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Some T-Mobile Prepaid Customers Getting "Data Stash" Mar 22

T-Mobile USA announced today that beginning Mar 22, customers on "qualifying" Simple Choice Prepaid plans will get Data Stash rollover data. The Data Stash perk is something that T-Mobile added to postpaid plans January 1, 2015.

The way Data Stash works is that T-Mobile will give every prepaid voice customer with a qualifying Simple Choice plan a one-time bonus of 10 GB of data. Beginning after the 10 GB bonus is used up, unused plan data will roll forward for up to 12 months.

So what's a Simple Choice Prepaid Plan? And which ones qualify?

There are currently four Simple Choice Prepaid plans priced at $50 to $80 per month. All four include unlimited, talk and text. The four plans differ only in the amount of included high speed data; 1 GB on the $50 plan, 3 GB on the $60 plan, 5 GB on the $70 plan and unlimited, unthrottled data on the $80 plan.

All the Simple Choice prepaid plans also include unlimited international texts, unlimited Music Freedom streaming and unlimited data throttled to 128 Kbps after the high speed data is used up. They also allow tethering and hotspot usage up to the plan's high speed limit except for the $80 plan where tethering/hotspot is capped at 5 GB.


As for which plans qualify, on postpaid Data Stash is available on phone plans with a 3 GB or greater high speed data allowance. If T-Mobile uses the same criteria for prepaid, only the $60 and $70 plans will qualify for Data Stash. The $50 plan doesn't qualify as it only has 1 GB of high speed data and the $80 plan already has unlimited data, so Data Stash is irrelevant.

On the other hand, T-Mobile could make other unannounced changes to their prepaid line up coinciding with the launch of prepaid Data Stash on the 22nd. T-Mobile has a history of pre-announcing good news and then making other unannounced and unpopular changes simultaneously. Like they did on Jan 25, when they launched pre-announced, lower priced Simply Prepaid plans and discontinued their prepaid daily plans without warning.

I'm actually surprised that Data Stash is being added to the Simple Choice Plans rather then the currently heavily advertised Simply Prepaid plans. T-Mobile hasn't been promoting Simple Choice Prepaid recently and the Simple Choice plans aren't even listed on T-Mobile's main prepaid plans page. Currently the only way to see the Simple Choice plans and prices is when activating a new T-Mobile prepaid line of service or for current customers, when changing plans on the My T-Mobile online account management site. The Simple Choice plans are so thoroughly hidden that I suspected that T-Mobile was getting ready to eliminate them. Instead, it looks like Simple Choice Prepaid is getting rejuvenated with Data Stash.

Update 3/23/2015: T-Mobile has posted a web page with more information about Data Stash for both prepaid and postpaid plans. The page confirms that only the $60 and $70 Simple Choice Prepaid phone plans are eligible for Data Stash and that Data Stash is not available with prepaid mobile broadband plans.

Current customers with $60 or $70 Simple Choice Prepaid plans will get their 10 GB of bonus data the next time their plan renews. New customers on those plans get the 10 GB bonus immediately after they activate the plan.

Source: T-Mobile

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48 comments:

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  1. It would be awesome if the Walmart exclusive Unlimited web & text plan gets rollover data but I highly doubt it will.

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  2. Is the Walmart exclusive thing the same as Family Mobile?

    Or does Walmart have two different exclusive T-Mobile deals?

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    1. If you're talking about the secret plan that gives you unlimited text, 5 GB of LTE data (with 100 MB allotted for courtesy tethering) + 100 minutes for $30/month, it's not the same as Walmart's family mobile, which I believe is a no-contract post-paid cell service on T-Mobile's network. I don't even think the secret plan should really be called "Walmart exclusive" since you can also get it from T-Mobile directly either from their store or online.

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  3. No love for the $30/month secret plan? Well, actually I think 5 GB of LTE is plenty of data for me. But it would be nice to have rollover data for tethering (vs. the 100 MB allotment that's included with the plan), and/or rollover voice.

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  4. T-Mobile needs to be more competitive with these plans once again. They are still a bit high compared to Boost, Metro, Go smart. Now Sprint is the one sprinting on deals and price cuts. What happened to T-Mobile's aggressiveness?

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    1. I'd choose Boost, unfortunately, over anything T-Mobile, due to the coverage. If I only had a choice between those two, that is.

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  5. Tmobile has Metro pcs doing its 50 a month unlimited data promo, something that sprint can't match no matter what they do.

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    1. That metro promo is only for select phones purchased from metro. Similarly, Sprint has a $50 unlimited plan for iPhones. Without checking it may just be for iPhone 6. They have a $60 unlimited plan for everyone else

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  6. ...unless, of course, Sprint simply chose to match it.

