Apple Watch Series 3 data speed will top out at 512Kbps with T-Mobile Digits


UPDATE: John Legere just announced that he’s “heard your frustration about the Apple Watch plan” and that, as a result, the Apple Watch Series 3 plan will now include unlimited 4G LTE data for $10 per month.


ORIGINAL: Today’s the day that T-Mobile began taking pre-orders for the Apple Watch Series 3, the first Apple Watch with built-in LTE connectivity. There is one T-Mo-specific detail about the new wearable that buyers should be aware of, though.

With Digits, T-Mobile’s service that pairs your phone number with your wearable, smartwatches with unlimited data will have their speeds limited to 512Kbps. Digits normally costs $10 per month with autopay or $15 per month without autopay, but there is a high-speed data with Digits option that costs $20 per month with autopay or $25 without.

The Apple Watch Series 3 includes support for LTE connectivity, and 512Kbps isn’t exactly LTE fast. Customers with the Apple Watch Series 3 aren’t likely to be doing anything very data-intensive on their smartwatch, which is why some folks are disappointed by this limit.

I reached out to T-Mobile to see if it had a statement about this matter, but the company hasn’t yet responded. When the official @TMobileHelp account on Twitter was asked about the 512Kbps limit, it said “This plan is designed for these wearable devices and will work perfectly with the Apple Watch!” and “512kbps is more than enough data speed for the watch to do everything you want, and well!”.

Via: MacRumors
Source: T-Mobile

Tags: , , , ,

  • Plutarco jimenez

    That’s a good thing people are mostly gonna use for calls and messages and even gps or Apple Music Which is plenty
    Plus if lte is gonna grain the Apple Watch battery life really fast
    I looked at the battery specs you can only talk for 1 hour LTE
    Or 3 via Bluetooth

  • ict2aus

    Are digits lines eligible for kickback?

    • ict2aus

      Never mind – just checked, and they aren’t.

  • steveb944

    Wow that’s horrible speed for a standalone device.

    • yankeesusa

      Are you planning on using it as a hotspot or browsing the internet? If not then you will never notice a difference.

      • steveb944

        Well Wear for example has standalone apps that you’d be downloading forever via that speed. Not to mention if you’re downloading music there may be a cache issue.

        • yankeesusa

          I guess we’ll have to see how much speed it requires for the apps on a watch. Real world use will show that. Should be interesting. The thing is that if you start installing or updating apps on the go your battery life will be horrible. As far as music, I guess caching could be an issue. I guess we’ll see what apps will offer streaming from the watch, again battery will take a nose dive.

        • Allen Alberto Enriquez

          Good inputs I wonder how will it will do streaming pandora, Spotify, etc.?

  • Keith

    This makes me have zero desire to want one of these.

    • yankeesusa

      Question, have you ever used a smartwatch on tmobile? The s2 ran on 3g speeds and i couldn’t tell the difference between that and the speeds on the s3. On a small device like that you will never notice.

  • AllHailPresidentCheetoJesus

    How very “Uncarrier” of them… Now I’m seriously considering canceling my Apple Watch order… What a joke.

  • graywolf323

    T-Mobile was already probably the worst of the carriers when it came to how they were handling the Apple Watch 3 and they keep managing to make it even worse…

  • Petey07

    If they knew that the apple watch isn’t going to take advantage of the LTE speeds, then why worrying about capping it at 512 kbps? It shouldn’t be a bandwidth hogger.

  • Jesus Rosales

    John needs to hear our frustration on the trade in offer.

    • JStatt

      “We want free things! Why won’t you do that John!”

      • TylerCameron

        *t-mobile announces more “free” things and then later raises the prices for the rates for the what, 6th time in 3 years?*

  • Mike

    Don’t blame tmobile blame Apple for a crap over priced device

    • Michael C

      Crap…and now the number 1 watch in the world…yup, goes together.

      • Dakota_Offspring

        He’s just jealous he can’t afford any Apple Product.

  • Mad Hatman

    What about those who already have wearable from Samsung or ZTE and have data with paired digits? Are we too going to get the 512kbps cap lifted as well. Not according to @tmobilehelp. They are saying this is Special Promo for Apple Watch Only. I am sorry I am calling total B.S.. This is such a violation of Net Neutrality. Charging the same $10 but giving preferential data speeds to one brand (Apple) over Amother (Samsung & ZTE). @tmobilehelp went futher to throw salt into wounds saying I too can have full speed LTE speed for only $10 more. So they want to charge me 2x the price for same service.

    If they don’t offer the same service for the same price for all wearables they are just asking for a class action lawsuit & mass customer defections.

