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T-Mobile Test Drive: Day One

June 26, 2014

Received T-Mobile Test Drive kit on Wednesday afternoon, June 25, 2014.

T-Mobile Test Drive kit

The Test Drive Kit includes:

  • Gold 64GB iPhone 5s with nano-SIM pre-installed
  • Apple EarPod with mic and remote
  • Apple 5 Watt USB Charger
  • Apple Lightning Cable
  • Manual
  • Terms & Conditions booklet

T-Mobile Test Drive kit, iPhone 5s

I wonder what T-Mobile / Apple would do with the EarPod after it is being used. Remember, I have to return the Test Drive kit at after the seventh day.

T-Mobile Test Drive is free with no obligation to buy, but if the iPhone 5s comes back with a cracked screen, damaged screen display, water damage, active Find My iPhone feature, or can’t be powered on we have to charge a $100 damage fee. If you don’t return the device, we have to charge $699.99 plus applicable taxes.

A hold for $699.99 + taxes will be placed on your credit or debit card. The timing of releasing that hold will vary by credit card company. We won’t charge your card unless you fail to return the device.

Here’s the interesting part: a 64GB unlocked iPhone 5s retails for $849 + taxes at Apple Store. Should I choose to keep the 64GB iPhone 5s from the Test Drive kit, it would have cost me $699 + taxes. That is $150 cheaper than Apple Store price.

I already have an unlocked 64GB iPhone 5s, courtesy of firstnameatappledotcom. I don’t think I would want to buy one anytime soon.

Gold Unlocked 64GB iPhone 5s

For 24-hour period I used the iPhone 5s on T-Mobile network and performed Speed Test using Ookla app. Bear in mind, these tests were not done scientifically. In that 24-hour period I spent some times at the following locations in Southern California:

  • Long Beach, Downtown and 2nd Street
  • Fullerton and Placentia
  • Costa Mesa and Newport Beach

I noticed that T-Mobile network performed exceptionally well in the Costa Mesa and Newport Beach area; 74.99 Mbps download and 25.43 Mbps upload peak test result. T-Mobile has the best network around my office desk, beating out AT&T, Sprint and Verizon. T-Mobile might have secretly installed a cell tower a few feet from me.

SpeedTest,net T-Mobile Costa Mesa, Newport Beach

Somewhere in the Fullerton / Placentia area, Verizon seems to have the best network; beating T-Mobile and AT&T. Sorry for the slightly blurry picture, it’s the only one I have.

iPhone 5s on Verizon LTE network has an impressive 40.77 Mbps download speed compared to 13.48 Mbps and 9.92 Mbps for T-Mobile and AT&T, respectively.

iPhone 5s on T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon

In the Downtown Long Beach area, AT&T hits 8.88 Mbps download speed while T-Mobile hits 20.55 Mbps.

Speed Test Long Beach Downtown AT&T

Speed Test Long Beach Downtown T-Mobile

What do these all mean?

I can certainly say that I would not mind switching carrier. Six more days to go.

p.s. Here’s a 37-second video of one of the speed test I did.


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