Frequently Asked Questions
What is mobile broadband?
A: Mobile broadband is the wireless data service that allows you to connect to the full Internet on a mobile broadband-capable device through T-Mobile's network. Mobile broadband-capable Internet devices from T-Mobile® include tablets, Ultrabooks, mobile hotspots, and laptop sticks.
How is mobile broadband different from Wi-Fi?
A: Mobile broadband can be more convenient than Wi-Fi because it allows you to connect to the Internet anywhere you get a T-Mobile data network signal, instead of having to hunt for a free Wi-Fi location. When traveling to areas with T-Mobile coverage, this saves you the chore of purchasing access and memorizing multiple Wi-Fi logins.
How would this service fit with my existing plan?
A: Mobile broadband is a complementary service to your traditional voice and phone service from T-Mobile. It therefore requires a separate data plan for access. Prepaid or session-based mobile broadband is available for those wanting to pay as they go for access.
Where can I buy compatible accessories?
A: Accessories for style or convenience are available for purchase along with your mobile broadband device on T-Mobile.com or at participating T-Mobile retail locations.
What mobile broadband solutions does T-Mobile have for business customers?
A: Mobile broadband devices from T-Mobile fit a variety of users, including business users. T-Mobile offers discounts on service for business and government users. Call our Business Customer Care Team at 1-888-537-4242 for more information.
Is mobile broadband as fast as the Wi-Fi connection I have at home?
A: A variety of environmental and coverage factors may impact your data transfer experience. You can get a home broadband-like experience on the go with T-Mobile’s 4G network.*
Why do I need a mobile broadband device when I already own a smartphone?
A: Smartphones are great and are evolving into more sophisticated devices with lots of useful features. But smartphones are limited by their screen size and form factor from allowing you to enjoy the Web to its fullest. Mobile broadband is designed to complement smartphone ownership, as it allows you to enjoy the Web like you do at home, while on the go. Mobile broadband devices from T-Mobile come in a variety of form factors and allow you to enjoy rich multimedia content such as movies, surfing the full Web for extended periods of time, staying productive, and wherever your busy life takes you.
How can I save $10 on my mobile broadband rate plan?
A: Add a mobile broadband package (Internet device and plan) to any voice package (individual or family), and you immediately qualify for the $10 mobile broadband rate plan discount.
When will I see the $10 discount applied?
A: You will see the $10 discount in the shopping cart, and also on your monthly bill.
How is an Ultrabook different from a laptop?
A: An Ultrabook is a laptop. It’s thin and lightweight so it’s easy to take with you to work or school or when you travel. It’s also powerful and has great features like a long battery life and the ability to boot-up in seconds. An Ultrabook from T-Mobile comes with an Internet device embedded, so you can connect to T-Mobile’s Nationwide 4G data network virtually anywhere, anytime—without a Wi-Fi connection. An Ultrabook is perfectly suited for web browsing, shopping, checking email, editing documents, and streaming videos and music.
Why would I choose an Ultrabook over a laptop?
A: An Ultrabook has the full functionality of a laptop but because it is thin and weighs only about 3 pounds, it offers the convenient portability of a smaller device like a tablet. An Ultrabook is a more powerful device than a netbook. It includes the latest Intel® CPU, high-capacity storage, and a full-size physical keyboard.
Do I need a laptop stick to connect my Ultrabook to the Internet?
A: No. With an Ultrabook from T-Mobile, there’s no need for a laptop stick or any other Internet device to connect to the web. T-Mobile’s Ultrabook come with an Internet device already built in. All you need is a mobile broadband data plan or prepaid data pass to access the Internet when you’re on the go.
What is a laptop stick?
A: Laptop sticks or data cards or USB modems are tiny mobile broadband modems that plug into any laptop with a USB port and allow the computer to connect to the Internet using mobile broadband. Many laptop sticks double as portable storage devices with expandable memory for added convenience when switching from one laptop to another.
How do laptop sticks work?
A: T-Mobile laptop sticks plug into a USB port of any PC or Mac laptop. Initially, the desktop software on the laptop stick installs and once launched, gives the user the freedom to connect the Internet either via mobile broadband or Wi-Fi and allows convenient switching between connection types, based on speed or mobility needs. Laptop sticks are convenient for households with multiple laptops, since they can be switched from one laptop to another.
How do laptop sticks work with my existing plan?
A: A laptop stick can be a complementary device to phone ownership, as it enables you to experience the full Internet on a larger screen and get a home broadband-like experience on the go with T-Mobile’s 4G network. Laptop sticks will need a separate data plan to access the T-Mobile network. Prepaid or session-based mobile broadband is available for those wanting to pay as they go for access.
Why do I need a tablet?
