Verizon or Sprint? And what store to buy from?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by dmk1974, Feb 13, 2013.

  1. macrumors 68000


    Sep 16, 2008
    My brother and his wife are looking to make the switch to an iPhone and are looking at Verizon and Sprint (he gets a 15% teacher discount for both, but nothing for AT&T).

    Also, is there a benefit to signing up at a Best Buy, Sam's Club, or elsewhere vs directly from one of the cell provider stores? Any bundles they throw in, waive activation fees, or other benefits?

  2. macrumors G5


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    I would from AT&T.... I'd never go to Sprint (horrible, horrendous doesn't begin to describe their 3G speeds) or even less Vericrap.
  3. macrumors 6502


    Feb 3, 2011
    Columbus, OH
    I would go with VZW. Look through some other threads. The Sprint data speeds are horrendous. I like buying my phones directly from Apple, simply from a customer service standpoint.
  4. macrumors 65816


    Nov 17, 2008
    Cudi Zone
    Verizon 100%. They have the most coverage and LTE towers. Sprint may have unlimited data, but you'll never want to use it as its too slow. Buy from Apple for customer service.
  5. macrumors 6502a

    Apr 24, 2012
    Denver Colorado
    I would go with AT&T. I had Sprint with their slow speeds. I had a 4S on Verizon for a year but cancelled my account due to dropped calls and NO 3G data at all where I live here in Denver.

    Ben with A&T since 2007 and have never been happier. I had to keep my AT&T account open while I had Verizon so I could have a phone that worked at home.
  6. thread starter macrumors 68000


    Sep 16, 2008
    Thank you all for your feedback so far. I also want to add, they live in the Chicago NW suburbs.
  7. macrumors 6502


    Feb 3, 2011
    Columbus, OH
    Verizon works very well in Chicago, even underground.
  8. macrumors 6502

    Nov 4, 2009
    Wow, couldn't agree with you more on how bad Sprint is! I average .05kBps down and about the same up constantly down here in South Florida. 108 days until my contract is up (yes, it is so bad that I'm counting down the days)!!!!!!

    I would go with AT&T since they have talk and surf at the same time.
  9. Browns2212, Feb 13, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013

    macrumors regular

    Dec 6, 2012
    Orchard Park, NY
    The biggest factor is where they are going to use their phone the majority of the time. So, probably work and home. They need to find which provider has the best coverage.

    Personally, I would say Verizon. That's what I have and I really like it. Excellent LTE coverage and I rarely, if ever, have dropped calls. Data speeds are fast and prices have gotten better with the Share plans. I get unlimited calls and texts and 4GB of data for $70 but then have to have the $40 data plan. My wife shares the account and we pay about $160 including our 19% work discount.

    Honestly, all I generally hear are horror stories about Sprint unless you never leave a good reception area, which they seem to have fewer of.

    Also, I upgraded to my iPhone 5 over the Internet through That said I would probably go into a store. I only really did it online because they were on back order and figured I could get one quicker that way.

    PS - Guys, it doesn't sound like AT&T is an option because they want the work discount. Plus, overall I think Verizon is just as good, if not better than AT&T. That said I've never had AT&T so take it for what it's worth.
  10. macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    You'll probably pay the least with Sprint, but they have a long, long history of being lousy in Chicago. For some reason they always seem to muck up the network there. It's not worth going with them unless you almost never talk on your phone and you're on good, fast wifi 95% of the time.

    I would echo the calls to go with AT&T, but if you're really set on getting that 15% discount, Verizon is the lesser of two evils here. Even so, price out what Verizon will give you, and what AT&T will give you. Verizon's plans are a bit more expensive unless you're sharing 3 or more users on a single account, so the discount may actually be a wash.
  11. macrumors 601

    Dec 18, 2012
    Charlotte, NC
    Between the two I would go Verizon. If you're open to trying AT&T I would choose them overall due to them being gsm and able to talk and surf the web at the same time.

    Either way don't go with Sprint
  12. macrumors member

    Mar 30, 2012
    I live downtown Chicago and travel to the burbs Just came from shaumburg mall. Anyway Sprint is fantastic out here. LTE Towers are up and running. I would go there. Cheapest best service in Chicago by far
  13. thread starter macrumors 68000


    Sep 16, 2008
    You are the first person in this thread to be happy with Sprint :)

    I do have 1 friend with Sprint and for where he goes, he's been fine with it. He's not at much af a tech geek as me though.