    This is the biggest Carrier B.S. I have ever seen.

    Btw I have never complained about the 512kbps cap on my data with paired digits on Samsung Gear, but this just takes the cake & I am so friggen upset. I am so ready to take my 9 lines, 3 tablets & 3 wearables over to VZW or AT&T.

    • Michael C

      Is there a mass of anything wearing the terrible android watches?

      • Brad C

        I swapped from an Apple Watch to a Moto 360 months ago.. could not be happier. It does more, cost way less, and is actually functional unlike my Apple watch. I have apple everything at home, but the whole iOS/Ecosystem has died with Steve Jobs. They’ve had little to no innovation since he went.. and not to mention the Moto 360 just looks a hell of a lot nicer. The apple watch is just “meh” design wise.

    • JStatt

      There is no need for a class action lawsuit when T-Mobile publicly expresses the speed difference for those who care to look, and you have the freedom to switch your phone and wearable over to another carrier at any time. If you’re mad at T-Mo then leave.

      • Mad Hatman

        What’s next Only IPhones get full LTE but all other brands of phones are capped at 512kbps. You can not give preferential treatment to one Brand (IOS platform) over another Samsung (Tizen ) or ZTE (Android Wear) by giving full speed to Apple watch but 512kbps capped to Samsung & ZTE yet charging same $10 /mo fee. That is clear violation of Net Neutrality!

        • NapoPeb

          Net neutrality is long dead. T-Mobile have been at the front of killing it. Well done T-Mobile. Not.

        • msohail

          I guess its time to move all your lines over to AT&T or Verizon.. clearly T-Mobile is not a good fit for your needs.

        • yankeesusa

          LOL. Att and verizon do the same things.

      • Mad Hatman

        Oh & I can’t freely take my phone or watch over to another carrier either because of lock or incompatible band frequency neither my Note 5 nor Gear S2/S3 will work on Sprint o VZW!

  • Gator5000e

    Looks like they changed the policy and it will now be 4G LTE speeds for the Apple Watch. No idea of what the watch is capable of but while the initial decision was a head scratcher, the change is what make T-Mobile a great company.

    • NapoPeb

      You are utterly brainwashed with the magenta juice.

      T-Mobile were the ONLY company across ALL GEOS to implement this absurd restriction. It is only due to the backlash against it and no other provider joining them in implementing such throttling that has forced them to change tack.

      To then commend them for simply doing what they should have done right first time is batshit insane.

      • yankeesusa

        That is very true. It should have never been capped but at the same time you will never notice the difference between 3g and lte on a watch… for now. Unless you’re using an internet browser on your watch there is no point in having LTE on it.

      • TylerCameron

        Who seriously wants to pay $10/month for a watch tho? No thank you, it can use my phone for internet. If where I’m going is so top secret I can’t carry in a phone, I probably can’t carry I a smart watch toy.

    • bkat11

      That’s great for you but some of us who have been paying $25 per month for data on a Samsung Watch for dial up speeds…

  • Brad C

    Anything you do on a watch is not going to need more than 512kbps, and they did this because people like me during the digits beta.. I carried two full fledged smartphones with the same number (one iOS, one Android) and used them to their full extent while only paying for one line of service.

    That’s why T-Mobile capped the Digits lines to 512kbps. They KNOW the watches will not use much data.. it’s when you put that SIM card into a phone that the damage gets done.

  • Bryck

    Ten dollars it’s a Little steep.

    • yankeesusa

      I agree. On older grandfathered plans it was only $5. No reason it should be that high on a watch.

  • Nobody Special

    UNLIMITED 4G speeds now….

  • Mad Hatman

    Evidently T-mobile doesnt value non apple customers & treats us like 2nd class citizens. John gives
    them full speed data on Apple Watches because they cry about but they still throttle Samsung & ZTE wearables & they have audacity to want to charge us $10 more for uncapped speeds. New IPhones don’t have band 71 600mhz support so they complain so he says ok we have a new upgrade program only for iPhones. We will go ahead & let you upgrade to next year’s iPhone when you have paid off 50% of the phone . We wipe your remaining EIP balance clean so you can buy next year’s phone With Band 71 600mhz. Well guess what the Note 8 doesn’t have band 71 600mhz either. So why should I upgrade my Note 5 on T-mobile & pay $930 for the phone. Its almost as much as IPhone x & more than either 8 or 8 plus. But where is our upgrade promo where once we pay 50% of EIP they too wipe out our balance so we can get next year’s Note 9 with 600mhz support. I guess T-mobile is no longer the great Uncarrier & instead is a Apple Fanboy Carrier who treats Samsung Customers as 2nd class citizens.

