Cindy was given a Verizon iPhone 4S, and wants to know if she can use it on T-Mobile. She's been told she can pay to swap the chip out. Leo says no, that won't work. T-Mobile is a GSM based carrier, and Verizon is CDMA. The iPhone 5 actually does have both GSM and CDMA radios, so it would be able to work on T-Mobile.
Scott loves the Google Nexus IV, but it's GSM only with T-Mobile. He's not much a T-Mobile fan, and would like to move it to another network. Leo says that since it's GSM, it only would be able to work with a carrier that uses GSM, which is AT&T and T-Mobile. Verizon and Sprint use a different technology called CDMA.
Google created the Nexus to be a developer phone, and as such, it may only be designed to work with T-Mobile. So he may just be out of luck there. It's a real shame too, because the Nexus phones are really popular. People really want vanilla Android.
Cathy has to get a new phone and wants to change to something else from Sprint. She has ruled out AT&T and Verizon, so that leaves T-Mobile. It doesn't have the iPhone yet, though. The real problem could be coverage. Softbank just bought Sprint, so they may improve over time. Leo thinks T-Mobile is the best bet for Cathy and recommends the Samsung Galaxy SIII or the Galaxy Note 2.
Annette bought a new iPhone 5 and she can't send pics to her friends running Android through text messages. Leo says that since Annette is using an iPhone on T-Mobile, the phone isn't configured right for iMessages, is getting confused and won't default to MMS. Here's a technote from T-Mobile. There's also a youtube video that will walk her through it called How To Fix MMS on iOS 6/6.0.1 iPhone 5/4S/4/3Gs Tmobile.
Walmart has a phone service which offers unlimited texting and calling, and Gene is wondering if that's a good deal. Leo says that Walmart is an MVNO (virtual network operator), meaning they resell another company's service, which is T-Mobile. They also offer Sprint's True Connect. There are some limitations because it may not include a lot of data, if any. He should read closely at what he's getting.
This week, T-Mobile not only announced that they're finally getting the iPhone, but that they would be eliminating phone subsidies, two year contracts and early termination fees. They will offer "financing" for phones, which makes Leo wonder what the difference is. They are also going to lower the cost of their monthly plans. An interesting move as T-Mobile tries to leach more customers from the big two.
Steve unlocked his T-Mobile phone when he went overseas, but when he came back to the US, T-Mobile locked it back down again. Leo said to ask T-Mobile to unlock it again, and they gave him a new unlock code. He can't get to the point where he can enter the code, though. Leo says he can try dialing the code in the dialer as if he's calling it, and that might unlock it.
Leo says when he gets his next phone, he should just buy it unlocked. It won't be subsidized, but then he can put other SIM cards in it and it will never be locked.