T-Mobile responds to AT&T’s upcoming 2G shutdown with free service for IoT customers

tmobileinternetofthings

T-Mobile is no stranger to poking fun at the other major U.S. competitors and the moves that they make, and today T-Mo is putting AT&T in its sights.

T-Mobile says that it’s “throwing a lifeline” to AT&T Internet of Things (IoT) customers but offering them free 2G service through the end of 2016. This includes up to 50MB per device per month and free SIM cards.

If you’re an AT&T customer that’s interested in migrating your IoT devices to T-Mobile’s 2G network, you can fill out this form.

AT&T plans on shutting down its 2G network by the end of 2016. T-Mobile plans on keeping its 2G network through 2020, though, a decision that’s been made in part so that IoT customers have time to make the transition to newer networking tech, like LTE.

T-Mobile recently partnered with Sequans Communications S.A. to use LTE Cat 1 technology for machine-to-machine (M2M) and IoT service.

Today’s news is part of what appears to be an IoT push from T-Mobile. We’ve seen a few IoT-centric moves from T-Mo so far this year, including the aforementioned Sequans partnership and an alliance with Novatel Wireless to offer a bundle to get retail connected devices online. While T-Mobile is still working on getting regular consumers to jump to the Un-carrier — John Legere says that T-Mo’s Q3 porting ratios are higher than Q1 and Q2 — a focus on IoT gives T-Mobile another way to grow.

Source: T-Mobile

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  • emcdonald75

    I can understand T-Mobile wanting to get M2M customers for growth, but I don’t like it. I am with AT&T on this one. 2G is an archaic technology and it should have been phased out years ago. M2M customers should be forced to move to LTE now that newer LTE technologies are viable and available. T-Mobile should continue to implement 4G LTE technologies in more places.

    • Trevnerdio

      Agreed. 2020? Geez, that’s operating a technology for 20+ years – that doesn’t happen in the mobile world. 2G has long overstayed its welcome. Also, PCS1900 could definitely be used for some slightly longer range Band II LTE…just sayin’.

      • Bradley Karas

        They already launched a good portion of their pcs for LTE…they just launched tri band LTE in Tampa yesterday with a blend of 12, 2 and 4

        • Trevnerdio

          Ooo, me likey. I’m still waiting for the stupid TV station in Marianna, FL to get off their bums and move their Channel 51. In-building coverage in Panama City can be downright deplorable.

      • maximus1901

        you’re clueless. m2m barely uses any data and doesn’t need 200mbps.
        cat 1 lte, which tmo has just certified to work on their website, has max speeds of 10mbps
        cat 0 lte max = 1mbps
        cat m1 lte max = even lower.

        • Trevnerdio

          Am I clueless though? Did you know I wasn’t concerned with, or referring to, speed at all? Spectrum is a finite resource – any 2G technology taking up that resource is a waste of valuable space.

        • Fabian Cortez

          Am I clueless though? Did you know I wasn’t concerned with, or referring to, speed at all? Spectrum is a finite resource – any 2G technology taking up that resource is a waste of valuable space.

          GSM is existing in guard bands that cannot be used by LTE.

          So no, this has nothign to do with wasting valuable space.

        • Trevnerdio

          That’s pretty neat, thanks for the info. Yay for efficiency!

        • Fabian

          If it was true. I’d ask for evidence of where T-Mobile is doing that.

        • Trevnerdio

          Who is this fake Fabian? Will we ever know? The search for answers continues…

        • Jon

          power draw is a factor for iot

        • Trevnerdio

          ^yes, this. I had forgotten about that.

  • Walt

    It sure would be nice if t-mobile would shut down 2G and 3G HSPA and go to an all LTE network. That spectrum sure could use refarming to LTE. ATT is taking a step in the right direction imo.

  • kev2684

    I wish T-Mobile would shut down their 2G network earlier than 2020. I’m so tired of seeing edge, 3G HSPA even. What year is it?!

    • Trevnerdio

      EDGE is better than nothing, but I agree, I’d like to see some LTE in place of that E ;)

      • Jimmy

        Id rather have nothing than Edge. At least i wont be frustrated trying to use my phone compaired to having no signal

        • Trevnerdio

          But at the very least we have calls and texts, right?

        • cloud strife

          You prefer to have no option to call 911 in case of an emergency than having at least 2g to save lives? Internet >>>>>> human life

        • mdbrotha03

          Phones connect to any detected network when you dial 911. I dialed it once overseas in the middle of nowhere in an old Verizon flip phone. Went from no service to full bars instantly.

        • jimv1983

          We are talking about data connections not voice service. You don’t need a data connection to call 911 or any other phone numbers.

    • John Wentworth

      Shutting down the EDGE network doesn’t magically create an LTE network, they can build out LTE coverage while still maintaining a small amount of spectrum for EDGE for M2M machines and as backup voice services. They have been working very hard to build out their LTE networks and in some areas with band 12 LTE already exists where edge does not.

      AT&T is shutting down 2G earlier for one reason and one reason only, they are probably the carrier that has the least amount of usable LTE spectrum and their network is slow, they need that spectrum now for LTE.

      Caveat you can argue that Sprint is even worse off spectrum wise because so much of their spectrum is high spectrum 2500 Mhz airwaves, a comparatively little is low-band or mid-band. Those 2500Mhz airwaves don’t reach far.
      But if you ask Sprint they seem to think they have enough.

    • Bryan Pizzuti

      Honestly, it’s probably easier to shut down HSPA than it is to shut down EDGE. The M2M/IoT stuff will still work on EDGE. I’d rather see them use the spectrum being used for HSPA for LTE instead, but right now HSPA is still filling in a lot of holes in the LTE coverage, so they need to keep it around.

