Advice for Sprint user

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by xthishero, Jul 13, 2013.

  1. xthishero macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    #1
    So I always browse this forum for opinions and stories and finally posting since I don't know too many people with Sprint.

    I'm due for an upgrade with Sprint and currently have the 4s where the 3G network is slow I don't even bother doing anything unless I'm on wifi (and actually gotten lost a few times since Maps relies on data). I'm waiting for the 5s to come out and my question is this: is Sprints 4g LTE really that much faster than the 3G? Enough to sign over 2 more years. Or should I jump ship and pay more at a different carrier? Right now I live in Northern California outside SF.

    Any advice or experience would be very helpful :)
     
  2. IXDoubleDXI macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2011
    Location:
    Central Florida
    #2
    I can't confirm how much faster their LTE is, they've been testing in my area for the last few weeks, so i'm only getting LTE here and there, but they should be going live on 7/17, according to a rep. Tonight i was getting 11mbps down, so it seems considerably better than 3g. Whether this will hold going forward, who knows. I've found that Sprint is definitely the cheapest. I've got a family plan, with 3 smartphones and 1 dumbphone and it's running us about $55 a month. For unlimited data, text, and mobile to mobile, can't really beat it.
     
  3. Asuriyan macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2013
    Location:
    Indiana
    #3
    LTE is much faster than 3G, yes, but I have to ask why you would have stuck with a carrier for so long with such a poor experience. I wouldn't even be considering renewing.

    That said, their recent decisions as to plan rates and the long term availability of unlimited options for those who choose not to buy into the new plans has left a sour taste in my mouth, so my opinion may be a bit biased at present.
     
  4. oddnendz macrumors 6502

    oddnendz

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    #4
    He is probably like me: unlimited data. I am moving back to T-mobile in the fall when the 5S comes out. The contract is up at the end of Aug/ Sept and I am disappointed about the lack of LTE in my area.
     
  5. PM-Performance macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2012
    #5
    Do you want unlimited data you can't use because of bandwidth? Or limited data that you can actually use when you need it is the real question here.
     
  6. oddnendz, Jul 13, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2013

    oddnendz macrumors 6502

    oddnendz

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    #6
    There are other issues too. Like unlimited data I can't use because the network is down ..... again.. My sister can't use data where she works. There are parts of Raleigh/Cary, I haven't been able to use data on the Sprint network.

    I liked T-mobile when I was on T-mobile. But they didn't have the iPhone. So I went to Sprint (for unlimited data and iPhone). T-mobile now has the iPhone and better network than Sprint this area. So back to T-mobile.
     
  7. GusHerb macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2013
    Location:
    Chicago / Northwest, IN
    #7
    Once LTE is up and running on every cell site you should be good to go. In Chicago using LTE is pretty much the same experience as wifi, and the coverage is good since almost every single site is lit up. I'm not sure how the 5S is gonna perform in terms of connectivity but beware the 5 likes to drop LTE at the drop of a hat when the signal gets weak and it can be very frustrating - that's not the networks fault. (My previous android never dropped LTE like the iPhone does)
     
  8. eyoungren, Jul 13, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2013

    eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #8
    Network Vision isn't about speed. It's about capacity. Sprint is building out the network to handle more users and more data consumption. The by product of capacity however, is increased speed.

    My understanding is that 8mbs down will be the average rate once all is said and done. That being the speed you can get while everyone else is using the network too.

    I reupped last year for the iPhone 5. I knew full well at the time that Phoenix didn't have LTE. They are working on it right now and quite frankly the slow speeds have sucked since September. Now, it's worse. I'm actually starting to experience the dropped calls and zombie text messages that everyone else reports. What's happening is that as they take towers down for upgrades the other nearby towers (which are already overloaded) have to take up the slack.

    Sprint turns the LTE on as it's approved (when the backhaul is available, installed and hooked-up). You won't see an "instant" effect. It's going to be more like an air-conditioner slowly cooling down a hot car. As more and more LTE sites come on the overall capacity (and thus speed) will improve.

    As to if it's worth it or not. Well…it just depends on your market. Sprint is about 6 months to a year behind. A lot of this is due to delays on the vendors part (Sprint is not actually doing the work, it's been contracted out). Guess who is the slowest to deliver fiber backhaul? AT&T. What a shock!

    You can check out how far done your market is by going over to s4gru.com and checking their running list in the network forum. They also have a site acceptance list in the markets forum.

    My area is at 28% with scheduled completion of June 2014. But only 3G upgrades have been done so far. PHX is in an Alcatel-Lucent market and A-L does 3G upgrades first and LTE second.

    Note that now that Sprint has Clearwire and has shut down Nextel they are going to be very busy repurposing that spectrum for Network Vision. Softbank is also throwing money at this, although I'm not sure how it'll make already slow vendors speed up.

