Carrier Verizon LTE in Boston, switching from AT&T -- feedback?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by ilp, Sep 11, 2013.

  1. ilp macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    #1
    I've had AT&T for many years now, but thinking about jumping to Verizon for the following reasons:

    1. Sick of congested network non-performance with AT&T 3G. In Davis Sq especially and in many densely populated Boston areas, I get a very strong signal, but no actual data coming thru (or very slow).

    2. Spotty data coverage by AT&T. Streaming music over my phone while driving through some of the burbs or the New Hampshire areas, I get data drop-outs and music stops. I'd rather have slower data, but more consistent coverage. I don't need really fast data to stream music, for example.

    3. Verizon seems to have least basic data in more remote places than AT&T. Going up to the White Mountains area in NH, many of my Verizon friends seem to have coverage while I don't.

    4. No more 2G/EDGE GSM amplifier interference noise when I'm in a non-3G (remote) area!

    BUT, when switching to Verizon, what am I stepping into:

    1. Poor customer service-- can't be much worse than AT&T!
    2. Are there funky CDMA-related limitations, such as not being able to surf & talk? (Though that's fixed with LTE?)
    3. Anything else that's Verizon-nasty?
     
  2. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #2
    I found VZW's coverage in Davis Sq. to be good, I was there last Sunday.

    Also more often then not, in the Boston area I'm getting strong signals, and overall great performance.

    I too travel up to white mountains and where I'd have 2G or no coverage with ATT, I'd have a few bars with VZW. I'm typically either in North Conway, or a small town called Twin Mountains and I don't lose connectivity in either location.
     
  3. Dwalls90 macrumors 601

    Dwalls90

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    #3
    Not sure if Verizon is any better my friend. Even with LTE, iPhone cannot do data and voice at the same time.

    http://rootmetrics.com/compare-carriers/united-states/boston/boston-ma-july-2013/

    From personal experiences, Verizon seems to be better off "in the boonies", but if you're staying in Boston, AT&T takes the cake.
     
  4. ovation802 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    #4
    I get poor reception in Winter Hill and Charlestown from ATT. Luckily I am usually on wireless in those locations. I had Verizon for years before the iPhone. I have thought about switching back but I have unlimited data on ATT. I guess I will stick with it until they cut me off. In the "dead-zones" I mentioned, I have noticed that friends on Verizon have better service/signal.
     
  5. ilp thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 13, 2007
  6. Shockwave78 macrumors 65816

    Shockwave78

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2010
    #6
    I am in southern NH and switched from AT&T a couple years ago to Verizon(had AT&T for 10yrs)

    It was great at first because Verizon 3g signal and building penetration is much much better for phone calls. The first few months of there LTE speeds were great but has slowed down tremendously since.

    The last year or so I have just been really unhappy with the service so i tried out AT&T again a couple months ago for myself by signing up for a contract which i knew I would break and go back to Verizon. Just wanted to try there LTE network out and see how it is.. It absolutely smokes Verizon's LTE i will say. With AT&T i would get average speeds of 25-Mbps and peaks of 55-Mbps which i never ever saw on Verizon(peak was 42) Building penetration of LTE was also much better than Verizon. Where i would normal get 1 bar of LTE with Verizon i would get 3 with AT&T.

    So i was very happy with them for the short time i went back, however, the downfalls of AT&T that i left them for a couple years ago were still there. There 3g/4g network still has really horrible building penetration. There were times at work during those two weeks i had them that i would make calls from places in the building and they would constantly fail, or I would get cut off. I had not experience this once in 2yrs with Verizon. So i thought i was done with it and going to deal with Verizon again for a couple more years.

    Then after about a week or two after stopping the AT&T service i read that they are going to roll out there VoLTE starting this year. This means you will be able to make calls over the LTE signal. When that happens it will be a HUGE turnaround for AT&T and there service. Experiencing there LTE network for a couple weeks, combined with that VoLTE news convinced me easily to go back to them when the iphone 5s came out...which i will be in a week or two.

    The really annoying things about Verizon i noticed in my 2yrs with them...

    - There stores treat you like morons, its like your in a apple and they think there some sort of god or something. I just hate all these "actors" when realistically they make $10hr and know nothing about technology other than what they read off a card.

    - Every phone other than the iphone they seem to not get, or get a month or two after every other carrier has them. If your like me and like to try out multiple other phones over the year then Verizon is not for you. They just take forever to release phones and hold back software updates for weeks/months also on there phones.
     
