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Thread: T-MO COVERAGE SUGGESTION: Increased Domestic Voice + Data Roaming Add-On (optional)

  1. #1
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    Lightbulb T-MO COVERAGE SUGGESTION: Increased Domestic Voice + Data Roaming Add-On (optional)

    From my experience (and from what I have read on several forums), the #1 reason why customers & businesses aren't using T-Mobile is because the lack of domestic coverage in certain areas (or in the words that I have heard repeated over-and-over again: "T-Mobile's coverage SUCKS!").

    I signed up with T-Mobile USA the first month they were available in California back in 2001. I then switched around after 2007, going to Sprint, then Verizon Wireless, then coming back to T-Mobile USA early 2015. During this time I also have had the opportunity to use AT&T for a while as well.


    While I agree that T-Mobile USA's coverage and signal penetration leaves something to be desired (especially in less populated areas), keep in mind that this is NOT something that can be fixed overnight... or even in the near future:

    Verizon Wireless, AT&T, and even Sprint all had a HUGE head-start on T-Mobile USA. They all existed in the U.S. long before T-Mobile USA ever did. They all were products of decades of mergers and acquisitions and all had enough financial backing to jump into the wireless industry head-first. They all began buying property and building out their infrastructure long before the government (and/or other authorizing organizations) placed stringent restrictions and limitations on building cell towers, sub-stations, running lines, etc. They all were able to secure large swaths of coveted low-frequency spectrum (even before T-Mobile USA became a major player). The all have (or had) the support of a diverse business portfolio (at least two of them are now major players in landline, TV, and high-speed Internet services... and Sprint at least still has the support of their huge network backbone which they lease to other major businesses... not to mention other major assets and businesses they dabble in).

    To my knowledge, in the U.S. T-Mobile USA deals exclusively (or almost exclusively) with cellular wireless communications. To my knowledge, they don't have strong financial support or other significant investment in other industries in the United States. They started out as the "underdog" of the U.S. cellular wireless industry, and came in at a time when government regulation and scrutiny from health-related organizations and activists were picking up steam in the U.S. Much of their network gains were due to mergers, buying up other cellular companies, buying parts of existing networks from other carriers, or receiving government-mandated network divestments.

    That being said, in many ways T-Mobile USA is still the "underdog" of the U.S. cellular industry... and it is a miracle they have made it this far at all due to many hurdles the other Big 3 didn't really have to deal with (such as extremely high financial & political barriers to entry in the U.S. for a foreign company, taking huge risks by breaking previously proven carrier models and revolutionizing the cellular wireless world with their initial "1,000 Minutes for $39.99/mo" plan in 2001, multiple attempts and high pressure from their parent company to sell or close T-Mobile USA, etc).

    DISCLAIMER: I am NOT a professional or expert in this field and do NOT claim to be. Some of this information may not be 100% accurate (if you get into the details). The purpose of my statements above is to give the average person who complains about why T-Mobile USA's coverage "sucks" compared to the other "Big 3" a more complete picture of what is going on "behind the scenes" WITHOUT getting into specifics and technical jargon that may confuse most of the public. It is NOT meant to spark conflict or debate about technical word usage, or nitpicking minor historical details... those things are irrelevant to my purpose of presenting a quickly summarized global snapshot of T-Mobile USA's position compared to the other Big 3.


    As such, I will be the first to admit that T-Mobile USA's TOTAL nationwide coverage from their native network is currently NOT as complete as Verizon Wireless, AT&T, or even Sprint's native network.

    I will also admit that realistically speaking, unless a buyout, merger, or major divestment happens, T-Mobile's TOTAL nationwide coverage will NOT catch up to either Verizon Wireless or AT&T's in the near future (or even in the next 10 years). The increased government regulation/restrictions and the high pressure from health-related and HOA/NIMBY groups have blocked a lot of proposed network coverage increases in recent years.


    Therefore, what can we (as loyal consumers) do? Well, we can stick to our current pre-determined options:

    1) Stay with T-Mobile USA (and just "deal" with the coverage shortcomings the best we can with WiFi Calling and other "workarounds"... which may or may not work if you're on the road in a no-coverage area).

