just travel to major areas. I don't mind the spotty service when traveling but I would mind it in a major city. I know someone mentioned that they got consistent 4G and spotty LTE. I would definitely want consistent LTE in major metropolitan cities, NY, SF, LA, DC and the like. Doest that not happen?
     
  9. JackieInCo macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2013
    Location:
    Colorado
    #9
    Well in my area, there are only two small patches that have LTE and both are less than a mile wide. The map shows this and my own test has verified it. I happen to live in an area right in the middle of the patch that gets LTE so I am happy. I can not get LTE or even a reliable AT&T data signal here.

    Experience is going to vary.
     
  10. lordofthereef macrumors G5

    lordofthereef

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2011
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #10
    Well, as I mentioned, in Boston, for me, it did not. I would consider Boston a major metro, but then again, it isn't on your list. ;)

    My friend tried TMO in Los Angeles, but ultimately went back to VZW. He didn't say his coverage was bad, but he wasn't getting the speeds he was used to.
     
  11. CEmajr macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2012
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #11
    Works great with fast 4G and LTE in metro areas. The download speeds I see on Tmobile 4G rival what I used to get with Verizon LTE.

    $60 plan comes with 2.5GB of data which can also be tethered
    $70 plan comes with unlimited data on the phone and 500MB of tethering data. You have the option to increase the tethering allowance to 2.5GB for $10 or 4.5GB for $20 extra.

    Simultaneous voice + data and NO overages like AT&T. I'm satisfied with the service. Not in rural areas or on the road enough to need AT&T or Verizon and their crap.
     
  12. mrbrown macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2004
    Location:
    Ozark, Missouri
    #12
    And all of these are unlimited data plans -- it's all throttled over that amount. Same goes for tethering...
     
  13. JackieInCo macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2013
    Location:
    Colorado
    #13
    The tethering on the $70 plan has to be on the post paid plan to get tethering. If you simply sign up for the prepaid $70 plan, you can not sign up for tethering at all and it does not even include 250MB.
     
  14. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #14
    Nope, it's not consistent. TMobile claims Boston has LTE, but I've only ever gotten it in some parts of the city. My VZW and AT&T devices have LTE everywhere.

    I've heard similar reports all over the USA.
     
  15. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020

    KUguardgrl13

    Joined:
    May 16, 2013
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    #15
    Be careful if you take unlocked AT&T devices over. Because of the spectrum differences, T-Mobile has to buy AT&T's spectrum in order to support their devices. They don't have as much of that as their own, so the coverage maps aren't reliable. So unlock AT&T phones to keep the numbers, but I'd trade them in pretty quickly for actual T-Mobile phones. You also can't get T-Mobile LTE on an AT&T phone. You'll get HSPA+ or Edge.
     
  16. maxosx macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2012
    Location:
    Southern California
    #16
    First off I am NOT advocating for any carrier, but simply sharing my experience. Also I'm of the mind that I'd like to see them all be very successful, the more the better off we all are.

    That said I would seriously caution you to be sure you check with other people that are on any of the carriers you may be considering. Coverage maps are largely inaccurate and coverage areas of the most important part of choosing a service. If they don't have enough coverage for a good strong signal it doesn't matter who's brand is on the bill.

    AT&T or T-Mobile or Verizon all have strong and weak areas depending on the city and overall area you live in. Nothing is quite as important is finding out which carrier has the best coverage and using them.
     
  17. JackieInCo macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2013
    Location:
    Colorado
    #17
    True. An unlocked 4S will not have as good coverage on T-Mobile as a Nexus 4 because the Nexus 4 has all the frequencies that T-Mobile uses. It spends very little time on E whereas the 4S will spend half it;s time on E.

    I do get LTE using my iPad Mini on T-Mobile.
     
  18. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020

    KUguardgrl13

    Joined:
    May 16, 2013
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    #18
    My reference is my boyfriend with his 4S on T-Mobile, so I can't speak for their LTE. I do agree that he gets Edge more often than the coverage maps supposedly say he should.
     
  19. Menel macrumors 603

    Menel

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2011
    Location:
    ATL
    #19
    E.g. In Boston last week. LTE was spotty, harbor-side snd interstate, but dropped to 4G frequently. But who cares... TMo 4G runs 20mbps and low latency.

    [​IMG]

    Do you really need more on mobile? Hell, thats plenty for home.
     
  20. madsci954 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    Location:
    Ohio
    #20
    If those are your 4G speeds, then it's a region thing. My (spotty) LTE is about the same as your 4G, and my 4G is about 7 down and 1-2 up, and that's on a good day.
     
  21. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #21
    The service is trash if you actually live in the city and commute all over it.

    Constant holes in the HSPA deployment. Doesn't matter if it is on AWS or PCS. I've been on EDGE much more than I should be (never in a top metro area.) I NEVER have this issue on my AT&T and VZW devices. In fact, the only time I drop down to HSPA with AT&T in Boston is underground on the T because the DAS only supports HSPA.

    Their LTE deployment and refarming here is a joke. They said it was covered and done. Not even close.
     
  22. iPhonemaster5S macrumors 6502

    iPhonemaster5S

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2011
    Location:
    Colorado
    #22
    So far I have been satisfied my T-mobile service, I live in the Denver Metro area and frequently drive To Boulder, Vail and Aspen and I am covered nicely. While I don't have LTE in the mountains I have a good strong HSPA+ signal and it is consistent. Only when I am coming around to la junta which is no mans land of Colorado do I get edge. I mostly travel to big metro cities so T-mobile for me has been a good choice. It just depends on where you live and work, what you might try and do pick up a prepaid wal mart sim kit and give it a try, if the service is good then port your number, if not stick with AT&T.
     
  23. Lucille Carter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2013
    #23
    I tried T-Mo and coverage was horrible. Bad coverage is an ugly thing.

    I suggest you keep your AT&T phone and plan and go try T- Mo before you give up on AT&T. T-Mo tethering is limited so beware.
     
  24. rojct20 macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 15, 2013
    Location:
    SPI
    #24
    Tm

    Purchased iPhone 5, unlocked from Apple store. Got TM nano sim, Walmart $30 100min, 5gb data & $15 hot spot. Did not expect it to be very good. I'am pleasantly surprised how well it works! I use it 80% of the time now.
     
  25. kevroc macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2011
    #25
    I tried TMO. I really wanted to switch to them, but I travel to more remote places occasionally where TMO had no coverage and AT&T did, so I ended up sticking with AT&T. I also switched from my unlimited grandfathered plan to the mobile share plan. I really wanted tethering and to be able to tether up to your full data allowance is a nice feature vs TMO where you only get 500mb.

    Also keep in mind that TMO 4G is pretty freaking fast, it's not like AT&T. TMO 4G is like AT&T LTE.
     

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