Fast, faster, fastest... eventually.

Qualcomm’s New LTE Gigabit Modem Will Make Phones Very Fast… If It Ever Gets A Network To Connect To

You may not know much about Qualcomm, but odds are fairly good that you come into contact with their tech daily. Their tech powers the majority of Android phone brands, including Samsung, LG, Nokia, Motorola, and HTC handsets. They also have a reach into most connected devices markets, including “smart” home appliances, cars, wearable tech, and health care. Today, they’ve dropped an announcement that they hope will change mobile data forever… but there’s a catch. [More]

Wireless Companies Have A Plan To Make Your Mobile Data Faster And Better… But It Might Break WiFi

Wireless Companies Have A Plan To Make Your Mobile Data Faster And Better… But It Might Break WiFi

Over the last couple of years we’ve all finally gotten used to 4G LTE being the mobile standard our phones use… so of course, the next network tech is already in development. The wireless companies’ plans for expanding LTE networks sound simple: piggyback off spectrum that’s sitting right there, available for anyone to use, so the metaphorical pipes can be bigger. Except that could cause big problems for basically all the wireless tech we already use. [More]

(Steve)

AT&T Rollover Data A Good Idea In Theory, Useless For Some Real Users

Tom is an AT&T customer, and currently has a data plan that includes rollover data. Normally, he and the other person on his plan are very precise: he says that they normally use 2.8 GB of their shared 3 GB plan. Recently, their normal practices didn’t work, and they had to dip into the rollover data. That’s when they learned that rollover data is only useful if your data use fluctuates wildly from month to month. [More]

Report: AT&T Wireless Program To Let Subscribers Get Free Data From Advertisers

Report: AT&T Wireless Program To Let Subscribers Get Free Data From Advertisers

Data is a precious resource for mobile consumers and the wireless companies that serve them. The two are always in a trade-off: data caps, overage pricing, unlimited plans, zero-rating… there are loads of different iterations (and shenanigans) in that sphere. And now, reports indicate AT&T might be trying out a new one. [More]

Sprint CEO: Unlimited Data Works For Now But “Is Not Forever”

Sprint CEO: Unlimited Data Works For Now But “Is Not Forever”

The era of unlimited mobile data has been in rapid decline over the past few years. It turns out that consumers really like using mobile broadband and that wireless companies really like making money, and when the two go hand in hand the whole “unlimited” thing doesn’t really work out in business’s favor as much as “charge for data” does. Sprint has been trying to attract new customers by fighting against that tide, but even the top exec of the company now says that’s ultimately likely to be a losing battle. [More]

Verizon: You Should Love Your Mobile Data Cap Because It’s Good For You

Verizon: You Should Love Your Mobile Data Cap Because It’s Good For You

Nobody likes data caps. They’re an aspect of the mobile era that we all grudgingly accept, but everyone basically hates them. Enter Verizon Wireless! The mobile behemoth has hired an analyst to rescue us — but not, alas, by removing data caps. No, no: Verizon’s analyst is here to tell us why we should actually love them. [More]

T-Mobile's dynamic coverage map for the greater Washington, DC area.

T-Mobile Decides To Base New Coverage Map On Real Data From Real Phones

T-Mobile has been trying, for the past few years, to break away from the dominant competition in the mobile space by doing anything they can think of differently. And now, that extends to information for potential customers, too: their coverage map. [More]

AT&T To Free Up More Data For Mobile Subscribers, At Cost Of Net Neutrality

AT&T To Free Up More Data For Mobile Subscribers, At Cost Of Net Neutrality

Most of us are used to mobile companies clinging tightly to every precious bit and byte of data like a dragon hoards gold. Unlimited data plans were everywhere for a while, then went away, and then kinda sorta came back but not really. This week, AT&T has announced two big changes that will work to free up “bonus” data for their subscribers. One is harmless and maybe even good, but the other could have big, negative repercussions for mobile internet use. [More]

All Four National Wireless Companies Accused Of Breaking FCC Rules By Hiding Information About Data Throttling

All Four National Wireless Companies Accused Of Breaking FCC Rules By Hiding Information About Data Throttling

Just over two weeks ago, the FCC not-so-gently reminded all four big wireless carriers that although true “net neutrality” might not apply to them, there are still rules about transparency and disclosures that they have to follow. At the time, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler said that companies had no excuse to think the FCC wasn’t watching them — and the FCC isn’t the only group putting wireless companies on notice over their lack of transparency. [More]

Like To Multitask On Your Smartphone? Sprint’s Spark Service Isn’t For You

Like To Multitask On Your Smartphone? Sprint’s Spark Service Isn’t For You

Sprint calls its new Spark service, which they started implementing last year, a “super-high-speed capability” network. It’s faster than the 4G LTE network that they’re still expanding nationwide, but is a Spark-compatible phone something that you should look into? Well, that depends: how many things do you do on your phone at once? [More]