    2) Leave T-Mobile USA for another carrier that works better for you (i.e. Verizon Wireless, AT&T, or even Sprint). As I always said, THERE IS NO ONE "PERFECT" CARRIER FOR EVERYONE. Everyone's needs are different, and while some plan features (i.e. Stateside International, etc) and/or coverage (i.e. Poconos) may be important to some people, it may not matter at all to other people.

    3) Subscribe to service on multiple carriers if you don't want to leave T-Mobile USA but need specific coverage and/or features that T-Mobile USA lacks.


    OR we can "think outside the box" and actively petition T-Mobile USA for a better solution. Personally, I think the most "realistic" and benefical way for this coverage "issue" to be "solved" in the most effective and quickest way possible would be to:


    4) Voice support for an "INCREASED DOMESTIC VOICE & DATA ROAMING ADD-ON" (OPTIONAL)


    With this proposed (wishlist) add-on, T-Mobile USA customers would now have the option of adding this to their plan to be able to roam on AT&T and other select GSM/VoLTE carriers nationwide in areas that get weak/no T-Mobile coverage.

    I'm expecting that pricing for this add-on will be fairly expensive:

    PER LINE = $20/mo/line
    PER ACCOUNT (<10 LINES) = $60/mo/acct
    PER ACCOUNT (<30 LINES) = $120/mo/acct
    PER ACCOUNT (30+ LINES) = Negotiated Pricing (since this would qualify for a mid-tier business account)



    The reason for this expensive pricing is because:


    1) AT&T (AND OTHER GSM CARRIERS) MAY NOT NEED OR BENEFIT FROM T-MOBILE USA GSM COVERAGE. Thus the only realistic thing that will convince them to enter into a roaming agreement with their COMPETITOR is MONEY... A LOT OF MONEY. If T-Mobile USA can find enough support among its loyal customers & businesses willing to pay extra for BETTER DOMESTIC NATIONWIDE NETWORK COVERAGE THAN AT&T (i.e. T-Mobile USA + AT&T + select smaller GSM carriers), then yes, I believe this option will be possible.

    2) THIS FEATURE WILL BE OPTIONAL TO T-MOBILE USA CUSTOMERS. Obviously not EVERYONE "needs" AT&T (or better) coverage. Many customers do just fine with T-Mobile USA's existing coverage (hence why they continue to be T-Mobile customers). This add-on will be OPTIONAL so that those customers and businesses that complain about T-Mobile USA's coverage would like "AT&T-or-better" coverage with the features and service of T-Mobile USA will have that option as well. As such, in order to agree on a price that AT&T will allow T-Mobile USA (a major competitor) to roam on its network, each person/business that opts in for this feature will have to pay more (at least until enough people have added it to allow T-Mobile USA to lower the price).

    3) THIS WILL BE ANOTHER REVENUE STREAM FOR AT&T (AND OTHER GSM CARRIERS). Some may think that AT&T will never do this because it will cannibalize its current business. To those people, I would say they are right... and wrong. It is true that AT&T (and Verizon Wireless) seem very protective on who has access to their nationwide network. But they also must realize that everyone (including AT&T) has their price. Not all T-Mobile USA customers/businesses that want AT&T or Verizon Wireless coverage is willing to pay AT&T or Verizon Wireless prices. Cricket Wireless is an example of AT&T trying to branch out and gain more customers from the "cost-conscious" market segment... and it seems to be very successful at it. If T-Mobile USA basically offered to pay a negotiated price (lower that what an AT&T customer would pay obviously but may be around 2/3 the cost of a Cricket Wireless customer) for T-Mobile USA customers subscribed to the INCREASED DOMESTIC VOICE & DATA ROAMING ADD-ON to roam on AT&T's network when needed, then I think AT&T would consider it. It's not as if every subscriber will be on AT&T's network 24/7 and use up GB of data (obviously)... they would only roam in areas of weak/no-coverage areas in T-Mobile USA's native network, and there could be certain "limitations" to the roaming, such as throttled LTE speed of 8MB/s maximum (just like Cricket Wireless) and AT&T customers get tower priority over T-Mobile customers (in congested areas). Not only that, but AT&T doesn't have to deal with most of the customer administration cost, customer overhead, customer support or technical issues, and other customer expenses either since it's NOT their customer... they just bill T-Mobile for the resources used (or a contracted negotiated sum... whatever they work out) and they get paid.


