BGR has just independently confirmed what we already knew, that the GSM version of the Motorola DROID, the Motorola Milestone, will be available on Telus in Canada. BGR points to the vague timeframe of "early 2010" but that day can't come soon enough. The Motorola Milestone packs multitouch out of the bag but may not have Google Maps Navigation. A tough tradeoff.

But why is this big news? Well, since AT&T is currently ignoring Android, AT&T users have to take the issue into their own hands--either switch networks or buy unlocked Android phones to use on AT&T. Unlocked T-Mobile Android phones don't make sense for AT&T users since AT&T and T-Mobile use different 3G bands which means T-Mobile Android devices won't have AT&T 3G. Unlocked Telus/Rogers Android phones do make sense considering Telus and Rogers use the same 3G bands as AT&T, which means, yes, everything works as advertised.

Though the Milestone will surely cost you a boatload (probably more than simply paying AT&T the ETF and switching to Verizon for the DROID) some users in unique situations may be able to justify the cost: benefits of a GSM network, better service with AT&T, good rate plan, etc.

Are any AT&T users thinking about doing this? We have AT&T on one of our lines here at Android Central and we're most definitely considering this option. Hurry up and get the Milestone out Telus!

 
There are 61 comments

Breezy says:

"better service with AT&T"

are you kidding me. a joke right?

Bill says:

I sure hope he is. AT&T is a joke. I currently have an iPhone (which I love) but am switching back to Verizon for the Droid now that VZW has a phone in the iPhone realm...and I love Google so Android is the perfect fit!

Anonymous says:

AT&T's service has never been bad for me. iPhone users complain the most, and I think for two reasons:
1) too much data usage. AT&T has the highest data usage network in the world, and it is because of the iPhone users
2) The iPhone is inferior.

Rich says:

In some areas yes. Everyone seems to forget that the service of each carrier varies from area to area and while Verizon's is better overall it's not the best everywhere.

Anonymous says:

Yeah AT&T has better service then Verizon if you live here in the sticks of Kansas. In Atchison you will be lucky to [pick up a signal from Verizon while AT&T has full bars. So take the good with the bad. Ive had AT&T for years and havent found to many places my phones lose signal and ive traveled from Florida to New Mexico to South Dakota.

Terry says:

I might do this, but it would be cheaper for me to just switch to VZW and buy the droid. The VZW version has multi-touch correct? I saw a video where a guy was doing that.

I would want the navigation as well.

Anonymous says:

The VZW version and Android 2.0 both support multitouch. Unfortunately, the Google apps on the VZW version (including the browser and maps) have had multitouch disabled- specifically the "pinch to zoom" gesture.

The Milestone does support pinch to zoom as seen in some recent videos.

Anonymous says:

Verizon is the better network.
That is obvious.
What the USA Droid lacks ( for now at least) is multitouch capability.
As for Telus phones being "unlocked" , good luck with that!
I can not see that happening.

Anonymous says:

>What the USA Droid lacks ( for now at least) is multitouch capability.

You can install Dolphin browser and have multitouch web browsing.

I am very heavily considering buying an unlocked one.

As an AT&T employee though, i still have to carry a phone we offer. I've always loved motorola HARDWARE (the razr v9m was my favorite flip phone, but the software was AWEFUL! and ruined the phone)

So I basicly would be forced to carry 2 phones, one as a personal and one as work phone. this upsets me. an extra 10 bucks a month.

The best solution would be for AT&T to get the apple's iPhone out of their mouth, fix the broken network, and start looking forward instead of relying on a device that is now (for the most part) unchanged in 2 years.

Terry says:

I just read that VZW should be getting the HTC Passion soon. Might just wait for that.

Jef says:

Well I am on AT and where I am the coverage is just fine. Its beter than sprint and the only reason that the big red check ix here is bc they bought out Alltel. I am not that impressed with VZN and TMo is just starting up in the area. I am on a family plan and quite happy with AT and have no interest in switching to a cdma network. So an unlocked droid/milestone with android 2.0 is a possibility to consider down the road. Hooray for the big blue deathstar.

simp_10 says:

Yes, where you are AT&T may have good coverage....but don't move two feet to your left or right...you will likely drop the call!!!

Anonymous says:

Never had trouble with an AT&T network.

Anonymous says:

Tigerdirect.com is supposedly carying "unlocked" gsm milestone droids.

Anonymous says:

I have AT&T and most my friends have Verizon they are ALWAYS dropping calls, I don't think I have every seen a company with so many dropped calls. I have had all carriers that are available in my area expect Verizon and am most happy with AT&T. All others have crappy service areas or dropped calls. I will admit Verizon has better coverage if that's what you want to call it, but if I can't say more than 2 words before the call is dropped whats the point!!!

