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T-Mobile announces the SyncUp DRIVE, a 4G LTE hotspot for your car

Car trips can turn from fun to annoying fast, especially if your little ones in the back can't get their fill of Disney Channel shows on Netflix. T-Mobile aims to solve this (and other predicaments caused by lack of Wi-Fi in your car) with the T-Mobile SyncUp DRIVE.

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AT&T GoPhone plans will have more high-speed data, starting Friday

 

AT&T announced today that customers on their GoPhone $45 and $60 monthly plans will have a greater LTE data cap, starting this Friday (November 11). The plan prices already go down to $40/month and $55/month after enabling AutoPay.

The $40/month plan will now get 4GB of LTE data, up from the current 3GB. The $55/month plan is jumping up to 8GB of LTE data, previously only 6GB. After you run through that, you will be limited to 128kb/s speeds. Both plans have unlimited talk and text in the United States and rollover data.

AT&T is also offering deals on GoPhone-compatible devices. You can get a ZTE Maven 2 for free (from Nov 11 until Dec 31) when activating a new line and paying $30 for the service.

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Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge are the first devices compatible with T-Mobile's new 4x4 MIMO and 256QAM technologies for faster data speeds

Back in September, T-Mobile announced several improvements to its network's infrastructure that would help speed up data transfers significantly. There were two folds to the strategy, 4x4 MIMO and DL-256QAM/UL-64QAM, as well as two devices promised to be compatible with these options first: the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge.

First, 4x4 MIMO is already available in 319 cities and has the potential to double the data paths between the cell network and phones for better speeds in congested areas. It turns out that 4x4 MIMO was already enabled in the update that rolled out to the T-Mobile Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge back in September, but it wasn't mentioned in the official changelog. Cellular Insights tested out firmware G935TUVU4APIA on the S7 Edge and verified that 4x4 MIMO was working on it.

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Editorial: Fact-checking the latest video rant from T-Mobile CEO John Legere

As mobile bloggers, watching national carriers with revenue in the billions snip at each other like gossiping high school students is the closest thing we have to a spectator sport. Between Sprint hiring Verizon's old spokesman, T-Mobile continuing its cloying David-versus-Goliath narrative, and Verizon using textbook straw man attacks against both of them in all those Jaime Foxx spots, we can hardly make the popcorn fast enough.

Every couple of months or so, T-Mobile CEO John Legere emerges from his fortress of solitude to directly address mobile consumers with a rant against his competitors. This time he's addressing specific points from Verizon's latest ad campaign.

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T-Mobile will issue Note7 update that limits battery to 60% starting tomorrow (11/5)

T-Mobile is planning to release an over-the-air update to T-Mobile-branded Galaxy Note7 devices tomorrow that will limit their maximum battery capacity to 60%. The OTA will be released beginning at 12:01AM (time zone unclear) tomorrow, November 5th. It is unclear if T-Mobile or Samsung are utilizing any features to "force" the OTA to install without explicit user authorization, but the rollout at midnight when most owners would be asleep and their phones charging would be about the best time to try something like that. An internal memo, below, details just how the update will work.

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The RCS Mirage: "Advanced Messaging" is a mess in the US, and Google's "standard" is just one more

There has been much noise made about Google's launch of its RCS messaging platform via the Messenger app on Sprint today. Sprint announced it would support Google's RCS platform, formerly known as Jibe, back in February, though, and remains the only US provider to do so.

But T-Mobile and AT&T have launched RCS messaging, right? Yes. But their versions don't work with Google's (Sprint's) RCS. And AT&T's RCS messaging doesn't work with T-Mobile's, and vice versa. And there's no indication that this will change any time soon. While both T-Mobile and AT&T have signed on to the GSMA's soon-to-be-published intercompatible RCS messaging standard, carriers seem much more interested in making "advanced messaging" a carrier feature rather than the universal SMS replacement it was developed to be.

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Google makes RCS support in Messenger official, will be default SMS/RCS app on all Sprint Android devices

The ultimate goal of RCS is to completely replace SMS, but moving the millions of daily SMS users away is no small feat. Yesterday, we posted that RCS support was being rolled out to some Messenger users on Sprint and Project Fi. Now Google has made the feature official, and should be available to all Sprint customers starting today.

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T-Mobile's $325 off Pixel promo is now available to customers with Simple Choice Unlimited plans too

John Legere is well-known for being a rather unconventional CEO, and the Pixel promo that T-Mobile took the wraps off of last week had Legere stamped all over it (it was essentially the equivalent of spitting in Verizon's face). The $325 bill credit for having a Pixel on T-Mobile seemed like a sweet deal at first glance, but it required customers to be on the carrier's controversial, "unlimited" ONE plan.

We first heard about T-Mobile extending the offer to non-ONE customers when a reader tipped us with a thread from the Pixel subreddit (thanks, Alex!), but nothing was official. However, T-Mobile has just updated its promo's press release to indicate that Simple Choice unlimited customers are now eligible for this offer as well.

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Project Fi app now shows live data use and per-app breakdown

Project Fi subscribers are getting a new tool to track data usage today. A post in the Fi sub-Reddit by the verified Google community manager account says data tracking will now update live, and that usage will be broken out by app. It's all live right now—just open the app and check it out.

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[Deal Alert] Motorola offers $150 off the Moto Z, Moto Z Droid, and Moto Z Force Droid with promo code

The new Moto Z line is divisive. It's probably the best example in a limited field of new "modular" phones, consisting of only the Z variants and LG's G5... and LG already dropped the modular design for its more recent V20. But if you've been eying either the Verizon-exclusive Moto Z Droid (or the Moto Z Force Droid with a bigger battery) or the unlocked Moto Z, the sticker shock of the phones and the Moto Mod add-ons may have been a disincentive. Now Motorola is giving a generous $150 off all of them on its web store.

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