(rockmixer)

Straight Talk Cuts Off My Data, Will Only Explain Why In Confusing Doublespeak

Mike’s phone spent two weeks in the repair depot at Samsung. When it came back, shortly afterward his data stopped working. Oh, no! Would it have to go back for more repairs already? Well… no, that wasn’t the problem. The problem is that his mobile carrier, Straight Talk, has throttled his data access down to nothing. [More]

(bikeoid)

I Can’t Make My Son Use Less Data On HIs iPhone Without Giving AT&T More Money

Mark has a teenage son. His son has an iPhone. Like many teens (and quite a few adults, come to think of it) his son has trouble managing his usage on his 200-megabyte data plan. Most of the time he’s near wi-fi…but that’s only most of the time. Mark called up AT&T to see whether there was any way that he could lock down the phone from his account so it just can’t access the data network at all after reaching its limit. That would be a nice feature, wouldn’t it? Too bad that AT&T doesn’t offer a way to do that without somehow giving them more money. [More]

(Kevin Froissard)

For Once, AT&T Being Incompetent Is Good News

Do you remember reader Aaron? We published his story about a month ago. He was stuck between two mobile providers. He ditched AT&T when his iPhone 5 was devouring so much data that his data connection got throttled. Fine, he said–he switched to Sprint, which has unlimited data, but painfully slow data. He resolved the situation by going back to AT&T, but here’s the interesting part: he got unlimited data back because AT&T thought that he had never canceled his account. Well, um, that’s nice. [More]

(rafa_uoc)

AT&T iPhone 5 Customers Just Keep Gobbling Data

Last week, we asked whether anyone out there in Consumerland had experienced their new iPhones downloading huge amounts of data when the phone wasn’t supposed to be using any data at all. Yes, having a mobile device that uses the faster LTE network means you can use more data faster, but that’s not supposed to happen while you’re connected to wifi. Or driving. Or asleep. [More]

iPhone 5 Data-Gobbling Bug Affects AT&T Customers, Too

iPhone 5 Data-Gobbling Bug Affects AT&T Customers, Too

Josh doesn’t think that he’s using any more data with his new iPhone 5 than with his previous iPhone 4. In fact, he should be using less, because he isn’t streaming music anymore. Only that’s not the case. His phone gobbled 5 GB of data in only 22 days. He has an unlimited plan, but getting through 5 GB means he would be throttled for the rest of the month. Just like Verizon’s customer service, AT&T tried to convince Josh that he was using more data because he was using it faster on the LTE network. While that might be the case for some less savvy customers, Josh is an experienced smartphone owner and knows how to manage data. [More]

(Will Middelaer)

For Hours Of Frustration And Weeks Without iPhone 5 Mobile Data, Sprint Offers $10

Who gets to buy an iPhone 5? You may remember reader Luke, who wrote in to back up our Consumer Reports colleagues’ account that Sprint stores were requiring customers to buy an accessory bundle if they wanted to get their hands on the shiny new gadget. After a mixup in activating the two phones he eventually bought (from the Apple Store, with no unwanted bundles, thank you very much) Luke’s data connection wouldn’t work. Sprint’s apology for two data-less weeks? A $10 credit on his bill. [More]

I Have To Sign A 2-Year Contract To Put A SIM In My Outdated Android Tablet?!

I Have To Sign A 2-Year Contract To Put A SIM In My Outdated Android Tablet?!

In the life of a human, a few years isn’t very long at all. In the life of an electronic device, it’s… well, it’s an entire lifetime. Literally. Still, Matt doesn’t understand why his Android tablet, which was manufactured a few years ago, can’t just have a T-Mobile SIM slapped on it so he can use it on a mobile network. He’s been using it on wifi for years, but wants to be all portable, as well as update the OS. This would require a two-year T-Mobile contract. Two years? [More]

T-Mobile Signal Finally Fails On My Unlocked iPhone

T-Mobile Signal Finally Fails On My Unlocked iPhone

Once upon a time, T-Mobile and the iPhone were friends. Even though AT&T had exclusive rights to the iPhone, T-Mobile was a significantly cheaper, friendlier, and less busy carrier that also used GSM. T-Mobile welcomed the owners of unlocked iPhones with open antennae. But that golden era is over, reader Brielle tells us. She’s been using iPhones on TMo for four years now, and is beginning to experience problems with her signal. It just so happens that her area has recently been upgraded for 4G service…right around the time her iPhone’s signal crapped out. They’re happy to sell her a new 4G Android phone, though. [More]