TVision refresh is reportedly ‘tech-ready’, but T-Mobile will wait until summer for launch


We heard about a month ago that T-Mobile was in the process of “retooling” its TVision TV service, and now it sounds like TVision is ready to go. That doesn’t mean we’re going to see it launch any time soon, though.

The refreshed version of TVision is reportedly “tech-ready for launch” but likely won’t roll out until sometime this summer. That’s according to sources speaking to Light Reading, who say that T-Mo has made a new architecture for a pay-TV service that can be sent to homes and TVs while also prioritizing streaming on smartphones.

What’s holding back the launch of TVision is the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Many of T-Mobile’s stores are closed due to COVID-19, and an in-store demo would be a great way to demonstrate a pay TV service for interested customers. Since most of T-Mo’s stores are still closed, T-Mobile may be opting to simply push the entire launch back rather than roll out the service without offering a way for most consumers to see what it’s like in person.

Plus, a summer launch would line up with that post-merger marketing effort that we recently heard about. T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert said last month that T-Mo is eyeing the summer timeframe to begin marketing with all of T-Mobile and Sprint’s stores and advertising and offers in a unified way. That big launch could be a good time to also begin pushing the refreshed TVision.

T-Mobile launched TVision a little more than a year ago in a handful of markets, including Chicago, Dallas-Fort Worth, Los Angeles, New York City, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Washington D.C., and Longmont, CO. According to the TVision website, those are still the only markets where the service is available.

When asked about TVision last month, T-Mobile told TmoNews that “TVision and home entertainment remain important parts of our longer term strategy.”

We’ve heard previously that T-Mobile is working with MobiTV to retool TVision, but it’s unclear exactly how T-Mo is going to improve its TV service. The streaming TV space is pretty competitive with players like Sling TV, Hulu, YouTube TV, and others, and TVision as it currently exists with its $90 per month price may have a hard time convincing consumers to choose it over those other options.

Source: Light Reading

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  • Alex – T-mobile appears to be giving free 10gb of tethering data to everyone with a plan that can tether for the next 2 months due to covid-19

    • gramps28

      He reported this in the middle of March but with 20 GB of tethering.

      • RealShit

        Who cares? 10… 20GB. Bottom line tvision will never be competitive. It’s trash.

  • TenEightyPeePee

    T-Mobile needs to provide data transport for the price they are asking.

    • riverhorse

      Yes. Also, those who like most sports & non-fiction programming would never leave cable TV. For instance, a cursory look reveals beIN not available even @ alacarte.

      If TVision had a premium tier, I’d go as high as $200 fees included for a triple package of tv, broadband & cellular… Everything included & unlimited: 5Gno throttlehotspothdno deprioritize.

      • rosedawg

        You can easily leave cable and satellite. I did and I still get sports. Nfl Sunday ticket for football. Tmobile gives out mlb. You can get any sports package our there without cable/sat. Hulu has sports too. As a matter of fact, I can stream hulu, Sunday ticket, and mlb on the go. Unless tmobile changes something, you won’t be able to with their tvision.

        • riverhorse

          Thanks. ¿ All sports? I also like the various MMA + international soccer. Everytime i check a “streamer” they’re missing something… Even something as innocuous as tnttbs for baskets…

          And not looking forward to juggling multiple services, although coupla combo guides & even just Google are noticeably improved.
          ¿Which is your preferred guide app?

      • Hilton GoWahoos Redskins

        I was paying like $150 a month with Directv. I cut the cord and now I pay $70 a month for the majority of the channels on SlingTV and actually get more sports than I did before. I was hoping the T-mo version would be the same thing but cheaper and with a deep discount for T-mo customers but it sounds like it isn’t. Shame. I continue to re-evaluate but I can’t find any other streaming service that can compete with Sling in terms of sports, streaming from ANYWHERE and the selection of channels I watch outside of sports.

        • riverhorse

          I glanced at their guide + others awhile ago… I bet sports live in play.
          Didn’t see all the following in any- tvg 1&2, beIN, axs, ESPN’s, tudn, NBCSN, Paramount, FS1&2, fix deportes, TBStnt, universo, tennis, golf, any, msg, yes,
          I’ma take another look since you mention it. I could just do with all those plus locals.

