T-Mobile's new coverage map!

cchs2014

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 1, 2014
58
35
As of today, November 4th, T-Mobile has updated their coverage map and the results look very promising when compared to the beginning of the year! Take a look at the GIF I attached.

I am definitely excited to see how robust T-Mobile's LTE network will be once most of the network expansion is complete!

Has anyone experienced any major improvements as a result yet? :)

SG8ePYe.gif
 
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Eileen89

macrumors 65816
Aug 12, 2014
1,146
327
I have a T-Mobile Prepaid Sim and from my experience just in PA, can say that their Maps are not accurate at all. Coverage in my area leaves a lot to be desired.
 
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madsci954

macrumors 68030
Oct 14, 2011
2,664
499
Ohio
I stopped believing in T-Mo maps when I tried them and had to go outside both my house and office to use the phone. Both areas showed "excellent" for reception. That was several years ago but it killed my faith in these carrier maps.
Agreed, I tried Tmo a few months ago when I saw their coverage was full LTE over my workplace. Instead, I was greeted to poor Tmo coverage 10% of the time and roaming on ATT the other 90%, which was my experience before the coverage map was updated. So either the maps are full of it, or they were updated before the towers were switched on.

I'll give them one more shot in the spring next year, no way I'm gonna risk it in the winter in case I get stranded. Unless Cricket adds the iPhone to their list of phones that can tether, then no way am I switching at that point.
 
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Newtons Apple

Suspended
Mar 12, 2014
22,764
14,918
Jacksonville, Florida
Agreed, I tried Tmo a few months ago when I saw their coverage was full LTE over my workplace. Instead, I was greeted to poor Tmo coverage 10% of the time and roaming on ATT the other 90%, which was my experience before the coverage map was updated. So either the maps are full of it, or they were updated before the towers were switched on.

I'll give them one more shot in the spring next year, no way I'm gonna risk it in the winter in case I get stranded. Unless Cricket adds the iPhone to their list of phones that can tether, then no way am I switching at that point.
That is why if you try a carrier make sure you have good coverage and return your device before the "trial" period runs out. I remember walking outside from my office and all of a sudden getting like 10 emails and 3 missed calls. No T-Mo for ME!
 

jamezr

macrumors G5
Aug 7, 2011
12,550
10,051
US
i think T Mobile is really making a big difference in carrier services.
I switched 2 lines from Verizon to TMO a month ago. I have not noticed a difference in coverage or signal yet in my area.
We go off roading and hiking in the AZ mountains allot. My teenage son has a 6s+ on Verizon and i have my 6s+ on TMo and we compare them all the time. There are times when he (VZW) has signal in areas and i(TMO) don't and then when I(TMO) has signal and he(VZW) doesn't have signal. We have not found a difference in signal between them and they pretty much evens out. But I love the rollover data and free music streaming on my TMO plan. It is cheaper and has better features.
 

willmtaylor

macrumors G4
Oct 31, 2009
10,196
7,724
Here(-ish)
Nope. Don't believe it. The maps on their commercials are deceiving and my experience (as well as is the experience of my students, colleagues, and friends) would indicate this information is as well.
 
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airb330

macrumors member
Jun 5, 2012
33
13
Agreed, I tried Tmo a few months ago when I saw their coverage was full LTE over my workplace. Instead, I was greeted to poor Tmo coverage 10% of the time and roaming on ATT the other 90%, which was my experience before the coverage map was updated. So either the maps are full of it, or they were updated before the towers were switched on.

I'll give them one more shot in the spring next year, no way I'm gonna risk it in the winter in case I get stranded. Unless Cricket adds the iPhone to their list of phones that can tether, then no way am I switching at that point.
Same. They've added 0 new cell sites in central Delaware but the coverage maps now fill out similarly to at&t. Adding a few 700 panels to only some of their existing sites wouldn't help them fill out their maps like they claim. The network is a hodgepodge of a 50% Band 2 LTE & 1900 GSM, 25% Ericsson AIR (w/ hspa+), 25% Ericsson AIR and 700 panels.

So yes data has improved but voice will still be a mess but in no way has that meant the network has suddenly matched even Sprint here who has more rural cell sites than T-Mobile.
 

ABC5S

Suspended
Sep 10, 2013
3,395
1,597
Florida
Tried T-Mobil all of 5 hrs and returned to the Mall. They said I would get great Data Download and reception and once I left the Mall, I got Edge and it went down from their (Dunedin, Florida). At my home I got spotty coverage and Edge again. This was less than 6 months ago. I say no to T-Mobil and stick with Verizon.

