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9/27/2010
02:00 PM
Eric Zeman
Eric Zeman
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T-Mobile's First HSPA+ Phone Won't Tether

According to T-Mobile, the G2 Android phone made by HTC won't be able to tether when it launches.

One of Android 2.2 Froyo's defining features is the built-in ability to tether Wi-Fi equipped devices with a carrier's cellular network.

Some carriers, such as Sprint, are highlighting this feature in devices like the EVO 4G. The EVO 4G can tether with up to eight other devices, and the Epic 4G can tether with up to five. That's a great business feature, especially when more than one device needs Internet connectivity.

For whatever reason, T-Mobile isn't going to take advantage of this feature, even on the eve of its fastest phone's debut. The HTC G2 Android phone will be available in the coming weeks, and it is the first handset from a major U.S. carrier to include high-speed HSPA+ wireless data.

HSPA+ means the G2 can download data much faster than standard HSPA handsets. With access to this faster network, it would seem tethering to be a no-brainer.

T-Mobile explains, however, "T-Mobile does not currently support handset tethering or offer a tethering rate plan. Though tethering and Wi-Fi sharing will not be initially supported on the T-Mobile G2, we know that consumers are interested in these features and we are working to develop a solution to support them in the future."

Sprint, Verizon, and AT&T all offer tethering in one form or another with a batch of different handsets. This is becoming a crucial feature for today's smartphones. it's surprising that T-Mobile would launch such a noteworthy device without the feature ready to go.

Hopefully T-Mobile is working to bring this feature to market as soon as possible.

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