Sprint Disses T-Mobile 4G Network Claims

T-Mobile officially kicked off their 4G marketing campaign tonight with the introduction of a video that took a shot across the bow of AT&T.  While we’re certain to hear an AT&T response in the next day or two, Sprint certainly took the opportunity to take a shot at T-Mobile even before the commercial ran.

Sprint 4G President Matt Carter responded to T-Mobile’s claims by saying:

“Halloween is over–it’s time for T-Mobile to stop dressing up like their favorite super hero–Sprint 4G.”

That’s all well and nice, President Carter, but around these parts we recognize that what really counts is cold hard facts.  You can take all the cheap shots you want but the proof is in the pudding as they say.  Recently, I tested out both the EVO 4G and Epic 4G, Sprint’s so-called, “4G” enabled handsets, and the first thing I tested was data speeds.  On average, I would get around 2.3Mbps (Downlink) in New York City on Sprint’s 4G (WiMAX) network and around 5Mbps (Downlink) on T-Mobile’s 4G (HSPA+) network.  But, unlike Sprint’s 4G network which requires a 4G handset to take advantage of the network, T-Mobile’s 4G network is backward compatible, meaning non-HSPA+ handsets will also benefit and receive a speed increase.  Furthermore, T-Mobile’s 4G network has a max download rate of 21Mbps with plans to upgrade to 42Mbps beginning next year, compared to Sprint’s 4G network which has a max of 10Mbps download speeds.  Lastly, in addition to being forced to purchase a 4G- enabled handset to take advantage of Sprint’s “4G” network, Sprint also charges customers who want to use 4G data speeds $10  extra each month.  T-Mobile does not charge anything extra to use its 4G network.

Fierce Wireless

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  • Ansel

    Sprint needs to sit down, shut up, and stop hating smh…what, feeling threatened already by big bad T-Mobile lol??

    • J-Hop2o6

      i aint gonna lie tho.. that Super Hero–Sprint 4G sentence was preddy funny.. but yea, Sprint needs to stop hating and worry about migrating to LTE.. Tmo is faster than them (and the rest) now and later.. especially once Tmo upgrades their HSPA+ once again in 2012 to DC-HSPA+ w/ MIMO (DC-HSPA+ in 2011) to reach 84mbps (theoretical).

      Tmo’s current data is HSPA+ (Release 7 – Category 14)
      2011 = [Dual-Cell/Carrier] DC-HSPA+ (Rel. 8 – Cat. 24)
      2012 = DC-HSPA w/ MIMO [multiple input, multiple output] (Rel. 9 – Cat. 28)
      2013 = LTE

      • blah

        VERY VERY awesome on the MIMO update!!! I heard rumors but didnt actually believe it was in their long term plans since they claimed they would head the LTE route. That being said if they are investing in HSPA+ like this it doesnt look like they will make the switch to LTE until 2014/15 and this appears to be their actual long term “4G” solution. True it will get the speeds and coverage up quicker but in the long term it could prove detrimental. Maybe by then they will have the subscriber base to built their LTE network.

        And yes the super hero comment was funny, the reason they have to confront these claims is because ATT and Verizon will be entering the 4G market soon so they have to stay the leader in this market for the time being. Sprint has a recurrent fear that WiMAX is DOA in the US, which it likely is… which is honestly the only reason Im not with Sprint right now. They were my very first carrier until I switched to TMO. Had they not choosen the likely ill-fated WiMAX I may have gone back. Either way its a shame their network will crash and they have to build dual LTE/WiMax phones just to compensate for their poor choice… I applaud them for being pioneers but they really shouldnt have gun on 4G and WiMAZ in the US in particular…Unfortunately, like the majority of the first pioneers they run the rest of just flat out dying…

      • blah

        Also just found this quote from TMO

        “IntoMobile asked T-Mobile what justification it uses to call HSPA+ a 4G network.