By the way the map said I have great coverage. What a joke. Don't believe them but try it out and be prepared to return it
 

whodatrr

macrumors 6502a
Jan 12, 2004
672
490
Switched from AT&T to T-Mobile, once the 6s came out. I mainly had three reasons for switching:
1. AT&T would not allow me to use my mobile hot-spot, because I had a grandfathered unlimited plan
2. I was paying about $50 more every month (counting $40 more in standard fees and ~$10 in occasional Canada calls).
3. AT&T customer service seems to be getting worse... treated me like poop, and were always trying to get me to drop my unlimited plan. Seriously, if I called them about a tech issue, they'd turn it into a pitch for me to drop my unlimited plan

Anyhow, my big concern was with the network. So far, my experience with that has been OK. I've never lost voice coverage when I needed it, though I will admit that sometimes my data speeds seem worse, though sometimes it's screaming fast. The most disconcerting thing is that I now have lots of situations where I only have one bar, which initially worried the heck out of me. But I don't know whether it's a T-Mobile thing or a 6s thing, but even 1 bar doesn't seem that bad. Overall, I'm feeling like my concerns about T-Mobile's network were overblown. But time and more travel will tell?

So far, so good. The mobile hot spot capability is amazing! I use it often and don't know how I lived without it, for so long.

Weird thing is that I would have stayed with AT&T, even though they were charging me considerably more than T-Mobile does, if they just would have let me use the hot spot capability. But they didn't, so AT&T wireless lost a 20 year customer relationship. An that's what I don't get - they pay a ton of money on Marketing trying to attract new customers, while treating their existing customers badly. Oh well...
 

TechZeke

macrumors 68020
Jul 29, 2012
2,363
1,973
San Antonio, TX
Switched from AT&T to T-Mobile, once the 6s came out. I mainly had three reasons for switching:
1. AT&T would not allow me to use my mobile hot-spot, because I had a grandfathered unlimited plan
2. I was paying about $50 more every month (counting $40 more in standard fees and ~$10 in occasional Canada calls).
3. AT&T customer service seems to be getting worse... treated me like poop, and were always trying to get me to drop my unlimited plan. Seriously, if I called them about a tech issue, they'd turn it into a pitch for me to drop my unlimited plan

Anyhow, my big concern was with the network. So far, my experience with that has been OK. I've never lost voice coverage when I needed it, though I will admit that sometimes my data speeds seem worse, though sometimes it's screaming fast. The most disconcerting thing is that I now have lots of situations where I only have one bar, which initially worried the heck out of me. But I don't know whether it's a T-Mobile thing or a 6s thing, but even 1 bar doesn't seem that bad. Overall, I'm feeling like my concerns about T-Mobile's network were overblown. But time and more travel will tell?

So far, so good. The mobile hot spot capability is amazing! I use it often and don't know how I lived without it, for so long.

Weird thing is that I would have stayed with AT&T, even though they were charging me considerably more than T-Mobile does, if they just would have let me use the hot spot capability. But they didn't, so AT&T wireless lost a 20 year customer relationship. An that's what I don't get - they pay a ton of money on Marketing trying to attract new customers, while treating their existing customers badly. Oh well...
I was going to switch to T-mobile, but got jerked around when trying switch. I tried to get a hotspot device, but the service was terrible and it took 3 hours to get it working. Cancelled and payed the re-stocking fee, but T-mobile put a $100 charge on my account and wouldn't take it off. Almost had it put on my credit until 3rd time going into the store telling the guy to take the charge off.

At the same time, AT&T is increased my data plan to 5GB from 3GB for $5 less than before. Needless to say, I'm pretty much done with T-Mobile for now.
 

SBA

macrumors member
Aug 10, 2008
84
8
Even with a device that has Band 12? I thought the whole purpose of having Band 12 was to improve indoor coverage....
I think a lot of the people in this thread that are saying they tried t-mo and had bad service were on older devices, where by 'older' I mean almost anything that came out prior to 2015.

I had a similar experience with their test drive, where they loan you an iPhone 5S for 2 weeks. I'm in an area that shows great coverage on their map, but I got nearly useless service in my office building (no wifi for me here), so I returned the phone and didn't switch.

A month or two later, the Band 12 thing dawned on me, so I tried a basic pre-paid phone that has Band 12 and actually got usable service at my office. It was an Android device, so I checked using the LTE Discovery app from the Google Play store to see what band the phone was connecting to - it was indeed B12.

Of course, this all depends on whether or not Band 12 is rolled out in your area.

If it is rolled out and you still get crummy service, then that's certainly a bummer since at&t and verizon are pretty pricey alternatives.
 

Plutonius

macrumors 604
Feb 22, 2003
7,847
5,972
New Hampshire, USA
As of today, November 4th, T-Mobile has updated their coverage map and the results look very promising when compared to the beginning of the year! Take a look at the GIF I attached.

I am definitely excited to see how robust T-Mobile's LTE network will be once most of the network expansion is complete!

Has anyone experienced any major improvements as a result yet? :)

View attachment 598188
Not I and I never believe the coverage maps from any of the providers. I still have to carry a pre-paid AT&T phone to make calls when I'm away from home :(.

On another note, how is their coverage increasing when I see no additional towers being built ?
 

magicman32

macrumors regular
Dec 25, 2007
128
151
Not I and I never believe the coverage maps from any of the providers. I still have to carry a pre-paid AT&T phone to make calls when I'm away from home :(.

