T-Mobile to rename its HSPA+ network as 4G?

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T-Mobile to rename its HSPA+ network as 4G?
While Sprint advertises its 10mbps network as 4G, why can't T-Mobile do the same with its 21mbps HSPA+ pipeline? After all, neither meets the ITU Radiocommunication  sector's definition of 4G as an advanced cellular network with speeds that "must have target peak data rates of up to approximately 100 Mbps for high mobility such as mobile access". Currently, the nation's fourth largest carrier refers to its HSPA+ network as producing 4G speeds, but had not publicly referred to it as a 4G network despite internal documents that do so.

With Sprint's WiMax network covering 120 million people and T-Mobile's HSPA+ reaching 200 million, the latter has already had documents leaked where they call themselves "America’s largest 4G network". Even T-Mobile's web site makes references to 4G. Replace HSPA+ with 4G and with a couple of quick pen strokes, the nation's fourth largest carrier becomes its largest purveyor of 4G service.

Perhaps this is what Project Emerald is all about.

source: AndroidandMe



1. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

Wow, someone may get sued for this....anyone with T-Mobile getting 5mbps download yet?

3. skymitch89 unregistered

Look up videos on Youtube. I've seen videos of it getting upwards of 7Mbps down and 5Mbps up.

4. TmobFan unregistered

I currently have been testing my G2 and average 6-7Mbs down and have reached 10.7 Mbs down. Also T-mobile has legal documents to be able to call their network 4G once it covers enough of the population. HSPA+ is getting rebranded to 4G before this year is over and trust me its fast and stable.

8. hunny54 unregistered

well i honestly dont care what t-mobile calls there network its still waaay faster than sprints soo called 4G network i tested both the most i Have EVER gotten on sprints 4G on my epic is 6 mbps and on my g2 im co nstantly getting 7-10 mbps which is something i have never seen on sprint so i dont know why sprints advertises their wimax as 4G when t-mobiles 3G hspa+ is faster so i think its good that t-mobie is calling there network 4G so they can rub it on sprints face also hspa+ covers more people than sprints 4G

12. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

i get 5mbs steady on my Vibrant. Ive seen the G2 kick 14mbs with my own eyes. Tmobile is the fastest carrier in america and they do have the largest 4g network (until VZW launches LTE).

18. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

WOW, and I thought 3MBPS on my CAPPY was good...

19. IHatePhones

Posts: 99; Member since: Aug 12, 2009

4G = 4th Generation. WiMax is Sprint's 4th Generation cellular technology. Simple. There is no rubbing anything in anyone's faces. T-Mobile's HSPA+ is just an enhancement (hence the +) to their 3G (or for the real slow ones, 3rd Generation) network. 4G is not just a name, it is a completely new network architecture, new towers etc. Think of it this way, HSPA+ may very well be at its capacity but WiMax is just starting. Anyone ever look up the specs for WiMax 2? Simple upgrade to the existing WiMax towers in 2011 gives it a theoretical limit of 100Mbps. That meets the real standard for 4G.

28. sacto unregistered

check again... there's plans to do yet another network upgrade next year using the HSPA+ to push the network to 50mbits down... whats wimax's max again? Heck LTE is going to have a tough time keeping up with that.

31. IHatePhones

Posts: 99; Member since: Aug 12, 2009

What? That made no sense if you were replying to me... Last I checked 100 is better than 50... And 3rd generation is still 3rd generation no matter what color you paint it to make it go faster.

2. skymitch89 unregistered

I wouldn't say that they have 4G because the HSPA+ uses 3G technology.

5. JeffdaBeat unregistered

Like the story says, Sprint says WiMAX is 4G even though it doesn't meet the 4G standard. If Sprint can call theirs 4G then I can call EDGE 4G if I wanted...

17. skymitch89 unregistered

It isn't based on speed, but the type of technology. 3G is 3rd Genereation Cellular Technology and 4G is 4th Genereation Cellular Technology.

6. djkd1 unregistered

Call it what they want..they aernt a US company..based in Germany somewhere...they rent out satellites to US and setup stores..thats it

13. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

lol, if u had any clue what your talking about. Tmobile USA is a seperate company from Deutch Telecom (Tmobile Europe). DT owns a percentage of Tmo USA but not a controlling stake. They are an investor much like Vodaphone is an investor in Verizon Wireless.

