Congestion at State College

dragon1562

    So I recently moved up to State College, PA since school has started back up. I love it up here and I love T-mobile however there is two issues that need to be fixed.

    1. The overall coverage is pretty bad even on campus and especially inside buildings compared to the other carriers up here.

    - This isn't a huge deal since there is plenty of wifi connections available but is still something that should be improved. Especially on the outskirts of campus coverage is bad.

     

    2. Congestion

    - Normally the speeds here are better then the other 3 carriers. However there is still times when I'll have 5 bars of service and only be able to pull about 2mb down. This is literally a college town in which everyone is on their phones and there are always events. For example there was a weekend concert and I remember being unable to post to Snapchat due to the heavy congestion of all the people there at the event. Currently Band 4 is deployed 20x20 and band 2 is 5x5 for LTE. I think T-mobile should refarm some of the spectrum allocated to HSPA+ so that the LTE here can be consistently faster and more reliable.

     

    I also have had little success with Band 12 which I know nothing can be done about due to limited licensing. I'm also aware that 600mhz is supposed to be deployed at the end of the year somewhere in Central PA i hope that State College is one of the areas.

     

    Just wanted to post this so T-mobile can be aware of the rapdily growing needs of people in this area.

      All replies

      • htghtg

        Re: Congestion at State College

        Hello!

         

        I'd just like to add that you can put a request for improvements/coverage by calling into T-Mobile. This is especially true for congested network issues. These requests are used to pinpoint areas that have demand for network improvements and could further help you alert T-Mobile to the shortcomings of your coverage.

         

        Additionally, I found an article (that you may have already seen) that mentions State College specifically and may provide some relief.

         

        Have a great semester!

         

        HTGHTG

        1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • dragon1562

            Re: Congestion at State College

            Thank you for linking the article. I did not see this one and am glad to hear that State College specifically will gain access to this extra spectrum since it is definitely needed. The place that is worse on campus is toward the West by the IST building where today I was completely unable to use the LTE while my AT&T phone worked fine. Although AT&T also struggles here to the point that I rarely see above 1mb with them at times. The only thing that is good with them is that I at least always have service of some kind.

             

            It looks like i will have to wait till next year to see the improvements since I am currently using a GS8 which is unable to take advantage of the 600mhz spectrum and I don't feel the need to upgrade to the V30.

             

            I'll call t-mobile so they are aware though.

              • tmo_mike_c

                Re: Congestion at State College

                Congrats on the move and I hope that went smoothly. We appreciate you sharing what kind of coverage you're getting. We wish it could be more positive, but we always appreciate the feedback. Giving us a holler about it is the best way to go. We can still have our engineering folks take a peek at the area for possible improvements. Did you ever touch base with us about this area?

                  • dragon1562

                    Re: Congestion at State College

                    I have sadly not had the chance to touch base and that was due to poor time management on my end. However, I do plan to make the call tomorrow when my schedule is much more open. Also thank you for touching base with me on here. My move did go quite smoothly. Also its not your fault that the service can be inconsistent. There is a lot of people here and that puts a strain on the limited bandwidth available of any network. I just wanted to make sure it was something that was on the radar for future improvements.

                     

                    In the meantime I have been using the wifi a lot which is thankfully widely available while on campus and when going downtown the LTE is solid enough for my needs. I have also had some great results by dropping off the LTE to HSPA+ when I have issues. For example, sometimes when attempting to call over LTE I won't get any ringing noises but if i drop down it works.

                    • dragon1562

                      Re: Congestion at State College

                      So I placed the call. The first person wasn't very helpful but thankfully I was able to get transferred and give a detail mark of the effected areas. In 72 hours i'm supposed to get a response.

                        • tmo_marissa

                          Re: Congestion at State College

                          Just wanted to check in here and see if you'd heard back yet, dragon1562! I know that this might have fallen over the weekend so perhaps the timeline might run a little long (and our engineering team is still working like crazy to get some of the hurricane-impacted areas back up and running, so that may contribute, too) but I figured it couldn't hurt to ask!
                          Also, welcome back!

                           

                          - Marissa

                            • dragon1562

                              Re: Congestion at State College

                              Thanks for welcoming me back. I never actually left I just hadn't had any trouble till recently. Sadly I have had no response which is ok since other issues are more important. The majority of campus has pretty solid coverage as well so I can't be that upset especially since wifi is widely available. Thank you for checking on me.

                    • drnewcomb2

                      Re: Congestion at State College

                      Historically, T-Mobile was somewhat spectrum constrained in Centre Co. with just 10x10 MHz of AWS and 5x5 MHz of PCS. To this you can now add a 5x5 LTE signal on 700 MHz and another 5x5 signal on AWS-3. While most T-Mobile phones can currently use 700 MHz, there are only a few that can access AWS-3 (bands 10 or 66). In the future, T-Mobile will be able to add a whopping 20x20 MHz of 600 MHz (band 71) LTE service in Centre Co. They can probably deploy at least 10x10 of that now but have to wait until WKBS-TV relocates to clear the whole band. Access to 600 MHz will require new phones. Currently only the LG-V30 can use this band.

                       

                      At the present time, to make the most of what T-Mobile has in Centre Co., you need a phone with carrier aggregation (CA) and band 10/66 would not hurt.

                      1 of 1 people found this helpful
                        • dragon1562

                          Re: Congestion at State College

                          I just wanted to mention that I am using a GS8 which does support everything besides band 71. So now it just comes down as a issue of spectrum and tower placement. I honestly feel that band 66 would be perfect for the campus itself since there are plenty of small area to put micro cells. This would help tremendously and can be done now.

                            • j.a.r.v.i.s

                              Re: Congestion at State College

                              Hi dragon1562 - sorry I'm late to the game, but def appears to be congestion you are experiencing...sometimes there are just too many users in one location to really get traffic through (think Super Bowl or the Presidential Inauguration), but T Mobile has put in extra capacity when needed, so I think we just need the right ppl to help us get that done.  I would say that 2Mbps throughput seems tolerable, although probably not enough for streaming. 

                               

                              I'd be interested to see what the speeds are like around 4am when no one is really awake.  This may solidify the "congestion" hypothesis that you have...

                               

                              ...in the meantime, WiFi it is...

                                • dragon1562

                                  Re: Congestion at State College

                                  I can confirm that this is the case because at late hours(with the exception of weekends) speeds are more then great. However that does me little good since like many people, the phone is not needed. Also there is one area still where its a connection issue which is probably due to the IST building itself blocking line of sight between me and the nearest tower on the far west side of campus.

                                   

                                  To be perfectly clear I'm not that upset. This issue effects all carriers during certain times. Heck AT&T regularly drops below a 1mb connection during peak traffic. Although 2mb as mentioned is still usable for most things it will only get worse and I simply wanted to draw attention to the emerging issue since it can most likely be resolved using readily available resources.