      I hardly ever end up on EDGE, personally, and would almost prefer just losing signal altogether, M2M might be able to use it but my smartphone can’t, not really.

      • maximus1901

        you can make phone calls and text

      • jimv1983

        And what about all the T-Mobile customers that are in places that don’t have LTE coverage? They’d all be forced down to EDGE? Yeah, that would sure help T-Mobile keeping customers.

        Before T-Mobile could even think about turning off the HSPA network it would have to make sure that every place that currently has HSPA coverage also has LTE coverage and that is far from being the case.

        • Bryan Pizzuti

          Introductory reading comprehension lesson #1: in order to comprehend, you must read.

          “but right now HSPA is still filling in a lot of holes in the LTE coverage, so they need to keep it around.”

    • Adam

      Today’s weather forecast is LTE. I’ll sometimes turn off WiFi to see what the cell signal is at home. I have noticed I get LTE or EDGE depending on the weather. I suspect the higher data rate of LTE makes it more susceptible to interference. I also noticed on T-Mobile’s coverage map, there is sometimes a thin band of EDGE between LTE and no service. I did a web search to find other people are also experiencing EDGE carrying farther. If EDGE is shutdown, there will be more holes in the network. In my case, it would be an intermittent hole.

    • cloud strife

      HSPA is more reliable than LTE at this moment. Unless you stream 4k then H+ may not be enough. But with phones usually set by default on auto and prioritizes connecting on LTE, it could get crowded over there while H+ can give better speeds especially in the metros because of less users on that frequency. VoLTE support is still a major problem. It’s still in early stages and most phones out there doesn’t support it (2014 – early 2015 and below models). Not everyone like to upgrade frequently & be forced to upgrade when they don’t see it necessary.

    • Sayahh

      But my phone only gets EDGE. Will you send me some money for a new phone so that YOUR wish of TMo shutting down 2G comes true? ;)

      • jimv1983

        That is a joke right? Any phone that doesn’t have 3G is over 10 years old. I’d be really surprised if a 10 year old phone still works at all. It’s time to get a new phone. You could probably get a used phone from a few years ago for like $25.

        • Sayahh

          Why would it be a joke? The asking for money part, yeah, that was a joke, but my phone is from 2007. (I got it new in 2008, IIRC.) It has no Wi-Fi, no GPS, no NFC and, no, no 3G.
          From: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nokia_5310
          Packet Data
          Technology: EDGE (EGPRS) class 32, up to 177 kbits / GPRS class 32

          So, no, it wasn’t a joke, and sorry, “any phone that doesn’t have 3G is over 10 years old” is just not a correct statement.” I have friends who offered to give me their iPhone 3G and my brother who has offered to buy me a brand new iPhone or Galaxy S line phone, but I declined.

          Also, the fact that it is still working proves that you are probably really surprised by a lot of things. I’m sure I could even find older phones that would still work if I didn’t need to get on the internet to check my email and access Google Maps. But yeah, I could definitely get a used phone from a few years ago for like $25, so you’re not completely wrong on everything.

        • jimv1983

          It’s unusual for a phone from 2007 to not have 3G. I remember when the first iPhone came out in 2007. It didn’t have 3G and that was probably the biggest complaint because most other phones on the market at that time DID have 3G.

          Verizon was the first United States carrier to launch a 3G network. That was early 2002. AT&T launched its 3G late 2002/early 2003.

          http://edition.cnn.com/2002/TECH/ptech/01/28/verizon.3g/

          It did take 3G a long time to get going. A lot longer than LTE. I got my first 3G phone in like early 2006 and I wasn’t close to the first to have one among my family and friends.

          So yes, not having 3G on any phone newer than 10 years is pretty strange.

          In one of your other comments you said your phone loads pages quickly but here you say you phone can go UP TO 177Kbps. It’s very rare to get the max theoretical speed over mobile data. Realistically it’s maybe 50% faster than dial up internet.

  • Dylan Gorski

    How will this affect the roaming agreements? I live in Kentucky and when I travel I’m often roaming on AT&T’s Edge network. Will it put people on their 4G network instead or just not roam entirely?

  • Fabian

    I think T-Mobile wants to continue the POP coverage race with 5×5 B12 and slowly convert PCS for LTE. In other words, it will be more of the same.

    • kgraham182

      John & Co. like using the POP number cause it makes them look like they can compete with Dumb & Dumber on coverage. Good luck covering those last couple millions of POP who live in Alaska, Big Sky country, the state above the city of New York, Maine, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and West Virginia.

      • Fabian Cortez

        John & Co. like using the POP number cause it makes them look like they can compete with Dumb & Dumber on coverage. Good luck covering those last couple millions of POP who live in Alaska, Big Sky country, the state above the city of New York, Maine, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and West Virginia.

        It’s funny that you should say that. T-Mobile signed an LTE roaming agreement two years ago with GCI in Alaska, whose coverage trounces Verizon’s. Likewise, T-Mobile covers Puerto Rico just fine.

        On the other hand, it is Verizon who lacks serious native coverage in Puerto Rico after selling their assets to Claro in 2007. 1xRTT roaming was all that was offered until 2014 when roaming was then handled by Open Mobile’s network as Claro shut down their CDMA network.

        Neville Ray’s comments were quite clear: “We plan to materially close the gap [with Verizon] by the end of the year,”

        He also specifically stated that they plan to cover the same amount of people as Verizon. If you are unhappy about the POP metric then you should take that up with the census and FCC.

        You bring up the POP metric as if it’s a bunch of smoke and mirrors. You then unilaterally praise it with your sarcasm in wishing T-Mobile “good luck [in] covering those last couple millions of POP.” All while listing random geographies that are either already covered and/or contribute next to nothing to that POP number.