Anonymous says:

I have AT&T and most my friends have Verizon they are ALWAYS dropping calls, I don't think I have every seen a company with so many dropped calls. I have had all carriers that are available in my area expect Verizon and am most happy with AT&T. All others have crappy service areas or dropped calls. I will admit Verizon has better coverage if that's what you want to call it, but if I can't say more than 2 words before the call is dropped whats the point!!!

Anonymous says:

I have AT&T and most my friends have Verizon they are ALWAYS dropping calls, I don't think I have every seen a company with so many dropped calls. I have had all carriers that are available in my area expect Verizon and am most happy with AT&T. All others have crappy service areas or dropped calls. I will admit Verizon has better coverage if that's what you want to call it, but if I can't say more than 2 words before the call is dropped whats the point!!!

Anonymous says:

AT&T is never getting a Droid device that's why I said F em.

Anonymous says:

They will when baby Apple grows off the tit and gets a new carrier or all carriers in 2010 :D

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.

Janus says:

AT&T has spectacular coverage in my area. Given that it was cobbled together from so many regional networks, it only makes sense that some areas would suck and others would be good. In Philadephia, AT&T (once upon a time Comcast Metrophone and CellularONE) is quite good indeed! <3

Anarchus says:

Agree completely with Janus. At&t coverage in the Philadelphia and suburban area is better than Verizon - and also the call quality is better GSM vs CDMA - I know, my wife has Verizon and I've been back and forth between Verizon and Cingular (now AT&T of course) several times in the past 8 years and have AT&T currently and it's just better.

I'm eager to ditch my blackberry and get an Android phone.

Anonymous says:

I've had an unlocked G1 from Rogers for a few months now and it works great. Where I am I have good 3G coverage. So with Android on ATT I'm a happy camper.
That said, the iphone for the most part is still a more mature phone. For Android being so "open", there are a lot of locked features varying on model/carrier. People want Android because they are tired of being controlled by providers and want to control their own experience. The carriers need to start thinking as a bandwidth provider only and leave each user to his own "experience".

James says:

There's nothing locked about Android.

Anonymous says:

> nothing locked about Android?

Try getting root access on the VZW Droid.

Yogi says:

I would love to have an Android phone on the AT&T network. I share a family plan with my wife who has an iPhone, so switching to Verizon is not an option.

Anonymous says:

i didnt learn shit from this blog. But what i can tell you. Verizon hands down service is way better. There phones are gettin a bit better. but droid still cant compete with the Iphone. T-mobile has the best plans... and they do have the G1 n touch, cliq, etc. but the only reason why ATnT is surviving is because of the Iphone... not cause of there service. And in order to keep customers they decided to lock the iphone into gettin a contract with them. Greedy cunts.

Anonymous says:

What a Joke, Obviously not a phone junkie

zo says:

I am with att but am planning to switch to tmobile when the HTC HD2 to comes out in Q1 2010. This phone has one of the fastest processors,3g, multitouch, and 5 megapixel cam with led flash. check out the phone on youtube. It should blow away Droid and maybe even the iphone.

JungleRanger says:

I'm the kind of guy who wants every possible feature, even if it's not skinny. I want a tricked out Android PDA/phone/camera/radio/gps/pica/etc that works on any network without a contract. (I travel a lot.) And I want it to do as much as possible so I can leave my laptop behind as often as possible. I can't stand apple; they think inside such a small box! Google finally gave carriers the finger and put out an open source OS. THANK YOU GOOGLE!!! Now we just need a manufacturer to do the same thing with a device that doesn't suck up to any one carrier. The first one will force all carriers & manufacturers to give up control and start offering useful products that can stand on their own merits. Imagine what that would be like.

Anonymous says:

Having recently tested the Droid on Verizon, I can say that the coverage of voice and 3G with my AT&T iPhone is MUCH better in the Miami area. The Droid went back to Best buy in less than a week !

Not sure why so much AT&T bashing, as for me Verizon is worse.

Also, the Droid could not connect to my work network (WPA enterprise), feature not available.

I will wait for the Telus version to see if I can use it on my AT&T service. Perhaps it will have a more mature Android 2.0 (or at least less locks).

Anonymous says:

You guys saying ATT has terrible coverage must not ever travel.

Problem with Verizon and so on is that they will not work overseas. Has to be a GSM phone. I do not like ATT that much but it works as well in Tokyo as it does in Berlin, Moscow and home, which is Phoenix.

Until Verizon gets it head out of you know where and offers real worldwide coverage its going to be limiting. America needs to end anything but GSM coverage and join the rest of the world.

Aelther says:

LTE is supposed to come out in 2010. Service in PHX must be nice, I live in Chandler and didn't get bars in my house when I was with AT&T

BB_Storm4me says:

Perhaps you should try a Verizon "World Phone" like the Storm2 or the Tour (GSM/CDMA combo). You also can "unlock" these phones for a couple of bucks and use another carriers SIM.

