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T-Mobile HotSpot @Home Review

Basics Using It Video Wrap Up Comments  63  

Intro Technology Setting Up First Experiences  

Jun 26, 2007, 11:00 PM   by Eric M. Zeman

Phone Scoop's In Depth review of T-Mobile's new HotSpot @Home service, plus video demo.

This is Phone Scoop's in-depth look at the new HotSpot@Home service from T-Mobile, which goes live today. The service lets users roam between cellular and Wi-Fi networks seamlessly for calling. Do two radios make for a better cell phone?

About the author, Eric M. Zeman:

Eric has been covering the mobile telecommunications industry for 17 years at various print and online publications. He studied at Rutgers Newark and University of Kentucky, and has a degree in writing. He likes playing guitar, attending concerts, listening to music, and driving sports cars.



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This forum is closed.


Jun 27, 2007, 9:27 AM

T-Mobile HotSpot@Home Data connection

One comment in your video is not correct. When using T-Zones the data connection is actually using the WiFi connection too (the EDGE icon on the display is showing you have a data connection to the network and not the type of conection). When on WiFi ALL the cellular services go through WiFi... (SMS, MMS, Calling etc.) Did you notice it was faster?
I have it straight from T-Mobile that the data connection is still through the EDGE network and NOT the Wi-FI.

Jun 27, 2007, 10:33 AM

are the minutes prorated?

So i guess i'm concerned if this is going to work as the nights work. For example in nights if a call starts at 8:59 and you talk for 15 minutes, because the call started before 9 you WILL get charge the full 15 minutes from your day minutes... So what if you are ON the network and jump into a wifi network... how is t mobile going to charge that?? do the calls that switch from one network to the other count??? or are THOSE calls gong to be bill if you initiated the call on Tmobile's cell network?.... i wonder....
whatever network you are on when you begin the call is the network the call is credited to, so if you are on the tower network, the entire call is credited to that network, so yes, the entire call would be charged under your wenever minutes. on the ot...

Jul 5, 2007, 5:13 AM

Subscription Required ?

If I already have a home wifi router, do I still have to pay a monthly fee to T-Mobile for UMA? The article indicates it is possible to select an existing wi-fi connection from available networks but it is unclear as to whether there is a fee to pay. Is it also possible to connect to a wifi hotspot elsewhere that is not T-Mobile??
rgronenb said:
If I already have a home wifi router, do I still have to pay a monthly fee to T-Mobile for UMA?

No, you don't have to pay extra for UMA usage. You can use your existing router as well. You do, however...

Jun 27, 2007, 8:14 AM

dumb question

I'm sure this is a stupid question but what exactly is the point of this?
For people who don't have cell coverage in their homes, this provides it.
I am guessing that they are also creeping into VOIP arena with this. Not a bad move on T-mobiles part. One phone for all your needs. One number for both your home and cell phone.
wirelessjunkie said:
I'm sure this is a stupid question but what exactly is the point of this?

What's the point? Seriously? Have you ever had poor coverage at home? This eliminates that. You ever wanted unlimite...

Jun 30, 2007, 2:18 PM

low long promotion will last?

1. Does anyone know how long the $10/20 promotional rate will last?
2. It would be nice if there were sexier phones available in the very near future. Any rumors?
3. I'd love a 1-year contact. It seems like this service is not yet available through resellers like letstalk with 1-year contracts.

The promotion will last through the middle of September. I was told this by tmo customer service.

Rep in store said eventually most new phones will have it like they do with myfaves.

Jun 30, 2007, 12:52 PM

Why This Is A Great Idea For T-Mobile's Pockets

Now granted, this will actually provide a SERVICE to those with poor service in their homes, or to those who truly are holding back on their talking while home due to minute contsraints. For your average user...here is why it makes perfect sense to T-Mobile:

You have to be a min 39.99 rate plan which gives you 600 min.

You have to add $20 (Yes I know about the intro rate...even at $10 they get you) to get access to the unlim calling wi-fi option.

That would actually put your bill at $59.99...which on the regular T-mobile plans gives you 1500 Anytime.

They are counting on you NOT using more than 900 Additional minutes at home.
My T-mobile rep told me it can be used on any plan, which would inculde the 29.99 plan. They are saving money, because it really wont cost them anything to have people talk voIP, which is why the @home plan has unlimited usage.