    • RealShit

      Under the JUMP! 2 program you can trade in any device (all Galaxies included) once 50% of the balance is paid and have the remainder cleared from your account. Everyone’s covered here.

      • Mad Hatman

        With Jump I have to pay $12 /mo for Jump benefit & insurance. I don’t want nor need insurance. Yet T-mobile is basically giving the jump benefit for free with EIP purchase of new iPhones (without band 71) while not doing the same for Note 8 (also without band 71). The Note 8 costs more money than either iPhone 8 or 8 plus & is only $70 cheaper than IPhone X and just become available in stores one week before iPhone yet we don’t get the same benefit. I will not invest $930 in a phone without band 71. So John just colluded with Apple to damage sales of Samsung Note 8 by not offering the same waiver of remaining EIP balance once 50% has been paid, thus discouraging me from buying The Note 8. The same with the apple watch, by giving Apple watch full LTE Speeds but not Samsung(capping at 512kbps) he is also now discouraging sales of Gear S3 over Apple watch.

        These could very well be illegal trade practices & will be contacting FTC & CA attorney general’s office.

        • spartanjet

          Easy solution. Ditch the data mining OS and get an apple phone. Done.

        • yankeesusa

          Your’e data mined on ios also if you use google search or google maps or anything google. In fact, apple uses google as their main search on the iphone. That’s not a good reason to switch to ios. If only apple would fix their maps program then more people could leave gmaps also but google is just too far ahead when it comes to mapping tech.

  • Eric Harlow

    all this complaining and bitching … customers just want more and more… just be happy were the cellphone technology is today…. I cant imagine all you whiners today, how they would react ten to fifteen years ago when cellphone technology was at it’s beginning. 240 X 320 resolution 3″ phone screens without any of today’s mobile apps. Could you cope?

    • Jason Caprio

      I certainly did lol. At the young age of 35, over the years I witnessed quite an evolution of cell phones. I remember my excitement back around I think 2003 when I got a flip phone with a, wait for it, COLOR SCREEN!!! Ahh the good old days!

      • DigitalAttacker

        I’m with you, Jason. At 32, I’ve witnessed the same thing. I couldn’t wait for my PREPAID Verizon Moto T720. It was the first Moto I’ve ever seen with a color screen. Cost me a pretty penny at around $250 outright. It certainly is a different tech age today.

  • Dave Slater

    I thought wearable (watch) plans were $5 per month…

    • rbfrost

      It was until June or July of this year. I went to Tmobile store to try to get it 2-3 years back, they said $5 rate plan didn’t exists.., think the store person didn’t know.

      • rbfrost

        $15 – $10 voice plan = $5 wearable plan

  • rbfrost

    Verizon: $10 after autopay (checking or debit) for single line wearable plan, 1GB data, unl talk, unl text (maybe also north america calling, texting, and data). $10 more for each 1GB.
    Search Verizon Single Line Plan (look for as low as $10). I saw this on some odd message board, I didn’t think it was real but it is. It’s single line plan, you don’t need any other lines. Pretty good deal, better than current Simple Choice Plan Options for $20 -$10 voice = $10 for 500 megs (2G speed after) unl talk, unl text. I tried to ask Tmobile if there is anything better and they said nah, that’s all you can get under SC plan. Treats old plan customers worse. Sadly, old customers pay taxes so Tmobile makes more money off of the old customers but gives less features vs. unl min, unl text, unl data for Iphone users under T1 plan.

    • rbfrost

      Verizon may not give free music, so maybe a wash on features unless Verizon gives N. America talk, text, data. One reason I didn’t get Tm watch was reception worries (wanted band 12 watch) but with Verizon I wouldn’t worry so just on reception, think Verizon wearable plan is still better.

      • rbfrost

        cool thing, it’s truly single line plan (verizon), no other lines needed and you get $15 – $5 = $10 after auto pay (checking or debit card) vs. tm, you need voice line to get to $10 or it’s $20 which is more than verizon.

  • bkat11

    A$$clown in customer care told me that my Gear S3 Frontier was like a Toyota Camery vs Ferrari (Apple Watch) and they cannot switch my watch to LTE because of this!


    If the policy has changed, the freaking headline should change, because it is no longer accurate.
    Is this Phonedog and pony show not concerned with accuracy?

  • AllHailPresidentCheetoJesus

    How long is the 3 free months promo going on for? I need to determine whether or not I’m going to wait until Christmas to purchase the Series 3. Thanks!