7. annoynomous unregistered

Here is the big difference and the reason why T-Mobile can not call there HSPA+ a 4G network...it is built on 3G technology! HSPA+ is a maxed out version of 3G, it does not have the potential to reach 100Mbs...ever...in any condition. WiMax and LTE are both built on 4G technology, although upon birth they are not reaching 100Mbs, they both have the capability over time to evolve and do these speeds(Similar to EVDO to EVDO Rev A or 3G to EDGE and HSPA+), HSPA+ does not have the capability to evolve beyond it's claimed max speeds. WiMax II has actually already been ratified and the technology and equipment will be available starting in 2012, just 14 short months away, it is an upgrade to the current WiMax and requires no new devices and just a "software upgrade" to the existing towers, all devices that are compatible with WiMax now will be compatible with WiMax II. This is just an example of how WiMax and LTE are 4G technologies and have potential for further growth and performance HSPA+ does not. That is why it is not a true 4G technology.

9. Mr. Joe unregistered


10. android lover unregistered

+1 i am a T-mobile customer and am very happy with these new speeds but i totally agree with you! if its built off of 3G equipment than its not 4G! its not fair to the other companies to let T-mobile call there 3G hsdpa+ 4G. my bro has verizon and his speeds were always above 2mbps while i always had 700-900kpbs. just because they have faster speeds now dousnt mean that they should be allowed to call it 4G! this is just T-mobiles easy way out of spending extra money on real 4g! i think its really not fair to the other companys!

11. JeffdaBeat unregistered

I could potentially come in first place in a marathon...but it doesn't mean that I can call myself a marathon winner...same thing goes with WiMAX and LTE...they have potential, but they currently, they don't meet the 4G standard.

14. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

not to blow a hole in your theory, but Tmobile has already announced that they are doubling up the speeds next year to 44mbs on HSPA+. That will be a working network before Wimax2 puts a single tower up. Technically yes, 4g is the name of the tech, not the speeds. It doesnt matter if 3g runs at 100mbs and 4g runs at 10mbs. But the general public DOESNT KNOW THAT. They THINK that 4g MEANS FASTER. Its just a matter of stopping confusion. and btw, they say "4g SPEEDS" not "4g TECH". There is a difference. Wimax2 will require NEW phones. Existing phones will work on it, because wimax2 is BACKWARDS compatable. That doesnt mean that the Evo is going to hit Wimax2 speeds. its not going to get faster. Its just going to work on the network, the same way an Edge phone can work on a 3g network. Spreading much misinformation lately?

15. scorpio85

Posts: 160; Member since: Jan 16, 2010

LTE is expected to get more traction worldwide as it's the official successor to HSPA-based 3G and is also technically superior. Peak speeds for the format run at 100Mbps where current WiMAX often tops out at 16Mbps or less. WiMAX 2 is in development and will bring 160Mbps, but it should launch only after most initial LTE services. Read more:http://www.electronista.com/articles/10/08/04/clearwire.to.test.out.25ghz.lte.late.this.year/#ixzz1 2RN4qy6o Also Sprint is already testing LTE/Wimax 2 in Phoenix this fall and will dominate T-Mobiles HSPA's speeds. I cant believe most people dont know about this.

20. IHatePhones

Posts: 99; Member since: Aug 12, 2009

Still doesn't reach nor has the ability to reach the 100Mbps standard tho. And they do not need to put new towers up for WiMax 2, just upgrade the existing ones then bam 4G in name and function. The reason WiMax is considered 4G is that it is capable of the minimum specs on paper when it was conceived. Just like you can run DDR3 ram in your computer as slow as DDR2 (and it was almost that way at first anyway), but it was capable and DID become much faster than the pre-existing technology ever could. And the current Sprint 4G devices WILL get a speed boost from WiMax 2 but will not reach the speeds that a WiMax 2 handset could achieve.

22. IHatePhones

Posts: 99; Member since: Aug 12, 2009

Well using your own analogy, yes you could potentially win a marathon, lets say you're out of shape but have two perfectly good leg and joints (4G), vs another competitor who is in amazing shape but who is getting severe arthritis in his joints making it impossible to become much better than he currently is... You have a future and can be a winner for years to come. But the other guy had his day and should retire.

23. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

yea, they will get a speed boost to their max theoretical which will be 10-12.. thats assuming that Sprint turns off all Wimax1 towers and only uses Wimax2 towers. So its not a "speed boost", its just closer to its maximum radio. The phone isnt going to get faster hardware radios in it. Your analogy of DDR3 backwards compatibility to DDR2 has nothing to do with anything, as you could not make DDR2 run as fast as DDR3 which is what u keep assuming the Evo is going to do when Wimax2 comes out. Delusions. LTE will eventually dominate all 4 major carriers anways unless something happens. Sprint will shoot themselves in the foot if they keep up with Wimax and they get no partners to help with buildout.. all the while Tmobile, VZW, and ATT go to LTE and roam off each other. Wimax is nice but it will always be the "other 4g". It was first out the gate but its going to be last to the finish line.

