AT&T vs. T-Mobile vs. Verizon
Over the past years I accumulated a number of plans from different carriers. I’m constantly using 3 phones (this is going to change soon), running on all kind of platforms, BlackBerry, Android, iPhone…
The number one question people ask about phone service targets reliability of the network. I decided to write a quick post to share my experience. This is a non-scientific review based on phone usage – voice and data- in different US cities.
Customer since 2007.
Device: BlackBerry 9700
I was reluctant at first. Heard so many bad things about AT&T.
Reason to pick them was/is 3G. I couldn’t stand the slow T-Mobile edge connection.
Voice: Best network in South Florida. Fewer drop calls vs. T-Mobile. Sucks in NYC.
I do get those ‘congestion’, ‘call failed’ from time to time. Voice quality is good.
Data: Fast, solid 3G network. Blackberry is a no brainer on the network. AT&T should give up on all their ‘multimedia services’. They are all terrible. I wish my BlackBerry was not infested with so many worthless applications imposed by the carrier.
International calls: World Connect for $5/month offers great pricing for calling foreign destinations. I use Google Voice for all my long distance calls but I still appreciate the ability to pay cheap for premium quality over AT&T.
Customer Service: I can’t believe AT&T customer service is not 24/7. This is a deal breaker for me. They take our money 24/7 they MUST provide service 24/7. I hope VZW jumps on this for their next comparison campaign against AT&T.
Customer since 2005.
Currently running on HTC Hero
When I first heard of T-Mobile landing in Miami I saw hope. The underdog would conquer mobile subscribers by offering better pricing, better service and newer devices. Over promised – under delivered. Definitely not what I expected from them. Hoping HSPDA (fast cellular broadband) will put them back in the game.
Voice: Coverage in South Florida is growing but still displays a lot of ‘no signal’. I have a much better experience with them in NYC. Voice quality is average.
Data: So far I haven’t got anything higher than Edge on T-Mobile network. Even my HTC Hero locks in as Edge. Apparently T-Mobile is rolling out a new HSPSA 21Mbs today J. Definitely something I will try.
International calls: T-Mobile offers a discounted calling option. Prices are a bit more than AT$T. Again I encourage to use Google Voice for this service.
Customer Service: AT&T and Verizon are pretty flexible when it comes to discuss billing issues. T-Mobile will not reduce your bill – ever. One should know that. They are very helpful on technical support though.
Customer since 2008
USB Dongle and Droid
I first signed up for a Verizon account to get fast internet access while roaming in the US. So far VZW has been super solid on all counts.
Voice: by far the best coverage compared to competition. Clear crispy sound, very few dropped calls. Excellent quality.
Data: Fast and reliable. I use my dongle everyday with no complaint whatsoever. Works everywhere even in confine places.
International calls: VZW is CDMA and won’t offer roaming service outside the US [actually they do on certain phones using a Vodafone sim card]. I don’t use them either for long distance BUT they have a very open policy to allow VOIP applications on their network. That enough deserves a good grade.
Customer service: when you offer a flawless product you handle much less customer support. I never really connected with their CS. The only time I needed to change my plan to cut some extra charges they were prompt to credit me back. Awesome.
There is room for competition in the US and I really hope Google will grab the momentum to invade this space. Only 2 GSM carriers is just ridiculous compared to 5 in the UK and 4 in France (with Free Mobile).
Just for fun I added a YouTube video of all AT&T ads attacking Verizon.
This entry was posted on Monday, March 22nd, 2010 at 7:41 pm and is filed under android, Apple, Blackberry, google, iPhone, Telecom, USA. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
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