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Cellphone reception -- Verizon or AT&T?

Original post made by Barbara, Amador Valley High School, on Jul 30, 2009

Hi, all. I have to get a new cell phone contract for my family, and am leaning toward getting an iPhone, but Verizon probably has better reception around town. I do not want to invest in a phone that won't work because of bad reception. Does anyone out there have experience, good or bad, with either AT&T wireless or Verizon wireless? Thanks for your comments.

Comments (9)

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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Jul 30, 2009 at 9:03 am

Stacey is a registered user.

There's a dead zone in Birdland if you're not on AT&T. I don't know if Verizon covers it or not.

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Posted by traveler
a resident of Downtown
on Jul 30, 2009 at 9:47 am

I can't vouch for everywhere in Pleasanton but I have used my Verizon phone (and Verizon cell computer modem) from the northern counties of Maine to the erupting volcano on Hawaii and most states in between. Never a dead zone, cannot even remember a dropped call. An iPhone is never gonna happen for me until Verizon can have the service.

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Posted by tmh
a resident of Civic Square
on Jul 30, 2009 at 9:59 am

I've had AT&T (or versions of it) since 1999 and the wife had Verizon for quite a while. We've lived in the tri-valley since 2003. AT&T has gotten a lot better over the past few years and the drop call issues have become fewer and fewer. There is a weak spot or two on I-580 out in Livermore, but that's about it (for me at least). After hearing my wife's cell phone stories I felt that her covereage and service was a bit better than AT&T's. However, the Verizon voice plans were significantly more expensive for comparable service than AT&T. I had my wife port her number to my AT&T account and our combined bill is now cheaper than her bill alone, with significantly more minutes and rollover minutes. Customer service from both has been hit and miss, although AT&T has been better over the past 2-3 years than they were 5+ years ago. Overall if you're doing significant business and where a dropped phone call would make a huge difference then I would go with a Verizon. If it's okay to have "slightly" worse cell coverage than Verizon, you like the smaller data/voice plan costs and you want the features of an iPhone (which is great if you're using it for personal use) then go with AT&T.

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Posted by AT&T here
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Jul 30, 2009 at 11:52 am

We brought our AT&T plan with us when we moved several years ago to Pleasanton. We've never had any trouble with calls on the plan at home or when we travel.

The plan for the first phone with the data plan is $40 and each line afterwards is $10 each. We have a family plan for unlimited texting at a flat $30. There are only 450 minutes per month for daytime use but with using the phones mostly for texting during the day, night time talking with friends, and the free AT&T to AT&T calls, we normally use only half the minutes allowance and roll over the rest for 12 months.

In 4 years, we are still losing expired minutes each month and we can be a bit chatty at night.

The folks at Parrot at The Shops at Waterford in Dublin are great as well as the Radio Shack across from Kohl's in Pleasanton.

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Posted by Verizon
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Jul 30, 2009 at 7:30 pm

I use to work for AT&T and I will tell you that I felt bad for all of the wireless service that I sold to people. I just personally ported all my numbers over to Verizon because AT&T has horrible service. I had so many dropped calls on AT&T especially on their 3G network. Take my advice and get Verizon. You won't be disappointed.

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Posted by unclehomerr..
a resident of Downtown
on Jul 30, 2009 at 7:42 pm

Why not Sprint Digital?? I've had it in Pleasanton since '98, and never had a dropped or failed call and signals have been strong in every area. I've traveled to Seattle, Portland, Bellingham, Fresno, Sacramento, Norfolk/Virginia Beach, Nags Head NC, Richmond, WaDC/Balto, Las Vegas, Nashville, NYC, NY Thruway and MA Pike. My plan with video/data is $40mo. I'll show you the bill.

Let's get in touch.. we'll both get a $25 bonus.


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Posted by Karen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 30, 2009 at 8:38 pm

If you go to Clark Howard's web site you will see that he thinks we're all a bunch of suckers for buying these two year contracts.

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Posted by unclehomerr..
a resident of Downtown
on Jul 30, 2009 at 9:03 pm

Good point, Karen. I've always bought my phones on ebay and just activated service with Sprint.

The contracts are so they can recover the costs of their 'free' phones.


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Posted by unclehomerr..
a resident of Downtown
on Aug 2, 2009 at 3:03 pm


You got me thinking about a new phone, and I just bought a Blackberry on ebay today. You interested in my old Samsung A-900 with lots of accessories and 2 extra batteries for $50??

Check Craigslist next weekend for "Buy My [SPRINT] phone please!"


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