Hey, North Dallas T-Mobile customer -- that speedier internet connection isn't a figment of your imagination. Just before Thanksgiving, the carrier silently got the ball rolling on its plans to unleash a faster LTE network. To achieve this upgrade, Deutsche Telekom combined its LTE spectrum with that of MetroPCS, which it acquired for $1.5 billion earlier this year. Best of all, T-Mo's improved network doesn't require a device upgrade (unlike Sprint's enhanced LTE service) -- your current one will work just fine. Unfortunately, Magenta's efforts are currently confined to select portions of northern Dallas, but it hopes to eventually roll out its faster LTE network to other top markets in the US.
[Image credit: Alex Schwenke / Flickr]
02/09/2013 - Nokia Lumia 925 Goes Live at AT&T Starting September 13th for $99.99, Pre-Orders Now Open
01/09/2013 - Mobile Miscellany: week of August 26th, 2013
If you didn't get enough mobile news during the week, not to worry, because we've opened the firehose for the truly hardcore. This week brought convincing signs that BlackBerry users are moving away from physical keyboards, along with a new budget Android smartphone for MetroPCS and a stumbling block that's holding up AT&T's acquisition of Alltel. These stories and more await. So buy the ticket and take the ride as we explore all that's happening in the mobile world for this week of August 26th, 2013.
When T-Mobile threw the switch on its first LTE markets back in March, the company promised to cover 100 million people by mid year. Four months on, there are 157 million potential customers with access to the un-carrier's still fledgling 4G LTE network. With true 4G now launched in 116 metro areas the expansion is actually ahead of schedule, and could match its HSPA+ footprint within a year. By the end of 2013, Big Magenta plans to cover 200 markets, encompassing 200 million people -- which actually seems quite conservative seeing how quickly the network has expanded so far. In fact, the speedy deployment kinda puts AT&T and Sprint to shame. T-Mo might have waited the longest to get on the LTE train, but it's hasn't wasted any time getting those blazing speeds to its loyal customers.
10/07/2013 - Sony Xperia Z for T-Mobile: what's different?
What can you say about a phone that's half a year old, already been reviewed and poised to launch virtually unchanged on T-Mobile's LTE network? Not much, it turns out. But in the event you've been eyeing the Xperia Z as a suitable smartphone replacement, we're here to help guide that purchase decision. Forget specs for a moment -- the most important thing you need to know about this Xperia Z is that it'll be available on T-Mobile July 17th for $99 with a two-year payment plan and it comes in purple (online-only). Otherwise, you're stuck with the default black option, which is still mighty fine to hold and look at, but color is always a welcome differentiator. Variety, people. Spice!
Gallery: Sony Xperia Z for T-Mobile review
Verizon was the first US carrier to launch (and famously fumble) its LTE rollout back in 2010, but its long road to 4G nationwide coverage has finally come to a near close. As of today, the operator's LTE footprint now blankets more than 298 million people in 500 markets across the US, with Parkersburg, West Virginia claiming that 500th market distinction. It's a milestone Verizon managed to achieve in a little over two years' time, as the company's Chief Network Officer Nicola Palmer was quick to point out. The completion of this initial LTE rollout also brings Alaska into Verizon's coverage map as early as next month -- a territory that, before today, didn't even have 3G -- marking the carrier's network as available in all 50 states.
With a full LTE expansion, however, comes network congestion problems, as subscribers in major cities like New York are already starting to experience. Palmer assured us that solutions are currently underway to shore up capacity in these LTE markets. Verizon's AWS holdings, in particular, should serve to augment LTE reception in select areas starting in the second half of this year. The same goes for small cell site deployment, which Palmer stressed is an LTE-only initiative. News on the carrier's plans for LTE-Advanced remain just as vague as ever, with Palmer positioning the standard as yet another tool to enhance current LTE capacity. Unfortunately, she wouldn't commit to a timeframe for LTE-A nor address concerns about the potential for new pricing tiers when it does eventually launch. Still, Verizon subs will at least have VoLTE (voice over LTE) to look forward to next year -- that is, when it eventually clears the company's rigorous lab and field testing.