        • kgraham182

          You’re right, those areas I listed contribute next to nothing to the POP number. And that’s why TMO like using it instead on sq. miles covered. I like when we agree, Fabian.

        • Fabian Cortez

          You’re right, those areas I listed contribute next to nothing to the POP number. And that’s why TMO like using it instead on sq. miles covered. I like when we agree, Fabian.

          You’re once again changing the subject. Nice straw man attempt.

          You brought up those locales in an effort to make it seem like T-Mobile didn’t cover them, wasn’t planning on covering them, and/or they all make up the remaining land coverage difference.

          The reality is what I explained above. Do you have any evidence to support you claims?

        • kgraham182

          How did I change the subject, I stated TMO likes using the POP statistic cause it makes them sound comparable to the Big 2. Which it does, and if I was John I would do the same thing. I listed some areas with poor coverage, then you replied and said those areas contribute little to nothing to the POP number. Which I agree with, so what’s the problem. Be happy, we agree the POP numbers mean nothing. My fantasy team and Packers are 1-0.

        • Fabian Cortez

          How did I change the subject, I stated TMO likes using the POP statistic cause it makes them sound comparable to the Big 2. Which it does, and if I was John I would do the same thing. I listed some areas with poor coverage, then you replied and said those areas contribute little to nothing to the POP number. Which I agree with, so what’s the problem.

          Your comprehension is lacking.

          You listed areas in which you assumed all had no coverage that would magically increase the POP coverage metric once covered.

          “Alaska, Big Sky country, the state above the city of New York, Maine, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and West Virginia,” the areas that you think T-Mobile doesn’t cover based upon the POP metric, are already covered (you unfortunately lumped in covered areas with areas that may not be with LTE). Places where people don’t reside are not counted in the POP (population) metric.

          Which I agree with, so what’s the problem. Be happy, we agree the POP numbers mean nothing. My fantasy team and Packers are 1-0.

          Not once did I claim the “POP numbers mean nothing.” So we are not in agreement. Likewise, your “fantasy team and Packers are 1-0” means nothing as it relates to this discussion along with what you discussed above.

        • Richard Roma

          POPs mean little to the user as most of us are typically out and about and not jumping from POP to POP. For example, no POP in central park but I need coverage there.

        • Richard Roma

          T-Mobile have a lot of ‘closing’ to do, considering they’re a good 1 million fewer sq miles. While they are at it, can they also close this gap in all of the large metro areas, like at LAX or when I enter a mall or grocery store. Such places are not the boonies..

      • Fabian

        God forbid if those POPs decide to go out of their homes and out of the city.

        • Richard Roma

          It’s why I have to carry around a 2nd phone from the evil Big Two carriers. Contrary to T-Mobile’s marketing BS, there are significant and valid reasons as to why over 250 million Americans still use the other two carriers.

    • Richard Roma

      POPs are BS anyway, as they have over 1 million sq miles less coverage than Verizon. They barely cover interstates outside metro areas, secondary roads almost always drop to 2G or No service.

      If there is any carrier that needs to decommission their useless 2G asap it’s tmobile. For starters, I am sick of seeing it in so many places, including large metro areas and stores in 2016, as it’s simply not usable and calls sound terrible.

      At least in the few places that still have poor service 1x CDMA is usable.

      • maximus1901

        if you only see 2g and they get rid of 2g . . . guess what you’ll see.

        • Fabian

          LTE if they decide to spend the money on real coverage.

        • SirStephenH

          Likely LTE or 3g. Many areas that people are complaining about getting 2g or 3g have LTE, phones just decide that’s a great idea to drop down to a useless connection on the outskirts. Try forcing your phone to LTE only some day and see what you get in those spots. I’ve found it’s pointless to have 2g/3g enabled in areas where band 12 is deployed.

        • Richard Roma

          Funny, because this is not an issue on either of my AT&T or Verizon services. I see LTE or 3G/4G 99% of the time.

          Tmobile is the only carrier of the four that typically shows an E whenever I take my phone out of my pocket in a big box store. Their AWS and B12 is pretty useless for coverage.

          GSM has poor coverage. If T-Mobile converted these PCS frequencies to LTE, I would without a doubt see LTE. Hence, they need to convert to LTE more than anyone else. If they didn’t, we wouldn’t have to rely on cell boosters and wifi calling so much.

      • Fabian Cortez

        For starters, I am sick of seeing it in so many places, including large metro areas and stores in 2016, as it’s simply not usable and calls sound terrible.

        What device are you using?

        • kgraham182

          It’s 2016, not 2014. Should it matter what device he has, cause it doesn’t on ATT. If it’s a GSM/LTE phone it automatically ATT compatible. Things just sorta work you know, no asking does it support B12, Wifi Calling, or VoLTE.

        • Fabian Cortez

          It’s 2016, not 2014. Should it matter what device he has,

          Of course it matters. People tend to hang onto their devices longer.

          The fact remains that if one doesn’t have a Band 12 LTE phone, with VoLTE, they will not be able to take advantage of its beneficial properties.

          cause it doesn’t on ATT.

          I know the answer, but I’ll ask you why it “doesn’t happen on ATT.” Why does it not happen on AT&T?

          If it’s a GSM/LTE phone it automatically ATT compatible.

          If it’s a “GSM/LTE” phone, it also automatically compatible with T-Mobile as well. Especially now that AT&T has agreed to switch to Band 12. What exactly is your point?

          Things just sorta work you know, no asking does it support B12, Wifi Calling, or VoLTE.

          The fact remains: to take advantage of their network expansion, via Band 12, a customer needs a Band 12 phone that supports VoLTE.