      • UniBroW

        Have you tried FuboTV? I’m in NY and they don’t have ESPN (I believe) but I have it so I can watch the Rangers games without any work arounds.

        • riverhorse

          Last year. I’ll take another look soon since things change. Thanks.

    • RealShit

      The price will never change, unfortunately. And even if the price went down they force you to have autopay ONLY and still gotta have your own ISP. That trash service is losing in every way possible. Meanwhile people are downloading sling and YouTube tv and watching tv within seconds, T-Mobile is a joke lmao

      • dcmanryan

        Yep. I cancelled directv and went with YouTube tv and could not be happier. I also had to buy Philo for another $20 but I’m still saving money over directv and have every station we ever watched. I’ve compared every package offered on cord cutting apps and YouTube tv with philo covers it all.

        I was already paying for Xfinity XFi unlimited internet so add unlimited internet into the equation if you don’t have it as it’s a must. Between my Nest cameras, streaming, Xbox etc. and wife and kids being off 1 tb is about useless and I’ve used as high 3 tb in a month but average 2 to 2.3 tb.

  • rosedawg

    Tmobile better be offering something very, very similar to HULU Live or PS VUE (lord knows I miss you PS vue) and pricing.

    • RealShit

      They would NEVER. That makes too much sense. They’ll just put tvision in a new colored trash bag but it’s the same garbage at the same price. I would expect to see Obama for another term before I see T-Mobile doing that, lol

    • Bryck

      I miss PS Vue myself. But I will say that YouTube TV has been a good replacement.

    • Matt

      It would have to be less expensive than Hulu Live for me to even consider it.

  • Willie D

    So they’re desperate now to make a larger ARPU with deferring everyones bill lately by trying to launch, a second time, a very high priced TV service no one wanted and isnt any different than any other service? No thanks.

  • agent_smith

    I have actually been using the T-Vision service as it is right now, mostly as an experiment that is cheaper than cable (and not Comcrap), and has more channels than YouTube TV.

    T-Vision has been a weird experience. At the price point and with the number of channels it comes with, it is much more affordable than cable and the video/audio quality is phenomenal, much better than I’ve ever seen on Spectrum, Comcrap, etc. It can store a decent amount of content, the video on demand is great. It is neat having a box to play shows because app-based television is buggy, unstable, inconsistent, and you end up paying $5/mon here, $12/mon there, $50, mon elsewhere instead of just having pile of content in one consistent place with universal search. It also has many channels YouTube TV does not. The T-Vision web site lets you schedule DVR recordings from a useful web interface, but I’m fairly certain this is just holdover tech from Layer3, T-Mobile doesn’t get any credit.

    However, for all that potential, the set-top box is buggy, sometimes you find multi-minute skips in DVR recordings. In fact, the way it handles HEVC, when it hits a missing bit of video on the DVR, it skips ahead to usable HEVC, but if you rewind slowly into the “gap” it turns out there was just a tiny few-second hiccup with playable video afterwards. Every once in a while the whole box will show error messages on every channel until you reboot. Sometimes the DVR just skips recording shows for no explained reason, for weeks. There is a fast-forward rewind bug in recordings that has yet to be resolved, if you fast forward too fast towards the end of a program, a “you look like you are done watching” dialog pops up, if you dismiss it, the show just crashes back to the home screen a minute later. The same happens if you rewind too fast towards the front showing how truly poor that algorithm was written.

    T-Mobile promised Netflix and other stream service integrations by the end of 2019, never happened. Some channels have gone away, they said to keep price the same they’re just dropping the channels instead of fighting for them, no word on those channels coming back. They are difficult to work with the local public access TV channels so those channels never work very well. The remote has a button with a strange hand gesture that has never done anything, likewise there is a microphone for voice access that has never worked. Yet the remote seems to burn through batteries like it is trying to heat the moon. It is 2020, DVR boxes like TiVo, and apps like YouTube TV let you watch your recordings from other places. T-Vision is on-box(es) only.

    Plus it’s pretty skeezy they advertise $90/mon, you HAVE to get the first box, which $10/mon additional, plus taxes and fees instead of having them baked in like their high-end phone plans. Oh, and there is still no integration with the T-Vision site and T-Mobile proper, it is just a red-headed stepchild with its own experience.