        “The market has determined what 4G is, and customers aren’t concerned with what the ITU decides or the technology behind it. Customers have come to expect faster speeds and a better overall experience, ” Reid Walker, VP of Corporate Communications for T-Mobile, said.”

        Ok fair enough but blantantly saying no one cares what the ITU who defines the standard says??? There are reasons there are standards, wifi standards, bluetooth standards, you cant just ignore them and make up whatever you want. At least make an effort to comply with the set standards.

      • J-Hop2o6

        well i hope Tmo starts building out LTE ASAP once they get the spectrum needed for it, and launch it when they have atleast 20 markets ready to be lit, while still having HSPA+ of course.. so hopefully LTE will be here way before 2014.. its more than just speed to me.. i want to use the new tech, new air interface, etc in true 4G.. u know what i mean Blah.. and other than waiting for subscriber grwoth, they better ask for more $$$ from DT to build out LTE cuhz DT supports LTE heavy.. and yea, it is nice seeing these huge speed bumps (gettin close to true 4G speeds).

        and that makes sense on using the 4G term since Verizon will soon.. not sure on AT&T’s stance on their LTE.. end of 2011? but AT&T has been quiet on their network for awhile than (other than 7.2 HSPA, lol).. and Sprint wont do dual WiMax/LTE phones.. thats insane.. they’ll juss start doin LTE phones and no more new WiMax phones whenever they start their LTE network.

        and yea, i read that comment earlier today.. it makes sense, but still, HSPA+ is still using 3G/WCDMA/UMTS air interface, while WiMax & LTE are using new air interfaces (LTE uses E-UTRAN).. so thats too big of a lie.. its more than just speed, which is mainly what WiMax and LTE are missing from in their current form.. LTE should have voice support soon in early 2011.

      • Bill

        problem is you have to realize marketing is more important than specifications to a large majority. look at computers. how long did the public blindly buy intel products when amd switched to processor equivilancy based on the fact that intel had higher mhz ratings? if you looked at (and still look at) the mhz to mhz ratings amd was higher, but the standard didn’t allow for the common consumer to see that value. this is the same with 4g. if sprint is going to ignore the “standard” and call wimax 4g when it’s 3.75g, why should t-mobile play fair and call theirs what it is: HSPA+ or 3.50g. standards ARE important, the people that need to know them do, and the marketing plays to the mob. to put it simply the mob does not care about standards, they care about value.

    • Kold

      Screw CDMA and screw capped “unlimited” data plans. Yeah, AT&T, I just went there.

    • J-Hop2o6

      We know its good marketing, and most consumers wouldn’t now the abc’s (even basics) of wireless tech.. Blah and I are just getting technical.. and WiMax is actually 4G.. but its in its pre stages (pre-4G) right now until 802.16m (and MIMO?) rolls out.. its currently 802.16e.. and Tmo’s HSPA+ is 3.75 (3.9 w/ DC & MIMO).

      but yea, like i said, HSPA+ is will never be 4G since its still using 3G/WCDMA air interface.. while WiMax and LTE in their current forms are using new air interfaces.. calling HSPA+ 4G is too big of a lie.. but its good marketing either way.. but hopefully they wont get sued for this.. thats why i have a problem with them calling it 4G.

  • vinny

    Sprint is just pissed off at the world. Worst network in the country. You are forced to pay an extra $10.00 a month if you own a 4G phone even if you don’t live in a 4G area. No 4G but you still pay. Great freaken deal. Sprint better get off the can and get on the stick. Snap the hell out of it, this is T-Mobile country. They have the most expensive devices without any merit. Why go Sprint when you can go the fastest and the best, go T-Mobile. My DL speeds on average with my Nexus One are around on average between 3.5 and 5.5 mbps. Upload speeds are between 750 – 1000 mbps. Not too shabby.

    • Kickstar13

      Almost forgot Sprint also charges extra to use their “4G” speeds.