On another note, how is their coverage increasing when I see no additional towers being built ?
Well the way I understand it is Edge towers are (still) being converted to LTE and 700 MHz spectrum they acquired (Band 12) has further propagation and better penetration inside buildings.
 

scaredpoet

macrumors 604
Apr 6, 2007
6,626
342
I guess my experience is different from many of the others here. I have been pleasantly surprised by T-Mobile's coverage. When I switched I thought it would be utterly awful, and I was just doing it as a way to get out of my AT&T contract, get reimbursed the ETF, and then I had full intentions of going back to AT&T on a lower cost BYOD plan.

But it didn't work out that way. Coverage for me on the east coast was quite good... not AT&T/Verizon level, but still sufficient in most cases where it wasn't a problem. There were even a couple of spots where I *would* lose AT&T signal, but T-Mobile was strong, which was nice. And the lower prices overall on T-Mobile was a motivator for me to stay. It's been over a year now, and I really don't have a compelling reason to switch back.

I have seen incremental changes in that time. Some areas in rural spots that had only Edge coverage now have LTE, which is great. I will be doing more traveling again over the next couple of months, so I'll know then for sure if the coverage has improved for me in other locations.

FWIW: yes a lot of that new coverage on that map likely DOES require newer devices with wider LTE band support. Band 12, for instance, requires an iPhone 6S and 6S Plus, or the few but growing android devices that have Band 12 (including VoLTE on Band 12... if they do data on on B12, T-Mobile won't allow it to sign on there).


On another note, how is their coverage increasing when I see no additional towers being built ?
T-Mobile could be adding on to existing towers, leased out by third party companies, which is a common practice. Tops of buildings are common cell sites, too. The roof of the building where I work recently became home to some Verizon and T-Mobile base stations.
 
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Eileen89

macrumors 65816
Aug 12, 2014
1,146
327
I think a lot of the people in this thread that are saying they tried t-mo and had bad service were on older devices, where by 'older' I mean almost anything that came out prior to 2015.

I had a similar experience with their test drive, where they loan you an iPhone 5S for 2 weeks. I'm in an area that shows great coverage on their map, but I got nearly useless service in my office building (no wifi for me here), so I returned the phone and didn't switch.

A month or two later, the Band 12 thing dawned on me, so I tried a basic pre-paid phone that has Band 12 and actually got usable service at my office. It was an Android device, so I checked using the LTE Discovery app from the Google Play store to see what band the phone was connecting to - it was indeed B12.

Of course, this all depends on whether or not Band 12 is rolled out in your area.

If it is rolled out and you still get crummy service, then that's certainly a bummer since at&t and verizon are pretty pricey alternatives.
Not in my case. I tried T-Mobile again using both my 6 Plus and my new Sim Free 6S Plus, and T-Mobiles coverage definitely hasn't changed here in PA where I live and travel. Their coverage maps can show what they want but I'm going by my own personal testing. Yes, AT&T and Verizon may be slightly higher, but I'm a firm believer in the old saying "you get what you pay for". For me though, I have Unlimited Talk (with my roll over minutes), unlimited Text and Data with AT&T all for $64/month after taxes which is just fine for my needs. I have great service with AT&T everywhere I go. That to me is worth way more than the $2 that I would save with T-Mobile. That said, I think most if not all of the wireless carriers tend to exaggerate about their actual coverage when it comes to their maps, not just T-Mobile.
 
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throwthedice

macrumors 6502
Aug 27, 2015
252
77
Tmobile has pretty bad coverage inside buildings. WiFi Calling is the only thing that's holding me from switching to a different carrier.
 

magicman32

macrumors regular
Dec 25, 2007
128
151
I guess my experience is different from many of the others here. I have been pleasantly surprised by T-Mobile's coverage. When I switched I thought it would be utterly awful, and I was just doing it as a way to get out of my AT&T contract, get reimbursed the ETF, and then I had full intentions of going back to AT&T on a lower cost BYOD plan.
That's pretty much my experience as well. Here in NJ where I live and the places in NY and Philly I travel too the coverage is rock solid. Loaded with LTE and HSPA+. Did take a couple of trips to NC and TN over the last year and while the voice coverage is ubiquitous in my experience, it did drop down to Edge quite a bit in the less densely populated areas of Tennesee and North Carolina. But it is an anomaly I'm in those areas, so no biggie to me.

I paid ATT an ETF (April 2013) to get the hell away from them and their terrible plans at the time. Ever since then the coverage and speed where I live and travel has only gotten better and better. For the 30 dollar prepaid plan I'm on I feel like a thief. It's a rare case of getting WAY more than I pay for.

Couldn't be happier with them at this point and I'm still on a 6 Plus without the band 12 reinforcements.
 
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Christian 5G

macrumors 6502a
Jun 16, 2010
906
533
Orange County, CA
Very very excited about tmobile getting into Montana! Now hopefully soon enough when I go up there to visit my parents I won't be switched to ATAT only text...