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T-Mobile Coverage Map: How it Compares

"Wyatt Jett" (2019-10-05)


T-Mobile Coverage Map: How it Compares
ARTICLE SUMMARY

T-Mobile has the second-best coverage in the country, behind Verizon
T-Mobile's 4G LTE network covers 59% of the United States
T-Mobile is rapidly expanding its network footprint, especially when it comes to 5G
A portion of T-Mobile's network is made up of their new 600 MHz spectrum, which not all phones can access
A variety of smaller carriers (MVNOs) operate on T-Mobile's network, giving you the same great coverage
In the U.S., there are four dominant networks: Verizon, Sprint, AT&T and T-Mobile.

Recent national network shootouts put T-Mobile's network in second place out of these four, behind Verizon and ahead of AT&T. The result relates mostly to network breadth, i.e. the amount of U.S. territory covered by T-Mobile's network. The carrier's rapid network expansion and addition of their 600 MHz spectrum is really starting to show.
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A number of smaller carriers, known as MVNOs, also occupy T-Mobile's network. This includes Metro, itself a T-Mobile entity, as well as Ultra Mobile, US Mobile and TracFone. Read on to see T-Mobile's coverage maps and learn about what they mean for your T-Mobile service.
How T-Mobile's Coverage Compares
The national coverage map below gives you a sense of T-Mobile's cell phone reception compared with Verizon, AT&T and Sprint. Click on each carrier to get a look at their nationwide 4G and 3G coverage. You can also zoom in to see what coverage is like in your specific area.
The map shows T-Mobile almost neck-and-neck with AT&T in the coverage department. There are some sizable blank spots, especially in Montana, Wyoming and Iowa, but the east coast and south east is completely blanketed.

Without the carrier's 600 MHz spectrum, which not all phones can access—the iPhone X and anything earlier, for example—AT&T's network bests T-Mobile. See our picks for the best T-Mobile plans.

Is T-Mobile the Most Reliable Network?
Here's how the 4G coverage breaks down numerically between the four majors:

#1: Verizon: 70% 4G coverage
#2: T-Mobile: 59% 4G coverage
#3: AT&T: 58% 4G coverage
#4: Sprint: 27% 4G coverage
T-Mobile's covers the second-most U.S. territory with their 4G network behind Verizon and within 1% of AT&T. Here's how the nationwide carrier coverage scores break down percentage-wise.
T-Mobile covers roughly 11% less U.S. territory than Verizon with their 4G network, but trails far behind in terms of 3G coverage. 3G is the network your phone will fall back to in the absence of a 4G signal.

Want to learn more about the specific networks? Check out these guides:
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Verizon Coverage Map Compared
AT&T Coverage Map Compared
Sprint Coverage Map Compared
MetroPCS Coverage Map Compared
Virgin Mobile Coverage Map Compared
Cricket Wireless Coverage Map Compared
How Good is T-Mobile's Coverage?
The coverage map shows why T-Mobile is in second place in terms of nationwide coverage. A good portion of the country is covered with purple—i.e. T-Mobile coverage—though there are gaps in Nebraska, Wyoming, Idaho and Oregon. However, as mentioned earlier, T-Mobile is aggressively expanding into rural regions, so expect this to change.
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T-Mobile's Coverage in Your Area
We've given you a snapshot of T-Mobile's coverage nationally—covering 59% of the U.S. with their 4G network—compared to the other major carriers. Now you'll want to find out what T-Mobile's service is like in your specific area.

That's where WhistleOut's address lookup feature comes in. Head over to our comparison engine, type in your talk, text and data preferences, then your street address where it reads "Coverage Check." On the resulting page, you'll be able to get location-specific coverage info by clicking one of the buttons on the upper-right hand of your screen.
We've also written in-depth state-by-state coverage guides, as well as coverage info for America's largest cities. Use these to get thorough coverage information on the four major networks in your area.
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Carriers That Use T-Mobile's Network
You don't have to buy a plan from T-Mobile specifically to enjoy their solid coverage. There are a number of smaller carriers, known as MVNOs, that also occupy the network. The biggest T-Mobile MVNO is Metro, itself a wholly own subsidiary of the company. The T-Mobile network is also home to TracFone, Simple Mobile, Ting and US Mobile.

The following is a list of MVNOs that run on the AT&T network:
T-Mobile Coverage By State
Curious how T-Mobile's coverage compares state by state? Use this handy chart to get the quick rundown, and click on an individual state to check out our full coverage guide on it.
How to Improve Your Cell Phone Reception
One hidden way to improving your cell phone coverage—other than moving to an area where it's verifiably good—is by upgrading to a newer device.
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See, newer phones get far better cell phone coverage than older models. This is because they have the radio technology to tap into newer, faster "spectrums" rolled out by carriers.

For example, a couple of years ago, T-Mobile introduced a spectrum known as Band 12 that works 4 times faster than its predecessor inside buildings. The iPhone 5S does not have a radio that works on Band 12, whereas the iPhone 6S, 7 and 8 all do.

Same goes for other carriers and phones—the newest models will be more apt to have the built-in technology to operate on the latest spectrums.