All T-Mobile phones
are 3G phones. True story. Despite the ‘4,’ all
T-Mobile phones run on 3G
networks per the ITU.
They had no choice. Sprint started it with saying their WiMAX was ‘4G’ even though their implementation was about as far as you could get from the then ITU definition of ‘4G’, then T-Mobile with LTE (which AT&T rallied against, at first), then Verizon with LTE. AT&T really has no choice in a society that is ignorant to technical aspects and is used to the marketing terms typically have a one up over the previous generation tech.
I can’t fault them for that, nor can we fault the public for not realizing how HSPA compares with HSPA+ compares to WiMAX compares LTE compares to LTE-Advanced, or how the ITU defines these terms and every carrier in the US is using the marketing term because they can (and should). All we can do is try not to strain the rectus muscles of our orbits when we uncontrollably roll our eyes when someone claims that their phone with ‘4G’ in better than a phone with ‘3G’ without actually knowing what that implies except that the number before the ‘G’ is one more than the other.
My perception is that we've still a way to go before the service providers have the capacity in their networks to exceed the technical capabilities of the [3G] services they are delivering. Moving up a technology doesn't seem the sensible course of action.
I'm buoyed that in the UK Orange and T-Mobile are sharing their networks now to improve capacity and coverage to users at no cost to them. http://www.t-mobile.co.uk/share/ Hope this practice spreads elsewhere.
The fragmented mess that it sounds like the US "4G" networks are in only seems to benefit the marketing departments and no-one else.