A: Tablets are mobile broadband devices that provide rich connectivity and entertainment from just about anywhere, anytime. With large multi-touch screens, tablets provide a fuller multimedia experience (movie, Web browsing, reading, gaming, etc.), than any smartphone. Tablets are also super-portable, with a slim and lightweight design (most only weigh as much as a full can of soda), and can easily fit into your back pocket or purse. In addition, with preloaded entertainment, the ability to video chat, and the simplicity of Android™at your fingertips, tablets are devices that your whole family can share and enjoy.
What applications are pre-loaded on the Samsung Galaxy Tab?
The Samsung Galaxy Tab comes preloaded with the Samsung Media Hub, which allows you to buy or rent movies and access on-demand TV—so you can enjoy all kinds of entertainment on-the-go. Other preloaded apps and services include:
- Kindle for Android– Read the largest selection of the most popular books with the Kindle for Android application.
- Slacker Radio– Listen to free personalized radio
- Preloaded games, including the Asphalt5 HD demo: Peel out, drift, and chase down rivals throughout locations around the world in over 30 licensed vehicles from manufacturers like Ferrari, Lamborghini and Ducati.
- Qik Video Chat – Qik Video will keep you close to friends and family through two-way live Video Chat and Video Mail.
What is Samsung Media Hub?
A: Preloaded on the Samsung Galaxy Tab, Samsung Media Hub puts cinema-quality movie and on demand TV in the palm of your hand. Featuring all the stunning viewing quality you’d expect from Samsung, Samsung Media Hub is a gateway to mobile video like you’ve never experienced before.
What are the data plans I can buy for my tablet?
A: All current T-Mobile webConnect mobile broadband data plans, including postpaid and prepaid, can be purchased for use with your tablet.
What is a mobile hotspot?
A: Mobile hotspots are pocketable wireless routers that allow multiple Wi-Fi capable devices to connect securely to the Internet using a single mobile broadband connection. Mobile hotspots from T-Mobile double as portable storage devices with expandable memory for added on-the-go convenience.
What is a Mobile HotSpot–ready smartphone?
A Mobile HotSpot–ready smartphone is a smartphone with built-in Wi-Fi sharing capabilities. Once Smartphone Mobile HotSpot Service is activated on this phone, you can connect multiple Wi-Fi–enabled devices to high-speed Internet.
Find Mobile HotSpot–ready smartphones
How do mobile hotspots work?
A: Mobile hotspots can be used with any Wi-Fi capable device, giving you the ultimate freedom to use whatever device you desire. On start-up, simply locate the mobile hotspot network and enter the assigned password to the network from your Wi-FI capable device. Both the network and password are changeable via an easy-to-use web interface, allowing for complete security and personalization. Mobile hotspots are extremely convenient for households and businesses as they can transmit an Internet connection to many Wi-Fi capable devices from up to 30 feet.
How is a mobile hotspot different from a laptop stick?
A: Mobile hotspots offer greater flexibility for connectivity than a laptop stick, since you can connect multiple devices to the Internet at the same time. Mobile hotspots are "always on" and connected to the network, similar to a tablet or smartphone. A mobile hotspot user must be aware of battery life though; unlike a laptop stick which is powered by a laptop, a mobile hotspot has a rechargeable battery.
How do mobile hotspots work with my existing plan?
A: A mobile hotspot can be a complementary device to phone ownership, as it enables you to experience home broadband-like experience on the go with T-Mobile’s 4G network and any Wi-Fi capable device(s). Mobile hotspots will need a separate data plan to access the T-Mobile network. Prepaid or session-based mobile broadband is available for those wanting to pay as they go for access.
How does video chat work? Does it work out of the box? Will I be able to use the provider I currently use (e.g., Skype)?
A: T-Mobile Video Chat is preloaded on select devices and requires only a very simple registration (user name and password) to get started. Or you can download other video chat apps from the app marketplace direct to your tablet.
Can I make calls with an Ultrabook? A tablet?
A: You cannot make a direct call like you would with your mobile phone. However, you can use third-party web applications to voice connect using your Ultrabook or tablet. T-Mobile does not endorse any third-party providers.
How do your monthly plans work?
There are two types of monthly mobile broadband access plans.
For heavy mobile broadband users who plan to access the Web frequently throughout a month (as much as daily), there is a 5 GB Overage Free plan. This plan is overage free meaning the user is allowed up to 5 GB of mobile broadband access per billing cycle. Once that limit is reached, a user’s speeds will be slowed until the limit resets at the next billing cycle.
How many hours of Web browsing will I be able to do on the 5 GB plan?
The 5 GB Overage Free rate plan is designed for heavy data users who plan on accessing the Internet frequently (as often as daily) while on the go. The plan supports up to 250 hours sustained Web browsing OR up to 20 hours video streaming via a mobile broadband connection.
Various conditions may impact data transfer rates and coverage quality. The approximate times provided are for directional guidance only and are not a guarantee of quality of service or constitute a service level agreement. Actual usage varies widely.
Which activities use the most data? With the tablet? The Ultrabook?
