Tags T-Mobile

T-Mobile has the happiest wireless subscribers

T-Mobile JD Power Customer Satisfaction

Uh-oh: It looks like T-Mobile CEO John Legere has a new reason to boast about his "Un-carrier." J.D. Power's newest Wireless Customer Care Full-Service Performance Study shows that "T-Mobile ranks highest among wireless full-service carriers" in customer care, which means T-Mobile customers are the happiest about the customer service they receive.

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Brad Reed

February 4th

Mobile

T-Mobile does a clever ‘remix’ of ‘Hotline Bling’ for its Super Bowl ad

T-Mobile Drake Super Bowl Ad

T-Mobile has released its Super Bowl ad a little bit early and it's actually a pretty clever "remix" of Drake's already classic "Hotline Bling" video. Basically, it shows what would have happened if "Hotline Bling" were rewritten by wireless carrier executives who like to make you sign two-year contracts and charge you overage fees for using too much data.

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Brad Reed

February 3rd

Mobile

Jeremy’s 5: New emoji, T-Mobile LTE CellSpot, Google Photos, iTunes account merging + iOS beta battery

j511119

Welcome to the latest edition of Jeremy’s 5, my latest quick roundup of 5 interesting little things that aren’t big enough for full articles, but are still worth sharing with you.

This week, I’m looking at the next wave of emoji, T-Mobile’s 4G LTE CellSpot, Google Photos, iCloud/iTunes Account Merging, and battery drain from the latest iOS beta…

1. Take A Sneak Peek At The Next 70+ Emoji. As I’ve said in prior columns, readers seem to be more excited about new emoji than pretty much any other feature Apple adds to iOS. Apple doesn’t create the emoji characters — it implements the Unicode standard, which has standardized hundreds of icons over a dozen different revisions since 1991. The next revision, Unicode 9.0, is currently being finalized and should be released this year, possibly in time for iOS 10.

unicode-emoji

Want a preview of over 70 new emoji candidates that may be headed to iOS? Visit Emojipedia, which is showing off all of the possibilities. Potential new emoji include Face Palm, nauseated face, clown face, shark, eagle, and a collection of food items: shrimp, squid, tumbler glass, potato, carrot, cucumber, bacon, peanuts, baguette bread, kiwi fruit, pancakes, a glass of milk, stuffed flatbread, green salad, egg, and clinking champagne glasses. Until iOS 10 comes out, you can find versions of some of the icons in third-party emoji apps such as Kimoji.

tmobilecellspot

2. T-Mobile cell booster. T-Mobile’s prices are great, but its 4G/LTE towers really benefit from neighborhood-level assistance. To that end, my colleague Cam Bunton first reported on T-Mobile’s 4G LTE CellSpot Signal Booster two months ago, but actual CellSpot hardware has been in short supply, and my review unit only showed up last week. I’ve been testing it since then, and my impressions are mostly positive. The unit (shown above, right) is larger than a last-gen Apple AirPort Extreme router, and also larger than T-Mobile’s 4G LTE Signal Booster, which I was previously using. It needs to be connected to your broadband router, and optionally attached to a (fairly long) included GPS cable to help determine your location. (Hopefully your router’s near a window for GPS signal acquisition — mine isn’t.)

After an entirely automated but up-to-2-hour setup process where the CellSpot downloads unspecified content as an ‘update,’ it just starts working, creating a 5-dot LTE signal immediately around itself, in a 1- to 2-room radius. The signal’s certainly strong for phone calling within its immediate radius: borrowing your router’s broadband access, it creates what callers described as “excellent” (if not quite Wi-Fi-calling-clarity) voice quality, but it’s nothing special for data; you’ll see faster speeds over Wi-Fi. Notably, the 5-dot signal falls down to 4 or 3 dots when you move to the second floor or other side of a larger house, assuming CellSpot’s not centrally located.

Given the choice between CellSpot and the prior 4G LTE Signal Booster I was using before, I prefer the CellSpot’s performance, but with reservations. CellSpot requires only one power outlet versus the Signal Booster’s two, is guaranteed to create a strong voice signal even where the Signal Booster may struggle, and sells for the same price — a refundable deposit of $25 with T-Mobile. However, CellSpot’s router dependence, small peak power radius, and limited data benefits mean that it’s not a cure-all — just a better calling experience for signal-starved T-Mobile users. That alone makes it worth considering.

googlephotos

3. Google Photos. Last year, I wrote articles discussing the choice I was trying to make between using the free Google Photos service — syncing hi-res but not archival versions of my photos — or paying for 1TB ($10/month) of Apple’s iCloud Photo Library storage. Since then, some readers have asked which service I decided to go with.