          If you or anyone else is unhappy about this, there are OEMs that make phones that work perfectly on all carriers. Likewise, T-Mobile has abandoned all service contracts in 2013; you are free to leave to any of the three other carriers that [allegedly] have nationwide service. But then again, this is TmoNews…

        • Richard Roma

          Poor indoor coverage is something almost all diehard Magenta fans deny. AWS is very poor for indoor coverage and their B12 is woefully under-powered.

        • DynamikD

          I personally don’t deny anything to prove a point. If I go someplace and have poor indoor coverage, then other cellular providers suffer poor indoor coverage as well. I’ve been inside many buildings where Verizon and att had little to no coverage and I had full LTE inside the same buildings.

        • Richard Roma

          Here is the perfect example. There is a cell phone tower near a target that has both Verizon and Tmobile cellular equipment. One guess who shows LTE in the store while the other drops to E, until I hold it out for a few minutes and don’t move and aim it towards the tower.

        • Richard Roma

          Iphone 6s+ & Note 5

  • Bryan Pizzuti

    It’s nice to pick up the customers, but T-Mobile really needs to accelerate the retirement of their HSPA network, and finish refarming that as LTE.

    • maximus1901

      until they get lowband everywhere, that’s not an option

      • Bryan Pizzuti

        Why? Their 2G is all 1900 MHz.

        • Greg Dalin

          1900 isnt low band…. 850mhz and such is low band

        • Bryan Pizzuti

          I’m aware of that. The point is that the current 2G is not low band.

    • jimv1983

      You really think T-Mobile would leave a large percent of its customers with 2G data or no data at all?

      Before T-Mobile can even think about retiring its HSPA network it would need to make sure that its LTE coverage is AT LEAST as good as its HSPA coverage and that is FAR from being the case right now.

      • Bryan Pizzuti

        You keep assuming that “Retire their HSPA” network just means to flip the switch on it to “off” and never ever use the spectrum or antennas for anything else ever. Which tells me you don’t really know how things work. Retirement of the HSPA network would involve replacing the backend equipment with LTE.

        • jimv1983

          Yes, I realize that. What I’m saying is that getting LTE coverage in all the places where there is only HSPA needs to happen before they can even think about retiring the HSPA network. Considering how many places T-Mobile has HSPA but no LTE that is a LONG time off.

          And the coverage map is a flat out LIE when it comes to LTE coverage.

          When you zoom in on the map they have 4 levels of LTE.

          1. 4G LTE – Excellent Signal
          2. 4G LTE – Good Signal
          3. 4G LTE – Fair Signal
          4. 4G LTE – Partner

          I am currently sitting in a building in Pleasanton CA that is in an area of “4G LTE – Excellent Signal”.

          I have talked to 4 people that sit near me. Two iPhones (one 6 one 6S), a Nexus 6P and a Galaxy S7. All of them are on 3G. None of them are getting LTE.

          Looks like a lot of work to do.

  • noh1bvisas

    tmo is keeping their 2G so they can throttle down your data speed.

    • Fabian Cortez

      tmo is keeping their 2G so they can throttle down your data speed.

      Factually speaking, throttling your speed to 2G speeds occurs on their LTE and UMTS (W-CDMA)/HSPA network.

      • noh1bvisas

        interesting. it only happened to me once, years ago. i saw 2G on my display and called to ask what was going on.

  • Walt

    It sure would be nice if t-mobile would shut down 2G and 3G HSPA and go to an all LTE network. That spectrum sure could use refarming to LTE. ATT is taking a step in the right direction imo.

    • Fabian Cortez

      It sure would be nice if t-mobile would shut down 2G and 3G HSPA and go to an all LTE network. That spectrum sure could use refarming to LTE. ATT is taking a step in the right direction imo.

      2G/GSM is being placed/squeezed within the spectrum guard bands. No spectrum is being used by 2G/GSM which isn’t already being repurposed for LTE or needed for LTE due to capacity constraints.

      • Walt

        Ok thanks. But what about 3G hspa? Would that be capped at 14.4mbps max speed for only a 5mhz chunk of hspa spectrum?

    • jimv1983

      Maybe for 2G but not for 3G HSPA. At least not until the T-Mobile’s LTE network covers at least as much area as their 3G network. Despite what T-Mobile commercials may tell you the coverage is still pretty bad in many areas. Even major metropolitan areas. For example, I live about 35 miles from San Francisco. I know many people with T-Mobile that only have 3G in some areas.

      • noh1bvisas

        3g 35 miles from SF or in SF? 35 miles away i can kinda understand.

        • jimv1983

          35 miles from San Francisco. The San Francisco metro area has millions of people. If T-Mobile were to shut down the 3G HSPA network there would be lots of people who would have no data connection at all. There are other metro areas in the country where T-Mobile customers don’t get LTE. There are even places within the large cities (San Francisco, LA, NYC, etc) where they don’t get LTE. T-Mobile isn’t that stupid. It wouldn’t cut off millions of customers in the country that either have 2G/3G or nothing.

        • noh1bvisas

          i understand SF is a large city. if you’re going to live that far outside of a city you can’t expect the same level of services in a city.

        • jimv1983

          I still don’t think you are getting the point. The comment by Walt suggested that T-Mobile should shutdown its 2G and 3G networks. There are lots of T-Mobile customers all around the country who would have no data at all if T-Mobile shut down its 3G network.

          And 35 miles outside a major city isn’t really that far. It’s only like a 30 minute drive(with no traffic of course). If a cell carrier only has good coverage within the city limits of a major city and not most of the metro area it isn’t a very good provider. It’s not unreasonable to expect good LTE service over the entire metro area. Of course there will be dead zones. That’s understandable to a point. T-Mobile’s LTE coverage in the San Francisco bay area(the entire metro area) is probably 60-70%. The other 30-40% rely on 3G. If T-Mobile were to shut off the 3G network 30-40% of T-Mobile customers would have no data at all.

