What Tello customers can expect when we’ll be switching to the GSM network
2020 is the year for big changes, but truthfully, we are desperate for good news, right?
The T-Mobile/Sprint merger is the biggest news in telecom and we’ve got all the details about what this means for Tello customers and newcomers, as well as the answers to a lot of burning questions. Let’s dive in!
🧐 Why did Sprint merge with T-Mobile?
If this was the very first question that popped in your mind, you’re a thinker, just like us!
We have the answer right from T-Mobile that states on its website the following:
“We’ve united and are combining our resources to bring customers the coverage, service, and value they deserve. We are taking things to an entirely new level!
We’re building a transformative nationwide 5G network that will drive innovation and connect every American. With T-Mobile’s low-band, Sprint’s mid-band, and other spectrum, we’ll build the highest-capacity nationwide network in U.S. history.”
⏰ I’m already a Tello customer, what do I need to do?
If you’re an existing Tello customer, there’s nothing you need to do yet. The device you enrolled to Tello will still work, your phone plan and pricing won’t change, and you can get the same great Tello value and service as always – no need to worry!
💭 Rest assured: here at Tello, we are already working intensively to implement the GSM service by the end of 2020 but this will not mean an immediate cutoff for your CDMA (only) compatible phone. We’re not the pull-the-rug-from-under-your-feet type of people.
Instead, you will see a very gradual switch with lots of opportunities to change trains. We will keep our customers updated with any migration steps that may be of interest to them and everybody will be notified well ahead of time on how to ensure that their service is not affected.
We will provide at least 3 months of notice prior to a closure of the Sprint network and then (if you have not already switched over from CDMA phones) provide you information on how you can keep using the Tello service.
💭 Extra good news: Older Sprint phones will work up until at least mid-2021 and our great value plans will not be changed. Plus, many Sprint devices on Tello will already be compatible with the new network.
📲 Do I need a New Phone now?
No, not yet. The new network will continue basic CDMA voice service even on older phones until at least mid-2021.
💭 Keep an eye on older Sprint devices: Please be advised however that data performance on some older Sprint phones (pre-2018) may decline noticeably as T-Mobile turns Sprint’s Band 4G LTE network over to 5G. Those older phones will not benefit from the expansion in coverage, speed, and call quality that will come from joining the new expanded network.
🤳 Will I need a new phone when the T-Mobile service is eventually available on Tello?
Maybe, but not necessarily.
If you bought a phone in the past 2 years — such as a recent iPhone or Galaxy — it likely already has support for both networks. Same goes for iPhone XR, XS, or later that should be good for the full T-Mobile experience, but devices older than 2018 may not be able to tap into the full capabilities of the new network.
💭 Have your eye on a new phone? Here’s what to look for: If you intend to buy a new phone in the near future, we recommend that you ensure that it is both T-Mobile and Sprint compatible and that it was released no earlier than 2018.
To best use the new network, your phone needs to have, as minimum requirements LTE frequency bands 2, 4, 12 + VoLTE and when talking about an ideal connection: bands 2, 4, 12, 66, 71 + VoLTE. Key takeaway: Regardless of the phone brand you fancy, always go for a device that supports voice over 4G (VoLTE), which will help make the most of the newly expanded network.
💭 Here’s your sign: If, after Tello has implemented the new network, you see your phone performance declining, you’ll know that a phone upgrade will help.
☎️ How will I know for sure if my phone will work on the new network?
As soon as the GSM service is available (before the end of the year), customers will then be able to check the device compatibility of their existing phone with the new network on our Bring your own device page.
⁉️ How do I know that the Tello devices you sell will work on the new network also?
Really simple. On our Phones page, choose a device and then click on “View Details”. Scroll down to the “Technology” field under Tech Specs. If it says “VoLTE” in that field then YES, it will also work with the new network. Simple as that.
📍 Will my coverage be improved?
Yes! We have been waiting a long time for this question :)!
As soon as T-Mobile is implemented on Tello, users who move on to the new network should start to see improvements in coverage. Can we get a hip – hip – hooray?
👀 Will my plan change?
No, we’re not making any changes to your plan cost or value.
Tello’s current plan pricing and options will remain unchanged through the transition process.
📡 Any news on 5G?
For the best 5G experience that can tap into everything a combined Sprint and T-Mobile will offer – including T-Mobile’s low-band and millimetre-wave networks and Sprint’s mid-band 5G spectrum – you’ll need to have a 2020 phone such as Samsung’s Galaxy S20 Plus 5G or Ultra 5G.
Both of those Samsung phones, regardless of if you bought them at Sprint or T-Mobile, should work with the other’s 5G networks. However, other 5G phones may only be able to use a certain 5G network in very specific areas of the country.
👌Is this good or bad news for me as a Tello customer?
Real-time realization: Changes can be scary (please nod), but trust us on this one: only good things are coming to Tello customers. We’re here to stay and we’re committed to keep on doing what we do best: offering people great value for their money.
Extra benefits of the merger, you ask? The Sprint and T-Mobile networks will combine to create one supercharged network with average speeds 8x faster than current LTE in just a few years and 14x more total capacity in the next six years – much faster and bigger than either company could have done alone.
In other words, improved coverage, faster data speeds, and a super-stable network – all at the same great Tello rates! Woo-wee!!