    So it is like, a terrible unpolished piece of junk with so much potential but the potential never comes. The new incantation just sounds like they’re going back to the T-Mobile TV app they had years back, which doesn’t sound any good either. Perhaps they should just leave the video market like AT&T is trying to and stick to cellular.

    • dcmanryan

      That great and all but have you compared the channels you watch to streaming services? Compare YouTube TV and Philo to what you actually watch and I’m guessing you could be saving $20+/month. YouTube TV and Philo together cover just about everything.

      • agent_smith

        That is addressed in the above comment. The comment wasn’t meant for the Internet to weigh in on how an individual should roll their TV plan.
        Just how awesome and simultaneously terrible T-Vision is from the perspective of someone that actually uses it. One of all twelve of us.

        • dcmanryan

          Fair enough. Just trying to help you save some money is all. You’re literally on a comment board. Weighing in is the point of being here is it not? And FYI you did not address my question. You stated it has more channels than YouTube TV. No where did you mention you’ve compared what you actually watch and see if YouTube TV and Philo offered them for $20 less per month. Neither service has ever been buggy for me or my family I share it with as you’ve stated you’ve experienced. Both are extremely stable with zero outages since January. You are correct on having a universal search with T-Mobile but that point will be meaningless for most. If that’s your main points I promise you can get directv for less as for years and years (since 2006) until January of 2020 I had 4 boxes and was $80-$95 OTD with every station but the premiums. Yes, I called every March to get it but it was simple and painless. I compared what we actually watched and figured the YouTube TV and Philo covered it all for almost $300 less per year. Easy decision to leave. It sounds like you’re still paying a premium for a poor service. Only you can answer why you’re still there.

          T-Mobile basically made cable/satellite 2.0 which no one wants or asked for. People want only the popular channels for less, not everything for slightly less. T-Mobile’s service will fail without major changes and good riddance if they don’t change it in a hurry.

        • agent_smith

          Fair points. I don’t actually intend on using tvision much longer. The main original pull at the time was DVR + one-stop shop, and as mentioned experimentation, sometimes new underdog services end up being gems. Was curious to see what this service had to offer. That cycle has run its course, but given the timing of this article and that I am still a user, I just figured I could share pluses and minuses as an actual user of the product. All one tends to see in tech news these days is PR guff or paid reviews of things.

          And as mentioned in the original comment, I am not a fan of app-based viewing. The UIs differ between apps frequently, the streaming boxes are always nagging about firmware updates, or the apps stop working because they need to be updated, or the box just stops working and need to be rebooted. I don’t want to have to play tech support just to watch a silly sitcom. But then also as mentioned in the original comment, tvision is buggy, so that defeats the goal I was attempting to achieve and I have made a fool of my own goals!

          Appreciate the comments and suggestions though! Always good to try and save money, and look for better things! Cheers!

    • I call them CONcast but I do like your name for them as well. Thank you for the TVision breakdown.

  • Mike

    Im guessing the push back is due to improving the network first. Sure hope the re-launch covers more areas and hopefully it will work with the T-Mobile network this time. Just hope the re-launch come with a lower re-launch price.(Please be competitive with dumb and dumber) . Keep John’s style going please..

  • JG

    I get the idea of including it with their unified “New T-Mobile” marketing …

    But is summer really the best time to launch a TV service?

  • JLP474

    This needs to go app based. I dropped cable and have YouTube TV, Netflix, and Prime thru the Roku. So much cleaner with no box.

  • I was sad when I found out that it wasn’t compatible with my T-mobile Home internet box. I didn’t look for whatever the alternate option is. I just stopped looking. Then, I was on the phone with a Tmo rep yesterday and he said basically, not quoting, that it didn’t work out and made it sound like it was discontinued. Hmmm…

  • Jason

    Push back was to fire and remove the whole department . TMobile layed off 90% of TVISIOn. Seems it may go app based . Just happened today . I’d know . Who knows if they’ll actually release . Tmo has been laying people off silently ever since the merger .

  • Jason

    News is that TVISIOn is put on the back burner . TVISIOn is no longer a focus of TMobile. They are catering to current customers but aren’t pushing for sales and aren’t pushing for anything of the future of the product. Things are going on a daily basis . Right now it’s just RIP TVISIOn .