T-Mobile likely won’t sell Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL, but does say its network is fastest for Pixel phones

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The first two generations of Google Pixel phones were both U.S. carrier exclusives for Verizon, and it looks like that’ll be the case for the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, too.

T-Mobile today put out an announcement touting the 4G LTE speeds of Google’s Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL on its network and also seemingly confirmed that the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL will be exclusive to Verizon in the U.S. “Verizon may be the exclusive carrier to sell the Pixel, but that doesn’t mean you’re stuck with their slower network, higher prices and lousy customer service,” said T-Mo.

Tomorrow is the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL event, so we’ll learn more about their availability then. By the sound of this T-Mobile announcement, though, it sounds like T-Mo won’t be offering them directly. The good news is that Google also sells its smartphones unlocked in its own online store, so you should be able to buy a Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL from Google and bring it onto T-Mobile if you’d like.

Unfortunately, T-Mobile’s announcement doesn’t mention any sort of deal for customers that do bring a Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL onto T-Mo’s network. With both the original Pixel models and the second gen versions, T-Mobile offered $325 for customers who bought an unlocked model and used them on T-Mo. There is still a chance that T-Mobile will announce a similar deal tomorrow or shortly after Google’s event, though, so stay tuned.

T-Mobile also took this opportunity to tout the 4G LTE speeds of the previous generation Pixel phones on its network. Ookla Speedtest data for Q3 2018 showed that the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL put up the fastest average 4G LTE download and upload speeds on T-Mobile, with Verizon coming in second, AT&T in third, and Sprint in fourth.

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Are you thinking about buying a Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL for use on T-Mobile?

Image via: WinFuture.de
Source: T-Mobile

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  • g2a5b0e

    Kind of a weak spin if you ask me. We all know T-Mobile has the fastest average speeds blah, blah, blah, so this claim would apply to pretty much any phone. What about all of those folks who want to take advantage of monthly payments with T-Mobile?

    • bkat11

      Google has a solid EIP program

      • g2a5b0e

        I wasn’t aware, but I suppose it makes sense. I finance my phones directly through Samsung & I know Apple finances phones too.

        • bkat11

          Google has the same process as Samsung. Pretty easy

    • Dummy Up Meathead

      Not blah, blah, blah. It depends on the device and its ability to benefit from T-Mo’s spectrum. Fastest network overall, but if your device doesn’t work with their low-band spectrum, you won’t get those speeds.

  • HeatFan786

    T-Mobile has been really all talk and underdelivers on promos. They talked up the iPhone deals and came up with a crappy $300 deal and an add a line BOGO. Both deals weren’t really worth it either.

    • Tim Hotze

      I mean, most of us think that they’re already the price/performance leader, so it’s not like they had to offer anything… Those promos cost T-Mobile hard cash. There’s different ways of acquiring a new customer – more TV ads, better promos, lower prices – and frankly, I think the device promos too expensive to really be worth it (plus, they generally don’t reward existing customers for their loyalty).

    • SirStephenH

      These deals are done through negotiations with the manufacturers. T-Mobile could quite possibly have no say in the terms.

  • JG

    Hopefully if the do another Pixel deal it won’t require having to add a new line in order to take advantage.

    I just want a shiny new phone, I don’t need another line…

  • AndTheWorldMayNeverKnow

    Why would they still be limiting the Pixel to one carrier on it’s 3rd year? I’m really interested in the Pixel 3 more than the XL but we’ll see.

    • Acdc1a

      Buy it unlocked from Google, not limited at all.

      • AndTheWorldMayNeverKnow

        It’s limited when you can go into a carrier and pick up the phone. Some people, including myself, orderp to purchase phones from their carries. I have had network issues with unlocked phones in the past so I’m trying to avoid that. We’ll see what happens today during the announcement I’m hoping it’s a timed exclusive.

        • Acdc1a

          Those days are long gone. The only reason to buy from a carrier these days is a bogo promotion or something of the like. If you can’t pay in full, fund a different device is my advice.

        • AndTheWorldMayNeverKnow

          So you’re saying no more issues with unlocked phones not being as compatible with carrier networks compared to carrier branded phones? If that’s the case then maybe you’re right. In any case now that it’s over the Titan chip alone has me interested.

        • Acdc1a

          It’s exactly what I’m saying. Granted, you have to make sure of the bands supported. My Z3 Play even supports band 71. Great phone if I may plug a mid-range Moto.

        • AndTheWorldMayNeverKnow

          I’m most interested in phone performance, network performance and security. I guess we’ll see what meets those standards the best come next month.

        • SirStephenH

          No, there are still issues with unlocked phone compatibility.

        • AndTheWorldMayNeverKnow

          I’m going to wait for the reviews and see if there are any issues first.

    • npaladin2000

      Probabl Verizon’s insistence on an “exclusive.” Google is one of the few companies Verizon can still push around that way in the phone business (Moto is another). Samsung and Apple are just too big to pull that with anymore

      • AndTheWorldMayNeverKnow

        I think Google and Android are big enough now that they’d make more money having it in all carriers than just having it on one regardless of the financial benefits there may be to exclusivity. I guess I’ll wait until next year.