    I've also heard a rumor that Sprint is wanting to take back it's former tech employees from Ericsson and bring them back in house. That would be a Softbank decision as I understand that Masayoshi Son likes to keep things in-house.

    That can only be a boon to Sprint as it won't have to rely on flaky contractors to get the job done.
     
  9. oddnendz macrumors 6502

    oddnendz

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    #9
    I have read that LTE will come to Raleigh/Durham area in fall 2014 or early 2015. I seen the LTE pop up on my iPad mini in some parts of N Raleigh (and so have other people), so they are testing it (I guess).
     
  10. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #10
    Sprint seems to be announcing a coming soon market around 40% completion. There's some debate about what defines 40%. Whether, that's 40% complete, or 40% of covered population in the market.

    In any case, Sprint's official policy is that if you connect to an LTE tower you are free to use it, even if the market has not been announced. So, as a customer you can be getting LTE before Sprint announces the market.
     
  11. cledet macrumors regular

    cledet

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2012
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #11
    I'm in the Philadelphia area and I've been with Sprint for over 3 years. 3G speeds aren't too bad but I never get 4G anywhere. Their 4G coverage sucks. I think I'm switching to Verizon once our contract is up.
     
  12. Technarchy macrumors 603

    Technarchy

    Joined:
    May 21, 2012
    #12
    Considering Sprint's 3G is on par with dial up or worse, yes LTE is a massive improvement.

    Sprint's raw LTE speed is not on par with Verizon or AT&T but a low latency 8-12mb pipe is plenty to take advantage of what all the iPhone can do.

    Once Sprint gets 90% market penetration with LTE and they get their network visions capacity upgrades 100% done they will be competitive and worth consideration. At this stage...no thanks.

    Sprint's Tri-band LTE should be quite interesting and provide good coverage under more conditions compared to things as they are now.
     
  13. bjb.butler macrumors 6502a

    bjb.butler

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2008
    Location:
    Southern California
    #13
    It all depends on your area. Where I am (Inland Empire), the 3G speeds are... okay. Yeah, they could be better, but the speeds let me do everything I want to do just fine. Email, Web Browsing, Pandora/Google Music streaming, etc.
     
  14. CEmajr, Jul 14, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2013

    CEmajr macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2012
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #14
    Seriously. Sprint doesn't even have LTE in Raleigh yet? Yet they have Dunn, NC as an upcoming live LTE market. T-Mobile just started rolling out LTE this year and already have Raleigh, Greensboro, and Charlotte announced as live LTE markets. It's going to take Sprint another year or year and a half to finally get Raleigh done? That's absolutely pathetic.

    Before Tmobile had the iPhone I could understand some people's reasoning for going to Sprint due to the low cost and unlimited data. Now these days there's really no good reason. Dial-up speed 3G and slow LTE buildout. How is it that the other 3 carriers have no problem getting the vendors to build out their LTE networks in a timely fashion while Sprint has delay after delay and excuse after excuse?

    To the OP, switch to a new carrier.
     
  15. iBreatheApple macrumors 68020

    iBreatheApple

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2011
    Location:
    Florida
    #15
    My advice for a Sprint user would be to change carriers. :p Though I'm sure that's not the type of response you were seeking. The parents have Sprint in south Florida and almost every single conversation gets dropped. :mad:
     
  16. oddnendz macrumors 6502

    oddnendz

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    #16
    Straw that broke proverbial carmel's back for me was Statesville NC. I just read Henderson NC (just north of Raleigh ) is getting it. Sprint is apparently has a "small city" strategy going.
    http://gigaom.com/2012/11/26/sprint-launches-11-new-lte-markets-maintains-small-city-focus/
     
  17. s2000gtx macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2012
    #17
    Honestly i live in south florida and i can tell u that LTE is sprint is decent if you have LTE. 3g is horrible in some areas its better than other. im on a sero plan for for me $50 a month is excellent price at my home Get about 4-7mb LTE outside i get about 7mb. where i live i think im getting the backend of the lte coverage because if i drive over the next block i get 15-20mb easily. but with that being said i do realize that the iPhone lte pick up sucks as mentioned if the signal is low it barely picks it up. i also have a S4 ON sprint and sometime while my iphone says 3g my S4 says 4G and i pick up lte on it. but i think this can be easily fix in a update from apple tho.

    overall if u have LTE IS AWESOME but if ur on 3g than its not so good. if it wasnt for mt $50 month sero plan i would of left sprint for a much better network a while ago. LTE DATA is useable but 3g from sprint isnt
     
  18. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #18
    I'm no fan of Sprint's rollout, but as a matter of explaining their idiocy…

    Sprint has over ~37,000 towers they need to upgrade. The majority of them have T1 lines as backhaul. None have fiber, because Sprint has completely neglected the network since at least 1997, which is one of the oldest towers they have to date.

    Anyway, it's putting in the fiber backhaul and making both 3G/LTE upgrades. You have the permits and the getting access to the site (many of these are leased). And then you have flaky vendors who can't deliver backhaul or do work in a timely manner.