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    1. Even the 60 unlimited plan by metro pcs is better then anything else in the market, unthrottled data is great, as for the coverage remarks that are going to come, unless you live in the sticks, it shouldn't be a problem.

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    2. " as for the coverage remarks that are going to come, unless you live in the sticks, it shouldn't be a problem."

      More accurately said, it won't be a problem if you live in 30% of the country. For those in most of the country, they are out of luck. Even if you travel short distances between large cities, you are hosed too: T-Mobile is notorious for shoddy coverage even in dense urban areas.

      If you actually want to use your phone, just about anything from Verizon and AT&T is far better than Metro-PCS. Better than Sprint? Debatable. It's really 6 of one, half dozen of the other comparing T-Mobile to Sprint plans. they are pretty much on the same level: two horses running a distant tie way back on the race course, behind two thoroughbreds.

      I did personally ask T-Mobile how their plans are for the often announced coverage as much as AT&T by the end of this year. All I got was evasion and "we're working on it". When I asked what areas not covered by TMO will get towers, and when. they went silent.

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    3. This experience with T-Mobile,which presents misleading advertising about the number of "Americans" covered (a meaningless statistic for mobile phones) instead of territory covered, is quite typical.

      From TMO News, from the beginning of this year:

      "I'm a driver and frequently go throughout the Midwest from Texas to the Northeast. I switched from Sprint unlimited to TMobile assuming the data coverage had to be similar to the other major carriers. Big mistake on my part! If you drive for a living, travel frequently or count on a usable data signal on major freeways, TMobile is not for you. ... It's so bad I have to borrow my kids LG phone on Boost Mobile to get a phone number off the net when she rides with me at work. We pay $205 a month for our HTC One M8 and Samsung 5, and we could not be more disappointed with the overall data coverage. Our personal situation calls for a network that allows the phone to be a business tool while out on the road. Unless TMobile merges with someone very soon, we'll be one & done with them unfortunately."

      I'm sure the disappointment has a lot to do with T-Mobile itself misleading people about its coverage when it gets them to sign up.

      Another commenter says:

      "I love what T-Moble is doing but their signal sucks where I live. It is the 2G/Edge network (if you even get service). Both AT&T and Verizon have solid LTE coverage here and Sprint has solid 3G coverage in my town. It is about 10 minutes out of a smaller city (covered in LTE by all 4 carriers). T-Mobile needs to expand their coverage into the areas surrounding the cities. Hopefully they work on that this year!"

      This refers to how T-Mobile coverage is not just atrocious "in the sticks", it also peters out in well populated suburban areas.

      Metro PCS looks good on paper, and for only some of the country.

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    4. Anybody who can use a search engine can find Tmo's planned coverage for end of 2015 on HoFo or tmonews: http://www.tmonews.com/2015/02/t-mobiles-lte-coverage-map-will-look-like-this-by-the-end-of-2015/
      Quoting two people who don't have good Tmo coverage doesn't inform anyone about their own Tmo coverage.

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    5. Is there any evidence they are doing anything? I saw the TMO maps for expansion by the end of 2014, and they ended up doing nothing.

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    6. Tmo did not stand still in 2014. Remember that in 2013 they took LTE coverage from 0 to 273 markets / 209M people / 43 of the top 50 markets: quite an accomplishment. Customers responded. Only Verizon added more in 2013. In 2014 their original goal was to reach 250M people with LTE (revised to 260M), and they went even further, to 265M. 2.1M new customers joined Tmo in 2014. If you want to follow coverage improvements for Tmo, it's easy. Just search for "coverage" in Tmonews, or log in and search "T-Mobile coverage" on HoFo. Both sites publish user reports of new coverage and report carrier announcements. Tmonews has a dedicated tab on the home page for 700Mhz coverage rollout.

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    7. Correction: T-Mobile added 8.3M customers in 2014, 2.1M of those came in Q4. They had LTE in 325 markets as of July 31, 2014.

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    8. Update: T-Mobile now reaches 270M people with LTE, matching Sprint. They now cover 60% of the US population with their new 700Mhz Band 12, and 70% of their current customers. This spectrum covers nine of the top 10 market areas and 24 of the top 30 market areas in the U.S. T-Mobile is using it to greatly expand building penetration and rural coverage, adding 1M square miles of geographic coverage this year. http://www.fiercewireless.com/story/t-mobile-hopes-deploy-lte-all-its-700-mhz-block-spectrum-year/2015-03-19

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  7. T-Mobile $60 for 3GB or $70 for 5GB ($70 really?) with rollover.
    Cricket $55 for 10GB or 20GB with AT&T coverage.
    GoSmart $45 for 10GB although without LTE.
    T-Mobile looks like a tough sell, for $60/mo you can use up to 36GB in a 12 month period or up to 60GB for $70/mo. With Cricket or GoSmart you can use the same amount of data or more in a 2 to 6 month period for less money.