    Anyway, to make a long story short (too late) if T-Mobile USA and AT&T (and other GSM carriers) were able to make this happen, then this add-on feature would benefit everyone (us T-Mobile USA customers, T-Mobile USA, and AT&T and other partnered GSM carriers).

    For existing T-Mobile USA customers who are cost-conscious and don't want any changes in their plan... they don't have to subscribe to this add-on. That's fine too.


    What do you think?


    Constructive discussion and ideas welcome... maybe T-Mobile USA will actually notice this thread and make some suggestions happen. You never know...
    - Chokaay

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by chokaay View Post
    From my experience (and from what I have read on several forums), the #1 reason why customers & businesses aren't using T-Mobile is because the lack of domestic coverage in certain areas (or in the words that I have heard repeated over-and-over again: "T-Mobile's coverage SUCKS!").

    I signed up with T-Mobile USA the first month they were available in California back in 2001. I then switched around after 2007, going to Sprint, then Verizon Wireless, then coming back to T-Mobile USA early 2015. During this time I also have had the opportunity to use AT&T for a while as well.


    While I agree that T-Mobile USA's coverage and signal penetration leaves something to be desired (especially in less populated areas), keep in mind that this is NOT something that can be fixed overnight... or even in the near future:

    Verizon Wireless, AT&T, and even Sprint all had a HUGE head-start on T-Mobile USA. They all existed in the U.S. long before T-Mobile USA ever did. They all were products of decades of mergers and acquisitions and all had enough financial backing to jump into the wireless industry head-first. They all began buying property and building out their infrastructure long before the government (and/or other authorizing organizations) placed stringent restrictions and limitations on building cell towers, sub-stations, running lines, etc. They all were able to secure large swaths of coveted low-frequency spectrum (even before T-Mobile USA became a major player). The all have (or had) the support of a diverse business portfolio (at least two of them are now major players in landline, TV, and high-speed Internet services... and Sprint at least still has the support of their huge network backbone which they lease to other major businesses... not to mention other major assets and businesses they dabble in).

    To my knowledge, in the U.S. T-Mobile USA deals exclusively (or almost exclusively) with cellular wireless communications. To my knowledge, they don't have strong financial support or other significant investment in other industries in the United States. They started out as the "underdog" of the U.S. cellular wireless industry, and came in at a time when government regulation and scrutiny from health-related organizations and activists were picking up steam in the U.S. Much of their network gains were due to mergers, buying up other cellular companies, buying parts of existing networks from other carriers, or receiving government-mandated network divestments.

    That being said, in many ways T-Mobile USA is still the "underdog" of the U.S. cellular industry... and it is a miracle they have made it this far at all due to many hurdles the other Big 3 didn't really have to deal with (such as extremely high financial & political barriers to entry in the U.S. for a foreign company, taking huge risks by breaking previously proven carrier models and revolutionizing the cellular wireless world with their initial "1,000 Minutes for $39.99/mo" plan in 2001, multiple attempts and high pressure from their parent company to sell or close T-Mobile USA, etc).

    DISCLAIMER: I am NOT a professional or expert in this field and do NOT claim to be. Some of this information may not be 100% accurate (if you get into the details). The purpose of my statements above is to give the average person who complains about why T-Mobile USA's coverage "sucks" compared to the other "Big 3" a more complete picture of what is going on "behind the scenes" WITHOUT getting into specifics and technical jargon that may confuse most of the public. It is NOT meant to spark conflict or debate about technical word usage, or nitpicking minor historical details... those things are irrelevant to my purpose of presenting a quickly summarized global snapshot of T-Mobile USA's position compared to the other Big 3.


    As such, I will be the first to admit that T-Mobile USA's TOTAL nationwide coverage from their native network is currently NOT as complete as Verizon Wireless, AT&T, or even Sprint's native network.

    I will also admit that realistically speaking, unless a buyout, merger, or major divestment happens, T-Mobile's TOTAL nationwide coverage will NOT catch up to either Verizon Wireless or AT&T's in the near future (or even in the next 10 years). The increased government regulation/restrictions and the high pressure from health-related and HOA/NIMBY groups have blocked a lot of proposed network coverage increases in recent years.


