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T-Mobile still open to 84Mbps, grows HSPA+ to 8 more cities

updated 04:20 pm EDT, Tue March 13, 2012

T-Mobile not ruling out fastest HSPA option

T-Mobile in a Q&A session with its CTO Neville Ray left the possibility open that it would still upgrade its HSPA+ network to 84Mbps. Although the carrier was now focused on LTE, it would "continue to evaluate" the option, Ray said. He wanted to see both flourish, as the network was still technically capable.

In the interim, eight new cities were getting the current 42Mbps peak speeds. The focus was primarily on Texas, where Abilene, Amarillo, Odessa, and Victoria were now on faster networks. Bakersfield in California, Eau Claire in Wisconsin, and both Joplin and St. Joseph in Missouri were getting the upgrades.

The pseudo-interview also saw Ray possibly call AT&T's bluff on its dropped merger attempt. Despite AT&T and T-Mobile claiming in March of last year that the $39 billion would-be merger was necessary as there was "no clear path to LTE," the spectrum and cash transfer agreements for failing to complete the deal were enough to cover its subscribers with the faster network. Three quarters of the top 25 urban areas would get a wide 20MHz bandwidth for 4G by 2013, while "most" other areas would have a smaller but usable 10MHz.

T-Mobile would "love to have more spectrum," Ray said, without indicating any near-term deals.

Rounding out the talk, he left further hints that T-Mobile's primary goal for devices in 2012 is to get the iPhone. In refarming frequencies, the company was adding support for more devices, "including the iPhone," he said. The swap would help with indoors coverage and would keep supporting EDGE-only (2G) users.

By Electronista Staff
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  1. facebook_Caleb

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Mar 2012


    Go Joplin!

    Wow, 42 Mbps sounds great! Unfortunately, it's not reason enough to switch from super-reliable Verizon to horribly-sketchy T-Mobile. Hopefully this move will push the other four carriers in the area (Big Four + US Cellular) to pick up the speed, too.

  1. UmarOMC

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2001


    I've had Verizon

    And I've had T-Mobile for about 4 years now. Verizon was always reliable... but T-Mobile's been just as reliable to myself, wife, father, two brothers, sister and two sisters-in-law and costs MUCH less. Emphasis on MUCH!

    Maybe its just because I live in NYC? I travel through and work in EVERY borough but Staten Island and almost never lose bars... I'd love to get an iPhone because I have a bad taste in my mouth from the BlackBerry Bold 9700s we got, but it looks like I'll be getting an Android-based phone.

  1. Inkling

    Senior User

    Joined: Jul 2006


    Service & iPhones

    T-Mobile's good service areas aren't as extensive as Verizon's, but where the service is good, their plans can't be beat. I live in Seattle, across Lake Washington from T-Mobile's national headquarters in Bellevue, and the coverage here is excellent. I've only found one dead spot, and that, oddly enough, is where Adobe's offices are at the foot of Queen Anne.

    T-Mobile needs to quit dreaming and start doing. They have a million-plus iPhones in their system. They need to give them active support and an incentive to stay around. That'd also prepare their system for the day when T-Mobile becomes an authorized iPhone provider.

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