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    1. $60 is way too much money for only 3GB on any network, but on T-Mobile its crazy. If you pay that kind of money for a data plan than you probably use more than 3GB or 5GB per month, so data rollover won't do you any good. You can go elsewhere and pay less for more data on a better network. Even AT&T's overpriced GoPhone brand offers 4GB for $60 with far better coverage than T-Mobile. T-Mobile seems to have forgotten how to compete.

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    2. T-mobile is looking for customers who appreciate free, unlimited music steaming that does not come out of the fast data allowance. Free international calling. Free data roaming and texting outside the US. Data Stash with 10GB free, so your unused, fast data will not disappear every month. Personal Hotspot. GoSmart has no voice or data roaming, and targets younger urban customers. Cricket also has the dumb name, relatively slow data, poor CS and unreliable proxy servers.

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    3. None of T-Mobile's plans include free international calling. You have to pay extra for an international add-on if you want free international calling.
      International data roaming is only available on postpaid plans, not on prepaid.

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    4. International World Class service roaming, including data roaming can be added to prepaid plans in MyTmobile; it's pay-per-use. Prepaid Simple Choice plans include free international texting. Postpaid Simple Choice plan international roaming lets you make calls for 20c/minute while overseas.

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  8. T-Mobile average customer LTE data speed: 10Mbps. Data connected 76% of the time. Hotspot OK.
    Cricket average customer LTE data speed: 3 Mbps. Data connected 70% of the time.
    Source: Open Signal latest report.

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    1. Depends on where you are. In many places T-Mobile data, or anything else, connected 0% of the time. In those areas Cricket's 70% looks pretty good.

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    2. According to Open Signal T-Mobile customers have a data connection more of the time than Cricket users. Must be those screwed up Cricket proxy servers. Data is no good if you can't use it.

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    3. The "Depends" person might be referring to how T-Mobile has thrown most of the US to the wolves, coverage-wise. For most of the US, you will connect 0% of the time with T-Mobile, while you will get at least some Cricket coverage in most of the country.

      The "T-Mobile customers have a data connection more of the time than Cricket users." statistic is being used in a misleading fashion... in actual fact, Cricket provides data coverage in twice the area that T-Mobile does. That's a lot of difference in teh "0% covered, no bars" territory.

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    4. There is nothing misleading about OpenSignal reports. Actual users, making actual calls and connections. Cricket customers have the slowest speeds and lowest percentage of data connections. A lot more elightening and accurate than bloggers who can't get their heads unstuck from carrier coverage maps. http://www.fiercewireless.com/story/t-mobile-offers-fastest-average-lte-speeds-opensignal-report-finds/2015-03-12

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    5. Carrier coverage maps... and experience. For what you claim, for TMO to have a better signal than ATT across the US, would require TMO to have towers that simply don't exist.

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    6. I looked closely at that map. Even if the promised 2015 TMO expansion happened and I got coverage in my area, by their own map it is still lousy and spotty outside my vicinity.. areas all covered by VRZ, ATT.

      Open Signal is not misleading, but the Fierce summary of the results are cooked as they leave out the vast territory in the US where Cricket provides some LTE coverage, and TMO had absolutely none. Of course TMO looks good if you exclude areas of zero coverage.



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    7. Re the Opensignal report, apparently you did not read it. The summary stats gathered by the Opensignal app and repeated by Fierce Wireless are for ALL customers who installed the app, wherever they traveled. Including any that ventured to your neck of the woods. So Tmo customers did have a better overall LTE connection experience than Cricket, 76% to 70%. And more than 3X the speed. Looks like the Mystery of the Tmo Coverage Rants is finally solved. You can't get ita Tmo signal in your neck of the woods, so nobody else should choose Tmo. The crusade/jihad will probably continue until you get Tmo coverage. Even tho Tmo is expanding LTE geographic coverage by 160% this year, an extra 1M square miles. All to serve LTE for a mere 35M extra people.

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    8. Actually, it is not "You can't get ita Tmo signal in your neck of the woods, so nobody else should choose Tmo", it is the fact that in most of the US, there is no TMO signal at all. This can't be gotten around no matter how you twist stats. And if there is no signal, its not a good choice for those those in most of the US.

