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  1.    #1  
    I am sure this has been asked before but I could not find any Threads on it.


    Do I want to stay with CDMA or do I want to go with a GSM carrier?

    Isn't GSM older technology? (I do not travel overseas)
  2. #2  
    My understanding of the initial selling point for GSM (other than overseas usage) was the portability of the SIM card. However, a smartphone eliminates that issue because your data is sync'd with Outlook, not moved from phone to phone with a SIM card.

    Otherwise, if you don't travel overseas it appears to be more a matter of what plan fits you best. Unfortunately, that's about as personal a choice as the color thread elsewhere in this forum. It also depends on local coverage and dead spots.

    I've been with several carriers. Here is how I approached my current decision with SPCS...

    Coverage: AT&T poor, Nextel strong (but no roaming), TMO strong, SPCS strong

    Data: AT&T expensive and poor, Nextel strong, TMO average, SPCS strong (unlimited, doesn't take from my minutes, and I can receive calls during data usage)

    Cost: AT&T poor, Nextel poor, TMO strong for low volume plans, SPCS good for high volume plans (plus unlimited data, plus free calls to ANY SPCS user)

    Brand: well, I'm in the communications business (ILEC) and I compete with all of them in a way, so I can't say anyone made me happy. My company doesn't have an option for me.

    When I moved from AT&T to Nextel I cut my bill in half. I almost did the same when I moved from Nextel to SPCS. I'm seeing even more improvement now with number portability, but the carriers are catching on to those of us who really use the free data.

    Hope that helps.
    KitMoni
  3.    #3  
    Is one better than the other?
  4. #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by Triple xXx
    Is one better than the other?
    Have used both; currently use GSM. As a geek I like the ideas behind CDMA. As a Qualcom stockholder I love CDMA. However, in practice, any difference in the technology pales when compared to things like cost, coverage, and customer service. If you are happy with those and you do not travel internationally, do not even consider changing for the technology. Keep in mind that the CDMA carriers are providing and promising faster data.
  5. Iceman6's Avatar
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    #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by Triple xXx
    Is one better than the other?
    With reference to the Treo 650, GSM is slightly better because EDGE is slightly faster than CDMA 1xRTT. This assumes The Muffin Man's slides are correct regarding the Treo 650 supporting EDGE.

    In the longer term, Verizon and Sprint are building new networks that will support much more data bandwidth to your phone. The Treo 650 will not be able to use the additional bandwidth, so you'll have to buy another phone in order to get the faster download speeds.
  6. DHart's Avatar
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    #6  
    Keep in mind that both CDMA and GSM OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturers) both claim that their equipment is the best upgrade path to 3G. But these arguments are aimed mainly at the service providers (carriers) and relate to the costs of upgrading a network. Other factors in their arguments are speed of implementation and new services that can be offered to the public as a result of the network upgrade. The carriers each made decisions about radio technology that their networks would use with an eye toward gaining more market share (with acceptable profit levels). As the carriers embark on network upgrades, the speed and features of each pass each other in the race. The upgrades happen geographically, so while one area has been upgraded another has not. The result is that you see statements on this board from one person saying "AT&T coverage/data transmission speed/features sucks" while another complains about Sprint, another about T-Mobile, etc. Each carrier (whether CDMA/GSM) has geographic pockets where they suck or shine. The projection from industry analysts engineers is that at some point in the future CDMA and GSM will merge into a common advanced standard.
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by DHart
    .....The projection from industry analysts engineers is that at some point in the future CDMA and GSM will merge into a common advanced standard.
    Or someone will build phones that use both. As there have been phones that exploited both digital and analog, and as vendors are already planning phones that use both digital cellular and WiFi, I expect to see phones that use both CDMA and GSM, one or two numbers, with SIM. It a lot easier to converge the phones than the networks.

    The net is that the answer to the question about comparing the two technologies is a short term answer at best and means more to the carriers than to the customer.
  8. bnishida's Avatar
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    #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by Triple xXx
    Is one better than the other?
    For the Treo 650 I would go with GSM for 2 reasons

    1. EDGE is faster thatn 1xRTT (assuming the rumor EDGE is supported is True)

    2. The ability to swap out phones. I would like to be able to move my SIM to a smaller phone when I don't want the size and fuctionality of a Treo.