After a lot of consideration and a couple of test runs, I opted for Google Photos, and I’m more satisfied with it for “free” than I would be paying for iCloud Photo Library. The uploading process remains painfully slow with a large photo library, but at least I’m not paying for the uploading time, which was necessary with iCloud. Overall, it works as expected, and for people like me with large photo libraries, it’s a much better option than paying $120 per year to Apple.

4. iTunes & iCloud Account Merging. It’s been almost four and a half years since Apple (Tim Cook’s office, specifically) said it was working on letting people merge two iTunes or iCloud accounts together. The merging tool still hasn’t launched, and for those of us who have separate accounts that we’d really like to merge for one reason or another, the wait has been agonizing. Any chance we could see this at WWDC 2016, Apple? Family Sharing can be a mess of its own and doesn’t count.

5. iOS 9.3 + watchOS 2.2 Beta Battery Drain. A quick word of advice if you’re thinking of testing the latest iOS 9.3 or watchOS 2.2 betas but unsure of the impact on battery life or stability: the iOS beta seems both stable and pretty battery safe on iPhones and iPads, but the Apple Watch is another story. My colleague Zac Hall has already warned that the watchOS beta is a battery killer, which kept me from installing watchOS 2.2. Even so, the day after installing iOS 9.3 on the connected iPhone, my Apple Watch died mid-day — something that hasn’t happened since I used the watchOS 2.0 betas last year, and thankfully hasn’t happened since. So if you’re an Apple Watch user, you may want to steer clear of Apple’s betas.

More From This Author

Check out more of my reviews, How-To guides and editorials for 9to5Mac here! I’ve published a lot of different topics of interest to Mac, iPad, iPhone, iPod, Apple TV, and Apple Watch users, as well as a personal gift guide for Apple fans, a great gift guide for iPhone users, a detailed gift guide for Mac users, and a separate gift guide for Apple photographers.


Filed under: Opinion, Tech Industry Tagged: battery life, betas, emoji, google+ photos, iOS, iTunes, T-Mobile

Visit 9to5Mac to find more special coverage of Tech Industry, iOS, and iTunes.

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Jeremy Horwitz

January 21st

Apple

Mac

T-Mobile CEO apologizes to EFF, still says Binge On is pro net neutrality

T-Mobile CEO John Legere EFF

The controversy over T-Mobile’s free-to-binge Binge On data program is not over, and CEO John Legere felt on Monday that he had more explaining to do, especially after blasting the EFF last week while talking to consumers on Twitter. Legere apologized for attacking the EFF, but he did not apologize for Binge On, or his language – in fact, he continued to explain in his lengthy post on T-Mobile’s blog how Binge On is pro net neutrality.

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Chris Smith

January 12th

Uncategorized

Sprint continues the trend, will stop offering two-year contracts for smartphones

sprint

The trend of carriers ending contract pricing continues today. According to an internal leaked document obtained by Android Central, Sprint smartphone subsidy options are now limited to customers who wish to add a line to an existing account or upgrade their existing phone. This move follows AT&T’s announcement that it will stop offering two-year contracts this week, as well as Verizon, who simplified its offerings last August.

Sprint’s move to end 2-year pricing follows a general trend in the industry of carriers switching focus towards monthly installment plans and device leases. T-Mobile was the first carrier to do this with the announcement of its UnCarrier offerings in 2013.

Instead of two-year plans, Sprint will pitch buyers on their Easy Pay and Leasing plans, which they claim offer the best value and most flexibility when compared to two-year contracts. Two-year agreements will, however, continue to be available for the purchase of tablets.

The shift in focus from two-year contracts has caused Apple to essentially stop marketing its iPhones with the $199/$299/$399 pricing scheme that it originally used. Instead, it has launched its own iPhone Upgrade Program which offers users an annual upgrade with a monthly device leasing fee.

Whether or not device installment plans save customers any money varies. Some users are better off with the installment plans, while some users have grandfathered deals that make the two-year agreements more plausible. The good thing is, Sprint is allowing existing customers to continuing purchasing phones on a two-year plan.


