In the morning, I am returning my iPhone 5S

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by pilot1226, Sep 21, 2013.

  1. pilot1226 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 18, 2010
    As the title suggests, in the morning I am returning my Space Gray iPhone 5S.

    Don't get me wrong, I love the phone. There's absolutely nothing wrong with it. It's brilliant. It has far surpassed my expectations coming from my old iPhone 4S.

    So why return it?

    I have 3 days to return the phone to my place of purchase, Best Buy, to get my activation fee refunded. I didn't mind waiting in line to purchase it. I don't mind going back to my iPhone 4S for a little while if need be.

    See, I'm on Sprint. The data speed has always been a problem, but now the problem has absolutely and definitely reared its ugly head. My whole purpose in upgrading to an iPhone 5 or 5C or 5S was solely to take advantage of 4G LTE. You'd think with all the blabbering their marketing and their customer service departments have done I'd be able to receive it, but no.

    I've checked maps on Sensorly and and while there've been many fleeting glimpses of LTE signals they must have only been a testing phase because I can't pick anything up.

    So this reverts me to the argument as old as time:

    What good is Sprint's unlimited data if you can't use it?

    I joined Sprint about 3 1/2 years ago from Verizon out of sheer cost. I wasn't using a smartphone yet, and this was an opportunity to save money *and* get a smartphone for myself. I jumped at the chance.

    And now I'm sick to my stomach. I'm ready to pay a $100 ETF for 2 of the 4 family lines on the account and go running to Verizon in a second. I've considered AT&T but the difference in price is miniscule. I'd rather have a better network.

    Again, what good is unlimited data if you just can't use it?

    I busted my rear off to go crazy and use as much data as I could last billing cycle and I barely used over 1 GB. Half of that is because I didn't have a good signal for my 20 minute commute to/from work, and half of that is because I have a wifi signal at both home and work after I get there.

    So, whenever I'm on the go, essentially, I don't have a "smartphone". I have a severely gimped iPhone 5S. And even a 4S for that matter.

    It's an absolute sin that Apple even allows Sprint to use the iPhone on their network. It's like trying to run a marathon without legs. Can it be done? Sure. But by the time you get to the finish line, everyone else will be at home sleeping.

    The price difference appears to be roughly $20 per month.

    For $20 a month, or $240 per year, I'd rather have a smartphone I can actually take full advantage of rather than a gimpy, limping data network.

    If I didn't want data bandwidth, I wouldn't have a smartphone period. I'd use an iTouch in conjunction with an old flip style Razr or something.


    - More expensive (20 per month)
    + Unlimited minutes
    + Much better coverage
    + Much faster data
    - Limited data

    + Slightly cheaper
    - 1500 minutes shared through the account
    - Acceptable coverage
    - Nonexistant data
    + Unlimited data

    I'm not going to continue to pour money into a bankrupt company so they can sit back and have customer service promise and promise and promise me that 4G is "right around the corner" for another 2 years.

    Hopefully I can convince my family the same (the other 3 lines) otherwise I'm getting my own plan on Verizon.

    Sigh. Rant mode off.

    This was a public service announcement from a somewhat tipsy soon to be former Sprint customer.

    Friends don't let friends have terrible data speed on their iPhone.

    It's a disservice to us all.
  2. WolfSnap macrumors 6502a


    Sep 18, 2012
    AT&T does data AND voice at the same time... Also, AT&T LTE is way faster than Verizon LTE... Just saying..
  3. user-name-here, Sep 21, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2013

    user-name-here macrumors 65816

    Aug 31, 2013
    So it appears OP has an issue with Sprints ****** network, not the 5s.

    p.s. that is one of the same reasons I sold the 5 I upgraded to last year. I looked around and didn't see any AT&T LTE in my area so I thought whats the point? I'm paying an extra $199+tax+activation fee for a 0.5 inch longer screen and a little bit faster processor? No thanks. So I sold that sucker for $500 profit and waited for the 5s so that the LTE network would be more built out by then.

