Cellspot incompatible with Spectrum (Charter, Brighthouse, TW)

After two years my cellspot would not sync. I returned it and was sent another V.1 although I requested a V.2. I spoke with a tech advisor at T-Mobile last night and he confirmed that Spectrum Cable and similar companies have been doing digital upgrades across the country rendering existing Cellspots incompatible. I was told that they are awaiting parameters from the Spectrum so that the cellspots can work again.


The Tech advisor said it was possible that it would sync after a few days if I left it on and didn't reset anything on the modem, router or cellspot.

Anyone else having this problem ?

When returning a cellspot, the instructions indicate you can send it back via a UPS shipping label or to a T-Mobile store. The latter was not possible as this was tried yesterday. Apparently they cannot input a device that did not come from their store since they did not have a code for the main warehouse and could not get one from customer service.


Best answer by tmo_mike_c 4 September 2018, 18:15

I checked and there's been some reported issue with a delay in activation/registrations. Making sure the device has the most recent software is the first step. The delay shows as 2 hours though so a Trouble Ticket will need to be escalated with our Team of Expert if it's going on longer than that. If you're having other troubles, and the steps in the thread posted earlier didn't resolve the issue, you'll need to Community-2153​ and have a ticket filed to get this resolved.

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I will respectfully disagree.

While I agree putting something in the DMZ of your router should work, think about a larger picture.  There have been no complaints from people who have Comcast.  There have been no complaints from people who have AT&T (DSL, Fiber, whatever).  There have been no complaints from people who have Cox.

The only complaints are Charter (and it's subsidiaries).

If you're on Charter and can't log in to Netflix, but every other provider can, is the problem a Netflix problem?

If you're on Charter and can't connect to GMail, but every other provider can, is the problem a GMail problem?

The answer to both those questions is a resounding "No".

Now, what causes Charter to not work for 7 hours, but at hour 8 everything connects?  I don't know.  I don't have any knowledge of the workings of the Cellspot.  I don't have any knowledge of what crazy things Charter blocks (whether intentional or unintentional).

Unless T-Mobile has logs sent to them to figure out what takes so long connecting (I don't know people's opinions on privacy here - some would be for it, some would be against - I mean, look at all the tracking angst that comes up every handful of months about your phones), nothing can be done except "it should work."  This is the same reason Netflix would give you if you can't connect.

My opinion is T-Mobile needs to somehow work with Charter to figure out what is going on.  But, I find it hard, with my client/server knowledge, to blame this directly on T-Mobile.

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The funny thing here is that using standard problem solving if the Cellspot works without issue on the internet providers and only has issues on Spectrum (Charter, Spectrum, Brighthouse, TW which are all the same company) then logic would dictate that the issue is not with the cell spot but rather with Spectrum regardless of what Spectrum says, that most likely it is something on their network. 

As I mentioned earlier, I know people used to have an issue with Wi-Fi calling on ATT DSL but worked on other providers and the fix was as simple as using non AT&T DNS servers. 

It is a Spectrum/Charter problem. From what Ive been told by them is that

with their upgrade going on what ever signal the Cellspot sends to them was

being rerouted back and forth and getting blocked. If it found its way to

the right port at the right time you got lucky and connected. They said

they would have it worked out once their upgrade was completed so we will


On Wed, Aug 29, 2018 at 10:59 PM smplyunprdctble <>

I have a new Cellspot which has yet to be activated for the first time over my Spectrum internet connection. I'm going on 2 weeks without it functioning. Here are some questions for T-Mobile support:

1. What is the real issue? It looks like Spectrum triggered it with their upgrade. But, every other internet connected device never had any issue at all. Can T-Mobile / Nokia issue a FW update to fix the compatibility issue?

2. Is the process different for the first time a Cellspot activates compared to unplugging one that has been working?

3. Once activated, what should I expect if we have a power outage or internet outage? Another 4 - 8 days of blinking lights, or 2 hours?

Thanks in advance.

Oh well, I was rolling along here so good......until lightning struck and blew out everything.   So yeah I’m back at the beginning.   Except maybe worse.   I can’t believe it will be days and days and days again, if ever.

Just so you know I just got my cellspot up and running yesterday after waiting 5 days for it to sync with Spectrum. Well as we would have it the storm yesterday knocked out the power. Figured I would have to wait 4 days or longer for it to come back up but it took about 12 hours so not so bad.

Read my post below. Good luck.