    Have you ever tested using the Speedtest app? If so, what kind of speeds do you get?
  14. macrumors 6502a


    Mar 22, 2009
    You should have your brother and his wife ask around to get a feel for the service at work and home. Do any coworkers get terrible signal at work? Anyone have a good signal? What about friends/family who come over to visit?

    I've gone as far as calling my friend on his cell phone from my home phone while he was in my house to test things out.
  15. macrumors 6502

    Dec 7, 2012
    I would go with Sprint if they are always in the Chicago area and only travel for vacation. I know Chicago has LTE for Sprint and the speeds I have seen from people in that area are 20-30 download. Also, Chicago has the 800mhz voice up and running so they will get better in building penetration. Verizon is great almost all places except they are limited data and expensive. Verizon's speeds in NYC was 4-15 download. They are already loaded with a lot of people.

    Sprint is rebuilding their towers with new technology right now. They will be better in the long run compared to Verizon.

    Having said this, Sprint is still upgrading and will have poor service occasionally. If having fail proof service and no interruptions, then go with Verizon.

    As for the stores, I would go with whoever gives the cheapest price on the phones. Apple stores are great but they are most expensive as well as the carrier stores. Check out Radio Shack and Sams club for discounts and activation waivers. That's what I always do. Every little bit counts.

    Good luck to them.
  16. macrumors newbie


    Feb 14, 2013
    I suggest buying four pre-paid phones one for each provider respectively. This will allow you to determine in the calling areas of interest TO YOU which carrier best suits. Sure they have interconnect agreements but that's not good enough (for me).

    The little money it'll cost comparatively is worth it in the long run.
  17. macrumors 68000


    Nov 2, 2006
    And Yourself?
    I would go with VZW. After seeing the problems my girlfriend has had with Sprint on her iPhone 5, I wouldn't want you to go through the same!
  18. macrumors newbie

    Aug 28, 2009
    I'm in the Chicago area too. I had Sprint years ago (pre-iphone) was not happy with it. Later went with ATT for the iPhone. Dropped calls, could not use at home, terrible service. Switched to Verizon this year and so far no problems. No dropped calls (yet), can use while walking around the house. Of the three carriers I'd go with Verizon.
  19. macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    Always select the carrier based on coverage where it is needed first. Most are just going to blindly recommend whatever they're using.
  20. macrumors 6502a

    Oct 25, 2007
    I would for sure skip best buy unless you signed up for the 50.00 gift card and also best buy does not keep much inventory what so ever.
  21. macrumors member

    Mar 30, 2012
    The problem is. There are a lot of unhappy sprint customers and rightfully so. It sucks outside of LTE. And there are people that just follow the heard and say its bad with no experience. Like I said. If they are in Chicago and vicinity they will love it. Anyone else on here actually from Chicago will agree with me. All others will bash it cuz they live in some Podunk town that hasn't upgraded yet. It's a slow process but sprint will show a lot here in the year to come
  22. macrumors 6502


    Nov 25, 2005
    New York
    I have been on Verizon for over 15+ years and have tried AT&T a couple of times with a separate line and have found the service to be horrible (in my market), the customer service to be horrible (Verizon crushed AT&T again in customer satisfaction) and Sprint is just getting their LTE off the ground so I would say Verizon.

    You can use a Verizon iPhone on any GSM carrier since it is unlocked out of the box you just won't get LTE on AT&T but their 3G HSDPA is pretty fast.

    Verizon is my hands down choice.
  23. thread starter macrumors 68000


    Sep 16, 2008
    Well, I think they are going to go with AT&T or Sprint. AT&T is nice because of the simultaneous voice/data. Sprint is appealing to him because he is planning to add his MIL for a 3rd line and they have a $400 instant credit when switching over 3 lines. I have a feeling they will go with Sprint because of the unlimited data and the great credit deal. He has to get it done this week.
  24. macrumors regular

    Nov 9, 2012
    Verizon! Works like a charm! Pretty pricey but its worth it! LTE is great in my location (Chicago)

    Was a sprint user years back, didnt like the customer service, which caused me to switch to verizon.
  25. macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2013
    I would go with the carrier that works in the area they are living, I have Verizon but Att does not work at my house, also I would order on line, the stores are a rip.

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