Filed under: Tech Industry Tagged: AT&T, carriers, Sprint, T-Mobile, two-year contract, Verizon

Visit 9to5Mac to find more special coverage of Tech Industry, AT&T, and T-Mobile.

What do you think? Discuss "Sprint continues the trend, will stop offering two-year contracts for smartphones" with our community.

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Chance Miller

January 8th

Apple

Mac

Sprint continues the trend, will stop offering two-year contracts for smartphones

sprint

The trend of carriers ending contract pricing continues today. According to an internal leaked document obtained by Android Central, Sprint smartphone subsidy options are now limited to customers who wish to add a line to an existing account or upgrade their existing phone. This move follows AT&T’s announcement that it will stop offering two-year contracts this week, as well as Verizon, who simplified its offerings last August.

Sprint’s move to end 2-year pricing follows a general trend in the industry of carriers switching focus towards monthly installment plans and device leases. T-Mobile was the first carrier to do this with the announcement of its UnCarrier offerings in 2013.

Instead of two-year plans, Sprint will pitch buyers on their Easy Pay and Leasing plans, which they claim offer the best value and most flexibility when compared to two-year contracts. Two-year agreements will, however, continue to be available for the purchase of tablets.

The shift in focus from two-year contracts has caused Apple to essentially stop marketing its iPhones with the $199/$299/$399 pricing scheme that it originally used. Instead, it has launched its own iPhone Upgrade Program which offers users an annual upgrade with a monthly device leasing fee.

Whether or not device installment plans save customers any money varies. Some users are better off with the installment plans, while some users have grandfathered deals that make the two-year agreements more plausible. The good thing is, Sprint is allowing existing customers to continuing purchasing phones on a two-year plan.


Filed under: Tech Industry Tagged: AT&T, carriers, Sprint, T-Mobile, two-year contract, Verizon

Visit 9to5Mac to find more special coverage of Tech Industry, AT&T, and T-Mobile.

What do you think? Discuss "Sprint continues the trend, will stop offering two-year contracts for smartphones" with our community.

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Chance Miller

January 8th

Apple

Mac

T-Mobile CEO John Legere Goes on Curse-Filled Hate Rant Against Electronic Frontier Foundation 

“Who the fuck are you anyways, EFF?” Guitar-rockin’ telecom BAD BOY John Legere is lashing out against the Electronic Frontier Foundation following an EFF investigation claimed that T-Mobile’s new Binge On program throttles data.

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Kate Knibbs

January 7th

Uncategorized

Why T-Mobile’s Binge On looks like John Legere’s first big misstep

T-Mobile Binge On Video Throttling

There's an old adage in politics that if you have to spend time explaining yourself, it likely means you're losing. T-Mobile, which for the past couple of years has been aggressively and relentlessly playing offense against its rival carriers, now finds itself in the unfamiliar situation of having to explain itself thanks to the controversy surrounding its Binge On initiative.

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Brad Reed

January 7th

Mobile

T-Mobile CEO blasts Binge On critics in a 1080p video you can’t stream if you use Binge On

T-Mobile John Legere Binge On

T-Mobile’s Binge On program that lets you watch unlimited video from certain content providers sounds like the best thing that could ever happen to your data plan – and it might be, especially if you like to watch videos on your phone. Who cares that the video you watch isn’t the best possible quality, right?

Even so, the Un-carrier is running into some problems with the program, as it’s facing intense criticism from Google and others. The search giant discovered that YouTube videos get throttled – something that T-Mobile calls optimization – even though YouTube isn’t included in the list of Binge On partners. Furthermore, the EFF found out that T-Mobile’s throttling applies automatically and indiscriminately to all video, which doesn’t sound very good since Binge On is an opt-out service, meaning it’s turned on by default on your data plan. It can be disabled easily, though — just follow these steps.

Facing all that criticism, T-Mobile execs including the company's outspoken CEO John Legere came out guns blazing in defense on Bing On, arguing that special interests are at play for critics of the service.

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Chris Smith

January 7th

Mobile

EFF Claims That T-Mobile’s Binge On Is Actually ‘Just Throttling’

Late last year, T-Mobile launched a seemingly miraculous offer called Binge On that allows you to stream unlimited quantities of video using cellular data, for free. Now, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has scrutinized the service and claims that its video optimization is in fact “just throttling.”

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Jamie Condliffe

January 5th

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