But, if AT&T works for you...keep it. I want people to stay with AT&T, it keeps Verizon from raising their prices. All these wireless companies would dig deeper into your wallet if they could. Do you know why much of the rest of the world pays less for wireless and has faster broadband? More companies chasing your wallet. We don't have enough competition. I hope LTE helps level the playing field so more little companies can compete with the big boys.

Garrett says:

So if I where to buy a unlocked Motorole Milestone would it work with tmobile? I have tmobile and I love tmobile and I will not switch over to Verizon or AT&T but I really do love tis phone to death. Please let me know if I where to get a unlocked one would it work for Tmobile

Anonymous says:

Everyone is either missing, or unaware of one very important thing: Verizon is using the oldest and most technically inept technology (CDMA) on it's networks. They do have good coverage, but, when it comes to delivering data (anything but audio) CMDA falls short. AT&T and T-Mobile use GSM and, in fact, AT&T has been in the process of upgrading it's GSM network to UMTS which is a very high-speed and very reliable network. GSM (and not Verizon's CDMA) is the most recognized, preferred, and used technology in the world. It is for that reason that a Verizon will not work anywhere other than where there is a Verizon/CDMA cell site. Verizon has the US well covered, but, they are here (in the US) on their own, and by their own. They can't roam on to other GSM networks. If a Verizon customer wants to travel outside of the US, they must obtain a special phone which has GSM capabilities - which, ironically, will give it the capability to roam onto an AT&T network. If you like to access the internet, send text, pictures, and other data, CDMA is at the bottom of the list. This is not an opinion, but rather is a fact.

Anonymous says:

right on, I live in Camden County in South Jersey and have experienced NO problems with my cell service at all, no dropped calls, always in 3G with full/ almost full bars. I go out to see my sister in Lancaster all the time without loosing any bars. And most importantly (to me at least) I was in Aruba last summer for a wedding, had full bars (albeit roaming like an MFer). And working in the telecommunications/cable industry, I have to say that I agree with a few of these guys when it comes to letting the service providers be service providers/ letting the phone makers be the phone makers. I don't know how many times I've had to explain this to people who I am around every day that the features that they are able to access all depend on their equipment, if you have an HD set with an HD box, you can see HD in HD. standard def without an HD box means NO HD. cell phones are the same.

Anonymous says:

No, you can't roam on AT&T on a Verizon World phone, the GSM only works outside of North America. That said, while GSM is the world standard, Verizon has much better 3G coverage in most of the US. For most people, that is a lot more important than being able to use their phone abroad.

I'd rather have five times the 3G coverage in the U.S., and keep a cheapo unlocked phone to use abroad, where I use a local SIM anyway. Local SIMs cost a tiny fraction of roaming charges, and incoming calls are free in most of Europe.

ok.

Anonymous says:

I have a Moto Q on AT&T, and pretty much stay pegged on 4 bars between Philly and DC. There are only 2 spots on I-95 where I drop breifly. I had (2) different Droids and had spotty reception (0 bars, 3G->1x switching while not moving, common issue on DROID forum) in my hometown, and house, which is 2mi from VZ store, in relatively flat area. At mom's for Thanksgiving, less than 2mi from VZ store, fully charged battery dropped to 20% fighting for signal and at least 1 bar. Others report that different phones on VZ, in same area as DROID, did not suffer from signal loss. Still having Moto Q, in all areas were VZ dropped, Q had full, or 3 bars.

I made a makeshift antenna (foot long twist tie into antenna port under battery cover) and it improved the Droid's signal strength from -80dBm to -88dBm to a stable -62dBm and 3-4bars (4 being full). Droid was capable of 700kb - 2.5Mb in the area, when it was connected, where Q can only manage 700-900k, though more consistently.

That said, I'd rather have a GSM Droid on a 3G network (I really think its a device/antenna/radio issue more so than network) be it AT&T or T-Mo, and have a more consistent signal than the bump in speed. Though a Droid on the upcoming 21Mb T-Mo network would be nice, given its speed/fluidity on VZ, even @ 700kb.

Anonymous says:

edit from above - Plus, you could add the Telus version Droid onto AT&T for $15/mo for data (MediaNet Plan). Euro version on T-Mo for $10/mo (web2go plan)...hard to turn that down.

Anonymous says:

The Euro Motorola Milestone will not provide 3g on T-Mobile US, afaik.

nico says:

Really? I thought that all smartphones (blackberry, HTC, etc.) require a $30/mo data plan. I'm currently using LG Xenon with the $15 internet plan. I want to upgrade to a smartphone without having to pay the full $30 data plan. So you say an unlocked smartphone such as the Motorola Milestone will allow me to use the $15 plan?