    • chogardjr

      I think its funny that everyone is upset at Sprint. I get 4g speeds of about 3.5 – 7mbps down and 1000mbps up. This is consistant but I do complain about its penetration and distance. As I drive to and from work I drive through about five 4g hotspots getting 3g in between. I love the speeds I get put wish it was less geographical. I don’t know much about tmob except anyone I call, or call me, sounds like crap. If they were to fix voice call clarity and were getting same speeds regardless of what kinda network, I would give them a shot.

      • Serotheo

        If everyone that calls you or that you call sounds like crap.. it could be your phone…

  • abel2fresh4u

    Lets go tmobile hit the ball!!

  • tehandroid

    Sprint can suck it, they’re bested and can’t accept it.

  • http://deleted mark

    I live in an area where i get terrible phone reception and my connection drops to edge whenever i get home :( …why can’t you come near my house T-mobile please!

    • Serotheo

      Same here.. at school I get 2.5Mbps-3Mbps down and 1Mbps up.. when i get home.. Speeds fall till I hit Edge at home, my crappy DSL at home is faster than the 3G I get sitting by my window.

  • jp

    It was bound to happen. Im sure theres more to come.

  • DallasDude

    In Sprint’s Super World 10>21. SMH.

  • chris

    Oh crap, T-Mobile is getting serious! I think that T-Mo is owning every carrier right now lol!


    Sprint cry me a river and go drown in it!!!!

  • TMoFan

    I’m so glad T-Mobile will be aggressively advertising their 4G. Show ’em how’s it’s done Magenta!

  • http://www.Twitter.com/QDOG8 QDOG8

    this is BIG! you can clearly tell that T-Mobile put a lot of thought and effort into “Project Emerald”

  • David Thomas

    Sprint is hurt that the red-headed stepchild is factually better than the flashy blonde. You’re the ones dressing up as “4G”, Sprint. You hear that? It’s the sound of 21Mbps laughing in your face, the voices of people crying out about your $10 “4G” fees. Why? Why are these people so angry about paying you extra for a service they may or may not have available in their area? That’s right, because the rent is too damn high.

    • blah

      We are going to keep getting into the technicals of why HSPA+ isnt 4G technology because apparently no one is listening, cares, or wants to be educated on it. Sprint uses 4G technology, only the infrastructure isnt there. If you check the specs for 802.16e vs. m the ONLY difference is 1GB require, same channels, frequencies, etc.

      Looking at J-Hops post above and viewing the TMO roadmap I doubt US TMO will see LTE until 2014/15. Why? They are building some of the 4G requirements into their HSPA+ spec such as MIMO, lowering latency, but still retaining the dual channel which is against 4G regulations since its all IP-based. As per the generally accepted model and term of 4G, it is ALL IP-based cellular communication which is Pre-ITUs definition of 4G which is why Sprint did originally comply with the term 4G because it was by general standards up until recently and still has the backbone of a true 4G network.

      Semantics aside ATT has already talked about TMOs network before. You cant take on the Iphone/ATT and Sprint/Evo 4G at the same time and not expect a $h#tfight…


      • thisguy

        So T-mos 3G is faster than Sprints 4G…..if so, those standards suck.

      • johnkzin

        Bzzt. Wrong.

        Not only is HSPA+ not a 4G technology … neither is WiMAX. That wasn’t a recent ITU ruling, WiMAX has been called “3.5G” for years. The only people on the planet that call WiMAX “4G” are Sprint and their fan boys.

        There is no currently deployed 4G network. HSPA+ is not 4G. WiMAX is not 4G. They’re both late extensions to 3G. Both sides should sit down and STFU.

  • immadroid

    tmo is coming up, i’m glad i’m sticking around and getting the mytouch 4g =)

  • keawai

    Well said!

  • jesus

    I love this commercial :D hhaha

  • Tito!

    Sprint, Get off T-Mobile’s nuts.
    & Change your Network’s name to Slander .