        • noh1bvisas

          thanks. that wasn’t how i read it. sounded like he was complaining he had worse service than people in the city.

        • Walt

          “If T-Mobile were to shut off the 3G network 30-40% of T-Mobile customers would have no data at all”

          Absolutely 100% False! Ever tower has atleast 2G edge or GPRS and you can use data on the (yes i know its slow but still works)

          If tmobile was Smart they would shut down 3G hspa move that specturm over to LTE and keep 2G up and running till 2020. Everyone who has a 3G hspa device would still be able to use their phone for calling/texts and data at 2G speeds! Forcing them to upgrade to an LTE device. That would be pure genius on tmobile part lol

    • illstplaya .

      Yes but you cannot make phone calls or receive phone calls over LTE unless your phone supports VoLTE. Only phones sold by t-mobile and a few others support this. Phones older than mid 2015 don’t support VoLTE even if they are sold by t-mobile. So what you said is true , it would not be ideal for the consumers to shut down 2G and 3G.

      • jimv1983

        2G and 3G refer to data. Normal voice calls don’t go over regular data. They could shut down 2G and 3G and not impact voice or SMS.

        • Sayahh

          jimv1983:
          “That is a joke right? Any phone that doesn’t have 3G is over 10 years
          old. I’d be really surprised if a 10 year old phone still works at all.”

          jimv1983:
          “They could shut down 2G and 3G and not impact voice or SMS.”

          I believe your two statements contract each other, since, according to you, it would still work for calls.

        • jimv1983

          Yes, it would still work for calls if the phone is functioning at all. How many 10 year old phones still work as intended after 10 years?

        • Sayahh

          I understand that there’s built in planned obsolescent (read: greedy corporations) in both cars and phones (notice how you’re financing phones the same way you finance cars?), but that doesn’t mean that I can’t fix the phone to keep it working. Do you dump your car because it stops working or because a newer, cooler car came along? It’s fine if it’s the latter, but just because something breaks down (normal wear and tear, or even occasional major mechanical problem, e.g., need for a new air conditioner compressor) doesn’t mean that you should trade it in, especially if the replacement cost is low or if the new car price is way beyond your budget.

          Many phones should still work as intended after ten years; how many iPhones or Galaxy phones stop working after four months because of a OS upgrade? Sometimes the manufacturers just don’t care. My sister-in-law’s Windows phone works fine–except for the camera. Mechanically it’s fine, but Microsoft just won’t fix what appears to be a software error, either because they have no will or incentive to do so, or because it’s easier to dump them and get a new one than deal with a small claims or class action lawsuit.

        • jimv1983

          For the most part cars don’t change much. Sure there are new luxury features like navigation, break assist, backup cameras, etc but the basic function doesn’t improve much in just a few years. That isn’t the case with phones. Even the most basic features on a phone are vastly improved over 10 years.

          In addition too that many cars do continue to work after 10 years. Phones often don’t. I still have my last non-smartphone from 2007. Even with a new battery it doesn’t even turn on any more. My friend still has a phone from 2011 and about 50-75% of the time he gets a call the phone restarts. I have to stick to texting him. My old Galaxy S II still turns on but that is about it. Try and do anything with it and it starts having issues.

          Like you said with cars you can easily replace a broken part and often for much less than buying a new car. With a phone just about the only thing you can reasonably replace is the battery and with phones as old as yours I’d be surprised if you could even get that battery anymore.

          Although, I wouldn’t even keep a car for as long as you’ve kept your phone unless I had no other option. Plus, when cars get that old they need repair more and more often. Let’s say you have an old car worth like $2,000. It has some minor issue that costs $500 to fix. Then 6 months later you have another issue that costs $1000 to fix. You have now spend almost the cost of the car in the last 6 months to fix it and, given its age, you’ll likely have to fix something else soon.

          Here is a real life example, my dad’s car broke down like 6 months ago. The transmission died. The car was already 13 years old and had like 180,000 miles on it. He could have fixed the transmission for less than what the car was worth and he didn’t really have the money to get a new car. However, he realized that, in the long run, he’d end up saving money by getting a new car because the old car was pretty likely to need some other repairs soon.

        • Sayahh

          “For the most part cars don’t change much. Sure there are new luxury features…” Like exploding airbags? LOL I kid, but not really; I’m going to drive my car into the ground and won’t buy a new car until it happens or until they fix the ammonium nitrate airbags and find a safe alternative, whichever comes last.

          “In addition too that many cars do continue to work after 10 years.” They won’t if they decided to keep pushing E15 gasoline and trying to make it mandatory, even if it’s only for newer models.

          “I still have my last non-smartphone from 2007. Even with a new battery it doesn’t even turn on any more.” “Like you said with cars you can easily replace a broken part and often
          for much less than buying a new car. With a phone just about the only
          thing you can reasonably replace is the battery and with phones as old
          as yours I’d be surprised if you could even get that battery anymore.” That’s why I like my phone. I replaced: the keypad (several times with cheap generic ones, and twice with OEM ones with better fit), the LCD screen (cheap one, not as bright), the battery cover, the speaker, the charger, the front frame, the camera cover, and last but not least, the battery. It was only the phone’s second battery; the original one lasted like six years, but I only had to replace it because I drop my phone so much (on purpose and by accident), that the battery expanded and the lid wouldn’t close flush with the phone. It still worked fine, though, but it probably wasn’t safe. But without so many calculations to make, it didn’t have to work as hard or store as much power as, say, the one on the Note 7 would have to store, so it wasn’t as dangerous. Sound like my phone is designed by people who aren’t out to screw consumers.