    Yeah, if by that you mean voice + (throttled to dial up speed) data at the same time :p

    AT&T used to be good and didn't throttle you if you were on a call but now they are just as bad as carriers who don't have any voice+data at the same time.
  4. deannnnn macrumors 68000


    Jun 4, 2007
    New York City & South Florida
    I switched from Sprint to AT&T in 2007 for the original iPhone. Don't miss Sprint at all. I do have coverage issues in NYC with AT&T but their LTE speeds are unmatched! Plus, AT&T has HSPA+, and Edge to fall back on when LTE is not available.
  5. iF34R macrumors 65816


    Jul 13, 2011
    South Carolina
    Based on what? Where I live, I can get 50Mbs down with Verizon, and the AT&T LTE stops about two miles from my house. So the speeds are 0Mbs. ;)

    Just sayin'.
  6. pilot1226 thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Mar 18, 2010
    I'm not a fan of the AT&T data packages. They are essentially forcing me to pick a 3 GB package for each line. It ends up being about $15 more per month than Verizon.
  7. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    Where in the US are you? My parents (Chicago suburbs) were previous US Cellular customers who moved over to Sprint when US Cellular pulled out of the market. I was skeptical since I know how awfully slow Sprint's 3G network is, but they rolled out LTE a few months ago, and it isn't bad. They aren't the type to run SpeedTest benchmarks, but they have LTE-capable devices and haven't had any complaints about downloads. If LTE is coming soon, you might consider staying with it. Also, is T-Mobile an option? Their HSPA+ network is pretty good even where they don't have LTE.
  8. Velin macrumors 65816


    Jul 23, 2008
    Hearst Castle
    Could the title be any more misleading. Should instead say, "In morning, I'm changing wireless carriers."
  9. Mobster1983 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 8, 2011
    Check out T-Mobile. I have been a verizon subscriber for 12 years, but am switching to T-Mobile when my 5S gets here. Unlimited data for cheaper. My wife and I both switching will save $100 a month. T-mobile has been updating their networks a lot, so hopefully it will be at least almost as good as verizon.
  10. dannyhex macrumors regular

    Sep 16, 2012
    damn that sucks man i feel your pain, its funny because I hit the threshold of ******** about 3 months ago and then sprint flipped the switch where I live, I love LTE, faster then my optimum home wifi.
  11. JodyK macrumors 6502a


    Jan 29, 2010
    Northern Atlanta suburbs
    T-Mobile is where it's the most bang for the buck
  12. joshdammit macrumors 6502

    Mar 6, 2013
    As a current (soon to be ex soon as my T-Mobile 5S gets here) Sprint subscriber, allow me to recommend you follow through with returning your 5S.

    Do not re-up your contract. I recently got Sprint to cancel mine because I finally griped enough about their awful data speeds, and plus I started getting letters about how I'm roaming too much and if I don't cut back, I'll risk having my account cancelled. I called their bluff.

    The lady on the phone was mostly interested in making sure I had roaming turned off, not the 0.02mbps I consistently get on 3G (or 2G, which is what I get most of the time. Living in the Phoenix, AZ area, so it's not like I'm out in no-man's land.) She finally agreed to wave the ETF when I told her I see no reason to make sure I'm not roaming if it's going to keep me on. A friend of mine did the same exact thing earlier this summer, and he didn't even get any roaming notices.

    Anyway, return your phone, call Sprint and insist they waive your ETF. They'll try to tell you that service looks great in your area, and that it's your device (I was using the 4S.) This is what they told me, and I put an end to that topic of discussion before she could even suggest I buy a new phone and sign a new contract.

    Go to T-mobile. They have great customer service, great coverage and they're constantly improving their network. For $70 (not including the phone, of course,) I get unlimited everything, including LTE data. Oh, and 2.5gb to use as a wireless hotspot. Get your 5S through them, and I'm positive you'll have far less buyer's remorse.
  13. Iphone5preorder macrumors 6502a

    Sep 20, 2012
    Very true! Love AT&T LTE !
  14. powerstrokin macrumors 6502a


    May 18, 2013
    OP should have consulted a rep and asked about LTE coverage for his area, but I guess with a 3 or 14 (whatever it is) day grace period to take a phone back it's no big deal.

    To everyone laying dicks on the table about what carrier is best:

    Just stop.