      "The crusade/jihad will probably continue until you get Tmo coverage."

      Not a crusade. Just resisting the T-Mobile misleading sales spiel. There will be no need to resist it if (1). T-Mobile's sales spiel were accurate or (2) they actually cover most of the country some day.

      Whether or not they have it in my neck of the woods suddenly tomorrow. the coverage is so poor compared to the real networks that my travel needs also (personally) render it a poor choice.

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      "Even tho Tmo is expanding LTE geographic coverage by 160% this year"

      I welcome evidence of this. The year is 1/4 over. so their coverage should be a lot large than in 2014 already. If they truly meet this, they will be a real carrier and can drop the "un"

      " All to serve LTE for a mere 35M extra people."

      Now, that is very misleading and false (part of the deceptive "covering Americans" instead of "covering America" excuse to mislead about terrible coverage).

      T-Mobile expanding to become a real carrier serves ALL its customers. Your assumption is that no existing T-Mobile user is interested in using their phone outside their fixed zip code. By covering the country, and putting the Mobile in "T-Mobile", it serves everyone.

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    9. If TMO keeps it's promises, it will cover about half of the country by year's end. Still way behind the other two, but a big improvement, and we'll on the way toward joining the big two as a true national carrier.

      And Sprint falls further behind.

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    10. T-Mobile has not promised to cover half the country by year end. They are saying that they hope to add 1 million square miles of LTE coverage this year. Most of those 1M sq miles already have T-Mobile 2G. This year's expansion will bring LTE to almost all of T-Mobile's currently 2G only markets. In markets where T-Mobile is able to deploy 700 Mhz geographic coverage will increase slightly because of 700 Mhz's greater range.

      It's unrealistic to think that T-Mobile or Sprint will greatly expand their overall coverage footprint anytime soon. They don't have the spectrum licenses to do it.

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    11. Thanks for the "straight dope" on this. What has been presented as an actual T-Mobile expansion turns out to be not an expansion at all (other than the effect from 700 MHZ),. but a mere hardware change in its existing territory.

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    12. Your "mere hardware change" is actually a pretty big deal for T-Mobile users. I have T-Mobile coverage almost everywhere I travel already but a lot of it is 2G. I'm happy that T-Mobile is adding LTE where I can use it rather than expanding into areas I'll probably never visit.

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  9. I'm on a REAL secret T-Mobile Select Choice Plan $45 Unlimited Talk,Text,Data 3GB LTE plan with Music Freedom and all that. I even got 10 gigs of data stash. It's basically the $60 Simple Choice 3GB plan but for $15 less. It's for select grandfathered postpaid customers. Coming from the $30 100 mins 5GB prepaid plan, I had to go through hell to get this plan. However my bill is still over $100/mo because I am financing a Note 4 and iPad Air 2 LTE 64GB.

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    1. Is this the double secret one?

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    2. It's pretty funny seeing the T-Mobile shill saying that T-Mobile has better coverage in that guy's neck of the woods even when T-Mobile has no towers or signal in those "woods". Talk about crusade/jihad.

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    3. That is not what the guy said. The Tmobile stat of 76% data connection is an average for all customers who used the app. Therefore it includes all phone use, including times when Tmobile customers were in areas where there was no data connection. Cricket customers who installed the app encountered a lower percentage of times when they could get a data connection (70% average for all). There must be something besides coverage that prevented Cricket data connections, like their use of proxy servers.

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    4. So there another bias/flaw in Open Signal methodology shows: where it relies on some volunteer users, instead of any scientific survey of signals across a given territory. So of course T-Mobile data would come from T-Mobile users who tend to go just where T-Mobile works well. The same with any network and its users. You won't find T-Mobile subscribers trying their phones much on those vast TMO-free areas to begin with. And for that matter, as (presumably) happy TMO customers, the ones providing TMO data to Open Signal, would tend not to be those who are in 0-signal areas

      Which makes such "Reports" worthless for actually comparing overall signal, as you end up seeing such obvious artifacts/glitches as the network with no coverage in most places somehow coming out ahead on signal strength.

      Two things do appear clear
      1) When someone has good T-Mobile coverage, the signal is a lot better than for those who have good Cricket coverage.
      2) A good, unbiased, survey of signal strength should take into account territory with 0 strength. The Open Signal methodology by design under-reports such data.

