T-Mobile takes aim at Verizon, plans to upgrade its 2G network to 4G LTE

by: Robert TriggsMarch 13, 2014

T-Mobile Globe International

T-Mobile has announced its plans to add 4G LTE to its slower 2G network, bringing additional coverage and speed to its existing network. As part of this operation, the company intends to use the wireless spectrum that it is acquiring from Verizon, which is costing T-Moblie $2.37 billion. The race for the fastest network in town is certainly heating up, just last week AT&T started gearing up its own LTE-Advanced network in several cities.

As mentioned, the plan is for T-Mobile to overlay a new LTE network over its slower 2G “Edge” capabilities, which should help to boost speeds for some of the company’s customers.  T-Mobile already claims to have the fastest network available. Don’t fret if you’re using an older handset, the trusty 2G network will be sticking around as well.

Despite all the talk of speeds, the company is mainly looking to address its lack of coverage with this upgrade. It aims to do this with the 700 megahertz spectrum that it will aquire from Verizon. This lower bandwidth spectrum is particularly valuable to T-Mobile as it will enable the company to spread the signal over greater distances, which will help increase the carrier’s overall coverage.

As a little side note to this news, T-Mobile also says that it will be taking legal action against Verizon over its use of a network coverage map in its advertising campaigns.

“Verizon’s ink blots massively understate our coverage and don’t begin to represent the actual customer experience on T-Mobile’s network,” T-Mobile CEO, John Legere

T-Mobile’s complaint is that Verizon is “cherry-picking” LTE as an example of Verizon’s superior coverage, which doesn’t take into account the broader coverage provided by T-Mobile’s own 4G HSPA+ network.

Back to the more important issue, T-Mobile’s upgrade aims to cover 230 million people across the US by the middle of the year, and 250 million come the end of 2014, which is great news.

  • Dare I hope for T-Mobile LTE coverage in Burlington, VT?!?


  • wezi427

    I live in Philadelphia and the best network is Verizon in that area, but I hate Verizon. I want to leave them soooooooo bad and go to T-Mobile, but their coverage is holding me back. This is good news.


      Philadelphia has pretty good coverage now. You may want to give it a try now.

      • wezi427

        What about outside the city?

        • TMOTECH

          Depends on how far outside the city you are talking. I will be the first to admit that rural farmland is best handled by Verizon but TMO can hang with ATT in the suburbs all day.

          • wezi427

            I base my views of T-Mobile from people that I work with. I get great reception inside of a building, but they have to walk outside to the parking lot to get a signal. I can’t just settle, I want something that is dependable.

    • Victor Who

      I completely agree.

      I wish John Legere would stop lying though and just upgrade their network.

      • gamerscul9870

        You need to wake up, did john lie about the plans and speed?

  • This is promising news. If this ends up improving their coverage/signal for the outer parts of Houston, we just might switch from Verizon!

  • KB

    So the whole part about T-Mobile re-farming some 2G spectrum to deploy LTE was lost. 700MHz wont start until 2015, while LTE expansion into 2G will be on progress before the first half of the year.


      Yea the LTE will be in the AWS bands and the 700 MHZ band. They did miss that point in the article.

  • EvenInTheDarkestHour

    Tmo’s lack of movement from 2g in our area is why we moved to Sprint. A smartphone on 2g is a chore at best. Their call quality and coverage was great though. If they upgrade, I’d definitely consider going back.