    (Threatened? Sit back. The Magenta Shadow has been cast. :)

  • kershon

    T-Mobile has finally got balls. Frk Sprint and ATT. Let the games begin!

  • James

    This is actually kinda exciting. T-Mobile is actually pushing back at these BS 4g claims, and the big boys are feeling threatened. This is great!

  • djdarkknight96

    Lmfao, go tmo go! Oh yeah already there! Sprint who? Hahaha!

  • Josh

    Yeah I bet it has to do with the new CEO. Robert Dotson was a freakign pansy!

  • BackAlley

    Haven’t you all heard that Sprint’s business is boomin! They added 664,000 subscribers last quarter! Oh, yeah and they posted a loss of $911 million! They can barely keep their head above water as it is and if it was wasn’t for Clearwire there to build out your WiMax network that has put you hugely in debt, I’m sure you would be waving the white flag of shame since you have nothing else to compete against The Top Dog, The King of Speed, T-Mobile!!!

  • Hecg55

    The girl is beautiful but what happened to catherine zeta??

    • Eddie Android

      She married Zorro and now own T-Mobile lol.

  • Name*

    Tmobil should have been faster since it’s got no subscribers…. traffic free.

  • DEPT

    The reason Tmobile is doing this is because they have a new president of the company! He is imported straight from DT and he is here to kick american cell phone companies butts!

  • watbetch

    Call me when Sprint can actually afford to build a 4G network of their own.

  • Robin

    Preach on brother preach on. Can’t wait to get mines lol

  • Spencer

    From the reviews I’ve seen sprint has about an average of 8mbps to 10mbps

    • Kickstar13

      Links please.

    • jim

      Sitting next to my buddy on his EVO 4g, time and time again, we compare speeds, and my good old Nexus One beats him out every time here in west Houston. I see speeds ranging from 1.2-5Mbps, but average around 1.7-3Mbps (note: my phone doesn’t support the “4G” speeds).. he gets excited when he breaks 1Mbps. It’s usually at this point that I ask him how it feels to pay an extra $10/month for that? :P

      • jdog

        I have gotten up to 7.5mbps in Sugar Land on my Nexus One.

  • http://www.twitter.com/carlos_fontes Carlos Fontes

    When people start biting, you’re doing something right. Good job, T-Mo.

  • papeshfoo

    Where is MailMan? BOOM GOES THE DYNAMITE!

  • Darnell

    “4G” is not ONLY about speed. What T-Mobile has is not true 4G when considering all the aspects of what is comprised in a true “4G” network.

    But hey, what really matters most to customers, speed :) .

    Just the same, T-Mobile should have stuck with the “4G speed” statements instead of trying to claim it’s really a 4G network. If they get sued and lose, we all lose because we customers will have to fund the loss.

    Like it or not, Sprint is right to say T-Mobile is a 3G network wearing a 4G costume. T-Mobile could have shown how actual speeds for users are faster and such. Plenty of ways to trump Sprint without claiming the network is true 4G, it’s not.

    • Kickstar13

      But at the same time according to the ITU, Sprint’s WiMAX network isn’t a “4G Network” either. Same goes for AT&T and Verizon’s upcoming LTE network.

      • Darnell

        Also, when Sprint first claimed they had “3G” it was not really “3G” ;) .

        So this has been a long running issue of carriers making claims that don’t meet technical spec.

      • Darnell

        Good article here on the issue of 4G marketing and how each carrier has sold it: http://www.bgr.com/2010/11/03/the-4g-forgery/

  • Alex

    please correct your pudding idiom – It is actually “the proof of the pudding is in the eating”

  • dahhh….

    It doesn’t sound like Sprint and AT&T customers are the cry babies on this link but it does sound like it’s the TMO people…

  • Nother

    I always wonder about the quality of articles like this when I see information like, “T-Mobile’s 4G network has a max download rate of 21Mbps with plans to upgrade to 42Mbps beginning next year, compared to Sprint’s 4G network which has a max of 10Mbps download speeds.”

