Significant Drop off in home internet speed

  • 19 July 2021
  • 7 replies
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I signed up with T Mobile Home Internet in February 2021. At the time, they told me that I was in an excellent coverage area and would get at a minimum 50 mbps. I had no issues and did receive 50+ mbps until last week. Now i receive 6-7 mdps, occasionally reaching 10-12. I have spent 3+ hours on the phone with service reps and tech reps only for them to tell me that I am in a poor coverage area and cannot get anymore than what I am currently getting. How can i go from a excellent coverage area to a poor coverage area in 1 day? This is deceptive practices by T Mobile, selling you on 50 and charging you for 50 only to throttle you later on because of “upgrades to the tower” with no ETA on when or if you will be put in a better coverage area. Buyer beware. this is a shady compay with shady business practices


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It may be worth checking if your having overheating issues.

 

Userlevel 1

One of the good things about this service is that there is no contract. You can simply return the device and cancel your service. You are free to select another service provider that can meet your needs and expectations.

While that’s good in theory, not so good in practice since my only options are T Mobile, satellite internet and AT&T DSL at 10 mbps max. This wouldn't be such an issue except they talked me into leaving AT&T where I had 18mpbs and a discounted rate, with promises of at least 50 mbps,  both of which are no longer available to me per my conversation with AT&T the other day.

There is no grantee or promise of any speed at all. If someone promised you a set min speed you where just lied to.  As per the TMHI open internet agreement the

5G Network (Wireless Home Internet):

  • Download Speeds: Typically between 37 – 110 Mbps
  • Upload Speeds: Typically between 8 – 24 Mbps
  • Latency: Typically between 21 – 35 ms

4G LTE Network (Wireless Home Internet):

  • Download Speeds: Typically between 30 – 115 Mbps
  • Upload Speeds: Typically between 6 – 23 Mbps
  • Latency: Typically between 26 – 45 ms

Now what it seems like to me is they are doing work on the tower you are on. This can generally take from a few days to upwards of a month depending on what is being done to the tower in question. Even more so seems like that if you had 5g secondary connection before and now you do not. Points to work being done on the 5g antennas and possibly a replacement from n71 antennas to n41 antennas.

But it is worth noteing that there is no min speed. You could get 500 kbps as a download speed if the tower in question is overloaded. If you need a min speed then your best bet is to look somewhere else because as TMHI becomes more popular and more sells are made speed will decrease overall with the aboves being the “targeted average” they want to target in the end game.

Userlevel 1
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One of the good things about this service is that there is no contract. You can simply return the device and cancel your service. You are free to select another service provider that can meet your needs and expectations.

Userlevel 1
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It’d be a business practice doomed to fail if Tmobile started even 25% of their customers on good speed, and then throttled them down to a tiny fraction of what they were getting. They’d lose thousands of customers, and there would be at least a few dozen complaints daily on this board. I’ve read of a few dozen people who got good speeds for months, and then a dropoff so bad they had to leave the service. But that’s it -- a few dozen out of well over 100,000 users. It’s probably closer to 300,000. 

But given that 5G home internet is a relatively new service, and you were a pioneer, one of the first 100,000 in the US to be on it back in February, it’s a given that they are rapidly expanding the number of users and doing some tower tuning and upgrades, which could potentially affect the service of a small percentage of existing customers adversely -- I’m guessing less than 5% but it could be more like 2%.

During tower work, let’s say they’re replacing a n71 antenna/transceiver with the more desirable n41, they could be shifting customers on that tower to another tower, turning the power down during the work, or tuning the equipment differently. Any of these three things might affect your service adversely.

Think of the tower antennas as radiating in 360 degrees. You might just happen to be in the one degree line or wedge of air space that is tuned differently after an equipment change or some kind of maintenance, which has left you in a dead zone compared to what you were in.

