T-Mobile has just announced that they’ve switched on the 42 Mbps flavor of HSPA+ in 41 additional cities (full list at the bottom of this article) bringing the total amount of markets with access to their ultra high speed network to 96. Their 21 Mbps HSPA+ network already covers 184 markets (over 200 million people) and considering that there’s just 1 smartphone in their portfolio that can even do 21 Mbps HSPA+, the Samsung Vibrant 4G, today’s announcement doesn’t really mean all that much to a lot of people. To fully take advantage of the 42 Mbps HSPA+ you need to have a T-Mobile Rocket 3.0, and pardon us for being a bit cynical, but USB modems don’t exactly make our mouths water.
If you’ve got a need for speed and you’re looking for a new smartphone then you should also check out Verizon Wireless, who just yesterday announced that they’ve expanded their 4G LTE network to cover 19 additional cities. They have 3 handsets that can use said network, the HTC Thunderbolt, the Samsung Charge, and the LG Revolution. We’re absolutely head over heels with the Charge, despite the fact that it doesn’t reach the same sort of download speeds that the Thunderbolt is capable of. With the Charge you get one of the best screens currently available on the market, and Samsung doesn’t mess around with Android too much to make the user experience frustrating, unlike HTC’s Sense. The Charge also has the best battery life of all three 4G LTE smartphones.
But back to T-Mobile, we’ve been asking around when 42 Mbps HSPA+ phones are due to hit the market, and we’re hearing mid 2012. That’s 1 year away, and by then T-Mobile may not even exist since AT&T is currently in the process of trying to get government approval to swallow them up; of course we’ll keep you updated on how that’s going.
Update: T-Mobile sent us a friendly reminder that their Sidekick 4G, read our review here, is also 21 Mbps HSPA+ compatible.
Full list of cities: Akron, Ohio; Albuquerque, N.M.; Brownsville, Texas; Cape Coral, Fla.; Canton, Ohio; Charleston-North Charleston, S.C.; Cleveland, Ohio; Colorado Springs, Colo.; Columbia, S.C.; Columbus, Ohio; Corpus Christi, Texas; Fayetteville, N.C.; Florence, S.C.; Fresno, Calif.; Hickory-Lenoir-Morgantown, N.C.; Killeen, Texas; Lakeland, Fla.; Las Cruces, N.M.; Madera, Calif.; McAllen, Texas; Merced, Calif.; Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach, S.C.; Napa, Calif.; Palm Bay, Fla.; Palm Coast, Fla.; Panama City, Fla.; Pueblo, Colo.; Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, Calif.; Sacramento-Arden-Arcade-Roseville, Calif.; Salt Lake City, Utah; San Antonio, Texas; San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, Calif.; Santa Barbara-Santa Maria-Goleta, Calif.; Santa Fe, N.M.; Sarasota, Fla.; Sebastian, Fla.; Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, Va.; Wilmington, N.C.; Visalia-Porterville, Calif. and Waco, Texas.