False Coverage Map

  • 16 September 2019
  • 14 replies

Userlevel 1

Has anyone else noticed that T-Mobile’s coverage map is misleading and flat out wrong?  Part of the reason we joined was due to their claim of having full coverage in a part of Wisconsin.  First time we were there we had zero service through T-mobile, and we ended up on a AT&T network.  That then treated our service as roaming and did not allow for us to use data.  I proceeded to call T-mobile and they confirmed their map is wrong and they use a roaming partner (AT&T) there and “appreciated the feedback”.  Despite that, they haven’t corrected the issue.  Seems like a false claim T-Mobile should be held accountable for.  Anyone else come across this?  And did they report this to any regulatory authorities? @tmobile-admin

14 replies

I am having coverage problems in NC, when their Map show T-Mobile is covering the area but I get NO SERVICE and even when I am looking at cell phone towers.  Went to a local T-Mobile store in Norfolk, Va and they just told me that if I had my phone set for roaming it would not work with T-Mobile

I'm in Texas and I'm having the same issue. The coverage map is a lie. I haven't reported it because I haven't figured out who I need to report it to. Customer support is zero help and I don't think tmobile has any plans to correct their map. The just continue the lie because it brings in customers.

Just switched from AT&T to T-mobile.  I thought T-mobile would be better, but I was wrong.  I have had more dropped calls and lack of service from T-mobile than I ever did with AT&T (I do not like AT&T so please don't think I am defending them).  All 4 of us on my plan are feeling the same way.  If I don't have WIFI calling enabled, I cannot make a call from inside any building.  If I don't have WIFI - no phone, no texts.  Pretty much ridiculous as an actual phone.  I am currently sitting next to a window in my house, cannot make a call.  I literally have to go outside - THEN I can make a call.

EVerywhere we used to have service with AT&T - does not with T-Mobile.  The coverage map is a lie - or at a minimum extremely stretching the truth.

Onalaska-Livingston Texas - same thing. We have ZERO service around this area, even though the coverage map shows solid pink (checked before we migrated from Verizon). Ridiculously, cannot send text messages most of the time when we are not at home... Very bait-n-switch.

Userlevel 4
Badge +5

Anything that is showing as 'light' magenta (fair coverage) is typically 'You will be lucky outdoors to find ANY usable service'.

I've been through many states, and even locally, where T-Mobile claims '4G LTE Verified' there is 'No Service' to be found from T-Mobile.

Network scan outdoors - in the open brings up... AT&T 3G/LTE, Verizon LTE and Firstnet LTE.  T-Mobile is nowhere to be seen.

I've escalated this issue MANY times with T-Mobile and their 'Office of Executive Management' through BBB and emails to last CEO.

Their OEM is exceptionally hostile and does nothing to resolve anything, except ask 'Why are you using T-Mobile where it doesn't work' ?  Which brings me to legitimately respond:  Why doesn't T-Mobile have working service where they claim ?  I'm paying for the service, but not receiving.

5 years later... still no service in an area John Legere and Neville Ray claim... 4G LTE verified service.

Response:  T-Mobile claims that a 'verified' marker only means that their network received a 'ping' from someone's device.  I.e. An attempted connection - may not have even shown up on your device.


T-Mobile does actually have little hexagons on their map where customer's phones connect to their network. It's not a lot of data but it's better than none. There are differences between phones so some people can connect where other's can't.

I tend to run CellMapper whenever I go to a new area or an area where I suspect there's recently upgraded service. Sensorly is another one. RootMetrics.com also has coverage maps and does reports on how the carriers compare in urban markets. Apps like this run only on Android phones because iOS doesn't expose signal information in the API.

Userlevel 4
Badge +5

Take those hexagons with a grain of salt.  There are a few areas nearby where service doesn't exist (never has), and 6 months before Band 12 existed in the area, T-Mobile magically painted the area with service and hexagons... that was in 2015.  Service still doesn't exist, and they still paint it.

Cell mapper recorded 1 dot over the +5 miles of community of 'No Service' - possibly during the one time that I saw T-Mobile in a network scan, and couldn't register.   Yes - my phone(s) support all T-Mobile bands, and this was outdoors in a clearing.

Take some of their coverage with a grain of salt.

Don’t trust T-mobile and their coverage maps at all. 

Userlevel 4
Badge +5

I would recommend ‘Cellmapper.net’ for a valid (but techy) map.  Similarly, Opensignal isn’t bad, but has less data.  Note:  cellmapper.net works on Android, PC.  You might be able to use the browser version on iOS

In Oregon I check coverage maps before we go camping and more than half the time we are disappointed with the accuracy.  Maybe time to start a lawsuit.  I have stayed with TMobile because of pricing and service, the latter has diminished in recent years... I will not refer any more because they screw it up and don't pay up, reaching somebody that cares enough to help with issues has become a thing of the past.  I have lost trust in TMobile

Same situation here in North East Texas. Map shows full pink even with 5g but I get 1 bar of LTE with .10-.26 MBs. What is really frustrating is that before 5g was introduced I was able to get about 12 MBs download speeds on T-Mobile at home. I even had the first round of home internet.  Signal has degraded severely over the past year to year and a half.  

Userlevel 4
Badge +5

T-Mobile has mostly covered their bases ‘legally’ with buried disclaimers about ‘no guarantee of coverage - anywhere’.

The ONLY true way to get this ‘fixed’ would be to have either competitors (AT&T/VZW) shame them (doesn’t help a lot these days, but the old “Can you hear me now” made Verizon.  The alternative is having media (News AND company like Ookla/Root Metrics) to pour some sunlight on this issue.  I’m doubtful, but you never know.


Userlevel 1

T-Mobile has mostly covered their bases ‘legally’ with buried disclaimers about ‘no guarantee of coverage - anywhere’.

The ONLY true way to get this ‘fixed’ would be to have either competitors (AT&T/VZW) shame them (doesn’t help a lot these days, but the old “Can you hear me now” made Verizon.  


Are VZW/ATT maps any more reliable?  Saw similar complaints on the VZW forums


Userlevel 4
Badge +5

Reliable.. not sure.  Accurate, and not as over hyped.. yes. For years, starting around 2015 with band 12, T-Mobile pushed coverage maps with “4G LTE coverage verified” in areas that have no 4g , or even service.  Last fall, until this spring, all of the coverage maps were updated to reflect  something more accurate .  Then in May, it reverted.  , Yet still the same coverage.