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T-Mobile testing 4G LTE in more than eight cities

A third-party app company caught wind of smartphones using its software to ping T-Mobile's fastest 4G network.

A T-Mobile store.

T-Mobile is quietly testing its forthcoming 4G LTE network in New York, Las Vegas, the San Francisco Bay Area, and other cities, according to OpenSignal, a firm that monitors network coverage.

OpenSignal first noticed activity on T-Mobile's unofficial network through a mobile app that collects diagnostic data speeds, likely the work of T-Mobile's network engineers as they test their own infrastructure prior to the official launch.

The mobile app also noticed pings in Seattle, Denver, New Orleans, San Diego, and Kansas City, OpenSignal said.

In addition to seeing the network tested on the Samsung Galaxy Note 2, the OpenSignal Android app also logged testing from Samsung's Galaxy S3 and newly-announced (but unreleased) Galaxy S4. In addition, BlackBerry's Z10 will also support the new 4G LTE standards.

Although OpenSignal logged speeds around 25Mbps down and 8Mbps up, and a 40ms latency, these numbers were collected from a small sample on a network that's still under development, and should be taken with a grain of salt.

Still and all, it's exciting to glimpse T-Mobile's progress and plans. Hopefully, we'll hear more about the official LTE rollout at T-Mobile's big New York event next week, which is expected to center on the company's contract model.