    It's ALL dependent on LOCATION.
  15. Jacoblee23 macrumors 65816

    Nov 10, 2011
    I just switched from Verizon to sprint so me and my fiancée could be on the same line. In places where I roamed with Verizon with 3G/LTE, I am only getting extended 1x with sprint. What is the reason for this? Ridiculous.
  16. RolandNights macrumors 6502a

    Aug 8, 2011
    Yup. Just a sensationalist title.
  17. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    Exactly. I clicked on this thinking it would be a post about someone who doesn't see much difference between his or her iPhone 5/4s and the 5s, or who came from an Android device but can't tolerate a smaller screen. Instead, it's a rant about how bad Sprint is in the area. It isn't Apple's fault Sprint got a late start with LTE. They certainly didn't force Sprint to dump billions into WiMax.
  18. mellofello macrumors 65816

    Feb 1, 2011
    Tmobiles deals are pretty good and their hspa+ is actually pretty quick. I live on my phone so fast data is money no object for me. If I was just a casual user I would be going T-Mobile right now. They will someday roll out LTE as well. I wouldn't hold my breath though.
  19. Carlanga macrumors 604


    Nov 5, 2009
  20. aka777, Sep 21, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2013

    aka777 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 13, 2012
    Recently thought I'd give the underdog Tmobile a try and the entire process has been a joke. For example, I had to call up to get the order processed because it was not accepting my SSN. Rep processed everything and all seemed good. I checked my email and noticed that they had entered incorrect details during their processing.

    I call back and find out that the order cannot be changed or cancelled. What the hell would have happened if it was the wrong address... In addition, I now have to go to a store with my ID to rectify their mistake.

    One rep said I can refused the package, while another said well we don't ask for a signature during shipping, so I have to open up the package and follow the standard return procedure, which can take 60 days.

    Looking at various forums, lots of customers are plagued with A to Z issues. For example, they seem to have an issue with their returns warehouse losing handsets. When a company treats new customers like that from the get-go, no way in hell are they going to give a crap once they have your cash.

    Not to mention, you have the other network issues with t-mobile; where a large portion of their cell network is still on 2G Edge. Yes 2G! They have the smallest coverage maps of any carrier and they don't even offer a micorcell like Verizon,Sprint, or AT&T. Some booster (not a microcell) they do offer is $500; which apparently is also unavailable until further notice.

    This is a company whose great at painting magenta lipstick on a pig as is why they are ranked dead last in subscriber numbers. How much cheaper are they really, after you factor the cost of the new handset? $5 to $10 cheaper than a national carrier with coast-to-coast 4G LTE, that also works inside a building.

    I'll stick with my Verizon and AT&T services any day over this ****** value carrier like T-Mobile. The carrier has dealt with budget customers for so long, it has no clue how to offer a quality service.
  21. joeshmo2010 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 25, 2009
    Seattle, WA
    Location, location, location. That is what it all depends on. Not one is the best. They all have ups and downs, although some more than others. Pick what's best in your area and stay with them.
  22. aka777 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 13, 2012
    Sprint has one of the puniest data networks yet is still obsessed with offering unlimited, which their archaic CDMA network can't handle. They don't seem to get that most customers don't even want or need unlimited data at dialup speeds.

    Most users want a few gigs (if that) of fast wireless cellular data, that also works everywhere; hence it being a cell phone, including indoors, where both Sprint and especially T-Mobile are terrible.

    After my experience with TMobile, no way in heck am I paying these guys a dime. I'd rather use PagePlus or Straight talk, who run on real networks, than Tmobile or Sprint. Sprint at least has great customer service and is trying to improve. Tmobile is just snake oil and painting lipstick on a pig.

    My choice today is:

    #1 Verizon
    #2 AT&T
    ... Prepaid AT&T & Verizon MVNOs
    #9 Sprint
    #10 Tmobile
  23. joshdammit macrumors 6502

    Mar 6, 2013
    Funny, I've had the exact opposite experience. Sprint has been awful with both data and customer service, whereas T-Mobile I've had nothing but good experiences with.
  24. HickDead macrumors 6502a


    Dec 2, 2011
    Depends on your location - and it's NOT "way faster." Personally I prefer my phone to have crystal clear call quality and stronger signal strength than to have the LTE data speeds be a tad faster.

    And this coming from someone who has used the IP5 on BOTH Verizon and AT&T.

    Just saying..

    P.S. forgot to add that Sprint is pure trash
  25. jdsingle macrumors regular

    Oct 28, 2011
    I'm in the same boat. I've had Sprint for a few years now and got the HTC EVO 4G LTE when it came out, think I have LTE yet? Of course not. I live in Downtown Denver and Colorado has still yet to have an official unveiling of LTE. There are sporadic areas where you can pick it up but the service is next to useless.

    Switching over to iPhone 5s on Verizon. Might cost more $$$ but at least my phone is usable. The guys on s4gru are a joke. The one admin thinks he's a god.

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