    Therefore, what can we (as loyal consumers) do? Well, we can stick to our current pre-determined options:

    1) Stay with T-Mobile USA (and just "deal" with the coverage shortcomings the best we can with WiFi Calling and other "workarounds"... which may or may not work if you're on the road in a no-coverage area).

    2) Leave T-Mobile USA for another carrier that works better for you (i.e. Verizon Wireless, AT&T, or even Sprint). As I always said, THERE IS NO ONE "PERFECT" CARRIER FOR EVERYONE. Everyone's needs are different, and while some plan features (i.e. Stateside International, etc) and/or coverage (i.e. Poconos) may be important to some people, it may not matter at all to other people.

    3) Subscribe to service on multiple carriers if you don't want to leave T-Mobile USA but need specific coverage and/or features that T-Mobile USA lacks.


    OR we can "think outside the box" and actively petition T-Mobile USA for a better solution. Personally, I think the most "realistic" and benefical way for this coverage "issue" to be "solved" in the most effective and quickest way possible would be to:


    4) Voice support for an "INCREASED DOMESTIC VOICE & DATA ROAMING ADD-ON" (OPTIONAL)


    With this proposed (wishlist) add-on, T-Mobile USA customers would now have the option of adding this to their plan to be able to roam on AT&T and other select GSM/VoLTE carriers nationwide in areas that get weak/no T-Mobile coverage.

    I'm expecting that pricing for this add-on will be fairly expensive:

    PER LINE = $20/mo/line
    PER ACCOUNT (<10 LINES) = $60/mo/acct
    PER ACCOUNT (<30 LINES) = $120/mo/acct
    PER ACCOUNT (30+ LINES) = Negotiated Pricing (since this would qualify for a mid-tier business account)



    The reason for this expensive pricing is because:


    1) AT&T (AND OTHER GSM CARRIERS) MAY NOT NEED OR BENEFIT FROM T-MOBILE USA GSM COVERAGE. Thus the only realistic thing that will convince them to enter into a roaming agreement with their COMPETITOR is MONEY... A LOT OF MONEY. If T-Mobile USA can find enough support among its loyal customers & businesses willing to pay extra for BETTER DOMESTIC NATIONWIDE NETWORK COVERAGE THAN AT&T (i.e. T-Mobile USA + AT&T + select smaller GSM carriers), then yes, I believe this option will be possible.

    2) THIS FEATURE WILL BE OPTIONAL TO T-MOBILE USA CUSTOMERS. Obviously not EVERYONE "needs" AT&T (or better) coverage. Many customers do just fine with T-Mobile USA's existing coverage (hence why they continue to be T-Mobile customers). This add-on will be OPTIONAL so that those customers and businesses that complain about T-Mobile USA's coverage would like "AT&T-or-better" coverage with the features and service of T-Mobile USA will have that option as well. As such, in order to agree on a price that AT&T will allow T-Mobile USA (a major competitor) to roam on its network, each person/business that opts in for this feature will have to pay more (at least until enough people have added it to allow T-Mobile USA to lower the price).

    3) THIS WILL BE ANOTHER REVENUE STREAM FOR AT&T (AND OTHER GSM CARRIERS). Some may think that AT&T will never do this because it will cannibalize its current business. To those people, I would say they are right... and wrong. It is true that AT&T (and Verizon Wireless) seem very protective on who has access to their nationwide network. But they also must realize that everyone (including AT&T) has their price. Not all T-Mobile USA customers/businesses that want AT&T or Verizon Wireless coverage is willing to pay AT&T or Verizon Wireless prices. Cricket Wireless is an example of AT&T trying to branch out and gain more customers from the "cost-conscious" market segment... and it seems to be very successful at it. If T-Mobile USA basically offered to pay a negotiated price (lower that what an AT&T customer would pay obviously but may be around 2/3 the cost of a Cricket Wireless customer) for T-Mobile USA customers subscribed to the INCREASED DOMESTIC VOICE & DATA ROAMING ADD-ON to roam on AT&T's network when needed, then I think AT&T would consider it. It's not as if every subscriber will be on AT&T's network 24/7 and use up GB of data (obviously)... they would only roam in areas of weak/no-coverage areas in T-Mobile USA's native network, and there could be certain "limitations" to the roaming, such as throttled LTE speed of 8MB/s maximum (just like Cricket Wireless) and AT&T customers get tower priority over T-Mobile customers (in congested areas). Not only that, but AT&T doesn't have to deal with most of the customer administration cost, customer overhead, customer support or technical issues, and other customer expenses either since it's NOT their customer... they just bill T-Mobile for the resources used (or a contracted negotiated sum... whatever they work out) and they get paid.


