Head hurts...

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by downyball, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. downyball macrumors newbie

    downyball

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2013
    Location:
    SF/EBay
    #1
    Our T-Mobile contract is up in a few weeks, so I've been reading articles/reviews/posts, calling carriers and generally making myself crazy. We've been with T-Mobile forever but its time to cut that cord. Their coverage in our area is lame at best, and not getting any better with age. Part of the problem is that we live on an island (yes, island) right in between San Francisco and Oakland, so we don't rank very high on the coverage meter - although Verizon and ATT seem to get the job done best (according to people I’ve talked to around town, at our jobs, etc).

    We’ve been using very nice Android phones, but will switch to the iPhone 5S when it’s released. We don’t use much data as we use wifi connections a lot and don’t really download very much. My wife does travel to Vietnam, and needs a phone that will accept and work with a local sim card when she’s there. I’m also a teacher, so I qualify for discounts with Verizon and ATT. I guess I’m just seeking a little feedback on what I’ve been able to decipher so far - please feel free to correct me or suggest whatever.

    A shared data pan seems like the best option if data usage is on the small side.

    Both ATT and Verizon tell me their iPhone 5 will work in Vietnam with just a simple sim swap.

    I’m leaning towards ATT over Verizon mostly because speed and coverage seems better in our particular area (coverage is a priority at this point, not price, although we’ll subsidize the iPhones).

    Is there a good technical article or website that explains the differences between the technology ATT and Verizon use for their cellular signals? (I’m not an upgrade every year kind of person, but I want to know about future expandability and compatibility for each carriers technology.)

    I have an iTunes library with about 3 GB of music, so I believe a 16GB phone would suffice? (Again, I’m not really a power user - just a school teacher with an eye for quality, over quantity.)

    Thanks.
     
  2. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020

    KUguardgrl13

    Joined:
    May 16, 2013
    Location:
    Kansas, USA
    #2
    This article from 2012 does a pretty good job of explaining the basics between AT&T and Verizon: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2407896,00.asp

    Basically AT&T and T-Mobile use the same technology on different spectrums. AT&T generally has better coverage than tmo and better reception indoors.

    It sort of depends on what you want from your carrier. The 5S will be on LTE on all US carriers. In lower reception areas it will drop to HSPA+ (4G not LTE) or Edge on AT&T. You might rarely get GSM. For Verizon it will drop to their 3G network or even 1X which basically doesn't support data.

    With AT&T you can talk and surf simultaneously. Verizon doesn't support that.

    I'm partial to Verizon. The brief period I was on AT&T was an endless series of dropped calls. My bf just did the opposite of you and took his 4S from AT&T to T-Mobile. The crappy customer service and price drove him off. I had U-Verse in my apartment last year and ended up paying more per month than I was initially quoted.

    For Vietnam you'll definitely want to weigh your options. There are many threads on here about taking phones to a variety of countries.
     

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