TMobile IPhone in Austria, but why not in the US?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by petalino, Jun 21, 2011.

  1. petalino macrumors regular

    Nov 21, 2010
    I am in the US and recently tried to switch my ATT Iphone over to TMobile US, only to be faced with limited functionality of webbrowsing due to lack of correct 3G signal frequency for the US model Iphone.

    I gave up this idea and am staying with ATT.

    Now a friend in Austria is asking me if I would recommend that she buys the Iphone there. She's with TMobile Austria which sells the Iphone along with other Android phones.

    Now the question is:
    How is the Austrian version of the Iphone different from the US edition? Obviously TMobile frequency must be in tune with the Iphone there, while it is not here in the USA.

    Is the TMobile Austria operating on a different frequency than the US TM? I doubt that TM Austria would offer an Iphone with limited webbrowsing.
  2. aneftp macrumors 601

    Jul 28, 2007
    The issue is T-mobile USA (a subsidy of DT) does not own the rights to the correct UMTS 3G bands in the USA supported by the iPhone.

    This is a definition of 3G bands

    The iPhone supports bands 1, 2, and 5 (2100, 850, 1900) UMTS. It's supported in every part of the world where GSM is the dominant carrier.

    In the USA, ATT is the dominant holder of the 850/1900 UMTS 3G bands.

    Tmobile USA was left only with "AWS" bands...1700/2100. Tmobile USA NEEDS both 1700/2100 for correct working 3G for upload/download. The 2100 3G band supported by Apple does not work fully with Tmobile USA because it needs the 1700 3G band also.

    Hope that explains it all to you.

    So in the USA, ATT is essentially your only choice for iphone full 3G access if you are using a GSM iphone

    There are very few "holy grail" 3G phones that support all the UMTS bands (pentaband)...Nokia N8 is the first one that come to mind. I believe the iPhone is a "tri-band" UMTS phone.
  3. The Californian macrumors 68040

    The Californian

    Jan 17, 2009
    Surfers Paradise
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

    ... until AT&T buys T-Mobile.
  4. aneftp macrumors 601

    Jul 28, 2007
    AT$T is buying T-Mobile USA. I don't think AT$T can afford to gobble up DT.
  5. The Californian macrumors 68040

    The Californian

    Jan 17, 2009
    Surfers Paradise
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8J2 Safari/6533.18.5)

    But AT&T will then give T-Mobile customers access to their 3G band.
  6. aneftp macrumors 601

    Jul 28, 2007
    I'm not sure about that. Even after the buyout takes place, I think it will be just business as usual for ATT and Tmobile customers. AT$T will just let T-Mobile USA customers continue to use their 1700/2100 AWS spectrum. Wait until those customers either leave or migrate to the ATT side with a phone upgrade.

    So for at least one year after the buyout, I don't anticipate any changes to current T-mobile customers.

    I have both T-mobile USA and ATT service. Probably going to get rid of my T-mobile service after my contract end. I love T-mobile's international blackberry pro-rated email only plans. It's been a life saver. ATT will just make things more expensive.
  7. Chundles macrumors G4


    Jul 4, 2005
    All correct except the iPhone 4 is a quad-band UMTS phone. Supports 850MHz/900MHz/1900MHz and 2100MHz.

    Previous iPhones were 850/1900 and 2100. Made a difference here for me as my carrier just turned on their 900MHz band - makes quite a difference indoors.
  8. goosnarrggh macrumors 68000

    May 16, 2006
    Not necessarily... In areas where AT&T and T-Mobile have overlapping coverage, it is fairly safe to assume that AT&T already has geographic rights to the appropriate 3G bands, so they could replace/upgrade the T-Mobile towers to go multi-band for 3G, simultaneously supporting both T-Mobile and AT&T with a more efficient layout of towers shared among both sets of users.

    But if there are any areas where T-Mobile has native coverage but AT&T doesn't, it may be that some other 3rd party already owns the geographic rights to the bands in which AT&T would have set up its native 3G service. In that case, it may be that T-Mobile will be the one giving their AT&T cousins access to their GSM/EDGE bands.

    Don't forget, T-Mobile's ownership of the AWS spectrum still constitutes a fairly valuable piece of capital, and AT&T may want to take advantage of it. Perhaps they'll start pushing for more of their new phones going forward to use many-band 3G chipsets, so users can take full advantage of the existing infrastructures of both former networks.
  9. heisenberg123 macrumors 603


    Oct 31, 2010
    Hamilton, Ontario

    not always buyouts are sometimes behind the scene and not some still looks like 2 companies

    in Canada Rogers bought Fido, but they still run as seperate companies

    other exaple is Future Shop that was our version of Best Buy before they came to Canada, when they bought out Future Shop, they still both run as seperate stores with different Brands and items
  10. Tarzanman macrumors 65816

    Jul 16, 2010
    If the T-mobile purchase happens (I hope it doesn't, but I think it will), then AT&T will migrate as many users as possible to their current 850/1900/2100 3G bands. A friend of mine in the business swears up and down that the FCC won't let AT&T dismantle T-mobile's current 3G network... but AT&T could stop selling 1700 MHz phones to T-Mo subscribers and eventually free up the bandwidth there.

    The entire reason they are purchasing T-mobile is to get control of the 1700 spectrum that T-mobile leases.

    AT&T will most likely roll out premium wireless access services on this spectrum and sublease it to companies who are itching to roll out products that use what would become semi-proprietary/black box connectivity.

    It is a market that Clear should be trying to develop (but probably doesn't have enough cash or acumen to).

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