Well it took me 30 hours to re-initialize it due to power failure. And now

I’ll be at it again! We had a severe thunderstorm with power outage. And

so here I go again! The wait. Yes 4-8 days is what I hear with

Spectrum. I have Spectrum. So I’m getting used to its issues with

T-mobile. Supposedly they are being booted out of NY. Hope not. I have no


Well, I got lucky too!  The storm knocked out all my power, which of course came back in a few minutes,but knocked out the Cellspot.  I also lost phone service even though my UbeeDVW32CB  has the backup battery installed, which didn't work.  With no Cellspot and no wifi calling now, I had no phones at all.  (Silence is wonderful sometimes!)

Took 4 hours for the  Cellspot to come back.  My rebooted my Ubee and my Apple Time Capsule router, as a last resort, but somehow that kicked it all back into gear, even though Spectrum rebooted the modem themselves a few hours prior.

I think I am going to now connect that Time Capsule with the Cellspot to an APC UPS Backup battery, as I do my computers so that if power goes it, the battery will kick in for about 30 minutes.

Finally activated and working !!

Mine is activated but I don't get the speed of 120 Mbps I used to get now.

On Thu, Aug 9, 2018 at 8:13 AM, magenta5687381 <>

I ran 5 different speed tests and Im averaging 117

Same question here.  Anyone use those"window unit boosters". Maybe take the internet out of the equation.  Idk I can't believe this should take 4 days to sync that doesn't make any sense.  Everything else in my house is working properly.  I actually had a solid green internet light but talking to chat they said after 3 hours to reboot.  So I'm back at square1.  Other problem, I have 3 of these devices to set up all 3 houses have spectrum. Is there any resolution on the fix.  I just switched 3 weeks ago (6 lines from att) I thought this thing would solve my issues but seems to just be causing more issues. 

I had asked the support team the same thing about the window boosters. I was told it won’t make that much difference since my signal is so poor to start with.  I have basically zero bars to one bar at most. Usually it’s no service at all.  I keep WiFi calling on now.  At least that works as long as I have WiFI working from Spectrum.  When the storm knocked that out too, I had nothing. 

Not sure why Spectrum and T-mobile seem to have this compatibility issue.  I never had this issue with AT&T. 

Maybe that reboot will help speed connection to the Cellspot.

I was told not to reboot but yes that it would take up to 4-8 days to activate.  Ridiculous.  

Syncing should get better shortly. Spectrum just finished going all digital

fiber as of yesterday. So now they can work on the syncing problems they

were having with Tmobile. Just be patient. Set it up and leave it do its

thing. Once up and running its fantastic.

What do you mean all digital. They did an all digital in my area (Albany) back in April.  However there internet has always been digital so the all digital channel changes shouldn't effect their internet service. If anything it opened up more room on their Network to allow for faster speeds.  Not trying to argue it, just trying to make sense as to what is going on.  I have all kinds of internet connected devices and nothing else is having an issue

I do hope once it starts working it's worth the wait lol

Just because your area was finished ahead of everyone else has nothing to

do with it. They converted their entire system over and now that that is

complete they can work on this problem. The way I see it you can be patient

like the rest of us were or you can change ISP or cell service. It took 5

days for mine to sync here in Florida where we had 0-1 bar of service and

now I have 5 and am extremely happy.

Yes I have to agree it took me 5 days for my cell spot to reinitialize but

since that time everything's been fine I live in Kentucky I will have to

say that the new Nokia cell spot that they sent me has never initialized

but the old one works just like it's supposed to.

It will be worth the wait.   Once up and running, I have full bars and service even in my basement.  Like I said, the window booster would do not much for me since service is that bad.  They said it might add one bar, but for sure, I'd have zero in the basement area.

Of course, as it has been said before, when I lose power, I start the process all over again.  I was lucky last time that it took several hours rather than days. I've acclimated to the wait now.   I'm in Staten Island, and I'm sure NYC has been all digital for a long time, so that had no bearing at all on why it takes so long to activate a Cellspot here.  It's just an issue between Spectrum and T-Mobile, which may or may not ever resolve here.   Right now, Spectrum has bigger issues to deal with in the State of New York and the Public Service Commission.   I'm sure their focus is not on Cellspot service here, but rather, maintaining its base in New York.  Who knows if what replaces them would be better or worse.  And I don't want to find out.  My service has been terrific.  But it's NYC.  That's why.

From what I was told until their system was totally converted which it is

supposed to be now it would remain a problem. It took me 5 days on the

initial sync but only a few hours after loosing power.