Source: Verizon Wireless
The LG Optimus F7 with LTE is now available on US Cellular, shortly after leaked documents robbed it of any surprise. It comes with a healthy spec sheet for a mid-range Jelly Bean device, with a 4.7-inch 720p IPS display, a 1.3-megapixel front cam, and an 8-megapixel rear camera. The device is powered by a 1.5GHz dual-core processor and has 8GB of internal storage, expandable via the miracle of microSD. You can get the Optimus F7 via US Cellular's website for $99.99 on a two-year contract, but don't move a finger-muscle until you've checked out our hands-on.
Via: Android Police
Source: US Cellular
If your city is one of the many that's part of Sprints ongoing LTE rollout (or will be soon), then the network's just announced three tri-band mobile broadband devices for your consideration. The hope, it seems, is that as different parts of Sprint's LTE spectrum become available (including spectrum from Clearwire), coverage and network performance of the devices will improve. The hardware offerings are Novatel's MiFi 500 LTE, the Netgear Zing Mobile Hotspot and 341U USB dongle, and are slated to be available by summer. No confirmed availability dates or prices just yet. Sprint also hints at tri-band LTE phones from Samsung and LG to follow. In the meantime, however, you'd better get set up with your Data Link and Static IP.
Last summer, Verizon users who wanted an LTE-capable flagship had a stark choice: Samsung's Galaxy S III, or the Droid Incredible 4G LTE. When we reviewed the latter handset, we found it comfortable in the hand, with a pretty display, but lamented the fact that the carrier insisted upon its own variant, rather than sticking with the beloved One X. But did those Big Red-enforced tweaks ruin this handset for you? Here's the moment to share your experiences of this device, tell us what you loved, loathed and, if someone was listening, would you change?
06/04/2013 - Mobile Miscellany: week of April 1st, 2013
If you didn't get enough mobile news during the week, not to worry, because we've opened the firehose for the truly hardcore. This week, Samsung introduced a new crop of smartphones for China and India, the Lumia 520 hit store shelves and Verizon introduced an LTE router... of all things. These stories and more await after the break. So buy the ticket and take the ride as we explore all that's happening in the mobile world for this week of April 1st, 2013.
Before today, using an iPhone on T-Mobile's network meant a compromise on speed: unlocked handsets would get service, but only on EDGE. Thanks to spectrum refarming efforts that started last fall, the operator has been able to suddenly "turn on" 4G (the HSPA+ kind) for that grey market segment. But with Apple now bringing the iPhone 5 officially to T-Mobile's newly launched LTE lineup, the UnCarrier's subscriber base no longer has to trade down.
Being the last of the major US carriers to be granted access to the Cupertino cult, T-Mobile trotted out the device with a decent amount of fanfare. Well, at least as much as can be mustered for a six month-old device. And, what can we say, an iPhone is an iPhone. Aesthetically, it's the same handset that's already available from AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and a handful of regional carriers. That means a large swath of fortified glass on the front and a sheet of lovely metal on the rear. When it launches on April 12th with a $99 down payment, it'll be able to hop on T-Mobile's burgeoning LTE network on the AWS band. But, should that not be active in your hometown, it'll fallback to big-magenta's AWS-powered HSPA+ 42Mbps network.
Gallery: T-Mobile iPhone 5 hands-on
26/03/2013 - T-Mobile lights up LTE in seven markets nationwide
T-Mobile's LTE rollout has been a long time coming, but as of today that network is finally live. At an event in New York City, the carrier made its initial batch of LTE cities official -- seven markets in total. Now, subscribers in Baltimore, MD; Kansas City, KS; Houston, TX; Las Vegas, NV; Phoenix, AZ; San Jose, CA and Washington D.C. will be among the first to take advantage of the UnCarrier's fully-fledged 4G network and its newly revised unlimited talk, text and data plans. As for New York City, a market many assumed would make this first LTE round, CEO John Legere says that's coming soon, mostly likely by early summer. Speeds on this new network, as we saw demoed just a little over a week ago, should range between 10 to 20Mbps down and 8 to 12 Mbps up -- at least, during this intro phase -- with a fallback onto HSPA+ when LTE isn't present. When T-Mobile gets around to repurposing that MetroPCS spectrum it's so close to acquiring, expect to see even more robust LTE speeds and wider coverage across its footprint.