          “I’d be surprised if you could even get that battery anymore.” Marty McFly keeps saying, “That’s heavy.” You keep saying, “I’d be surprised if…” It appears that you’re surprised A LOT. BTW, an authentic Nokia battery is only $4.48 USD on Amazon, and that’s probably not even the cheapest one I could find.

          My car is from 2002, by the way, so to each their own. Can I afford a Bimmer? Sure, do I feel ripped off each time I get a oil change (after the free maintenance program runs out)? Absolutely. Why do I want to feel ripped off when I can change my own oil and buy my own parts? If you buy a good car, it’s cheaper to insure and cheaper to fix/maintain than buying a new car, which has no scratches and make you worry everyday if someone’s going to put a dent in it. I’m gonna spend 1800 dollars to paint it soon. I don’t have to, but it definitely deserves a new paint job. I could probably buy another user car for the same amount, but you get what you paid for, and you don’t know what the other guys put their cars through; I know what I put my car through, and I know that it’s not salvaged, flooded or driven on rough terrain without care. It’s worth what you think it’s worth, and not having a car payment to worry about for 36 months (or 72 months, even, for some people) is worth a million bucks in and of itself. The only reason I’d like a new car would be a better gas mileage, but compared to haveing to spend 18k dollars to buy a car that I wouldn’t otherwise need to buy, I can take that money and buy gas. How much gas can I buy with 18 thousand dollars? (And it’s not like I wouldn’t need to buy gas for the new car, unless it’s a Tesla, but the Model 3 was still too expensive for me.) In the long run, in my situation, it’s cheaper to keep it, especially since I already spent the money to fix the AC compressor. Your mileage may vary, and, in your dad’s case, it clearly does. If I was in your father’s shoe, I’d do the same thing, but my car is in better shape and only has 130,000 miles on it, so mechanically it’s fine. Of course, nobody can see the future, so I only think it’s fine until something happens.

          Anyway, great discussion. I’m not saying that you are wrong because there is no right and wrong here (in as far as buying a new phone when your old phone works fine), but my money is going into my retirement and dining out at restaurants daily, and I rather spend it on me than handing it over to Apple and Samsung because it’s not really trickling enough down to their subcontracted workers, but that’s another rant for another say. I’ll probably cave and get a S7 Edge around Black Friday, Cyber Monday or next April when the S8 comes out, but I might not. The last time I wanted a new car was in 2005 (the “new” Mustang) and the last time I wanted a new phone was when the SIII (and later the S5) came out, but I resisted, because there will always be new phones coming out, and keeping up with the Joneses is easier on the budget when you aren’t trying to keep up with them in the first place.

        • jimv1983

          If you are replacing so many parts on the car so often then you are really wasting money. If you have a car that is so old the transmission dies, then the engine needs a rebuild, the starter dies, timing belt, emission computers, the AC, the heater, etc. Think about it. If you are spending several thousand dollars a year just to keep a car running you could put that money to a new (or newER) car and save money in the long run. Your spending more money to repair it than its worth and when cars get older something always seems to be breaking.

          That applies to phones as well. How much have you spend on those several keypads, the screen, battery cover, speaker, frame, the camera cover, the battery, etc? With that money you could have bought a used phone on eBay or CraigsList for like $25 that still works without need of repair and been able to do a lot more.

          Have you ever heard the term “throwing good money after bad”? It applies to both cases.

  • FryChickenIsha

    I can’t believe 2G is still around.

    • Sayahh

      I can, otherwise I wouldn’t be able to access the web on my old, old Nokia. But if 2020 is TMo’s self-imposed deadline, then I guess I’m gonna have to get a new phone in four years, at the latest. (Unless they keep pushing it back, like Microsoft’s Windows xp–and now Windows 7–support.)

      • jimv1983

        So maybe you couldn’t access the web on your old Nokia but considering 2G speeds would you really want to? Do you have any idea how slow 2G really is?

        • Sayahh

          Huh? I do use Opera Mini, so it loads pretty rapidly. Well, quickly enough for me–if I have at least one bar of signal. And no, I don’t watch movies on my phone, though my phone has that capability. And NOBODY said that I couldn’t access the web on my old Nokia. Please re-read my first sentence; “I said that I can [believe 2G is still around], OTHERWISE I wouldn’t be able to access the web on my old, old Nokia” (with caps added for additional emphasis).

        • jimv1983

          I remember using an EDGE network. It was awful. I don’t know what you consider “pretty rapidly” but it’s way different than my opinion. I’d rather have no data connection at all because at least I wouldn’t be frustrated with the slow speed.

        • Sayahh

          It loads text and pictures relatively quickly. Not even LTE is instantaneous. Frustration does not equate to uselessness. It’s like a teenager saying, “I rather kill myself if I can’t go to the prom.” If push comes to shove, I’m sure you’d rather have 2G than nothing at all. I’m sure Matt Damon’s character would rather eat all his rations on Mars in the movie The Martian, but sometimes you must consider your surroundings and situation. If you’re stuck in a third world country and need to get in touch with a friend or family member and there’s only 2G, or even in rural areas right here in America, then you’re really SOL so you have no choice but to use it. Or, like you said, just be a hermit and not get on the internet.

          Why do people still choose to drive VW Beetles? Because they run.

        • jimv1983

          Again, “relatively quickly” depends on opinion. What you call “relatively quickly” is terrible by my standards. You are referring to data. If I really need to get in touch with someone I can call/text them. That’s a totally different use case.

          Consider what you said, “not even LTE is instantaneous”. Even a slow LTE connection is easily 100x faster than the MAX POSSIBLE SPEED of your old Nokia. If even LTE has a delay and your phone is 100 times slower than that then it must be REALLY slow.