    My understanding is that HSPA+ has a theoretical max of 21Mbps and WiMax (802.16e) has a theoretical max of 40Mbps. The HSPA+ max may upgrade to 42Mbps and WiMax may upgrade to WiMax 2 (802.16m) at 100Mbps mobile and 1Gbps fixed/stationary.

    Comparing theoretical max (21Mbps) to advertised capabilities (10Mbps) is deceptive.

    • MoreCents

      It’s very deceptive, Nother.

  • nightkid

    Sprint just accepted the fact that you cannot considered your pathetic wimax as a 4G because you are not getting the peak speed rate to compared with tmo HSPA+ . Just shut you. Mouth and go back there to start to plan out a better idea how to implement your pathetic wimax tower, don’t wasted any more time just siTting there and willing about it. Be reality!!!!!!

  • hello….

    This link is nothing but a bunch of non-technical people talking about something they know nothing about…..There is a reason why TMO is # 4….

  • Nother

    “Be reality!!!!!!”

    Buddha couldn’t have said it better.

  • Tim

    you may be getting 5Mps now, but thats becasue there is almost no users on that network wait til people start buying that phone and tmobile does not have the capacity to support all those users at one time guess what happens the speed goes way down. sprint has more than needed amount of spectrum to keep the users running at the same speed


    • Ozz

      I just switch to sprint from TMO, which 4g in my area is lit up, and I get a constant 8.5-9.2 Mps on my Epic 4g. It all depends where you live. When i had tmo i was getting variable speed, at night was the best – day=556kps-1.4Mps and at night (11:30pm) i saw 1.4-2.1Mps, but it was not constant speed and of course reception too was bad. I was with them 4 years.

      • Tato22


      • http://washmate.net Morgan Chiu

        So you get above average throughput ALL THE TIME. Maybe very few users on the network? Maybe it’s just where you live?

        From Sprint’s website on their theoretical speeds (http://shop.sprint.com/en/stores/popups/4G_coverage_popup.shtml):

        4G speeds are up to 10x faster than 3G. That’s like swapping out DSL for a high-speed cable modem.

        So what’s the difference? 4G 3G
        Average download speeds 3-6 Mbps 600Kbps – 1.4 Mbps
        Peak download speeds More than 10 Mbps Up to 3.1 Mbps


      You guys that have sprint’ good job! I had t-mobile before I was paying almost 80$ with internet n unlimited calling, not text, not you tube, that was x, and a bunch of drop calls, people I know that still have t-mobile still have that problem… With sprint I have everthing unlimited, including sprint tv, everything about football, nascar cup mobile, and everything else that sprint covers…. HTC EVO 4G.

  • D.LaFleur

    That Lady is smoking!!!!!!

  • SublimeDavid

    I think last numbers ive heard is that t-mobile has only used around 30% of it’s capacity so they have quite a long way to go..

  • fore gee

    For future reference, it’s “putting” not “pudding.”

  • Tato22

    i’m in Miami fl and i have the sprint evo and my wife has the t mobile Samsung vibrant my 3g is 10 times faster them her t mobile even in Orlando where they new t mobile fast speeds are at my 3g for sprint is faster idk where u guys getting this from but sprint got it so far cuz in fl t mobile 3g sucks

    • http://washmate.net Morgan Chiu

      10 times? Show a vid of speedtest…

  • ken

    i think tmo still need to strengthen it’s 3G service i’m still getting EDGE on my G2 at home.

    unless u live in the city you will not be seeing 4G or 3G…just EDGE

  • Tato22

    why dose my comment keep getting deleted ?????????????/

  • http://www.youtube.com/Jeromeo1980 Jeromeo

    Here’s an interesting read called “The 4G Forgery”


  • alex

    Just because you soop up your 3g network shouldnt allow you to consider it a 4g network. They want to say the biggest 4g network but they dont even have enough 3g to begin with. Tmobile sucks and Sprint has more spectrum than anyone. So let the race begin

  • Elk

    Neither Sprint (WiMax), T-Mobile (HSPA+), Verizon (LTE), or AT&T (LTE) can claim to be 4G. All are lies!!!