    The major reason I might choose CDMA is that most CDMA phones will do analog which would mean better coverage in the US. But since the Treo does not support the analog network (AMPS) it is not a factor.

    If you only want to use the Treo then it will be the individual carrier not the Technology they use you need to choose.
  9. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by bnishida
    The major reason I might choose CDMA is that most CDMA phones will do analog which would mean better coverage in the US. But since the Treo does not support the analog network (AMPS) it is not a factor.
    After switching to GSM, I continued to carry my CDMA/AMPS/Sprint phone. I did so because there were some places with Sprint coverage but no GSM and a lot of places with AMPS but no digital. (I had to keep the Sprint account open in any case for family members. It is still open.) When a year had gone by since the last time I had to use that phone, I stopped carrying it.

    In any case, it may be more accurate to say that some, rather than most, CDMA phones will be also do analog.
  10. #10  
    my two bits on this is as follows. In some areas, gsm is better, in some areas, cdma is better. We don't have the fancy GSM high speed coverage (edge) in this area yet, so no big deal. Around here (Indy area) my coverage from sprint seems to be much better. A good gauge for me, is when I was in a restaurant for lunch, and tried to use my cingular gsm phone, I couldn't get a signal. A gal was chatting a table away, using her sprint phone. I started paying attention, and asked several people who were using their phones at different places, when I had no signal, and they were all using sprint. When I got my 600, I got a sprint. So far, I have not been sorry.

    Now, in NYC, it may be a whole different story!
  11. #11  
    According to the reports I've seen the 650 WILL support analog... It might not, but this is open for debate.
  12. #12  
    I left a CDMA provider(VZW) for a GSM(T-Mobile) provider to get the Treo 600. The reasons I like GSM better is :
    1. Better battery life. GSM 6 hours ...CDMA 4 hours
    2. Simcard. Sims allow you to use more than one device in a account.
  13. #13  
    This question will reveal that I am no cell phone expert, but which carriers (of the ones which support the Treo 600/650) use CDMA and which use GSM? I currently have a Verizon CDMA phone (Kyocera 7135), but I want to get a Treo 650 with the ability to move a simcard to a smaller phone at times.
  14. #14  
    Carriers that carry the Treo 600 in CDMA are Verizon and Sprint. GSM that have the Treo are At&t, Cingular, and T-Mobile.
  15. #15  
    i go for gsm... longer batter life... plus for me... and gives me to option to swith phones or if i goto states and dont want to get charged roaming charges i just buy a prepaid simcard and put i in my treo to make calls.
  16. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by Curious George
    ..... but I want to get a Treo 650 with the ability to move a simcard to a smaller phone at times.
    This implies GSM. While it seems reasonable that CDMA might use a sim at some point in the future, I have not seen any mention of it. There is clearly a move in the direction of self-provisioning of all telecom service and that really should include sims.
  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by wongster
    i go for gsm... longer batter life...
    Yeah! But it is strange. The fundamental advantages that are touted for CDMA include more efficient use of both spectrum and power. However, users of GSM Treos are clearly getting better battery life than the CDMA users.
  18. #18  
    NanoWiz and others, thanks for the responses!
  19. #19  
    I agree regarding the flexibility with GSM. I got (and returned) a Treo 600 from AT&T. The battery life was definitely better than my CDMA phone but the data connections were noticibly slower. Since the phone was locked to AT&T, it was painful (if not impossible) to get it to work outside of the US.

    If I traveled abroad more frequently, I'd get an unlocked GSM 650 however. I have a tiny quadband GSM phone which will work anywhere in the world with any SIM card but I'd miss having access to corporate mail via the smartphone.
  20. #20  
    Another good reason for GSM is roaming and being able to use your data while roaming not just voice, I'm speaking of my experience in the US. Another is UMTS, though you will have to buy a new phone the UMTS phones work on both GSM and UMTS...maybe the Tre0 XXX will take us there....
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