T-Mobile published a Q&A with CTO Neville Ray today focused on its 4G deployments — both of the HSPA+ and LTE varieties — and used the opportunity to announce that HSPA+ service has spread to eight additional cities: Abilene, Amarillo, Odessa, and Victoria, Texas; Bakersfield, California; Eau Claire, Wisconsin; Joplin and St. Joseph, Missouri. Of those, Abilene, Amarillo, Bakersfield, Odessa, Port St. Lucie, and Victoria get access to 42Mbps HSPA+ — the fastest service that the carrier has currently deployed, compatible with the Samsung Galaxy S Blaze 4G and the upcoming HTC One S. Overall, Ray reports that they're now at 225 markets with HSPA+ covering over 200 million people; they're still using the "America's largest 4G network" verbiage, though that may need to change soon depending on Verizon's LTE progress (assuming you buy into the notion that HSPA+ is indeed 4G anyway).
Talking about LTE and deflecting language during AT&T's merger attempt that T-Mobile didn't have a "clear path" to deploying it, Ray says that AT&T's parting gift of AWS spectrum is largely to thank for why it's able to deploy it now combined with smart refarming of its existing 1900MHz holdings — though he says that he'd "love to have more spectrum to further strengthen our position to compete in the marketplace."
T-Mobile told us back at MWC that it would skip 84Mbps HSPA+ altogether on the road to LTE; Ray tempers that language in this latest post, saying that the current focus is indeed LTE but they'll "continue to evaluate because the capability is there [for 84Mbps HSPA+] in the network." It's unclear what good 84Mbps HSPA+ might be once LTE is rolled out over the same footprint — but as they say, never say never.