Finally got my hotspot working.   Once I got all my ports forwarded and left it connected it took about 24-36 hours.  Set up the 2nd one at my dad's house (also spectrum) took about 30 hours. Going to try the last one at my brother's tomorrow.  I think the quickest way for initial set up is get all the ports forwarded and then hook it up and let it do its thing.  I kept playing with it at first because it wasn't getting on line as long as I expected.  Not sure how much is this is related to spectrum vs TMobile but it's certainly quite aprocess.  And I'm not rebooting to see how long it takes, hoping a little shorter next time since it's been on and registered with their Network now.  All I can say is I agree with everyone else, it's worth the wait, full bars everywhere now.  Everyone's happy.  Love this forum, makes me feel a little better knowing I wasn't alone in The what the heck is going on here camp.. .

Yea it is just a waiting game but well worth it in the end

I Have Spectrum/TW and my own LInksys 1900AC Router.  Having worked and researched for over two weeks I can share the absolute bottom line. IF you set-up the Cellspot and it connects, congratulations!  For some customers (apparently a lot) it just will NEVER work no matter what you do.  The Cellspot is supposed to be PLUG 'n PLAY.  It just is not at least on a universal basis. There are so many ISP's, brands of routers and people's individual home network configurations that are incompatible with the Cellspot.  T-Mobile can only address issues with the Cellspot device itself and not interaction or settings with specific routers.  If you install the Cellspot and it works within two (2) hours, you are golden.  If still not established after two (2) hours, box it up and send it back.  Period.  You would not believe how deep a hole you can dig for yourself IF you try to make this thing work if it does not automatically plug and play.

I got one and read all literature before the device actually arrived. So I called Spectrum after reading this forum. Spectrum assured me they block nothing and T-Mobile assured me that all problems with Spectrum were resolved (early August 2018). Next I called Linksys and we decided it best to wait until the Cellspot was received and connected to walk through port forwarding. Later with a Linksys Tech Support agent we reserved the IP address for the now discovered Cellspot, then one by one forwarded the three UDP ports. Done!  The Cellspot Power Blinked Green, Internet blinked Amber more than three (3) days. Stupidly, I had faith in T-Mobile and their insistence to wait that I actually wall-mounted the Cellspot and took great pains to route and hide wires. Finally T-Mobile agreed the Cellspot was defective and shipped a replacement.  After two hours, same result.  It's so difficult to get through to an actual trained technical person at T-Mobile I called Linksys again.  Linksys said as a last resort/test I could put the Cellspot in DMZ on my router which absolutely, positively opens every possible port and communication from anyone on the Internet to the Cellspot. Nothing.  I relented and took the necessary 2 hours and multiple transfer route to talk to T-Mobile. I actually got a very nice and competent support agent, We tried (my bad) hooking the Cellspot up directly to the Spectrum Cable Modem then the LInksys Router to the Cellspot LAN.  Well, that created some kind of hardware conflict that caused my router (and everything connected to it) to acquire a new IP address! This takes more than two hours and calls to Linksys Tech Support to restore. Three hours later, still green light on  WAN port, green flashing power and amber flashing Internet I call T-Mobile again. This guy says give it up to 8 hours to connect. I tell him the first T-mobile expert said a maximum of 2 hours. No real response. This guy says there is a known conflict with Spectrum. I tell him the first T-Mobile expert said that was all resolved, ticket closed and Spectrum swears there are no ports blocked. No response.

Bottom Line: Being self-employed I lost not only an entire day's work but a 14 hour day (up until 2 AM).  This doesn't count all the other hours lost the previous two weeks with T-Mobile, Spectrum & LInksys agents.  I've ticked off Linksys, they essentially told me that my router is past the free tech support period and they have accommodated me as a courtesy for something that is a T-Mobile issue and if I need their help in the future I HAVE to buy a service plan.   I have the original Cellspot packaged up in the materials I received the second Cellspot. Now I also have to send that one back and will have to go buy packaging for that one. I either have to pay a premium to UPS for pickup or drive 50 minutes one way to the nearest UPS store. And I have to patch the holes in the wall from the mount. And I am still finding devices that have to be reconfigured because of the IP address changing as a result of using the Cellspot as a bridge.


Maybe the problem lies in the fact that youre trying to use a Spectrum

Modem and and your own router. Why not use a Spectrum router/modem? Thats

what I had to do. I tried using my own to no avail. I got the Spectrum and

yes I had to wait 5 days for it to sync the 1st time but now I have 5 bars

and it resyncs within a few hours if we have a power outage. Plus with

every tech Ive spoken with not one has said it should sync in 2 hours. They

have all said a minimum of 4 hours and as much as 8 days.