1. HeyCori's Avatar
    Make sure he knows what he's talking about.

    I've been looking to leave AT&T for a while now. Figured now's a good time since all my devices are finally unlocked. I walk into our local T-Mo store to check their coverage map. Turns out I'm in-between a 2G/3G coverage area. I'm close to the outskirts of town so I was ready to accept that I might be stuck on 2G at home. He checks the map for where I work/shop. Tells me that the towers have been refarmed and I'll get great 3G/4G in town, which is good because that's where I use it the most.

    I take my two lines and sign up for T-Mobile prepaid. It takes like two hours for the phone numbers to transfer so I couldn't really test it out in stores. I head home to discover that indeed I'm stuck with Edge. Fine, I knew that was a possibility. Then I check my bars. It keeps fluctuating between 3 bars and no signal at all. That's warning flag number 1. Warning flag number 2 hits when I'm on my way to work. According to the T-Mo rep I'm supposed to be blanketed in all this refarmed 3G/4G goodness. NOPE! I get to work only to see that I have a solid 3 bars... of Edge!

    Reps should know better than to promise refarmed towers when they're not. Plus we use our phones for our side business in addition to work making unreliable phone service completely unacceptable. Heck, that's the only reason I stuck with AT&T so long, because I knew I wouldn't have to jump through a bunch of hoops. The only upside is that there's no ETF for leaving T-Mobile which is exactly what I'm going to do. Now to send a letter to T-Mobile.
    palandri likes this.
    12-20-2012 09:48 AM
  2. palandri's Avatar
    I had T-Mobile for a couple of years and It was sure a lot easier when Nokia made pentaband phones, like my Nokia N8 or my wife's Nokia 808.

    Have you tried calling T-Mobile tech support?
    12-20-2012 10:23 AM
  3. HeyCori's Avatar
    I have not. The only thing I've tried so far is running the network setup apps on both phones. MMS works fine when the signal holds up and, surprisingly, visual voicemail works too. Call quality is good for being on Edge. The only thing I'm not getting is the speed the rep promised me and unreliable signal strength.

    Right now I'm tempting whether to hold my head in shame and return to AT&T or transfer my numbers to another MVNO.
    12-20-2012 11:02 AM
  4. HeyCori's Avatar
    So less than 24 hours after signing with T-Mobile I'm already back with the Death Star. All my features are working again including LTE, internet sharing, visual voicemail, and a useable signal. I'm also contract free. Debating if I should upgrade my line and get a 920 on the cheap. I usually don't keep phones for two years but I could see myself holding onto a 920 for awhile. I might return to T-Mobile one day but only if I buy a phone made to run on their network or T-Mobile officially announces refarmed towers in my area.
    12-21-2012 05:09 AM
  5. sravanv's Avatar
    Figure 8 Dash, I had the same issue (fortunately I'm getting their "4G" coverage) with spotty bars. I barely had one bar everywhere I went in my house. Go back to T-Mobile and tell them straight up:

    Look, I understand that I will have crappy service in my home. However, I'm willing to overlook that if you give me a large enough credit. I was able to finagle waived activation fees (which should not be too hard to get) as well as a $50 credit (I told them that there was a rebate being offered if I switched from Verizon). They honored this and I signed up.

    Then call up T-Mobile customer service and complain about the crappy service. They will send you a CelFi cell signal repeater. As long as you have one bar in the house (doesn't matter if it fluctuates), the repeater will capture it and emit it all over. I installed it and I have great service in almost every part of my house. (There is one area that service fluctuates between two bars and zero but I don't mind that considering the savings).

    To make the deal even more slick, fill out the rebate form for an extra $50 and sign up for a T-mobile discount (they should waive the activation fees). You might be able to double dip ;-).

    Hopefully that works out for you. Make sure you do it quick because if the celfi doesn't work, you can still return everything and go back to the death star within a two week period. It seems like a pain but considering that I'm paying about half as much for even more service with T-Mo as I was for Verizon, I found it to be definitely worth the trouble.

    Also, where do you live? T-Mo has been improving service and they just lit up a bunch of new markets. I'm from San Diego, and I know they've been improving signal here.
    HeyCori likes this.
    12-21-2012 01:10 PM
  6. HeyCori's Avatar
    Thanks for the advice. Very helpful. I did not know about the CelFi signal repeaters. I talked to a rep. and she put in a request to boost the tower signal but who knows how long it would be before that happens. It was definitely a good time to jump ship since T-Mobile is offering free activations and .99 cent SIM kits. I would stay if not for the constantly dropped signal. Even at work my signal would just completely drop. It's only strong when I'm outside the building. With AT&T my signal at work drops from LTE to 4G. It's hard to stick with a company when you only get 1 untrustworthy bar of service. I'm already back on AT&T. Got my numbers transferred and accounts activated without spending a dime. Though, knowing AT&T, there's probably a bill coming at some point. I still have to contact T-Mobile about the possibility of a refund. Right now I'm living on the outskirts of Niles, MI, where change happens slow lol.
    12-21-2012 04:29 PM
  7. sravanv's Avatar
    Ahh, that could be why. It's definitely beneficial to live in one of the bigger markets. Yeah, who knows, maybe after some time, T-Mo will go nationwide. Their plans are definitely better priced and hopefully those rumors about Microsoft's unlocked but cheap "Nexus"-like device will let more consumers take advantage of Value contracts that T-mo offers.
    12-21-2012 04:53 PM

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