To kick off adoption of this nascent network, T-Mobile's offering up a pretty attractive portfolio of handsets and high-end ones, at that. So Magenta subs or prospective carrier-switchers looking to sign up for T-Mobile's LTE can choose from the HTC One, Samsung Galaxy S 4, iPhone 5, Galaxy Note II and BlackBerry Z10 -- that latter two of which are currently available. And now that the UnCarrier's removed the contract chains we've all come to know and loathe, subscribers can opt to snag one of these handsets outright with an accompanying Simple Choice plan. If you're excited by all of this change or just want to see it laid out in the company's official terms, head past the break for official PR.
18/02/2013 - PSA: Sprint LTE is now live in San Francisco
Imagine our surprise when, upon firing up Sprint's Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 earlier today for some routine app updates, we saw the 4G logo light up (!) for the first time ever. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, it appears that sometime in the past few days, Sprint's finally deigned to flick the LTE switch in a significant market -- namely beautiful San Francisco. We immediately grabbed our Optimus G and EVO 4G LTE review units and hopped in the car for some quick tests. The verdict? We found pockets of LTE in Potrero Hill and SoMa, and nothing but CDMA in the Mission District. Speeds reached peaks of 16.7Mbps down and 9.4Mbps up with full signal but performance varied wildly, even block to block. Sprint had already enabled LTE in parts of Silicon Valley and had marked the city by the bay as one of its upcoming rollouts. Do you use Sprint and live in SF? Hit the comments and let us know if you're enjoying the sweet nectar of LTE in your area.
Gallery: Sprint LTE in San Francisco
The old beer-selling adage that good things come to those who wait also applies to those who've yet to sign away a kidney for one of EE's LTE plans. ThreeUK is announcing that it's going to bundle LTE into its existing unlimited mobile data packages without any additional charges. The network is planning to launch its own 4G product later in the year, using spectrum it snagged when T-Mobile and Orange were forced to sell of a chunk in order to see their marriage go through. As such, existing ThreeUK customers who own an LTE-ready device can expect to see their mobile internet shoot through the roof as soon as the capacity is switched on.
31/01/2013 - Apple Launches iOS 6.1: Short List of Improvements
31/12/2012 - Refresh Roundup: week of December 24th, 2012
Your smartphone and / or tablet is just begging for an update. From time to time, these mobile devices are blessed with maintenance refreshes, bug fixes, custom ROMs and anything in between, and so many of them are floating around that it's easy for a sizable chunk to get lost in the mix. To make sure they don't escape without notice, we've gathered every possible update, hack, and other miscellaneous tomfoolery we could find during the last week and crammed them into one convenient roundup. If you find something available for your device, please give us a shout at tips at engadget dawt com and let us know. Enjoy!
LTE. LTE. More LTE. That's what's currently roaming the minds of wireless carriers in the US of A, and while Verizon, AT&T and Sprint are at the forefront of it all, smaller networks are also looking to get a piece of the "real 4G" pie. The latest one to flip its own Long Term Evolution switch is Bluegrass Cellular, which was accomplished in large part thanks to Verizon's LTE in Rural America program, and is a culmination of an agreement inked back in 2010 between the two telcos. With the initial rollout phase, Bluegrass Cellular's expected to cover more than 348,000 folks in cities such as Bowling Green, Glasgow, Radcliff, Bardstown and Elizabethtown, offering subscribers in these areas speeds of around 12Mbps down and 5Mbps up. Naturally, Bluegrass plans on bringing LTE to more of its covered markets, with the outfit noting that it "will continue to expand 4G LTE to additional areas in 2013."
