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Old 07-08-2005, 03:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Cingular vs T-Mobile

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I am trying to decide which service provider to activate BB service with. I am based in the South East US but will travel both domestically and international quite frequently. I am looking at the quadband Blackberry, which narrows my choice of service providers to T-mobile and Cingular. Can anyone provide an honest opinion as to which of the two provides better coverage? Or are they practically the same? Is one better domestic, one international? What if anything is the difference? Thanks!!
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Old 07-08-2005, 05:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Without any voice service attached; TMO is $39.98 /mth for BB w/BES option, Cingular is $49.99 /mth.

Domestic coverage: I think both are about the same if you do a national average. Keep in mind that you need GPRS coverage for email and GPRS (voice and data) coverage is not necessarily the same as GSM (voice only) coverage.

Roaming: Being TMO still belongs to Deutsche Telekom, I tend to believe they have more roaming agreements in Europe. I know some users that travel extensively in Eastern and Western Europe and never have any problem roaming with TMobile. Don't know about Asia Pacific and the southern hemisphere. Roaming rate is worth a whole other discussion thread.
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Old 07-08-2005, 05:56 PM   #3 (permalink)
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thanks aau007. i did know about the price differentials...i am more concerned with general coverage...i know this too varies, so its difficult to know which to choose. i had t-movile voice service long time ago and loved it. but i also had cingular BB service from my company for several years...loved it! looks like t-mobile might have an edge internationally...we'll see. thanks!
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Old 07-08-2005, 09:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Check out these two pages, Tmobile also states they have roaming service on some cruise ships.

http://www.t-mobile.com/international/roamOverview.asp

http://www.cingular.com/customer_service/roaming_we
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Old 07-09-2005, 09:07 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I'm a TMobile user and I don't really have the covereage issues that people complain about. What I hate most about Cingular is their poor support. I had posted a while back that I wouldn't have to deal with Cingular support if they had just set up stuff correctly in the first place, what can you say. It's all luck.
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Old 07-09-2005, 09:42 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks! rsun, you are correct in that "where you stand, depends on where you sit" regarding coverage...There are folks who probably swear by either carrier and those who despise each...

I was mainly hoping to ascertain whether one carrier was overwhelmingly better than the other in terms of "coverage"...sounds like they may be approximately equal...but service may be a differentiator.

I had a BB for several years as part of my job...way before they came to the mass market...through the old BS Mobility and never had an issue...this is why I automatically thought of giving Cingular a shot...
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Old 07-09-2005, 08:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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RSun is right, it really depends on where you're located, but customer service? I'd definitely go for T-Mobile. It's a whole lot better than Cingular. What does 4 JD Power awards for Customer Service are for?
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Old 07-09-2005, 09:48 PM   #8 (permalink)
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T-Mobile will be the best choice for the US coverage and International roaming. The are very strong in the European market. I am with Cingular… and they stink…specially the Customer Service and Technical Support. The only reason I have the service with them is because the company that I work pays 100% for the service with Cingular.

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Old 07-10-2005, 09:26 AM   #9 (permalink)
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T-Mobile's focus on coverage is strategic and precise. They do not cover huge areas in the middle of no where. Rather, they cover cities and highways, and that they do quite well. I'm in South Florida and am yet to experience any coverage issues at all. My partner travels domestically and internationally and it works fine for him as well. It really depends on where you travel. If you're in cities, then you won't have any issues with T-Mobile. If you're out "in the woods", Cingular may show on a coverage map that they cover that. Keep in mind that their coverage maps are highly overly optimistic. Cingular is currently going through the massive AT&T Wireless migration (and it will take years to complete), so unless you absolutely have to be "in the woods", I'd stick with T-Mobile. Cingular just has way too much on their hands right now. Their quality of coverage is significantly comprimised. I know several people that migrated from AT&T to Cingular as they were promised significantly better coverage. Much to their surprise, they are receiving significantly worse coverage and horrific customer service. Their customer service ranking is dead last these day, gathering more complaints to the FCC than anyone else.

By going with T-mobile, you'll actually save a few dollars per month as well.

Best of luck.
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Old 07-10-2005, 10:35 AM   #10 (permalink)
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From what I read, what scares me about Cingular is complex plan selection. I like being able to ask TMO for the BB service and be confident I have all I need for my BB to fully function. With Cingular, you have to know all the options to ask for or you'll have crippled/limited service. Doesn't sound like all the CS reps know what you need either.
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Old 07-10-2005, 01:16 PM   #11 (permalink)
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if you live in usa and have to travel internationally subscribe to cingular and have the quadband bb. most of the tmobile usa market is gsm only. also w/ the quad band gsm/gprs bb you will be able to get ANY gsm/gprs signal that is there. tmobile is a european company. the usa arm of deutch telecom I think. your quadband cingular will work in europe. you will have some issues in japan where they have moved to umts already.
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Old 07-10-2005, 01:53 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jfh4k0
... most of the tmobile usa market is gsm only. ...
Is this a fact or just an assumption?
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Old 07-10-2005, 02:00 PM   #13 (permalink)
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it is my experience. we have bb users all over the country the tmobile data network is somewhat smaller than the tmobile voice or gsm network.

one thing is true about tmobile: they usually have more affordable service plans so if yoyu can get a good tmobile plan that allows you to roam, then that is not an issue.
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Old 07-10-2005, 02:20 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I disagree. I travel all over the USA weekly and if I have vioce, I get my data. I am sure cingular has wider coverage in outlying areas but I'm ususally flying over them to civilization.
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Old 07-10-2005, 02:25 PM   #15 (permalink)
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10-4. i hear you.
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Old 07-10-2005, 05:05 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Thanks to all. To summarize these messages, I'd say:

1- in terms of coverage in most cities domestically/abroad, the two carriers are pretty much equal...t-mobile might edge out cingular internationally given it is part of telekom
2- cingular likely offers more comprehensive coverage than T-Mobile domestically...in terms of rural areas and "wilderness" (this sounds logical given cingular's roots in SBC and BellSouth)
3- t-mobile appears has better customer service than cingular...or it may be that cingular's customer service is extremely poor...
4- given cingular's preoccupation with integrating with AT&T, we might assume - for the short-term - customer service is not likely to improve...
5- t-mobile appears to offer more competitive pricing...

Considering all, I plan to purchase a quad band BB from T-Mobile...but in the end, the decision has been fairly close...

Thanks again and I hope this posting helps others make a decision!
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Old 07-10-2005, 06:18 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Well, all I can say is that I believe all cell phone carrier's customer service is terrible, I just spent 6 hours being transferred, hung up on, to tier II, Tier III, then to RIM to resolve a problem that they are now telling me I need to mail my phone back in on my dime and then I can order another phone through them and of course, pay postage yet again! TMOBILE sucks just as bad as anyone else, their coverage is good and the only reason to stay with them, price.
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Old 07-10-2005, 07:25 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hmrobert
Well, all I can say is that I believe all cell phone carrier's customer service is terrible, I just spent 6 hours being transferred, hung up on, to tier II, Tier III, then to RIM to resolve a problem that they are now telling me I need to mail my phone back in on my dime and then I can order another phone through them and of course, pay postage yet again! TMOBILE sucks just as bad as anyone else, their coverage is good and the only reason to stay with them, price.
What is wrong with the phone? Who caused the problem? Did you request express shipping?

When my first phone didn't work TMO sent me a new one that had a return shipping slip in the box. They even 2nd day it to me and I didn't pay a dime.
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