          In 2007 a typical camera on a smartphone was about 2MP. A picture taken on that camera would be about 350KB(that’s kiloBYTES just to be clear). According to one of your previous posts your Nokia 5310 is capable of, AT BEST, 117 kiloBITS which is about 14 kiloBYTES and that is AT BEST. So lets say you could get 75% of the best possible speed. So that is ~11 kiloBYTES per second. That means that the typical camera phone picture at the time would take about 30 seconds to download. I wouldn’t call that “relatively quickly”.

        • jimv1983

          I think it’s pretty clear you need a new phone.

        • Sayahh

          That’s not the point, and you know it. Besides, that’s your opinion, which you’re entitled to have. How many retirement homes and hospices still have CRT televisions? Sure, they might need a setup box to get digital over-the-air channels, but not if they only play VHS tapes on VCRs. Most retired people have to survived on a fixed income.

  • squiggleslash

    A 2G network works with every GSM phone, and requires only a 600kHz piece of spectrum (US licensees have spectrum allocated in 5MHz chunks) to operate. 2G GSM is probably the most solid, reliable, voice and messaging system ever created. It seems very short sighted of AT&T to shut theirs down.

    • Fabian Cortez

      Precisely.

      And with the ability to squeeze GSM into the guard bands, this seems more like a money grab by AT&T in an effort to monetize LTE upgrades.

      Good for AT&T to want to make money but equally good for T-Mobile to pick up some customers it wouldn’t ordinarily have.

      • noh1bvisas

        tmo is giving it away for free. is it fair to call them customers?

        • Bryant

          Free till the end of this year, then they would pay. Tmo will keep 2G through 2020.

      • GinaDee

        I agree with you on premise but I think if these customers were truly as valuable as T-Mobile claims then AT&T would be giving them free HSPA/LTE upgrades and fighting tooth and nail to keep them. Besides AT&T gave these customers years of advance notice.

        AT&T isn’t losing sleep over these customers. T-Mobile would be better served focusing their efforts and resources to LTE and 5G technologies. It would make much better use of their T-Mobile @ Work Team.

        It appears to be a real slow news day/cycle if T-Mobile is bragging about 2G and IOT in the same sentence.

  • Spanky

    T-Mobile sure knows all about 2G! I kid, I kid…

  • They are not shutting it down, rather emulating through a LTE-A standard.

    Your assertion about GSM being secure and robust is false.

    • SirStephenH

      I don’t know where you’re getting your information from but there’s no such thing as 2g emulation over LTE-A.

      Neither GSM nor CDMA are necessarily secure but GSM is definitely the better choice between the two. LTE is actually partially based on GSM technologies.

      • Durandal_1707

        GSM (the 2G version, before WCDMA and LTE) was actually kind of terrible compared to CDMA. Limited range (even from 800 MHz towers), no soft handoffs, and it kept causing that horrible buzzing noise in any and all audio equipment that happened to be in the same room (or even the next room over).

      • OMG. No it’s not. It’s based on CDMA2000.
        My information is from engineering at Qualcomm.
        They are exactly doing what I said, read the article carefully.

  • gmo8492

    Well if I ever feel nostalgic, I can always go back and use my Nokia 3310 on T-Mobile for the foreseeable future.

    • noh1bvisas

      i’m sure some note 7 users will find that comforting (couldn’t resist).

    • Fabian

      Does the Nokia 3310 support 480p? I’m looking for a new phone.

      • eanfoso

        From what I heard it doesn’t blow up.

  • Brock

    I see all these comments about doing away with 2g and 3g, first question comes to mine is why? We all want better data coverage but I would personally love to be able to make a call and not drop it in the so call dead zones. So why not use 2g and 3g to expand coverage area so I don’t drop calls? It’s got to be cheaper the rolling out lte….

    • SirStephenH

      Because 2g/3g does not provide better coverage than band 12 LTE, it’s a huge waste of spectrum compared to LTE, and it costs more to maintain multiple network technologies.

      Getting rid of 2g/3g would actually create fewer dropped calls because there would be no LTE>2g/3g handoff. I have had few issues since I started locking my phone in LTE only.

      • illstplaya .

        Yes but you cannot make phone calls or receive phone calls over LTE unless your phone supports VoLTE. Only phones sold by t-mobile and a few others support this. Phones older than mid 2015 don’t support VoLTE even if they are sold by t-mobile. So what you said is true , it would not be ideal for the consumers to shut down 2G and 3G

        • dtam

          it’s scheduled to be shut down in 2020, I think there will only be a small minority of customers using 5+ year old phones at that point

    • Bryan Pizzuti

      One problem with the handoffs is that once you’re handed off to EDGE, you’re pretty much stuck there. It’s easy to hand off “backwards” but handing off to a newer technology doesn’t always work that well. Personally I’d rather avoid EDGE’s horrible voice quality.

  • cloud strife

    One of the reasons why 2g is still alive is because for roaming purposes. There’s only 4 bands needed to cover you globally. Even up to this day, manufacturers still release dual – triband 3g supported phones especially cheap asian phones. LTE has a LOT of band variants that even the high-end devices can’t cover all at the moment.

    • Sayahh

      Is that why? It would appear the IoT has a lot to do with it, too. (ATMs, parking meters, DVD movie kiosks, etc.)

  • Omar Boyer

    Tmobile should keep 2g ,3G for roaming purposes for international travelers . I have family in mexico and Spain and they came to LA a months ago they were roaming on tmobile lte band 4 one has a Telcel mexico S7 the other a Movistar Spain Iphone 6 . But once they made a call their phones automatically dropped down to 3G or 2G once they hanged up LTE kicked back in. 3G,2G is still good for that for international travelers visiting the US because Even if they have the latest phones they only work with lte for data they dont get volte calls only go tru 3G or 2g.