Bluegrass Cellular starts rolling out 4G LTE network with a bit of help from Verizon originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 05 Nov 2012 16:38:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink Phone Scoop | Bluegrass Cellular | Email this | Comments
The last Casio G'zOne handheld to come our way was the Commando, a military-grade device that marked the company's first foray into Android smartphones. Now it seems there's another one in the works, at least if a recent FCC filing is any indication. The Casio C811 looks to be a successor to the aforementioned Commando, with its G'zOne branding and features like WiFi and GSM world phone capabilities. Notably, the FCC document reveals the phone has Verizon-flavored LTE plus NFC support, both of which lead us to believe it'll likely be a mid- to high-end handset. Not much else is divulged from perusing the filing, but we're sure that whatever the C811 turns out to be, it'll be just as tough and durable as the rest of Casio's G'zOne offerings.
Next-gen Casio G'zOne makes it to the FCC, reveals LTE and NFC support originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 18 Oct 2012 08:38:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | FCC | Email this | Comments
Cricket's parent company, Leap Wireless, announced earlier last week its intentions to start blanketing more customers with LTE service, though it didn't say which markets would be the ones to get the same experience as folks in Tucson, Arizona. Today, however, Cricket's claiming that subscribers in the Las Vegas area can finally get a taste of savory Long Term Evolution, making this the second market where the newfangled network's now present. To go along with this, Cricket has said a revamped, LTE-ready version of that $150 Huawei Boltz modem will be available online and at retail stores around Sin City (and Tucson) for customers eager to try out the new service. No word on when the carrier plans to bring its "true 4G" network elsewhere, but, according to Leap CEO Doug Hutcheson, the idea is to have "approximately 21 million covered POPs by the end of the year."
[Image credit: Cricket Wireless Premier Dealer]
Cricket brings 4G LTE to Las Vegas, outs new Huawei Boltz modem in celebration originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 17 Oct 2012 14:53:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | Cricket | Email this | Comments
AT&T's still keeping us in the dark about a hard date for the Galaxy Note II's release, but at least we know it's real and on the way. Confirmed to ship sometime this holiday season, this variant of Samsung's phablet refresh sports a 5.5-inch 1,280 x 720 HD Super AMOLED display, 1.6GHz quad-core Exynos processor, 8-megapixel rear camera capable of 1080p video capture, beefy 3,100mAh battery and, of course, a refined S-Pen. It's nigh unchanged from both the global and Sprint models we'd gotten hands-on with previously; a trend the OEM sparked off with the release of the GS III earlier this year. And in a move that augurs well for those of you averse to branding, there's no superfluous carrier logo blemishing its smooth white back.
If you thought the original Note was big and unwieldy, prepare to stretch your thumb even further up the display. Samsung added 0.2-inches to this update, while incorporating elements of its "famed" inspired by nature design that conspire to lend this handset a reassuring in-hand fit. On the lower right-hand side, you'll find a convenient slot for the S-Pen which, when removed, triggers an action menu that can be customized to launch selected apps. A large physical home button rests just below the expansive 16:9 screen and is flanked by capacitive buttons for menu and back, while the front-facing camera resides up above and hardware keys for volume and power are placed on the left and right edges, respectively.
On the software front, you're still looking at a TouchWizzed version of Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, as well as some carrier-specific apps that come pre-loaded, like My AT&T, CodeScanner, FamilyMap, Navigator and Ready2Go. As you might expect from its quad-core Exynos, performance was smooth... almost buttery smooth, but we'd be remiss if we didn't mention a slight hesitancy between pulling out the S-Pen and the launch of that Smart Actions menu. Bear in mind, this is a pre-production model, so most of those kinks should be worked out by the time it launches this holiday season. Check out the video after the break.
