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Kirk W

T-mobile or Sprint cell/data services?

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I recently was a site that compares cellular services and it seems to think that the new T-mobile that now includes Sprint will be the service to have for good service and coverage and also for best prices for unlimited data. I am wondering if anyone has tried them since the merger and how the coverage is? 

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It is my understanding that T-Mobile uses ATT Cell Towers in a lot of places? As for Sprint and T-Mobile when the company that I retired from used then they where ok for the urban areas but no service at all in many rural areas.

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Google's Project Fi phone service uses Sprint, T-Mobile and US Cellular to provide service and people with such service seem to have good coverage.  If I was going for a phone or device on T-Mobile I would make sure it is new enough to support band 66 and band 71, which are 700 and 600 MHZ respectively, which are the bands that T-Mobile is building out.  

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I just terminated my Sprint hot spot service a few days days ago after 26 months.  If we were close to the interstate in most places, we had good service, but if you're not in a metro area I had little to no service.

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Just my opinion but regardless of what the commercials say, seems like the feedback I hear and read on multiple forums points to VZ and ATT having the best coverage. I'm not FTing yet and keeping my eyes and ears open for changes but if I were starting today, I think my plan would be to have a combination of those two, one MIFI (likely VZ) and phone service with ATT with some hotspot data for when I was in a poor VZ coverage area as backup.   

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For T-mobile you have to make sure you have band 12 at the minimum which is in the 700mhz spectrum and what a lot of their rural towers use. In the last spectrum buyout, T-mboile cleaned house on the 600mhz spectrum (Band 71) and is where their latest build outs are happening. That's a brand new frequency that T-mobile acquired so you need one of the newer devices that has that capability and definitely something you want an as RV'er. T-mobile's rural coverage should get a whole let better (maybe even rival Verizon) once that gets well established, but that's still something to be seen. They are making progress though! - https://www.t-mobile.com/news/600-mhz-update-puerto-rico

The lower the frequency, the further the signal travels so that 600mhz spectrum will help them a lot. I don't think technically right now there is really any combination or help from the Sprint merger or if really anything has happened much on that front. That's still going to be a long time coming for them to compliment each other, but hopefully T-mobile becomes another major player for RV'ers. 

Edited by BlueLghtning

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We took the "leap" to T-Mobile back in June of this year.  I've been watching T-Mobile for a couple of years and I believe they are tend-setters under John Legere, he (T-Mobile) was the first to roll out "no contracts".  Now nobody has them and buy outs can be had from all cell companies to switch service providers. T-Mobile has greatly improved their network in recent years (IMHO).  We've all heard the stories about nonexistent coverage in rural areas but when we decided to make the change back in June I switched carriers first, my wife and I traveled through rural Iowa and I have to say I was impressed with the coverage I experienced!  We were US Cellular customers which in most places in Iowa service is just fine but I have to say my T-mobile phone worked well too.  After our trip to Iowa my wife switched to T-Mobile as well.  In late September we took a three week trip to the UP of Michigan, there too we had pretty good coverage, although I'll admit most of the time we were actually running on AT&T's network.  We had data, limited though being in "data roaming" areas but for the tree weeks we HAD data!  We're paying $70/mo for unlimited talk, text and data (50 GB cap), NO extra fees or taxes for our two I Phones.  We can turn our phones into hot spots too (at 3G speeds) or for $10/mo each we can bump up hot spot speeds to 4G.  So far we're very pleased with our service! 

I believe T-Mobile's network will only continue to improve and I'm looking forward to them rolling out 5G service in the future. BlueLghtning has it right IMHO, the 600mhz spectrum will totally enhance their service by better range with less towers.  Here's a link to an article from Yahoo about T-Mobile's progress in the 5G arena.

 

Dan

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We use Sprint and have enjoyed good coverage with unlimited data including a personal hot spot for connecting to the internet.  Monthly cost $63.68.

Good luck and safe travels to all....:)

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We have been using the T-Mobile 55+ plan for a year now and pretty happy with it.  Some rural coverage not very good but.... The plan give us unlimited data though they will throttle you back at times (still good enough to stream).  We burn through about 60-80gigs of data a month each.  The cost is $70 a month for both phones.  A pretty good deal.  You may have to hunt their web site to find the 55+ plan and at least the primary account has to be at least 55 years old.

And the plan allows tethering.

Momdoc

Edited by momdoc

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In checking various coverage maps, at least three of our upcoming winter stops in Florida have poor or no T-Mobile or Sprint service. All of them have AT&T and Verizon service listed. We have hotspots with both of those carriers. The two locations with no T-Mobile or Sprint service shown are Rodman Campground near Palatka and Salt Springs Recreation Area Campground in Salt Springs. If anyone has been there recently and knows differently, please let us know.

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14 hours ago, Kirk W said:

 

Oops, that link goes to a picture of a 30A receptacle. No worries, been there done that.

 

Edited by Ray,IN

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Thanks Kirk! We've been looking at options vs our prepaid Verizon phones; DW's smart phone is $40 with limited data, mine is a flip phone W/300 minutes a month for $15. For only $5 more we would get 2 smart phones with unlimited TT&D.

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I have explore unite hotspots on both AT&T and T-Mobile. Both offer no data limit with DirecTV Now. Both work great in most areas but in the most outback areas, AT&T is better.

My phone is with Verizon and works great everywhere. But with a 15g limit on tethering, and all DTV goes against your data plan, it taps out early in the month.

At this point in time I find myself using a combination of all three when I'm traveling cross country on the road.

T-Mobile is $32 a month, AT&T is $23 a month (Mobley plan) and Verizon is $70 a month.....DTV is $30 a month for over 100 channels 

Edited by rbertalotto
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