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    5. So first some 'Tmo shill' is biased, then Fierce Wireless is biased in their reporting on the Opensignal report, and now Opensignal itself is biased? Boy, it looks more and more like you are the only one who is biased, against Tmo. Regarding your point 2, Opensignal report already does that because their app records areas with no signal. "T-Mobile users who tend to go just where T-Mobile works well." This is silly. T-Mobile users are no different than other cellphone users. They go where they need to go. Even if we believed your rant about Tmo subscribers being happy boosters using the opensignal app, the same should be true of Cricket subscribers. So their problems in only getting a good data signal 70% of the time are an even bigger deal. It remains that Cricket users on average are being denied a LTE signal more of the time than AT&T users. So they can't enjoy their data allowances 30% of the time, and aren't getting the value they thought they paid for. Contributes to the fact that users on AT&T network only used an average of 1.2GB/month last Q2, versus Tmo customers using 2.8GB. Tmo says their customers use an average of 3.5GB/month now.

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    6. Of course the TMO shill is biased, beyond question. Open Signal itself is not "biased" as in intending to mislead. But there are limits to their type of reporting. which the Fierce report ignores.

      "Boy, it looks more and more like you are the only one who is biased, against Tmo. "

      Not in the least. I am simply insisting that areas with no coverage be considered equally and properly in this study alongside areas that do have coverage (instead of getting excluded). Open Signal's methodology has its limits, and prevents this. It's not anything "Bad" or ill intended by Open Signal. The ill intent comes from cooked reports that make unsound conclusions based on incomplete Open Signal information which under reports zero-signal.

      To say that "T-Mobile users who tend to go just where T-Mobile works well." is not silly at all. How can anyone doubt this? It is like this with any carrier.

      "T-Mobile users are no different than other cellphone users. They go where they need to go"

      Exactly. And like with any carrier, if they go to areas with no coverage a lot of the time, they will switch to a carrier that has the coverage.

      Open Signal data is very useful for some things, especially involving comparisons of signals in areas covered by multiple carriers., but the flaws in its collection make it not worth a lot for overall comparisons that involve areas with no coverage.

      " Even if we believed your rant about Tmo subscribers being happy boosters using the opensignal app"

      Not a "rant" Simply being factual. The rest of your paragraph is interesting and valid, as you have gone away from relying on flawed comparisons/conclusions that under-report areas with no coverage.

      Other than the repeated "Tmo customers using 2.8GB" stat, which has nothing to do with anything. In fact, it fits in well with my earlier point about such reports only counting areas where T-Mobile has good coverage while filtering out the majority of the country where it is impossible for a T-Mobile users to use more than 0GB a month.

      These reports are good for comparison coverage in specific markets. but it is foolish and false to use them to report on the US as a whole.

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    7. While it's true that "T-Mobile users are no different than other cellphone users. They go where they need to go." It's unlikely that T-Mobile users spend much time in places where T-Mobile has no service.

      People use what works for them. Anyone who discovers that T-Mobile doesn't work in many of the places they go to, will have switched operators long ago. I doubt that T-Mobile has many customers in places where they have little or no coverage and no T-Mobile stores like most of Montana, Nebraska or the Dakotas.

      Open Signal testers for any network are people who choose to use that network because it works for them. According to Open Signal T-Mobile works better for T-Mobile customers than Cricket does for Cricket customers. That doesn't mean that all Cricket customers would get better coverage by switching to T-Mobile.

      Arguing about which network is "best" is pointless. There is no one best network for everyone. Use what works best for you.

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  10. This will show more objective information than an interpretation of Open Signal reports twisted to exclude areas of zero coverage:

    T-Mobile finished 3rd or worse in each region according to J.D. Power’s network quality rankings

    From two weeks ago. Bad news for T-Mobile. Really bad news for Sprint.

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    1. The JD Powers report does not break out Cricket, so it cannot explain why Cricket data service was so poor in the OpenSignal report. Everybody know that the T-Mobile and Sprint networks are much smaller than the other two, so it is no surprise that they perform worse when JD measures network service across a whole region. T-Mobile performed much better in the 6/14 PC Magazine test of fastest and most reliable networks. Their scores went way up in the 30 cities tested, and they won quite a few cities outright. Tmo has deployed more spectrum per customer than any other network. Maybe that is why T-Mobile customers use much more data on average each month than any other network's customers. Average 2.8GB, compared to 2GB on Verizon, 1.5GB on Sprint and only 1.2GB on AT&T (NPD Group, Q2, 2014).

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  11. The new Tmo business+family plan is impressive. $40 total gets you two lines of Simple Choice with unlimited TnT and 1GB/month for each line. Additional lines or 3GB/month costs $10/line. Your second-X lines can be personal lines. Saves you $40/month compared to regular Simple Choice.
    http://www.tmonews.com/2015/03/family-plan-savings-for-t-mobile-business-customers-explained/

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