Gallery: Samsung Galaxy Note II for AT&T
Samsung Galaxy Note II for AT&T hands-on: an S-Pen phablet with 4G LTE (update: video) originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 04 Oct 2012 17:40:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
Surprise, surprise -- well, not really. Nokia's Lumia 920 and 820 will be making a splash stateside on AT&T's lineup with the former as an exclusive. Like most of the carrier's other announcements as of late, there's no concrete ship date set for the devices outside of a November bow. As a refresher, the Lumia 920 is the undoubted Windows Phone 8 flagship here, bearing a 4.5-inch Pure Motion HD+ 1,280 x 768 display, 1.5GHz dual-core S4 CPU, 8-megapixel PureView camera with OIS and a 2,000mAH battery. While the line's mid-ranger, the 820, reps the same chipset as it elder sibling, a 4.3-inch 800 x 480 ClearBlack OLED display and 8-megapixel Carl Zeiss camera. Both are set to launch with LTE radios in tow, with the 920 available in red, white, black, yellow and cyan and the 820 in a lone black hue. Stay tuned for official word on pricing and release. In the meantime, check out the PR below.
Nokia Lumia 920 and 820 land stateside on AT&T's 4G LTE network this November originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 04 Oct 2012 09:55:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
28/09/2012 - AT&T 4G LTE adds Galaxy Note 2, Galay Tab 2 10.1, Galaxy Express and Galaxy Rugby Pro to lineup
Of the four big US carriers, AT&T's always been a solid go-to for variety across its wireless product portfolio. And today, the operator's welcoming a gaggle of Android devices from Samsung to bolster its 4G LTE offerings. Headlining this galactic quartet is the Galaxy Note II, the company's 5.5-inch phablet sequel which, though previously announced, has yet to receive a solid ship date. Also sharing that spotlight is an actual tablet, the Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 and two new smartphones: the Galaxy Express and Galaxy Rugby Pro. While that latter handset is a mere update to the rugged, water-, shock- and dust-proof OG Rugby Smart, the Express is a 4.5-inch ICS device that reps a dual-core 1.5GHz CPU and considerable 2,000mAh battery. All are said to be arriving within the "coming months" which, in non-PR garble, should translate to a pre-holiday release. Check out the official presser after the break.
AT&T 4G LTE adds Galaxy Note 2, Galay Tab 2 10.1, Galaxy Express and Galaxy Rugby Pro to lineup originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 28 Sep 2012 11:24:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
28/09/2012 - AT&T 4G LTE adds Galaxy Note 2, Galaxy Tab 2 10.1, Galaxy Express and Galaxy Rugby Pro to lineup
Of the four big US carriers, AT&T's always been a solid go-to for variety across its wireless product portfolio. And today, the operator's welcoming a gaggle of Android devices from Samsung to bolster its 4G LTE offerings. Headlining this galactic quartet is the Galaxy Note II, the company's 5.5-inch phablet sequel which, though previously announced, has yet to receive a solid ship date. Also sharing that spotlight is an actual tablet, the Galaxy Tab 2 10.1, and two new smartphones: the Galaxy Express and Galaxy Rugby Pro. While that latter handset is a mere update to the rugged, water-, shock- and dust-proof OG Rugby Smart, the Express is a fresh 4.5-inch ICS device that reps a dual-core 1.5GHz CPU and considerable 2,000mAh battery. All are said to be arriving within the "coming months" which, in non-PR garble, should translate to a pre-holiday release. Check out the official presser after the break.
AT&T 4G LTE adds Galaxy Note 2, Galaxy Tab 2 10.1, Galaxy Express and Galaxy Rugby Pro to lineup originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 28 Sep 2012 11:24:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments
As the holiday season draws closer, bargain hunters and retailers alike are starting to map out their Black Friday game plan. However, if you're balling on a budget and looking to score a stellar smartphone, then allow us to lend a helping hand. An anonymous tipster has shared a peek at one of Sprint's post-Turkey Day attractions, with the gory details shown in the image above. Both current and prospecting customers will have a chance to snag a Galaxy S III for $50 on a new two-year agreement, with Sprint no doubt hoping to use its unlimited data policy to lure to-be network switchers. Supplies are expected to be limited, so you'd be wise to get up entirely too early if you're hoping to guarantee yourself a unit.
Sprint Black Friday ad reveals $50 Galaxy S III on November 23rd only originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 27 Sep 2012 15:12:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink | | Email this | Comments