Anonymous says:

Where or when can you buy this???? I want a Droid so bad but I have AT&T so can not get it :(

Anonymous says:

c.mon motorola sale the droid unlocked i want to be pick my own network services............i would like to take the phone on the road i'm a musician in i travel all around the glove..ben

david says:

hi i saw that my mobile phone was suddenly locked i found the perfect solution for unlocking it by logging onto www.mobileunlockguide.com

Joe says:

Okay. I had a iPhone 3g before the droid came out. I decided that i wanted the droid to try something new and have something different than everyone else. At first it was nice, the resolution is noticeably better at first sight. After a few days i realized that i had made a mistake. This Droid is not anywhere close to an iphone right now. I can't name one thing i like with the droid that iphone doesnt have. I have since been looking to sell my motorola droid and i purchased a new iphone 3gs. I have been a happier man ever since. If you have a mac thats even more reason to keep your iphone. If you have an iphone keep it. If you are thinking about getting a DROID....DONT. If anything ask some people like me who have had both and they will tell you what is up. Once again even if you dont like to admit it the iphone is the best thing going right now....

TK says:

I'm waiting for it to be available to be used on ATT. I just don't want to deal with Verizon, heard too many bad things about them.

Kona says:

There is a Chinese website selling what looks like the Euro version of the Moto Droid the GSM Moto Milestone for $218. Unfortunately I have read that these guys are scammers and will take your money and not ship anything in return. Is there a legit seller for the Moto Milestone that runs sim cards compatible with T-Mobile Quad Band 2G GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 and 3G HSDPA 900 / 2100??? T-mobile works well for me in Southern California and they roll out 3G HSDPA 2100 this summer. T-mobile already offers unlimited talk text and web for family plan 2 phones at $139/month no contract. Verizon and ATT can't match that!

Can I get an affordable GSM Droid phone that will work on the t-mobile or verizon network as well as foreign carriers?

Kona says:

Verizon is CDMA and is not compatible with GSM or sny Intl. sim card phone

Kona says:

T-mobile is compatible with international quad band GSM phones but the phone in question may need to be unlocked and could loose some of it's original function... it all depends on the phone/original carrier.

Juice says:

The droid will please those who have never owned a smartphone or have a blackberry and it's hard for an iPhone user like myself to change. I know most iPhone users won't change their phones for the droid even though it has a 5mp camera and other cool stuff. I'm not too familiar with the droid but an unlocked iPhone does wonders. I live I Texas and as far as At&t, it all depends on where you live and the capability of using data while talking is a great benefit. I do hate the dropped calls from AT&T but it's usually within the first minute of conversation. Verizon's prices are too expensive and even if they offer an iPhone it better have the voice and data dual capability with gsm as I do travel abroad to Europe and Australia to attend live Formula 1, MotoGP, and World Superbike races. I read that a new iPhone is already made but apple is just waiting how the current competition plays out.

Anonymous says:

Here's a "unique situation" that they refer to: I have to have AT&T for work and the iPhone isn't supported by my company. The only company supplied choices are Windows Mobile, which I can't wait to throw out the window (heh, heh). Actually, I'm kinda hoping the Nexus One will be affordable enough for me to bring on to my AT&T account...

jfa1 says:

the european GSM Milestone is not compatible with US 3G frequencies so on tmo or ATT would only be edge speeds.

Anonymous says:

Will the Motorola Milestone from Telus or ebay unlocked for GSM work with TMobile 3G? I have a G1 on TMo love love love my phone for the 5 row keyboard and trackball (main reasons I havent parted with it) but I want the Motorola Devour unlocked for GSM. I don't want the Droid. TMobile has the BEST plans and Im in DC and get EXCELLENT service everywhere!

nomoretmob says:

Hi I wanted to say, this is the BEST MOTO EVER!
I have unlocked it yesterday at http://www.worldunlocknet.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=24&... for $15 and it only took 18 minnutes!

I now use it on rogers, full 3g and amazing surfing capabilities!
I love it.

thanks

Music Ian says:

I wanna know about the question the person two above me asked: Will a Telus Milestone/unlocked Milestone from Ebay (or whatever) work with T-Mobile 3G?

shaunehunter says:

Seems like no one pointed out the most important issue with this story, Telus is CDMA. Rogers/Fido are a Canadian subsidiary of AT&T and currently the only GSM carriers in the country.

Guess you don't have many Canadian readers.

Kathy4589 says:

I actually unlocked my tmobile android phone very easily to be used on AT&T. It took only 10 minutes to unlock my phone. I got the unlock code very cheap from www.usedphoneforsale.com. They sent me my unlock code very quickly and I unlocked my phone within a couple minutes. They provide a solution which permanently unlocked my phone. Hope I helped you guys. Cheers!