It's here. It's fast. And it's better than ever.
1. What does 4G mean?
Simply put, 4G is the fourth-generation of mobile technology. It's the newer, faster version of the EDGE and 3G networks. The 4G network allows you to enjoy much, much faster internet access - meaning that you can download web pages, music, games, apps, and even be able to watch streamed video like YouTube - faster.
For the techies out there, BTC's initial deployment of 4G wireless is based on HSPA (Evolved High Speed Packet Access) and will offer you a not only faster, but much more fun mobile internet experience.
2. What are the 4G data speeds?
At top performance, customers with 4G handsets (and a suitable data package) will be able to enjoy up to 8 Megabytes per second (8Mps) in download speed which is up to 60 times faster than what they enjoy today. This is as fast as your better landline Internet connections in most places around the world.
Customers with 3G devices will also enjoy download speeds up to 2Mps per second, which is up to 15 times faster than what they enjoy today. With a 3G or 4G device, customers will enjoy a super mobile Internet experience where they will be able to download web pages in a flash, share photos and documents in seconds, and be able to stream video and music with unbelievable quality and reliability.
Naturally, the 4G network will be a shared resource over a wide area, meaning that your experience at any given time will be determined by other factors such as distance from the 4G cell tower and the number of users in the area you are in. However, even with this, your experience with your smartphone or device will be amazing!
3. What about cell phone devices that are not 3G or 4G? Will I still be able to use my simple and basic phone that I have now?
Yes. The phone that you have today, that works on BTC's GSM network, will still function just fine on the new 4G network. In fact, one of the things you will find is that the voice quality of your calls will improve. Persons on the other line will sound crisper and clearer. And there will be fewer dropped calls and call failures.
But while you don't have to change your phone, we do invite you to come into a BTC retail store to see our range of new devices. There, you will see, just how much more you will be able to do on the 4G network with a new hi-speed (3G or 4G) internet phone and internet package.
4. What can you do with 4G?
Think about it this way - Whatever Internet experience you would have on a very good landline Internet service, will now be available to you on your 3G or 4G enabled handset. You'll be able to connect faster and now, better than ever.
The 4G Mobile Broadband network will deliver a superior online experience - delivering popular websites such as YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare - all at super high speeds. You can enjoy it all by using a Smartphone device or tablet. Faster download speeds enable you to download large files such as video clips or games in seconds. With BTC's new 4G network, customers in the 4G coverage area with a suitable device will:
+ Enjoy enhanced data Internet speeds in more places
+ Experience video chat with no dependency on Wi-Fi
+ Download and watch video at blazing fast speeds
+ Send photos and videos to social networks - faster than ever
+ Browse the web with amazing speed, even when on a call
+ Send email easily, even with large attachments
+ Quickly download photos, apps, music, games and more
+ Better call quality, reliable coverage and secure connections
5. I am a prepaid customer (i.e. I buy phone cards). Are there Internet packages for prepaid users on the 4G network?
Yes. BTC is very pleased to say that there are 4G data (Internet) packages for both prepaid and postpaid customers - and for any suitable mobile device as well.
6. What are the price and packages available for 4G?
The pricing and packages for the new 4G services can be viewed - click here. We are excited about the range of offerings and prices that we now have catering to a wide variety of needs and budgets with innovative and exciting packages for both prepaid and postpaid customers.
7. Do existing customers on a data (Internet) or BlackBerry plan have to subscribe for 4G?
No, you do not. All present mobile data and BlackBerry customers will see some improvement in their download speeds even if they do not have a 3G or 4G device. The new network will mean an improvement in the performance of EDGE for 2G devices. Naturally, if you have a 3G or 4G capable device, you will see an even more pronounced improvement in your download speeds. You will, however, be able to review our expanded range of data offerings to ensure that you have the service that is just right for you.
8. Does this new 4G network do anything to improve voice calls?
Yes it will. Voice quality in the mobile network should improve with the new 4G network, because we are simultaneously modernizing the existing 2G network. Coverage will improve, call set-up times will be shorter and voice quality will improve substantially.
9. Does this service improve my in-building coverage?
Yes. Indoor and outdoor coverage will improve both on the 2G network for voice and with the new 4G network for mobile Internet usage.
10. I bought my 3G/4G handset off the island or from an independent retailer here in The Bahamas. Will it work on your new 4G network?
Not necessarily. We CANNOT guarantee that any 3G or 4G phone (not bought from BTC) will work on the 4G network, this includes Iphones. Since we cannot guarantee that your device purchased elsewhere will work on the BTC 4G network, we caution you to be careful when considering your next mobile purchase. Please note that BTC's 4G network operates on the HSPA+/UMTS 850MHz spectrum band.
BTC sells 3G and 4G devices that have all been tested and verified for our networks.
11. What will be displayed on my 3G or 4G device when I connect to the 4G network?
On the top of the screen, your device will display "3G", "H" or "H+" and some rare instances "HSPA". The icon displayed varies according to the handset or device make and/or model.
12. Will this affect the battery life on my phone?
Thanks to the latest technology, the new network does not in itself affect battery life negatively, as this will depend mostly on usage and screen size. Remember though, if you're making many calls, using the Internet extensively, using multiple applications that heavily use the device's CPU (ie. some screen savers, games, etc.) battery life may be reduced. You can save battery life by closing or limiting the number of active applications and by turning off Wi-Fi and Bluetooth when not in use.
13. Will I be able to access 4G data services when I roam?
If you're roaming within The Bahamas where 4G HSPA has been enabled, or if you are visiting any of the international countries where BTC has a roaming agreement and where that network operator has a 4G HSPA+ enabled network, then yes you will have access to 4G data services when you roam. You will also have access to 2G and 3G roaming in markets where we have roaming agreements. As always, you should check that your mobile device supports the mobile frequencies that are used by the mobile operator in the country where you are roaming.
14. I'm an existing postpaid data customer, what happens to my package now that the new 4G service has been launched?
Now that the 4G service has been launched, existing postpaid data customers have received improved data speeds and are automatically placed on the new 4G network.
15. I've received confirmation of my service activation but I can't browse the internet.
a) Ensure that the APN settings on your device are correct. For a list of the correct BTC APNs, click here.
b) If your APN is isn't correct, manual configure your device and insert the correct APNs. For information on how to manually configured your device. click here.
16. I have a smart phone which BTC APN should I use on my device - GPRS or Internet?
a) Smart phones should be configured with internet APNs. This is also the same for Iphones and Androids. The BTC APNs for smart phones are:
a. Prepaid - internet.btcbahamas.com
b. Postpaid - internet.btcbahamas.com
b) The GPRS settings should be used for all other phone types.
17. I waited too late to send a text message to confirm the activation of my service.
You will not be able to reply to the request after 3 minutes. Restart the service activation process.
18. What can I do to find out when my service ends or is deactivated?
Please follow the *205# instructions - click here to view
19. Will I be notified when my service ends?
With the exception of 1Day packages, 24 hours before a package expires the customer receives a notice to advise that:
"Your [Data Plan] will expire on [Date and Time]. To prevent service disruption, please purchase another subscription."
20. How to Activate My Postpaid 4G Data Service?
If you would like to apply for 4G postpaid data services, please visit our customer service location in the Mall at Marathon from 8AM - 8PM or Pioneer Way Grand Bahama from 8AM - 8PM For additional information, please contact CALL-BTC, 225-5282.
21. What frequency does BTC's 4G network operate on?
BTC's 4G network operates on the UMTS 850MHz spectrum band