I agree that it’s really unfortunate that when they’re working on a tower, they can’t give customers an email warning and an estimate of when the work will be done. But the fact is they have no way of knowing this sometimes. They don’t know who will be affected. It’s not like DSL where the phone company could do a test on your line to determine if the problem is at their main line, or something going on with your modem or wiring at your house. The transmission to your house is happening in T mobile’s air space, not on a wire, so they can’t trace it. No blinking light goes on when your service may get cut completely. That only happens in the backhaul, where the tower/wireless joins with the fiber cables to the main internet hub.

Instead, they have a general idea of what tower(s) you are connecting to, and should have some kind of schedule of what work is being done on the tower(s). With some towers though, they are shared by one or more other companies, and who knows how that affects the other antennas on the tower, when they are doing such work?

I wonder how much they respond to a single customer’s problem alone, or whether they are more like the phone and electrical companies, that prioritize the magnitude of the problem by number of customers in the area affected.

The way that would work in T mobile home internet is if they get service calls from other T mobile home internet customers in your geographical area, the coverage degree or slice you are in, then they would be more inclined to see they have a problem. They can’t just lower the speed to 1/5 of what it was and leave hundreds of customers like that for weeks without them discontinuing their service and going with something more reliable.

This is all speculation, based on my reading of how cell service, upgrades, and maintenance work.

What I think can potentially help when you call the service department as you have, is to be able to give them as much specific data as you can, as concisely and clearly as you can, preferably about your connection before and after that problem. That means using the GUI and finding out what bands you are on. A drop in speed as big as yours points to the possibility of connecting to a 4G primary-only connection, compared to the usually faster 4G/5G Primary/Secondary non-standalone signal pair that constitutes the current state of 5G.

I agree that them just telling you that you live in an area without a good signal makes no sense, since they were saying you were in a good signal area before and you got good speed for months.

And if you haven’t tried it, after seeing what bands you are on, if you are on the 4G Primary only, you might try repositioning your gateway to see if there’s anywhere in your house that you can get the 5G Secondary band and a faster speed back.

If you don’t know what I’m talking about with the GUI, click on my badge (blue circle with T in it) to the left and read some of my other posts where I explain in detail how to use the GUI.

If you haven’t watched them, watch the videos of the YouTube vlogger “Nater Tater” on T mobile home internet. He explains how to use the GUI, how to find what tower you are connecting to and how far away it is. Again, knowing all this stuff can help you give the T mobile service person more information.

 

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It’d be a business practice doomed to fail if Tmobile started even 25% of their customers on good speed, and then throttled them down to a tiny fraction of what they were getting. They’d lose thousands of customers, and there would be at least a few dozen complaints daily on this board. I’ve read of a few dozen people who got good speeds for months, and then a dropoff so bad they had to leave the service. But that’s it -- a few dozen out of well over 100,000 users. It’s probably closer to 300,000. 

But given that 5G home internet is a relatively new service, and you were a pioneer, one of the first 100,000 in the US to be on it back in February, it’s a given that they are rapidly expanding the number of users and doing some tower tuning and upgrades, which could potentially affect the service of a small percentage of existing customers adversely -- I’m guessing less than 5% but it could be more like 2%.

During tower work, let’s say they’re replacing a n71 antenna/transceiver with the more desirable n41, they could be shifting customers on that tower to another tower, turning the power down during the work, or tuning the equipment differently. Any of these three things might affect your service adversely.

Think of the tower antennas as radiating in 360 degrees. You might just happen to be in the one degree line or wedge of air space that is tuned differently after an equipment change or some kind of maintenance, which has left you in a dead zone compared to what you were in.

I agree that it’s really unfortunate that when they’re working on a tower, they can’t give customers an email warning and an estimate of when the work will be done. But the fact is they have no way of knowing this sometimes. They don’t know who will be affected. It’s not like DSL where the phone company could do a test on your line to determine if the problem is at their main line, or something going on with your modem or wiring at your house. The transmission to your house is happening in T mobile’s air space, not on a wire, so they can’t trace it. No blinking light goes on when your service may get cut completely. That only happens in the backhaul, where the tower/wireless joins with the fiber cables to the main internet hub.

Instead, they have a general idea of what tower(s) you are connecting to, and should have some kind of schedule of what work is being done on the tower(s). With some towers though, they are shared by one or more other companies, and who knows how that affects the other antennas on the tower, when they are doing such work?

