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HSPA+, LTE, GSM, UMTS... My head Exploded!

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Hi All!

I was wondering if someone could link an explanation, or briefly explain the difference between these?

I was debating on getting a Note 2 from TMo or Verizon. I understand that the former has HSPA+, and will be rolling out LTE next year. Verizon already has LTE, but is on a different type of network..? I has looking at the specs on the Samsung site, and they are both listed to support GSM and UMTS. For comparison sake, ATT's note 2 only supports GSM.

Can someone in the know shed a little light on this? Will one have a performance advantage? Will any of these be incompatible with future network upgrades?

Thanks in advance!

cheers.gif
post #2 of 11
Here's a basic set of terms:

GSM: the radio type that relies upon SIM for network identification. It is independent of the phone, and is the standard throughout most of the rest of the world. Used by networks such as ATT, Tmobile. This type of network allows for simultaneous usage of talk and web.

CDMA: This radio type identifies to the network by the phone itself. The carrier tends to lock this type of network down more, which means you can't bring your own phone to their network. This type of network isn't used much outside of the US, and it doesn't allow (for the most part, there might be a few exceptions) the simultaneous usage of talk and web. Used by networks such as: Verizon, Sprint, MetroPCS, Cricket.

LTE: This is Long Term Evolution. It is an extension of the GSM standard, which is why sprint LET and verizon LTE requires a sim card. This is still in development, but the ultimate goal is to phase out legacy 3g and 2g standards, and will allow for simultaneous talk and web.

UTMS: This is a type of 3g on GSM radios. iirc, the spec is true 3g (which isn't very fast).

HSPA(+): This is known as 3.5G, it is an extension of the 3g standard to allow for faster internet to phones, since the original 3g spec was horridly slow in comparison to what we know now. It is also iirc, part of GSM.
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post #3 of 11
HSPA+ = 4G. that's all i know. lol
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post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thank you Stumped!

If I found a page like what you wrote, it would have been much easier to understand.

I heard TMo would be rolling out true 4G (LTE next generation) next year, and only phones that support it will be able to make the transition from HSPA+ to LTE. The SGN2 has a LTE capability that will be unlocked VIA software when TMo transitions to LTE. I also heard this is why the phone costs more through TMo, but I am unsure how true that is. I think TMo usually has higher device prices than the other carriers (not including promotions).

On a different note, ATT is taking $100 off the second Note2 when you buy two... pretty tempting to get two of these for $499... I might be making the switch.

I live in North Jersey, and here Verizon has the most coverage, but their delay in releasing the Note2, and their prices are kind of turning me off. Plus, if they do not offer talk, and web at the same time, that is also a CON.

Thanks again!
post #5 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rmerwede View Post

Thank you Stumped!
If I found a page like what you wrote, it would have been much easier to understand.
I heard TMo would be rolling out true 4G (LTE next generation) next year, and only phones that support it will be able to make the transition from HSPA+ to LTE. The SGN2 has a LTE capability that will be unlocked VIA software when TMo transitions to LTE. I also heard this is why the phone costs more through TMo, but I am unsure how true that is. I think TMo usually has higher device prices than the other carriers (not including promotions).
On a different note, ATT is taking $100 off the second Note2 when you buy two... pretty tempting to get two of these for $499... I might be making the switch.
I live in North Jersey, and here Verizon has the most coverage, but their delay in releasing the Note2, and their prices are kind of turning me off. Plus, if they do not offer talk, and web at the same time, that is also a CON.
Thanks again!
It does offer talk and web at the same time. With LTE Verizon can do talk and web at the same time. I'd go with Verizon, because you do end up getting what you pay for. Best coverage overall and more 4G LTE locations (It will take a while for AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile to catch up)
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post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks Blackhawk4!

Even though reading your post made my decision harder ( wheee.gif ), you make a good point. That is why I was planning on Verizon until I saw that the note2 was not being released until 11/27. It also makes me think that there will not be any deals on that device any time soon after that as well.

cheers.gif
post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackhawk4 View Post

It does offer talk and web at the same time. With LTE Verizon can do talk and web at the same time.

Only with a phone that supports simultaneous lte + voice. The Gnex doesn't support this, and i'm not sure how many other devices do. the thunderbolt however, supported this.
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post #8 of 11
Don't be suckered and stuff with ATT's non-unlimited plans and their evil shenanigans. Why not go on T-mo's value plan and make payments on the phone/s . Even with payments you save money. OR go through someone list costco, that has lower prices than T-mo for the devices
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post #9 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by stumped View Post

Only with a phone that supports simultaneous lte + voice. The Gnex doesn't support this, and i'm not sure how many other devices do. the thunderbolt however, supported this.

Any phone with LTE on verizon can do data and voice as long as you're on the LTE network. This is because voice is still through the CDMA network. I think you're thinking of SVDO which allows you to do voice and data over a CDMA carriers EVDO network. In which case phones like the Thunderbolt and ReZound can do, but other cannot.

I think the only phone that can't do data and voice at the same time on verizon LTE network is the iPhone. Which honestly makes no sense to me.
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post #10 of 11
In the US HSPA+ tends to have the fastest average speeds (3g [HSPA] and 4g [LTE]). If you live in an area that has LTE for Verizon, that is generally the best,

However, if you have Sprint LTE you are in the best situation as Sprint still offers unlimited (for now) plans that should be TAKEN ADVANTAGE OF.
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