        • npaladin2000

          You might be right, but Google isn’t a big enough entity in the mobile phone world to throw it’s weight around and have it stick. And Verizon is still the biggest carrier in the US.

        • AndTheWorldMayNeverKnow

          Think about what you just said, you don’t think Google or Alphabet has enough money or clout to throw around to sell the phone everywhere? I understand the first iPhone we lived in a different time, 10 years ago the mobile landscape was much different. Today this should not be happening with a huge company like Google, One Plus I expect that from but not Google or Alphabet.

        • npaladin2000

          “you don’t think Google or Alphabet has enough money or clout to throw around to sell the phone everywhere?”

          No, i don’t. Google/Alphabet is an advertising company. It’s not big enough in the hardware game to throw its weight around. The Pixel phone is not the iPhone or Galaxy S/Note line, where customers will take their business to another carrier if they can’t get one. And until it does get to that point, it’s going to be subject to carrier bullying and exclusivity agreements in order to get placed in carrier stores.

          The mobile phone landscape today is frankly no different than it was 10 years ago except for one element: there are devices that people demand loudly enough that the carriers MUST provide them or risk losing business. The Pixel line is NOT one of those devices, sorry.

        • Tim Hotze

          I think the point was that Google HAS money to throw around with its Pixel line, if it chose to do so. I’m not sure what it’s getting for making the Pixels a VZW carrier exclusive (plus unlocked), but they’d better be pretty significant: I’ve heard multiple people say “oh, the ads for the Pixel look great but I’m not on Verizon.”

          IF it was important enough to Google, they could have said no to whatever VZW is offering, and even subsidized carriers to carry Pixels.

        • npaladin2000

          I’m sure T-Mobile would love to carry it. For all we know this is the result of a multi-year contract signed when the Pixel 1 released, so they could just be riding it out until they can renegotiate it. We’ll probably never know the actual terms of the agreement between Google and Verizon, but Google must have felt it was worth it whenever and whatever it was. So it must have bee a pretty juicy deal for that time it was signed.

        • AndTheWorldMayNeverKnow

          You might be right I know the politics of each industry is different but they should have enough alliances and people and the right places to be in a better position to negotiate

          Either way what I do believe is Google/Alphabet has no problem with the exclusivity. They might not have the muscle but they do have the money to sell the phones everywhere I just think they must not want to. My question is why, is in that they make so much more money selling them through the play store that they only need one carrier to support it? We’ll see I’m at work but I’m going to try and watch part of the event.

        • SirStephenH

          They opened the Nexus line to all the carriers. There was no reason to go back to exclusives when all they did was change the name.

  • npaladin2000

    Unfortunately, some T-Mobile techs take a user’s use of a Pixel as an excuse to blame any problems they have on it not being a “T-Mobile” phone and dropping the problem. I had endless issues getting my P2XL to stick to VoLTE, it always wanted to drop to HSPA+. One of the techs I talked to said “Oh, it’s a Pixel? You should have bought a T-Mobile phone istead, they use completely different hardware.” Never answered zeros on a survey until that point….

    • Acdc1a

      It’s a lame excuse. I’m using the Moto Z3 Play right now. Works great, not a T-Mobile phone.

      • npaladin2000

        I agree. I hope that tech got fired. Doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.

    • Ty Christensen

      Yeah, that’s BS man, my friend has the Pixel 2XL on AT&T and when trying to get VoLTE going when he first got it they gave him the same story that he should have bought an AT&T phone, countless calls to tech support finally got him someone who knew what they were doing and they were able to activate VoLTE for him. I have the Pixel 1 on TMo and out of the box haven’t had issues with VoLTE at all.

    • i had an exact response when i wasn’t able to send MMS with my Pixel 2XL – they flat out said said, “It’s isn’t a T-Mobile phone and this is “probably” why you’re having this issue. You should consider purchasing a T-Mobile branded phone”.. shocked!!

    • SirStephenH

      I doesn’t help that every carrier has their own implementation of these technologies. The government should be stepping in to protect the consumers and force the carriers to come up with open, generic standards that phone manufacturers can use instead of having to code for each specific carrier they intend to support.

  • Tim Hotze

    Google is really doing all it can to not sell too many Pixels. What other “flagship” phone is a carrier exclusive in 2018?

    “Next year, Google’s phones will get market share” is becoming this decade’s version of “Linux will take over the desktop” from the 90s.

    • g2a5b0e

      HTC U12 Plus & any Motorola flagship to name a couple.

  • Alex Pilaia

    If Tmo gives its customers the same deal as last time ($325 to bring the Pixel 3 to Tmo), I will be the first one at the door. If the phone will presumably cost $700-$800, $325 off is almost like getting it for 41% off. Not going to find a better deal then that.

  • SirStephenH

    Another Verizon exclusive!? Google really doesn’t like money, does it?