You might have noticed some obsessively pink commercials lately. T-Mobile is starting to roll out 600MHz service in areas where the FCC repack is already complete. They’re touting this as their first step toward 5G. I think that’s great, although they’re late to the party. As a result of T-Mobile and Sprint’s delicate dance the last few years, AT&T has pulled ahead in 5G already.
But the real question…
Sure, T-Mobile is rolling out this service, but is it any use? If you’re a T-Mobile subscriber with a phone older than a year, it isn’t. There are very few phones which will actually use these frequencies today. Of course everything has to start somewhere and it’s expected that within the next three years all midrange and premium phones will support this technology.
It’s also not clear how much 600MHz capacity T-Mobile is putting in. The maps are hard to find and they’re not really clear. Legally the company can say they’ve rolled out 600MHz to Los Angeles if all they’ve done is put up one tower. At the moment 600MHz is more of an advertising tool than something incredibly useful.
But if your phone did support it…
The next question, and the real point of this article, is whether or not your cell booster would work with it.
The answer is a disappointing “no.” At the moment there are no cell boosters that work with the 600MHz bands. The process of getting new boosters approved takes a few years and none of our vendors are willing to tell us about anything they even have on the drawing board for 600MHz. Of course that could just be corporate privacy in action.
The good news is that a cell booster will give you support for all the other bands used by T-Mobile. You’ll get great cell service whether you’re using voice or data. At least for today, you won’t miss that 600MHz band. A cell booster is a great investment because regardless of what’s added in the next few years, the primary cell bands aren’t going away. You may not get that stratospheric data speed but you’ll get much better service than you will without a cell booster. The combination of weak 600MHz signal and strong signal from the other cell bands is going to leave you satisfied.
When will cell boosters support 600Mhz and 5G?
That’s a really good question. If I had to guess we’re taking about 2022-2024 before you really see that technology get there. I say that because it was about three years between the time that 4G frequencies were unveiled and the time that cell boosters supported them in mass-market-priced products.
In the meantime, find the perfect cellular signal booster by shopping the great selection at SolidSignal.com. If you don’t know what you need, give us a call at 888-233-7563. Our reps can walk you through the process and recommend the exact booster you need. If it’s after hours, use our free recommendation form to get the help you need. There’s no obligation and the process is done by real, qualified technicians. They’ll reply usually within about a day with everything you need to know.