    The International Telecommunication Union defines 4G as LTE-Advanced or WiMan-Advanced which are completely different from Sprint’s WiMax, Verizon and AT&T’s LTE, and T-mobile’s HSPA+. Technically, these are 3.5G, but NOT 4G!!!

    Link to the ITU 4G Definition: http://www.itu.int/net/pressoffice/press_releases/2010/40.aspx

    It is nothing but a marketing scam!

    • Drumguy1384

      You are correct. WiMax, HSPA+, and LTE are all just enhancements and/or add-ons to the current “3G” protocols.

      In fact, 3G itself was a GSM (later expanded to include W-CDMA and others) standard developed by the 3GPP http://www.3gpp.org/

      The reason why we say that these new tech are not truly 4G is because the full standards of the 4GPP have not yet been completed or published. The only way these companies get away with calling it “4G” is they can say that it is the 4th generation of THEIR network.

      That being said these respective companies are making strides to improve their networks and data speeds which is commendable. What will and won’t be rolled into the actual 4G standard remains to be seen, but by the time it’s standardized the devices will already be widely available. It is, however, safe to say for now that one should just choose the tech that works best for them now or in the very near future because it’s all bound to change again soon.

      • Drumguy1384


        Elk, you are correct that the 4G standards do exist. However, from what I understand, none of the US networks will come close to it in the near future. So, my previous advice stands. Find the network that works the best for you in your current situation and don’t worry too much about what they call it because it’s all going to be changing again and again until someone actually meets the ITU’s 4G standard. Then it might level off like 3G did for a while before 5G rolls out.

  • i told u so .com

    first tmobile is #4 carrier in the US and will stay that way (look at the Q3 and 4 numbers). Second sprint will soon buy them out once they do go to 4G. third Sprints wimax is still consider 3G but 3.9 still higher then Tmo, but once upgraded in a year to wimax 2 as test show with samsung speeds are at 330mbps which TMo will never reach unless the really upgrade to 4G like the carriers AHEAD OF THEM. last even TMo failed to answer question regarding this claim, and is confermed they know this crap is not considered 4G http://www.techeye.net/mobile/t-mobile-stays-competitive-by-marketing-non-existent-4g. So calm down you clowns, and understand TMO will never be able to match sprint in anything, not pricing , not speeds, not CS not nothing, the best they can do is hope and pray for sprint to buy them out ASAP. Until then you dummys can stay on a inferior network.

    • thedude

      I think I love this guy. Tell them big buddy, Sprint will rule the world!!

    • crazythunder

      “Until then you DUMMY’S can stay on a inferior network”

      ok, it’s CONFERMED,you’re the true dummy. it’s CONFIRMED.

    • http://www.facebook.com/MatthewSki Matthew Kalinowski

      ok first off the rumors are that Verizon is going to buy out t-mo not sprint and second they debunked the rumors

      • http://tmonews.com tmonews

        Oh I’d love to know where these purported Verizon buying Tmo rumors exist? I’ve not heard of that…

  • i told u so .com
  • Tmoled

    I got 4mbps in new york this weekend on my vibrant! Their 4g epic doesn’t even get 3? What a joke! Sprint is so full of crap, they were the first to lie about 4g, freakin clowns.

    • thedude

      New york is a new area to Sprint’s “4g”. Here is dallas, tx I get a minimum of 4mbps down and a high of 8mbps. This is a big city with a lot of cell phones. Figure it out. Tell them I told you so!!!

  • Fresh

    Wow I think my comment got deleted! Tmobile sucks as far as service and everything else! When my contract is up I’m going to sprint to get my Evo 4g!

    • David, Managing Editor

      No comment got deleted, chill out.