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Thread: Virgin vs. T-Mobile

  1. #1
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    Virgin vs. T-Mobile

    After a couple of years on Net10, I finally went with an Optimus V and Virgin's 300 minute plan last March. After flashing a CM7 ROM, it's performing surprisingly snappily for its 600 MHz processor, and I was thinking recently that this phone could probably last me at least another year until I want an upgrade. I rarely use more than fifty of my minutes in any given month, though, and Virgin's coverage has been less than spectacular, especially the data.

    So I'm thinking of moving to the $30 Teemo plan and buying an Exhibit II, but I'm still not sure. Here are my concerns:
    • What's T-Mobile's future? I know the AT&T buyout isn't happening now, but what next? If someone buys them, what happens to my cheap plan? As it is, I'm grandfathered into VM's $25 rate as long as I keep money on the account and never switch to a different minutes plan.
    • How much of an improvement is the Exhibit over the Optimus? The thread on XDA-Dev is buzzing, and it looks like there could be a decent CM-based ROM in a few months; while waiting for that, I could probably be satisfied enough by rooting, removing the bloatware, and switching to the GO launcher. But despite the 1 GHz CPU, will I really see that much of an improvement? I know part of why the Optimus is snappy for its speed and price is because it has a separate graphics core, and it's the non-sluggishness, not an abundance of power, that keeps me happy with it. Do you think the Exhibit could do the same for two years? (Also, in particular, how is the camera audio? Videos that I take with the current phone sound terrible with even the slightest wind noise.)
    • What's the deal with hotspotting? I'm aware that the only official option is to go for the $70 unlimited plan, but that it's easy to tether against the TOS after rooting and removing a background app. But how well can I really get away with that? I'm not officially allowed to use my OV's WiFi tethering, but I feel really lucky in that Virgin doesn't seem to care if you don't do it much, and that data, however slow it may be, has been a godsend when I've been stuck in hotels with crappy WiFi. But I know Verizon and AT&T both went on tethering crackdowns not too long ago, so how safe is the rare 4G hotspotting on T-Mo? Would I be putting myself in serious risk of getting kicked off my plan?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jinglish View Post
    After a couple of years on Net10, I finally went with an Optimus V and Virgin's 300 minute plan last March. After flashing a CM7 ROM, it's performing surprisingly snappily for its 600 MHz processor, and I was thinking recently that this phone could probably last me at least another year until I want an upgrade. I rarely use more than fifty of my minutes in any given month, though, and Virgin's coverage has been less than spectacular, especially the data.

    So I'm thinking of moving to the $30 Teemo plan and buying an Exhibit II, but I'm still not sure. Here are my concerns:
    • What's T-Mobile's future? I know the AT&T buyout isn't happening now, but what next? If someone buys them, what happens to my cheap plan? As it is, I'm grandfathered into VM's $25 rate as long as I keep money on the account and never switch to a different minutes plan.
    • How much of an improvement is the Exhibit over the Optimus? The thread on XDA-Dev is buzzing, and it looks like there could be a decent CM-based ROM in a few months; while waiting for that, I could probably be satisfied enough by rooting, removing the bloatware, and switching to the GO launcher. But despite the 1 GHz CPU, will I really see that much of an improvement? I know part of why the Optimus is snappy for its speed and price is because it has a separate graphics core, and it's the non-sluggishness, not an abundance of power, that keeps me happy with it. Do you think the Exhibit could do the same for two years? (Also, in particular, how is the camera audio? Videos that I take with the current phone sound terrible with even the slightest wind noise.)
    • What's the deal with hotspotting? I'm aware that the only official option is to go for the $70 unlimited plan, but that it's easy to tether against the TOS after rooting and removing a background app. But how well can I really get away with that? I'm not officially allowed to use my OV's WiFi tethering, but I feel really lucky in that Virgin doesn't seem to care if you don't do it much, and that data, however slow it may be, has been a godsend when I've been stuck in hotels with crappy WiFi. But I know Verizon and AT&T both went on tethering crackdowns not too long ago, so how safe is the rare 4G hotspotting on T-Mo? Would I be putting myself in serious risk of getting kicked off my plan?
    No one really knows T-Mobile's long term future, but the prepaid plans should be good for at least the next 2 years. T-Mobile is good about grandfathering prepaid plans.

    The Exhibit 2 has a faster processor, but if you are happy with the Optimus V, you could consider the less expensive and similar T-Mobile LG Optimus T

    Tethering works out of box on the Exhibit 4G II: T-Mobile hasn't been strict about tethering, it just goes against your allotment (depending on plan: 30mb, 2GB, 5GB).

  3. #3
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    I was in the same position as you, but I was not happy at all with VM or the OV, constant data drops and incredibly slow data speeds, plus no flash, I work evenings and like to stream football and baseball games. I was using the Skyfire browser which worked ok on some flash videos but not all. Plus the screen is too small. I switched from Verizon and the Droid 1 so VM and the OV were a huge downgrade.

    I have been very happy with Tmo, data speeds are insane and I have yet to lose a data connection. I live in a good 4g area but it has switched to edge a few times in some buildings but overall no complaints. I was worried about Tmos future as well but figured I could ride the $30 plan as long as I can then look at other options if need be. 5gb at 4g seems to be enough although I just made it last month. I have gone over the 100 minutes but it was only a couple of minutes and I have some extra money in my acct for that reason, plus I have been using groove IP with minimal issues over wifi, its a little spotty over 3/4g.

    As for the exhibit 2, overall I'm happy with it, bigger screen, more internal memory, great reception, but I have had some issues. First off there is considerable lag when waking the phone which will hopefully will be taken care of with a custom rom. I have also had issues with with the stock messaging app. When you touch the box to compose a text. I would have to hit it several times before it responded, I switched to hancent and I have not had an issue since. I have had a few failed to send errors with texts but it hasn't happened that often. The wifi hotspots did not work out of the box for me, I had to root and remove the tether manager with titanium backup. Since then I have tethered my Xoom several times without issue. Root was the easiest on this phone than any other device, simply just one click, and it appears the guys over at xda are working on a custom recovery so hopefully cm7 is just around the corner.


    Sent from my Xoom using HowardForums

  4. #4
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    re - Tethering works out of box on the Exhibit 4G II: T-Mobile hasn't been strict about tethering

    When (wifi) tethered, do you default to the My T-Mobile log-in page and if you do, how are you getting past this?
    Or do you simply log in and can then move onto other web pages?
    Or is there a way to prevent the My T-Mobile page from popping up?

  5. #5
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    The only solution I've been able to find is root and remove tether manager. I've read that some phones worked oob but unfortunately mine didn't.

    Sent from my Xoom using HowardForums

  6. #6
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    re - The only solution I've been able to find is root and remove tether manager. I've read that some phones worked oob but unfortunately mine didn't.

    ---------

    Please tell me;

    When you were not rooted, were you able to go as far as defaulting to the my t-mobile page after setting up the wifi hotspot?

    Just trying to find out if I am encountering the same thing.
    I don't think anyone's mentioned the symptoms of wifi tethering being disabled by tether manager.
    At first I thought this meant the wifi hotspot setup routine would be grayed out, but I was able to proceed and complete the setup, including WPA2 password protect the network, only to be disappointed by ending up at the My T-Mobile page.

  7. #7
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    It was doing the same thing before disabling the tether manager, it would redirect to the tmo website. No issues since removing it, tethered my Xoom a bunch of times.

    Sent from my SGH-T679 using HowardForums

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