Switch iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 from AT&T to T-Mobile?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by andrewbkillen, Mar 26, 2013.

  1. andrewbkillen macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2012
    #1
    Hey everyone.

    I have seen different information on this subject and thought I would ask you all. I am considering switching first an iPhone 4S then a few months later an iPhone 5 from AT&T to T-Mobile. I have read online that in some areas these phones will only get 2G speeds even if T-Mobile has 3G/4G support there.

    I live in Lawrence, KS. I contacted T-mobile about this and they said it would probably support 3G/4G speeds...... probably..... his word not mine. Anyways how do I get the information I need to know if this switch is worth it. Cost wise it will save me like $50 a month so I really would like to do it.

    Anything I'm not thinking through?

    Thanks everyone,

    Andrew
     
  2. madsci954 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    Location:
    Ohio
    #2
    The current iPhones cannot and will not work on Tmobiles' ASW 3G network. Only way you'll get 3G speeds on an older iPhone is if the area has been refarmed to support GSM 3G, if not you'll just get Edge speeds. There is no official map of areas that have been refarmed, but there is an unofficial one that users can report 3G speeds on their GSM devices.

    However, iPhones sold after April 12 will support both networks.
     
  3. andrewbkillen thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2012
    #3
    So T-Mobile really can't tell me where the GSM 3G areas are? That seems absurb to not tell someone who is considering switching what their speeds will be like :(

    Just to be clear my phones would work but just at Edge speed? Would visual voicemail still work? I know I would lose the ability to do internet and talk at the same time, honestly I don't even use it now.

    Thanks for the response!
     
  4. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #4
    Yeah, TMO has been really tight-lipped about EXACTLY where PCS 3G has been deployed. For example, they say it's all Boston, but it's not true. I can walk down my street and some towers don't have 3G, but some do on my Note 2 with a TMo sim.

    Yes, EDGE will work.

    no idea about visual voicemail.


    best way would be to test it out yourself with a pre-paid SIM. Do the $2/day plan and just try it out in the places you frequent.


    If you really want to switch to TMobile and want to buy an iPhone, buy it after 4/12 to get an iPhone 5 that supports both their AWS and PCS 3G, but their LTE
     
  5. andrewbkillen thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2012
    #5
    Hmmmmm that's interesting. Why would they not want to taut faster networks? I already have the devices so I won't be buying anything. Where do I get a prepaid sim for $2? I think there is a local T-Mobile store, will they know anything/be allowed to tell me anything?

    Thanks a lot!
     
  6. NewAnger macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Location:
    Denver Colorado
    #6
    I have a two month old iPhone 4S that I bought using an AT&T upgrade that I unlocked two weeks after purchasing. I cancelled my AT&T contract and moved it over to T-Mobile and now get speeds up to 9Mbps.

    I also took my 3GS and activated it on T-Mobile this morning and have been getting speeds up to about 6Mbps.

    I was lucky to get 0.00 to 1.5Mbps on AT&T but usually it was 0.00. Visual Voicemail does not work.
     
  7. apollo1444 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2011
    Location:
    mexico
    #7
    there is a site which you can look up, it will tell you about the refarmed areas
     
  8. sharkmok macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2012
    #8
    http://airportal.de/
     
  9. andrewbkillen thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2012
    #9
    hmmm found http://www.airportal.de looks like there is coverage on the opposite side of town from where I live. Also I really like visual voicemail :eek:

    Thanks again everyone for all of your input.

    ----------

    haha beat me to it!
     
  10. lunaoso macrumors 65816

    lunaoso

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2012
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #10
    You'll also need to get it unlocked before the SIM card will work, which was recently made illegal by the US government. So you'll either need to get it done illegally or wait and see it'd the govt. reverses it.

    Also keep in mind you'll have to break your contract with AT&T which can be pricey.
     
  11. andrewbkillen thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2012
    #11
    Did that actually pass/is it being enforced?
     
  12. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #12
    Or just pay some money and buy an unlock off the internet.

    ----------

    They should be handing out the SIMs at the store. I got mine for free when I said I was signing up for a pretty paid plan.
     
  13. lunaoso macrumors 65816

    lunaoso

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2012
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #13
    It passed but I don't think it's being enforced too much. I think it's harder to find any unlocks now though.
     
  14. maxosx macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2012
    Location:
    Southern California
    #14
    I'm glad your happy, but had you done your research first you would have never used AT&T.

    Every carrier has strong and weak areas. It's important to determine that before you waste money on one that is inferior in your area.

    I happen to be in an area where there are two strong carriers, Verizon and AT&T. T-Mobile is very weak.

    Yet where my brother lives 80 miles away T-Mobile is really great. So it's buyer beware, do the work and you won't be wasting your money.
     
  15. NewAnger macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Location:
    Denver Colorado
    #15
    I moved to AT&T when the very first iPhone was released and stayed with them until last week. I thought it was normal to have the speeds that I was getting on my 4S especially given that AT&T was rated at having .45Mpbs average speeds in the Denver area as reported on our local news about a year ago.

    Verizon was even worse, tried them for a year with no 3G data at all and dropped calls. Who else was there? I was amazed when I bought a Nexus 4 and used it on T-mobile and got 17-21Mbps. Lately, it's been getting upwards of 26Mbps.
     
  16. Appl3FTW, Mar 26, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2013

    Appl3FTW macrumors 601

    Appl3FTW

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2012
    #16
    iPhone 5:
    Current iPhone 5
    - will support tmobile's HSPA+21 1900MHZ (with firmware update and refarm) and LTE 1700MHZ

    iPhone 5 with AWS support
    - all of the above plus HSPA+42 1700MHZ
     
  17. Appl3FTW macrumors 601

    Appl3FTW

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2012
    #17
    I think 4/4s can take advantage of the 1900mhz HSPA+21 firmware upgrade
     

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