GSM beta discussion

Update: Ting GSM is now in a public beta.  Head over here for the latest thread!


Hi everyone,

We've been testing GSM since early December.  Several weeks ago, several dozen Ting customers were recruited by a secret branch of the CIA called SD-6. They were sworn to secrecy...

No, wait.  Sorry.  Wrong script.

A few weeks ago, several dozen Ting customers were invited to join our private beta for GSM.  (And a few additional folks have joined since.)  We're going to start inviting customers who have purchased their SIM cards in small batches beginning today, and we wanted a place to where we could get your feedback, discuss known issues if we discover any, and allow everyone to share their GSM experiences.

A few caveats: international roaming, international long distance, and WiFi Calling are all currently missing in action.  We'll have more updates on these features as we get closer to our full launch.  We've also seen issues with group messaging on iOS.

So, stay tuned to your inbox!  Invites will start going out later this afternoon if all goes well, and we'll be increasing the number of invites that go out each day.  We really appreciate everyone's interest!

Beta questions...

So, you'd like to move your phone number from Ting CDMA to Ting GSM?  We're building a fancy tool that will let you do this in a click or two.  But, for now, you have to do it the hard way.  It works, but like everything else in the beta, there may be bumps.  For example, with the fancy tool, it'll be possible for the "switch" to happen in a few minutes.  For now, it's a manual number port.  If you want things to go as quickly as possible, when entering your porting information, be sure to get your account number and port out PIN from your Ting dashboard here.  Be sure to also include the current address listed here.

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Comments

890 comments
  • Michael - Sounds like you have some apps using background data.  I am not familiar with iphones, but android phones can show you how much data is used in your billing cycle, and which apps used the data and how much they used.  Does IOS have something similar?  

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  • Posted in the public thread. Thanks Bruce!

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  • I am totally bummed! I made the switch to the GSM beta and it does not work very well in my area. I can only get a consistent signal standing by my front window. But to be fair, I live in a cellular signal abyss where cellular signals go to die. The only reason Sprint works at my house is because we have an Airave. However, Sprint does get a better signal in my area, so unfortunately I am going to have to switch back. My question for the Ting team is should I switch back now or wait a little while longer? Is there a chance the GSM signal will improve much in the near future?

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  • I just switched my galaxy s4 from verizon to ting. Everything is working great, except that I am having trouble accessing and setting up my voice mail and also sending picture messages. Is their anything I can do to fix this?

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  • Michael,

    Perhaps you need to wait a while for network changes to propagate.I moved a phone from T-Mobile to Ting GSM on Saturday. The port took about a minute, but it took longer for picture messages to work.

    Troubleshooting at https://help.ting.com/entries/104696833-Troubleshooting-GSM-Picture-Video-MMS-Messaging

    For voicemail. here is an answer from a Ting staff member.

    There are a few options to access voicemail on your GSM device, use one of these when trying to access voicemail - press and hold 1 on the dial pad, or dial 123 and then press call or send, or tap the voicemail icon on your device.

    The pin you are being asked for unless it has been reset would be the last 4 digits of your phone number followed by the # key. From here you'll be prompted to create a new PIN/password.

    If the pin has been reset you can

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  • Bruce: Voicemail can be reached by dialing 123, or also the main VM messaging center number (805-MESSAGE) on the GSM network

     

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  • Michael:  Please make sure you properly set your MMSC to enable picture messaging.

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  • Is there a way to separate the threads here by phone?  There's no search box for this forum and with nine (at the time of this writing) pages and, I can't even tell how many posts per page, I just can't find what I'm looking for.  Odds are someone else has had the same issue as I've had and it's been addressed already, so I'd rather not make them address it again.  Or am I way out of line here?

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  • Good suggestion.  Best I can do right now is offer that Chrome has a "search" function but you have to do that page by page.  The other issue I've seen is that beta users often do not share their phone model when they post a question.  Just doing that would be a big help.

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  • Now seeing the LTE coverage I was hoping for. On CDMA, no coverage in an area I was at frequently. Now I can loginwith a hot spot and work. Also stronger cell signal at my home.