I wonder how much they respond to a single customer’s problem alone, or whether they are more like the phone and electrical companies, that prioritize the magnitude of the problem by number of customers in the area affected.

The way that would work in T mobile home internet is if they get service calls from other T mobile home internet customers in your geographical area, the coverage degree or slice you are in, then they would be more inclined to see they have a problem. They can’t just lower the speed to 1/5 of what it was and leave hundreds of customers like that for weeks without them discontinuing their service and going with something more reliable.

This is all speculation, based on my reading of how cell service, upgrades, and maintenance work.

What I think can potentially help when you call the service department as you have, is to be able to give them as much specific data as you can, as concisely and clearly as you can, preferably about your connection before and after that problem. That means using the GUI and finding out what bands you are on. A drop in speed as big as yours points to the possibility of connecting to a 4G primary-only connection, compared to the usually faster 4G/5G Primary/Secondary non-standalone signal pair that constitutes the current state of 5G.

I agree that them just telling you that you live in an area without a good signal makes no sense, since they were saying you were in a good signal area before and you got good speed for months.

And if you haven’t tried it, after seeing what bands you are on, if you are on the 4G Primary only, you might try repositioning your gateway to see if there’s anywhere in your house that you can get the 5G Secondary band and a faster speed back.

If you don’t know what I’m talking about with the GUI, click on my badge (blue circle with T in it) to the left and read some of my other posts where I explain in detail how to use the GUI.

If you haven’t watched them, watch the videos of the YouTube vlogger “Nater Tater” on T mobile home internet. He explains how to use the GUI, how to find what tower you are connecting to and how far away it is. Again, knowing all this stuff can help you give the T mobile service person more information.

 

yeah i’ve checked the GUI, i have been on 4G primarily since last week when the problem started, Haven’t connected to 5G since. I did send a tweet to the T Mobile helpdesk and CEO and apparently got their attention since i received a response within 30 minutes. They have told me that they escalated the problem to a different service area that can better pinpoint the problem. But what they have told me so far is consistent with what you said about them upgrading the tower. I live in a suburb/semi rural area with limited options for other providers and I suspect that they are focusing on adjacent areas with higher density of customers or potential customers. 

Badge

One of the good things about this service is that there is no contract. You can simply return the device and cancel your service. You are free to select another service provider that can meet your needs and expectations.

While that’s good in theory, not so good in practice since my only options are T Mobile, satellite internet and AT&T DSL at 10 mbps max. This wouldn't be such an issue except they talked me into leaving AT&T where I had 18mpbs and a discounted rate, with promises of at least 50 mbps,  both of which are no longer available to me per my conversation with AT&T the other day.

Userlevel 1
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I live in a suburb/semi rural area with limited options for other providers and I suspect that they are focusing on adjacent areas with higher density of customers or potential customers. 

I know what you mean about the limited choices in some areas because I’m in one of those areas, and just keeping my fingers crossed that my new T-mobile home internet will stay as good as it has been in my first month of use.

Being five miles away from the tower and getting an average of 80 Mbps on the B66/n41 combo, with no drops below 45 or so, and good ping, I’ve been elated about it. My former DSL provider (CenturyLink) lists the max speed available in my neighborhood now as 1.5 Mbps, even though I got 7 Mbps before.  I was paying $45/month only because I complained when they tried to raise the price to $55/month one time.

I read one guy’s comment where he was paying $110/month for Spectrum and when he told them he was trying T mobile, they immediately offered him a special price of $20/month for a year and now he’s keeping both services. But T mobile only got better for him so he plans on dropping Spectrum in a year when his discount is over.

So if this really doesn’t work out, if I were you I wouldn’t go into much detail with AT&T if you want to get their 17Mbps service back. Casually tell them you’re considering StarLink and just calling to see what AT&T has to offer. But I think StarLink right now, except for people who have no alternative or have lots of money, would be a bad choice because 5G is improving and spreading. I’m expecting to see price wars that haven’t happened since dial-up among a lot of companies. 

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