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  1.    #1  
    I was wondering if anyone had advise on the benefits of cdma vs. gsm.

    Right now I have a Treo 600 gsm phone through ATT. Do I want to wait for ATT to issue the 650 or is their a benefit to the cdma phone.

    Thanks for any help.
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  2. #2  
    anyone got a lighter?
  3. Quake97's Avatar
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    #3  
    There's really only one thing to consider when getting a phone, coverage. If it works were you need it, you're good to go. There's a couple of major differences between GSM and CDMA. GSM is available worldwide, CDMA is primarily US-only. They both have good sound quality, so that usually not an issue. GSM usually has better battery life. CDMA has faster data speeds, for the most part. GSM/EDGE is pretty close. CDMA doesn't allow for incoming phone call while in a data session, GSM does.

    So, if you don't need to use the phone outside the US, get whichever has the best signal in the places to need the phone to work.

    Joe
  4. #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by quake97
    CDMA has faster data speeds, for the most part. GSM/EDGE is pretty close. CDMA doesn't allow for incoming phone call while in a data session, GSM does.Joe
    Joe,

    Reverse that "GSM/EDGE is pretty close." CDMA is pretty close since EDGE is now 20-30 kps faster. This point has been labored in these threads for weeks. People with EDGE cards for their laptops have been able to bear it out. There is harder data at ATT website.
  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by specimen38
    Joe,

    Reverse that "GSM/EDGE is pretty close." CDMA is pretty close since EDGE is now 20-30 kps faster. This point has been labored in these threads for weeks. People with EDGE cards for their laptops have been able to bear it out. There is harder data at ATT website.
    The actual data rate will be higher when CDMA is upgraded. However, the latency through the wireless system will do a lot more to degrade the performance than will the increased data rate to improve the performance (its a 1/x sort of relationship).

    So, my expectation is that the the throughput of the EDGE system, current CDMA and the new CDMA may not be all that much different. The things that is important is effective bandwidth not the clock speed of the network.

    J
  6. #6  
    I am in the SF Bay. About three weeks ago I conducted the following experiment.

    I had a Treo 600 Sprint versus a Treo 600 ATT (GSM/GPRS) side by side.

    Download speeds were about the same with the GPRS finishing ahead of the CDMA unit by a second or two of each download.

    I am sure there are latency, network traffic issues, etc. But the GPRS was impressive and I concluded that the most rational thing to do was to stay with GSM because it is going to be FASTER when EDGE arrives on the T650.

    By the way see my attachment rating SF Bay carriers.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by specimen38; 11/17/2004 at 01:41 PM.
  7. #7  
    EDGE is faster Now
    WHEN
    WHEN
    WHEN
    WHEN
    WHEN
    WHEN
    WHEN
    WHEN will CDMA be upgraded.

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80
    when CDMA is upgraded. So, my expectation is that the the throughput of the EDGE system, current CDMA and the new CDMA may not be all that much different. The things that is important is effective bandwidth not the clock speed of the network.J
  8. #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by quake97
    CDMA doesn't allow for incoming phone call while in a data session, GSM does.

    Joe
    While in a data session and actively transferring data, all current GSM phones available from vendors today sends the caller to voicemail. Ditto for CDMA.

    You can be attached to the network and if you are NOT actively xferring data, the call will come through.

    I have replicated this I don't know how many times.

    Try this, start a stream on your gsm phone or pc tethered via bt, and then try calling yourself.

    /v
  9. #9  
    My experience is that CDMA has significantly greater coverage area than GSM. I live on the peninsula of the SF bay area, and there are a great many areas around here that are just not covered by GSM.

    I've heard that's true in some other US regions as well.

    I'd be happy to hear from anyone whose GSM experience differs from this.

    Pete
  10. #10  
    EVDO/CDMA is out for Verizon in some cities (I'm in KC and it is available). Sprint will begin rolling out next quarter and be nationwide by end of 2005. I tested a Verizon EVDO data card for laptop and it got about 300-400Kbits/sec, worth $80/mo me thinks.

    Unfortunately we won't see Treo phones with EVDO for quite a while (Q2+ next year). There is an Audiovox PPC phone coming that has EVDO. Verizon and Sprint will carry in the next month or two. I believe it allows

    As far as GSM/CDMA, I haven't had any issues with Sprint and don't travel globally except for vacation so don't have a need for GSM. CDMA has been fine for me. I've had lots of problems with Cingular data service though.
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by Pete_L_P
    My experience is that CDMA has significantly greater coverage area than GSM. I live on the peninsula of the SF bay area, and there are a great many areas around here that are just not covered by GSM.

    I've heard that's true in some other US regions as well.

    I'd be happy to hear from anyone whose GSM experience differs from this.

    Pete
    I also live in the Bay Area, following the Cingular/ATT merger coverage is now excellent, I have ATT and my Treo will switch between networks based on the best signal strength. GSM coverage in the Bay Area used to be poor but the addition of the 850Mhz frequency and the Cingular/ATT merger have resolved it (plus it's really useful (for me anyway) to be able to take my phone with me when I travel overseas).
  12. #12  
    AT&T and Cingular are now one. It's double coverage now. I don't suppose you have ever had a GSM phone. AT&T subscribers now have access to all of Cingulars towers. Unfortunately, I have heard that Cingular customers are still waiting to get access to AT&T towers. It's technical glitch that will soon be remedied.

    Quote Originally Posted by Pete_L_P
    My experience is that CDMA has significantly greater coverage area than GSM. I live on the peninsula of the SF bay area, and there are a great many areas around here that are just not covered by GSM.

    I've heard that's true in some other US regions as well.

    I'd be happy to hear from anyone whose GSM experience differs from this.

    Pete
  13. #13  
    Not to toss gasoline on this potential flame-fest, but isn't CDMA's clarity better than GSM's? I seem to remember reading some very technical data (w/a plain english translation) on the comparison b/t CDMA and GSM sound quality. I seem to remember CDMA being a better technology that sounded closer to a landline. GSM was more flat, etc.
  14. #14  
    I'll add to the flame war.

    IMHO, GSM voice is far better than CDMA

    Sprint's data packages are cheaper

    T-Mo's voice plans are cheaper

    AWS, well now Cingular, has EDGE

    GSM is used globally, great for globe trotters

    But mostly, it depends on the specific coverage in your areas, so try them and be satisified with the one that you decide on
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  15. Minsc's Avatar
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    #15  
    In a quiet room, I think GSM sounds better. Not clearer mind you, but more "life-like." This has nothing to due with the network or the air interface, mind you, it's just that GSM phones use a different CODEC than CDMA. However, CMDA does give you a nice noise-canceling feature which makes it sound better when the background is noisy - when driving, for instance.

    CDMA doesn't allow for incoming phone call while in a data session, GSM does.
    I was just waiting for someone to chime in with this. GSM does NOT allow an incoming call while actively transferring data - same as CDMA.

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