    So, Sprint's strategy was to just upgrade whatever they could whenever they could. What that equates to is that small towns and small citys who have one or maybe a few towers are getting upgraded first because there are less towers and then are being announced before other markets who may have thousands of towers.

    Sprint Marketing is just a complete loony bin. They have coverage maps that have no basis in reality and they have no concept that announcing markets this way is ticking people off.

    Now, again, I in no way defend this policy. It's just flat out stupid and Sprint should have done it another way. But Sprint is not known for being smart with it's customers. I'm just explaining the complete stupidity of how Sprint is handling the rollout.
     
  19. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #19
    I was reading on Howardforums or S4GRU about new towers getting approved.

    People were noting that most NV towers that have been accepted in major metro areas, like NYC, Boston, LA, etc are ALREADY at max capacity, which would mean poor network performance (still) and poor planning on Sprint's part.

    The problem is not only the lack of capacity, but the fact that so many diff't MNVOs also share this network, which kills it for the actual post-paid customers.
     
  20. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #20
    Honestly, OP, I would switch and go sign a contract elsewhere, at least for these next two years. What use is an unlimited plan, if it doesn't work? It's unfair to yourself to give them 2 years, when even EVDO doesn't work.

    Sprint has been talking about NV for a while now and they have not proven they can actually get it done in time at all. Every market has been delayed. Hell, PHX is almost a YEAR behind. Completely ridiculous. What's the point of being locked in, when the network is going to be crap?

    My personal experience has been terrible. In my office, we were all given Sprint MiFis about 2 or so years ago. All we saw were speeds getting lower and lower. Then last year, we were upgraded to LTE ones because the Sprint rep in our area (Boston) was boasting about how "amazing" and "expansive" the network was going to be. They delayed the LTE launch from November 2012 to Spring 2013, and it's still not even remotely done.

    We dumped the 100+ Sprint MiFis for AT&T ones after Christmas. The IT manager still carries his around to see if we could switch back (much cheaper), but it's not even close. In the last 6 or so months, there has been NO EXPANSION inside Boston. Huge blackholes for data, etc. AT&T? Every corner of Boston gets great signal with fast speeds. Never any downtime.

    Yet Sprint has no problem parading around that Boston has LTE up and running. Complete ****. When AT&T launched LTE in Boston, every part of the city had coverage. Same can't be said for Sprint, not even close.

    ----------

    Another important issue to debate IMO. Launching a major metro area with 40% is ridiculous. But it's not only Sprint. TMobile is just as terrible. They went on record to say they launch markets at around 60% finished. That is ridiculous.

    When AT&T and VZW launch new LTE markets, you actually get coverage in the whole city!
     
  21. SONiC5, Jul 14, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2013

    SONiC5 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Location:
    U.S.
    #21
    As a Sprint user in the same boat, I wouldn't stick around if your market didn't have an acceptable amount of progress already (unless LTE is already in your area). I couldn't spend another 6 months with service like this, let alone another year or more. I've yet to see any improvements in my area and my market is pretty far along (nearly 60%), but your experience may vary. LTE will make a big difference, but if Sprint doesn't have it here before the next iPhone I'm gone.

    Which is more than likely due to the fact that LTE comes online as soon as it's ready since they aren't in a position where they can wait to launch LTE in clusters.

    If one site is broadcasting LTE to an area served by eight sites, the performance will suffer as it's taking on eight times the load. This is visible on Sensorly, Sprint's LTE coverage tends to be light purple until the density of sites with LTE increases. It isn't poor planning, nor is it the MNVO's, it's their deployment strategy, which is a double-edged sword.
     
  22. taedouni macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2011
    Location:
    California
    #22
    Ditch sprint. Trust me, their LTE speeds will probably be as fast as Verizon's 3G network once it's fully rolled out.
     
  23. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #23
    Yeah, but that's just because not all of the towers have been LTE upgraded so just like with the 3G towers they are shouldering most of the load.

    Again, I'm not defending Sprint, just explaining.
     
  24. SONiC5 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Location:
    U.S.
    #24
    This is incredibly inaccurate. I don't get why some feel the need to spread misinformation.
     
  25. MsRandall macrumors 6502a

    MsRandall

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2011
    Location:
    Bay Area, Ca
    #25
    I am in the bay area too..Had Sprint and switched to Verizon after 16 years. My sister didnt leave when I left last year and she was in Sprint hell. Her i5 is unusable at times....so she filed a BBB complaint and left 2 days ago EFT free.

    Sprint stores in the area were promising LTE in the bay area at the end of 2012 - Then it was summer 2013 - Now it is end of 2013... Yes it a big upgrade but how long is too long to be with subpar service?

    Look on slickdeals there is material change thread where customers are walking away free....

    I love my Verizon service - I have 8gb and dont come close to exceeding it...actual gave up unlimited as I moved to the family share plans.
     

Share This Page