What you need to know
- T-Mobile is expanding its 5G operations to seven new markets.
- These are located in North and South Carolina, Maryland, Louisiana, and Pennsylvania.
- The carrier claims that its 5G network should be about 20% faster than existing LTE infrastructure.
Laying claim to the coveted distinction of being the first network with a nationwide 5G rollout in the U.S., T-Mobile is continuing to invest in the new communications standard that is poised to revolutionise networking. While T-Mobile's network already covers the largest area of any carrier, there are still gaps in its coverage, and the company is hard at work on plugging them.
As TmoNews reports, the carrier has expanded 5G access to seven new markets, primarily in the U.S. South and around the East Coast. The list of markets includeS:
- Folly Beach, SC
- Lonaconing, MD
- Old Fort, NC
- Reynoldsville, PA
- Mercersburg, PA
- Perryopolis, PA
- Tallulah, LA
The network is built on the 600MHz low-band spectrum, however, which is best suited for covering the most ground, but does not offer the same speeds as the wide-band offerings of competitors like Verizon. As a result, despite the revolutionary potential of 5G technology, T-Mobile lays claim to only a 20% increase in download speeds compared to its existing LTE infrastructure.
Focusing on the low-band spectrum, though, has not only enabled T-Mobile to expand coverage across America, instead of initial launches in just a few cities, but it's also allowing the company to offer the new technology to customers at no extra cost.
Unfortunately, not too many phones actually support the new networking standard at the moment. On T-Mobile's network, you're restricted to just five options if you want to take advantage of that 5G infrastructure: the OnePlus 7T Pro 5G McLaren, Samsung Galaxy Note 10+ 5G, Galaxy S20 5G, Galaxy S20+ 5G, and Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G.
I have a Note 9. It supports the 600mhz spectrum, but not 5G. Does it fall back to 600mhz LTE or was this just a useless band for pre-5G phones?
It isn't useless, your phone can and will fall back to 600mhz LTE. The issue is that there is a lot more non-600mhz bandwidth available especially considering that 600mhz is shared between two bands. The network tends to steer a user away from 600mhz as they leave that to help with fringe areas and steer users to higher capacity bands even if the signal is not as great. Because of aggregation of bands you may even connect to 600mhz as well as the other bands to further increase your speed. Said another way, band 71 (600mhz) is not their workhorse band for most users. That's at least my understanding of this band and it's use. Now that they are getting more spectrum, your phone may connect to 600mhz more often as Tmobile increases its capacity and ability to provide a good experience.
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