A: Downloads and video streaming are typically the most data-heavy applications.
What is the difference between mobile broadband and smartphone tethering?
Mobile broadband is wireless Internet service on a purpose-built device that has its own rate plan. This supports greater utility for media consumption and light on-the-go productivity, depending upon device.
Smartphone tethering is a feature that can be added to your set of smartphone services to allow it to function as a mobile broadband router to connect other devices to the Internet via Wi-Fi. While convenient, the connection may not be optimized (depending upon the phone model) and contributes to your monthly phone data plan limits.
What is Smartphone Mobile HotSpot Service?
By subscribing to this service, you can activate the preloaded Wi-Fi sharing capability that is already available in your Mobile HotSpot–ready smartphone and connect up to five Wi-Fi–enabled devices to high-speed Internet on America’s Largest 4G Network®
How do I enable the Smartphone Mobile HotSpot Service on my Mobile HotSpot–ready smartphone?
Step by step instructions for enabling Smartphone Mobile HotSpot on your particular phone are available in your phone’s Start Guide or at the T-Mobile Support site.
Can I put my current T-Mobile phone SIM card into a T-Mobile MBB device?
A: No, it will not work. You will get a message informing you that you need a correct mobile broadband plan to use this device on T-Mobile’s network.
Can I share my laptop stick? Are there any restrictions?
A: Yes, you can transfer your laptop stick from one laptop to another. But you cannot broadcast or transmit your single laptop stick mobile broadband connection for use by others. Laptop sticks are designed for use with a single laptop at a time.
What is dual-carrier or 42 Mbps service?
A: Dual-carrier HSPA+ is a 4G network enhancement that effectively doubles the theoretical peak speed of T-Mobile’s HSPA+ 21 Mbps network to 42 Mbps. The higher data speeds are made possible because T-Mobile is taking two 5-megahertz HSPA+ downlink carriers—each supporting theoretical speeds of 21 Mbps—and bonding them together. The resulting bandwidth allows T-Mobile to deliver even faster data transfer speeds on its advanced 4G network, where this service is available.
Where is dual-carrier or 42 Mbps service available from T-Mobile? Do I need a compatible device?
A: T-Mobile has started to deploy 42 Mbps technology in several markets already, with plans to roll out the faster-speed technology in 25 markets by mid-2011. To experience dual-carrier performance speeds, you must have a compatible 42 Mbps device from T-Mobile. Devices that are 21 Mbps capable from T-Mobile will work normally in 42 Mbps coverage areas, but they will not experience an additional speed boost due to their lack of a compatible chipset.
How do I activate any mobile broadband device as Prepaid?
A: Ultrabooks and laptop sticks can be activated at purchase as Prepaid devices. On tablets, there is a simple "start up" icon on your home screen that will guide you through the process. Or you can work with a T-Mobile Retail Sales Associate or a Telesales Associate to purchase your first prepaid mobile broadband pass.
How do your pay-as-you go plans work?
A: Passes can be purchased online at T-Mobile.com or in stores through refill cards. Weekly and monthly passes are available. Each session has a time and data limit associated with it (e.g., 1 month/1 GB), and users can access the Web pass until either the time or data limit is reached. The user is then prompted to purchase a new pass.
How can I protect my investment (insurance and extended warranty) for my Ultrabook? Laptop stick? Tablet?
A: Laptop sticks can be protected through T-Mobile’s Premium Handset Protection program, which can be added to your initial purchase. Ultrabooks and tablets can be protected through the extended warranty programs of their respective manufacturers.
Is there a dedicated number I can call if I have problems?
All service and network issues can be addressed by calling T-Mobile Customer Care directly. Hardware issues, specific to a Ultrabook or tablet device are handled directly by the manufacturer; the relevant numbers are in the support documentation that ships with your device.
For all laptop stick as well billing, coverage, and connectivity issues or questions, please visit www.support.t-mobile.com or call T-Mobile Support at: 1-800-937-8997. For deaf, hearing- impaired, or speech-impaired support, call us via TTY at 1-877-296-1018.
For Dell Ultrabook software, hardware, power, troubleshooting, and warranty issues or questions, please visit www.support.dell.com or call Dell Support at: 1-866-955-2251. For deaf, hearing-impaired, or speech-impaired support, call us via TTY at 1-877-DELLTTY.
How do I get started with the tablet?
A: Since your SIM card comes pre-installed, it’s as easy as powering on your device, registering with your user name and password, and connecting to the Web. Browse, set up your personal or work email, and begin downloading apps.
How do I get started with my Ultrabook?
A: It’s as easy as inserting your active SIM card and powering on your Ultrabook. With an Ultrabook from T-Mobile, there is no need for an additional Internet device to access the web.
How do I get started with the laptop stick?
A: It’s as easy as inserting your SIM card, inserting your stick in a laptop USB port, installing the desktop connection manager software, choosing a connection, and starting to surf the Web.