27. IHatePhones

Posts: 99; Member since: Aug 12, 2009

No I was comparing DDR2 to 3G and DDR3 to 4G and their capabilities. When the new technology (DDR3) came out, it was slow and expensive and you could get DDR2 that was faster. But it wasn't long before DDR3's true potential shown through and it will be the same way with WiMax spec 2. BTW why are you guys hating on WiMax so much? I just think it isn't right to call old tech a new name just to capitalize on consumer ignorance. That's all I'm saying.

32. supporter of "annoynomous" unregistered

First of all remixfa when did he/she say anything about actual speeds on HSPA+? Your comment on T-Mobile doubling speeds is null and void because all he/she said was "claimed max speeds", he/she didn't specify or say "current speeds". No one said that T-Mobile's current speeds were the max. Second of all everyone knows there is a difference between "4G speeds" and "4G tech", no one, including "annoynomous" was claiming anything different. The original article by phonearena and the highlighted text in T-Mobile's literature says "America's largest 4G network" which implies a network of 4G technology, so I don't know how you say "they say "4g SPEEDS" not "4g TECH". There is a difference." because they don't in this article. Third your comment "Wimax2 will require NEW phones. Existing phones will work on it, because wimax2 is BACKWARDS compatable." contradicts itself! You say it WILL require NEW phones in the first part and then you say EXISTING phones WILL work on it...which one is it?!! Either it requires new phones or it doesn't! 4th where in annoynomous' post does it say the Evo or any current 4G device will hit WiMax II speeds? All his/her post says is that it will work on WiMax II and it will be compatible, it doesn't say anywhere that it will acheiving Wimax II speeds, just compatible! And then you have the nerve to say "Spreading much misinformation lately"? You may have just posted the worst argument or rebuttle to a post I have ever seen. Sounds like you are T-Mo fan boy and just want to spout off. Win any arguments or make any valid points lately?

16. DBTMo unregistered

Of course everything will be faster 6 mos, 1 yr, 3 yrs from now, it's inevitable, but who knows how long Verizon will take to get their LTE network up and running fast and deployed to 200 million people with real world speeds that even achieve a fraction of its potential?. Who knows when WiMax2 will be ready. It's all speculative and there's new information every week speculating about this and that. Too many people argue about what's going to be better 'down the road'. Who cares? Does it have the potential to be faster? Yes, in theory. T-Mo's network is here now, today and it's faster than everyone else and they'll continue to make it faster and faster. Maybe Verizon will catch up within the next 2 years w/ real world speeds on LTE. Maybe it won't. 2 years from now, if Verizon has a network significantly faster for me to pay more for it, I may consider switching. For now, I'll take a myTouch HD in 3 weeks and 5+ Mbps and be happy with it and when my contract ends, I'll reassess and make a decision then.

21. IHatePhones

Posts: 99; Member since: Aug 12, 2009

Yes, yes, but the argument here is whether it should be called "4G" or not. You can't take a tricked-out 2009 model year car and then decide to call it a new 2010 model because it is faster than another 2010 model (which coincidentally has a new engine design that with a few bolt-ons can reach amazing speeds)... It is all cellular apples to cellular oranges.

24. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

they say 4g speeds. Wimax1 isnt "4g" by specs either. Wimax2 might be, but thats like trying to say a mustang V6 can hit 150mph because a Mustang Cobra can. Similar name, same look, different tech... not the same. VZW's LTE rollout is already underway. They are going to flip the switch in the next month or so in major markets around the US, so LTE's dominance gets started in 2010, but wont really be meaningful until 2011.

29. IHatePhones

Posts: 99; Member since: Aug 12, 2009

But say you've got a Cobra chassis and everything else but just a V6 engine in it. Just drop a Cobra engine in it as an upgrade later. The potential is there, the car can handle the speeds. But one cannot think of upgradeable technology as static. Most things on paper are the best that it can be hence the titles and naming schemes, but implementing new tech always starts out slow and prioritizing stability foremost before cranking up the speeds to meet the original intention. All that has been quoted for LTE is teh awesome. But what are the real world numbers gonna be? Hopefully good. But there is no way it is gonna be perfect. No new technology is.

25. dts242 unregistered

It's quite interesting how phonearena cites HSPA+ theoretical speeds, but only real-world speeds for Wimax. HSPA theoretical Speed: 21, Wimax: 50. Neither one of those are reached on anybody's phone. It's like when I connect to wifi. On my phone, it's no faster than 3G. But, reaches over 5Mbps on my laptop. Even though a network is capable of a certain speed, there are many factors that contribute to you not achieving that speed. Another point is that these speeds refer to downloading files. Browsing is hardly affected. Personally, I don't care who has the fastest 4G. Fast is fast. Period.

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