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  • Any ideas on why a Moto G 2nd Gen USA version (has the AWS bands) would only get EDGE (2G) coverage in an area that claims LTE. I would have expected 3G (HSPA or HSPA+). I know the phone does NOT have LTE, but without HSPA this level of data coverage is useless for a smart phone.

    Thanks

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  • Sherrie,

    People should be using the public beta thread. See https://help.ting.com/entries/89111288-GSM-public-beta-discussion

    John,

    The phone was likely designed for AT&Ts network and does not have all the needed frequencies. See https://help.ting.com/entries/105240696-Can-I-Bring-My-GSM-Device-to-Ting-Compatibility-and-Unlocking-Guide and compare with your phone specs.

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  • John - I believe you are only getting 2G because you are in an area where they offer LTE or 2G.  Tmobile has recently been upgrading the 2G areas to LTE, but they aren't adding 3G, so if you phone is not capable of getting LTE, then it connects to 2G.  

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  • Bruce - Thanks for the reply, but the phone is specifically designed for the US GSM market and has all ATT AND TMobile bands (2G, 3G, 3.5G, NO LTE).

    Christopher - Thanks for the insight on the Tmobile roll out. I think this explains things better. Does not help my non-LTE phone though.

    If this is the case, looks like Ting/Tmobile is not my new carrier, A shame, as I like the pricing and attitude. :-(

     

    Thanks for the help

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  • Is there any timeline for rolling out visual voicemail (VVM) on GSM iPhones?  I have 2 unlocked iPhone 5c's ported from AT&T.  Everything seems functional on Ting except VVM.

    I realize that Ting advises in its GSM FAQs that "Wi-Fi calling and visual voicemail are not currently available on GSM iOS devices" (https://help.ting.com/entries/104612453-GSM-iPhone-FAQ), but it would be good to know that "not currently available" means TIng is working on enabling the VVM function, so it will become available.  T-Mobile supports it for free, after all.  Having an iPhone without VVM is like stepping into a time warp to 1999...

    Otherwise, GSM on my iPhones seems to work fine at the locations I frequent in SoCal.  Ting's Call clarity is much better than AT&T's was, but call signal strength is weaker.  I get only 1-2 bars inside, 3 bars outside, where with AT&T, I might have gotten one additional bar.  Data signal is highly variable compared to AT&T.  With TIng, I often notice the data signal is switching from LTE to 3G or E within minutes while I'm staying at the same location, but not so much as to lose data entirely or to notice problems.  I expected more consistency based on the coverage maps, but again, have not experienced problems, so I have no complaints.

    One suggestion: AT&T had a "Mark the Spot" app that let users identify areas where they experienced problems, which I found to be surprisingly effective.  TIng might consider such an app to facilitate communicating about network issues.

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  • Richard,

    The fact that VVM was mentioned indicated it is planned. Ting support is swamped right now I know Ting GSM is progressing, but I think the deployment is more complex than was anticipated.

    Ting should get it working in due time. I performed a failed test of something on Ting GSM last weekend.

    Discussion should take place in the public beta thread, though.

    IMHO, this htread should be locked, but Ting has not locked any threads.

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  • I'm just in awe that Apple and Tmobile had VVM way back in 1999.  I am way behind the times.

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  • Is anyone else having any issues with MMS (picture messaging and/or group texting)? My phone is an iPhone 5. I posted about this back around February 25 and got very little conversation. I spent an hour on the phone with a Ting agent (with great customer service) but all of his suggestions got me no where... 

    This was troubleshooting page he directed me to...   https://ting.zendesk.com/entries/104696833-Troubleshooting-GSM-Picture-Video-MMS-Messaging

    I am concerned bythe fact that he had no answers for me it doesn't seem to be an issue many others are dealing with. Thanks for any of your thoughts and insight.

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  • Brent,

    MMS works fine on my wife's iPhone 5. I would double-check my settings. See https://help.ting.com/entries/99050753-Completing-Your-iPhone-5-5c-5s-Activation#GSM

    For further troubleshooting, look at https://help.ting.com/entries/104696833-Troubleshooting-GSM-Picture-Video-MMS-Messaging

    BTW, we should be using the open beta thread.

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  • Hey everyone,

    Bruce is right, we should try to keep the ongoing public beta thread in one place!  Head over here for the latest updates.

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