    Anyway, to make a long story short (too late) if T-Mobile USA and AT&T (and other GSM carriers) were able to make this happen, then this add-on feature would benefit everyone (us T-Mobile USA customers, T-Mobile USA, and AT&T and other partnered GSM carriers).

    For existing T-Mobile USA customers who are cost-conscious and don't want any changes in their plan... they don't have to subscribe to this add-on. That's fine too.


    What do you think?


    Constructive discussion and ideas welcome... maybe T-Mobile USA will actually notice this thread and make some suggestions happen. You never know...
    T-Mobile USA no longer exists.

    Additionally, the roaming issue has been explained in the other thread you copied this from.

    T-Mobile is becoming less and less interested in roaming domestically, especially on AT&T.

  3. #3
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    Tl ; Dr.. Learn how to communicate more effectively...

    (I did skim over some parts)

    I stay with T-Mobile because they work best in my area (NYC), and I stay in LTE coverage 90% of the time

    Your idea= project fi. Go switch to them

    Also, T-Mobile has complained that att is charging a lot for roaming.... Something like $100/100MB?

    T-Mobile has the option of att 3G roaming (in some/most?) Places due to the failed merger, but they aren't doing it

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by paperwastage View Post
    Tl ; Dr.. Learn how to communicate more effectively...

    (I did skim over some parts)

    I stay with T-Mobile because they work best in my area (NYC), and I stay in LTE coverage 90% of the time

    Your idea= project fi. Go switch to them

    Also, T-Mobile has complained that att is charging a lot for roaming.... Something like $100/100MB?

    T-Mobile has the option of att 3G roaming (in some/most?) Places due to the failed merger, but they aren't doing it
    I believe I heard the roaming was 30$ for 100mb which is still freakin expensive. If one family of 5 all uses 50 my of their roaming on atnt in one month, tmobile has to pay atnt 75$ just for that family for that month which is freakin outrages.

    Tmobile would rather have the customers who needs roaming that badly switch to another carrier than to continue shelling out money for that customer.


    via the HoFo App

  5. #5
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    I'm not sure I'd say T-mobile is so far behind their competition. 2G and 3G are phasing out. No one wants to make calls on them and data is useless on them, except maybe HSPA+, but only 2 of the 4 big ones even have that and no one is focusing on it. LTE is where it's all at. T-mobile is going to hit 300+ million covered by the end of this year, while Verizon and AT&T are both at 308 million and Sprint is where? somewhere behind T-mobile now with no set goal of 300 million or more? Sprint's coverage is as bad or worse than T-mobile for pops covered in my opinion unless you count their roaming on Verizon. AT&T and Verizon have more coverage, but 700mhz and aggressive buildouts are helping T-mobile to be competitive. Given that Verizon had 301 million covered 1.5 years ago, and could only cover 7 million people in 1.5 years, I'd be willing to bet T-mobile can catch up to at least being competitive.

  6. #6
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    I had TM as my main carrier for years. Then I moved from flat geography to hilly & TM became UNUSABLE. I wouldn't go back to TM as my main carrier ever. As OP mentioned VZW, AT&T & Sprint (MVNOs & prepaids) all have worked better for me since.
    If my actions include deeds of philanthropy in charity and acts of loving kindness I am living in my Faith.

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  7. #7
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    one advantage to tmo i don't see mentioned a lot or enough credit given is how flexible customer service is and how willing they are to accommodate and make you happy. you don't have to pull teeth or escalate questions endlessly to get credits or excellent customer service

  8. #8
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    Thats the big difference between Sprint and T-Mobile. Roaming. If you are a Sprint customer and wander into a building and lose signal, you can move to roaming on Verizon. Sprint pays a lot of money for this, which is why data roaming is 100 MB, and only 800 minutes. In network roaming I think is a direction T-Mobile should consider for areas that won't be getting band 12. I had AT&T, and it worked almost everywhere, and it did work everywhere T-Mobile currently doesn't for me.

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