And for the people w...
First of all the service is $10. You will be able to purchase at that price through September. And if you get it at that price it stays at that price as long you keep it. Secondly I have a small business. I have an office downtown and one in my home. ...

Jun 27, 2007, 9:34 AM

Wi-Fi Security Options?

What sort of Wi-Fi security options do the phones support? WEP, WPA, WPA2?
Wi-Fi security uses either WEP or WPA I believe. I _know_ WPA2 is not supported.
Also, the connection from the phone to t-mobile is an IPSec VPN connection, so even on an open hotspot the call is still secure.

Jun 27, 2007, 12:19 PM

How does 9-1-1 work on the wi-fi part?

I know with other VOIP providers, you have to enter you address for 9-1-1. Do you have to do that for the wi-fi part of this system (since it is essentially a VOIP system).
The user will have to register a 911 address with T-Mobile via My.T-Mobile.com or Customer Care.

Jun 27, 2007, 1:49 PM

International? (Question for the Eric's or Rich)

Will this feature work in Wi-Fi spots internationally? Say in Europe? And if so, since your not being charged for minutes used over Wi-Fi connections (if I understood your review correctly) would'nt you technically be able (to a certain extent) roam internationally free of charge?
😁 The answer is that because it's internet, it doesn't matter where you are! If you have a wi-fi access point abroad, and someone here calls your local TMO number, it finds you and not only is it unlimited for you, but free for your friends/family t...
I am a rep at a corporate store, and due to my excitement for this service, I have asked a lot of questions like this, and here is the answer:

According to the Hotspot@home Launch binder that we received, calls made internationally through a router...

Jul 1, 2007, 2:31 PM

International Rates?

VoIP services like Vonage have very low international rates. What would the international rates be for such calls originating in the USA over WiFi under H@H?
They are the same because the call isn't VoIP, its GSMoIP, basically its just a different interface to the normal t-mobile network.
But ya, t-mo's international rates are the same weather or not you are using wifi

Jun 27, 2007, 12:14 AM

What was that buzz sound?

When you walked from outside to inside, does it buzz when switching from a cellular signal to wifi?
The buzzing sound you heard was standard GSM interference. Hold any GSM cell phone that is on an active call next to almost any electronic device with speakers or a microphone and you will hear it.

I first discovered it when I switched from Sprint ...
No, all switches were completely seamless. There was no way to tell that the call switched other than to see the difference in the signal indicator. That sounds was my BlackBerry interfering with my videocamera.
gunny said:
When you walked from outside to inside, does it buzz when switching from a cellular signal to wifi?

This link is good in reference to your question: www.feelingcingular.com. T-Mobile and PlayStation 3 ar...

Jun 27, 2007, 3:28 PM


So does this mean that if your connected on Wifi that you SMS messages will go through Wifi? Thanks.
Nope, Texting along with internet usage will jump off the hotspot and onto the network...

Jun 27, 2007, 10:22 PM

Other phones?

What other phones can you use for this? Can you use unlocked phones with wife like the Nokia N90 series?
No. It needs to support UMA - which very few phones do - and I'm pretty sure it needs to be a T-Mobile UMA phone specifically.

Note that Wi-Fi is different from UMA. Most phones with wi-fi do not support UMA.

Jun 29, 2007, 5:42 AM

who is providing the GANC for UMA Call to T-Mobile

In the UMA Rove in and Rove out using Nokia's mobile ur able to handover to UMA and GSM both
who is providing that GANC to T-Mobile

Jun 27, 2007, 12:11 AM


I know you are 🤣

Jun 27, 2007, 7:44 AM

Looks Muy Cool

I'm definitely not a T-Mobile fan boy, but this sounds like a great idea. It seams to work really well and would be a no brainier for families that have big talkers. This could be a real solution for people who want to get rid of their home phone service, and a reasonable work around for people who have poor coverage in their homes. But one question that either wasn't answered or I missed, How does this service effect data speeds?
At the moment, there is no data side to the Hotspot for home. It is strictly for making calls so if there in no reception in your house without Hotspot then you wont have a data connection, you must have missed it in there he mentioned alittle bit abo...
Data speeds of the home network, or data speeds of the phone connecting to T-Zones?

I didn't notice any detrimental change in my home broadband network when using the phone.

Since this service is for voice calls only, it will NOT effect data sp...
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