    • Fabian

      I think 2G is also part of their international agreements for roaming.

      • joeypore

        “2G speeds” not necessarily 2G technology.

        When roaming, my phone often connects to another network’s LTE, but the speed is throttled to “2G speeds”

        • Fabian

          I meant 2G technology when people come here with their international 850/900/1800/1900 GSM phones. I’d assume is part of their roaming deals.

        • Omar Boyer

          Telcel mexico and movistar spain connect to T-Mobile lte here in the states and its full speed ran speed test on both and got 50 dwn 10 up. But like i said its only good for data once i made a call it dropped down to “3G” moment i hanged up LTE came back on. Sucks for u that were you go its throttled at 2g speeds even tho its lte . Like fabian said they should keep gsm technology for international travelers visiting here cuz apparently VOLTE doesnt work

  • Fred

    If you dont take the carrier update and keep it at 25.0 you can hotspot tether unlimited data without it counting towards your tether allowance. Check it out :D

  • Bryan Pizzuti

    A couple things everyone is failing to understand: 2G uses very minimal frequency slices, and can be deployed in little nooks and crannies of spectrum that nothing else uses, or can use (at least not easily). It doesn’t actually hurt anything to keep it around. HSPA, on the other hand, is using a lot of spectrum that could otherwise be used for LTE, which is a more modern protocol, a more robust protocol, and a more spectrally efficient protocol. TL:DR, your devices get faster Internet more often and in more places. It makes all the sense in the world to put effort towards shutting down HSPA and replacing it wholesale with LTE coverage (on the same towers and antennas so there is no loss in coverage). Frankly it makes NO sense to put ANY effort towards retiring EDGE. Leave it alone until the equipment rusts and falls off the towers. The spectrum can’t really be used for much else.

    • Fabian

      I think the 700mhz T-Mobile has is 6mhz from which 5mhz is used for LTE. Theoretically they can use the remaining 1mhz for 2G. And then we can say that 2G doesn’t affect LTE.

      Now, as far as I know only the 700mhz blocks have the anomaly of being 6mhz. All the mid bands T-Mobile has are in blocks of 5mhz.

      If they squeeze 2G in one of the mid band blocks it prevents other technologies of using the full 5mhz block. So it affects in this case LTE.

      This is what I believe, where am I wrong?

      • Bryan Pizzuti

        Everywhere. For starters, in the US, 2G EDGE can only exist on the 850 MHz and 1900 MHz band. Of those, T-Mobile only owns 1900 MHz licenses (except for one 850 license).

        Now, all LTE bands, including the 700 MHz band, have a 1 MHz band at the border, called a guard, which is to prevent interference with adjacent stuff. That’s why the 700 MHz license seems like 6 MHz, only 5 of it is usable.

        Anyway, the EDGE stuff can only be put in the 1900 MHz band, but it can be put in the guard portions of that band, because it won’t use all of it, and won’t interfere with frequencies adjacent to the band.

        • Fabian

          Okay, but I don’t see guard bands in the 1900Mhz, when I see the maps I only see 5, 10, 15 and 20Mhz of PCS spectrum that T-Mobile owns.

    • tdm

      It is costly to maintain the core infrastructure ie. GSM MAP Core and the base station equipment. It still costs money for dedicated backhaul and electricity, just to keep an antiquated technology alive. The benefit of HSPA is that it can be run as a flat IP network which means they can turndown TDM switching equipment much sooner. It may be a “small” amount of money they are wasting, but that money could go into expanding LTE.

  • Alex Zapata

    I’ve been wondering what they’re going to do with the whole M2M thing. As far as I’ve been aware the available LTE-capable modems have had far too much power consumption compared to the EDGE equipment currently in use. That and the vast majority of M2M communications require miniscule amounts of data so anything other than like a CAT 1 connection at 10Mb/s is way beyond overkill. I’m curious to see how this all plays out.

  • jimv1983

    Whether they charged you more or not isn’t the question. The question is whether the hardware had the ability.

    What do you mean the Sony wasn’t intuitive? The OS on Sony Ericsson phones was the best on the market. Companies like Nokia and Motorola had a horrible OS. In my opinion Nokia phones sucked in general and were the ugliest phones you could buy.

    Why are you even referencing the W550?

    And compression on a web browser only helps if the web server supports it. If a browser sends a compressed request to a web server that web server has to know that it’s compressed and what compression algorithm was used and support that compression to decompress the request. The same goes for getting responses. The web server needs to know what compression algorithm to use to compress the response so that the browser knows how to decompress is.

    • Sayahh

      It is. I only got this hardware because other phone’s hardware had access to 3G, which they were charging more for, or that’s how I thought it was being charged. My phone doesn’t have the ability to receive 3G or wi-fi.

      What’s intuitive to you might not be intuitive to others. I can type fast but can’t play any instruments. And I can’t figure out how to use a Blackberry without combing through a manual. Kudos to you if you figured it out. I didn’t like the Sony interface. People have different tastes, quirks and preferences. Sorry if I don’t live up to your standards.

      The W550 was referenced because I thought you might dog on it, too, since it didn’t have 3G and was available around the same time I picked the Nokia.

      “And compression on a web browser only helps if the web server supports
      it. If a browser sends a compressed request to a web server that web
      server has to know that it’s compressed and what compression algorithm
      was used and support that compression to decompress the request. The
      same goes for getting responses. The web server needs to know what
      compression algorithm to use to compress the response so that the
      browser knows how to decompress is.” Huh? Who’s on first? Have you ever used Opera Mini? Why would the browser need to decompress if it’s already compressed by the server?