Earlier today owners of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ on the T-Mobile network started to receive notifications that an update was available for their device. A few hours later the same basic update start showing up for owners on Sprint. Thus far no major changes have been noted after the update is applied, though users will find they are now on the May 1, 2017 security patch for Android.
Earlier this week Motorola launched the new Moto Z2 Play and for the U.S. market, the exclusive carrier will be Verizon, although an unlocked version is described as being available “later this summer.” Normally one would expect a Verizon exclusive phone from Motorola to be adorned with DROID branding, but that is not the case with the Moto Z2 Play. If you are a fan of the DROID branding, the good news is that Verizon appears to have plans to bring it back in the future.
At the end of April, Verizon updated their prepaid offerings for customers who were not interested in committing to an ongoing service contract or who wanted to avoid a credit check. The big headline at the time was the inclusion of an $80 per month unlimited data plan to match what they offer on the postpaid side, although smaller plans with set data limits were available. Today Verizon announced some changes to pricing or the amount of data available through some of these plans.
Last year, T-Mobile announced T-Mobile Tuesdays as a way to thank customers for being, well, customers. Since the program’s inception, the carrier has given away free movie tickets, ice cream, pizza toppings, magazine subscriptions, and a ton of other things.
While many consumers are able to find a satisfactory standard smartphone from many of the big name manufacturers, that does not mean some niche markets are still looking for options. Today T-Mobile announced they are adding a pair of devices to their on-line and retail sales channels for buyers with some unique needs. Both the Kyocera DuraForce Pro and Alcatel Go Flip are now available on the magenta network.
You might remember Digits as that really cool feature that T-Mobile announced late last year, then went totally silent about. It went into beta after being announced, but we haven’t heard much about it since then. Well, the good news is that T-Mobile is finally ready to talk about it again, since it’s officially launching to everyone on May 31st.
Back in March, T-Mobile updated their deprioritization limit from 28GB to 30GB. Now, only a couple months later, T-Mobile is making another adjustment to the limit by raising it to 32GB. If you are not familiar with deprioritization, this means T-Mobile may throttle your connection speeds if you have used over 32GB of data in a month and you happen to be connected to a congested tower. Once a tower is no longer congested or you move and connect to a different tower, speeds will return to normal 4G LTE speeds.
During the past week set against the hoopla of Google I/O 2017, Comcast went live with their new Xfinity Mobile wireless service. Xfinity Mobile is the company’s entrance into the wireless market made possible by a deal they struck with Verizon to operate as an MVNO. To celebrate the launch of the new service, users can get a line of unlimited data service for only $45 per month with no access fees. Although we have some doubts about some customer service issues, the price is a really good deal and brings possibly the strongest U.S. wireless network with it. In order to get this special price though, you do have to be a Comcast Internet service customer.
Although they are at a very preliminary level and informal in nature, inside sources says officials with both SoftBank Group and Sprint have contacted Deutsche Telekom, majority owner of T-Mobile, about a possible merger. The resumption of talks may have been triggered by an April 27th deadline passing that concluded a spectrum auction blackout period for participants to pursue deals. Investors were told this week by both SoftBank’s chairman Masayoshi Son and Deutsche Telekom’s CEO Tim Hoettges that they were open to the idea of a merger. Earlier this year T-Mobile’s John Legere indicated there was still interest on his part as well.
All of the major carriers in the US are already trying to pin down the logistics of their 5G network, which should start to become the standard within the next few years. Since the spectrum for that type of network is in high demand, however, that means you’re going to see big carriers fight over who gets what.