Motorola Building Chip That Will Support Both T-Mobile and AT&T 3G


ttt-smMotorola is currently developing a chip which will support the AT&T spectrum of 850 MHz, 1900 MHz, and the AWS spectrum utilized by T-Mobile:1700 MHz and 2100 MHz. Thats right folks, that means someday soon you might be able to use your Android handset on AT&T 3G and/or TMobile 3G. With dual mode chip phones released on AT&T or T-Mobile, any exclusive phone would be usable on the others network. There is no doubt in my mind that this would make things much easier for consumers as well as manufacturers. There would be no need to make two phones with the only difference being the 3G radio. Way to go Motorola!

Unlocked GSM Androids for the US!


    • Verizon and Sprint have the same 3G network… EvDO rev A, which peaks at about 3.1Mb/s. Yes, this is slower than AT&T's peak speed, which is 7.2Mb/s. AT&T's Uplink is fast, too, but many devices aren't supporting it (the iPhone 3GS, for example, only does 384Mb/s uplink… all EvDO Rev A devices can hit a peak of 1.8Mb/s uplink… so don't race DROID users on uploads if you're an iPhone fan).

    • Man, it ate the rest of my reply.

      My point was also that EvDO Rev A uses the same two 1.25MHz channels that everyone doing CDMA already had in any given area. So every CDMA cell is a 3G cell. You can lose 3G based on range or traffic, but it's there. So you don't go as fast everywhere on Verizon as AT&T, but in any arbitrary locale, you go faster, because you have a 100% of 3G being there, versus a 20% chance. Obviously, some if you live in a well served 3G area, that's not so much of an issue. In other locales, you may never see an AT&T 3G signal.

      AT&T only has about 20% of their cells doing 3G. Part of that's because it was totally new equipment.. a full speed HSPA+ cell is actually two bonded cells, each of which is 5MHz up, 5MHz down. So you need 20MHz of spectrum to offer the full speed service, which AT&T limits to 7.2Mb/s per client. They don't own that spectrum in every area… for that matter, they don't own the 10MHz needed to offer normal 3G service in every coverage area, which delivers the usual 3.6Mb/s service. So they're claiming sometime in 2010 they'll have 30 metro areas wired up with the 7.2Mb/s service. Many are just getting slower 3G, and outside of cities, probably just EDGE.

      AT&T and Verizon are both going to 700MHz and LTE for 4G. Verizon owns 22MHz, AT&T owns 12MHz, but LTE is much more scalable than HSPA+. Verizon is rolling out LTE sometime next year, AT&T will do their rollout in 2011.

      Today's HSPA+ at full speed compares well to some 4G offerings, if you actually get that speed. Clear, Comcast, and Sprint all use the same network, but promise different levels of service. Clear has been pushing the claim of 10-12Mb/s, Comcast says 8-12Mb/s, and Sprint is promising 5Mb/s or better. But the service areas a very limited.

  1. This does rather point out that the "world phone" factor of GSM is largely exaggerated. Not to mention that, if this is going to also be a world phone, they'll need to add in 900MHz and 1800MHz support (they already have the 2100MHz for G3 that's also common in Europe).

    And all this, just in time, most likely, to also need 700MHz for LTE, the common standard for G4. Only, T-Mobile doesn't have 700MHz spectrum, Verizon and AT&T do. Last I checked, they had some hope of allying with Clearwire to get in on the 10MHz-wide "D" block of the 700Mhz auction. This was not bid on in the auction, because it has to be shared with a public emergency use (Verizon largely won, with the 22MHz "C" block, AT&T did ok too, with the 12MHz "B" block).

    But with Clearwire now merged in as 30-something-percent of the new Clear, Inc…. and Sprint as the majority shareholder, doing WiMax at 2500MHz, this seems unlikely.