  7. AutoUnion39, Sep 11, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2013

    AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #7
    Verizon LTE in Boston, switching from AT&T -- feedback?

    I live in Boston and travel all over NH, MA, and ME.

    AT&T smokes VZW in Boston when it comes to reliability and data speeds on LTE. Their network is still spaced out too far and is too congested right now. AT&T is running a denser network around here. Rootmetrics has crowned AT&T king of Boston. And my speed tests in the area back it up. You can't compare the HSPA network with the LTE one.

    AT&T just launched a ton of LTE in NH and ME recently and have all of MA covered. VZW does also, but it isn't nearly as good. I have a MiFi from work and have noticed their spotty deployment. Not to mention, VZW's LTE network is the one that is struggling in high-traffic areas around Boston, not AT&T.


    Any other questions, feel free to ask. Happy to help.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. ilp thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    #8
    How bad is the congested VZW LTE around Boston? Is it like inability to make data connections (like I experience on AT&T 3G) or is it speeds dropping to 10MBps or something like that?

    Because I don't need it blazing fast, I need it to be decently fast most of the time and available and not dog-slow at all times.

    Looks like LTE changes the conversation... AT&T 3G -- bad building penetration, AT&T LTE -- good building penetration.

    What to do when I"m out in the boonies and on AT&T though?
     
  9. Aylan macrumors regular

    Aylan

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2013
    Location:
    Boston
    #9
    ATT has been nothing but amazing for me as far as LTE is concerned. ATT and Verizon are pretty much the same if you ask me. T-Mobile gets a bad rap but I have been testing their LTE network in Boston and it is pretty good in the Boston area. I do not have a car and pretty much only stay in the city so I may jump ship to T-Mo and save some $ on my data plan.
     
  10. AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #10
    Where are you in Boston?

    TMobile is trash here. I am on EDGE much more than I should be. Brookline and Fenway have spotty HSPA and LTE barely works.

    ----------

    Sub 10 Mbps speeds. I've seen it come to a screeching halt near Fenway, Govt Center, Park Street, etc. Sometimes have to force EVDO to get working data.

    AT&T has zero issues. Best part is HSPA in the MBTA tunnels
    This is correct. VZW LTE has good penetration too, but AT&T's denser cell grid is even better. I've seen 1x deep inside buildings, whereas I'm on HSPA or LTE with AT&T.

    Depends where. In MA, whole state has LTE. If you're really getting into rural NH, AT&T has tons of HSPA up, but you might be better off with VZW.

    I guess you have to figure out your priorities.
    Can't go wrong with either, but VZW IS having major congestion problems with their LTE in major cities, whereas AT&T isn't. They have learned from the iPhone 3G fiasco.
     
  11. Aylan macrumors regular

    Aylan

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2013
    Location:
    Boston
    #11
    I work downtown and live in Brighton. On the days that I've tested T-Mo I went through most of Allston/Brighton, Downtown, Copley/South End area, and JP. Pretty much all the places I frequent. LTE was pretty good in those areas. I had my 5 replaced due to a faulty power button and I got an iPhone that works with all T-Mo bands and the few times it drops to "4G" the signal and throughput was good from what I remember. I do have a friend that was on T-Mo before LTE was fully deployed and he did mention that he had spotty service. I always blamed it on his phone though.
     
  12. ilp thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    #12
    Thank you for all your feedback! Right now I am leaning to staying with AT&T and doing the LTE route, and just dealing with the boonies as I have been before. I'm not in the boonies all that often.
     
  13. ehfz macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2013
    #13
    I would say 5+ years ago that it was a pretty well-known fact that Verizon was the only reliable cell provider in the Boston area, but since then all the other ones have for the most part caught up. I've had Verizon for many years and have never had an issue. My wife and many of my friends used to complain all the time about dropped calls etc with ATT and TMobile but I almost never hear complaints anymore from anyone. Verizon is consistently the most expensive option so I'm strongly considering switching providers soon since I don't think I'll have coverage issues.
     
  14. AutoUnion39, Sep 12, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2013

    AutoUnion39 macrumors 601

    AutoUnion39

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    #14
    Worst case option, return the new AT&T within 14 days and port out to VZW

    ----------

    I think the clear distinction between the carriers in this area comes from data speeds and coverage. Not voice. They all do voice fine. But all their LTE networks are different.

    TMobile and Sprint are screwing around.

    VZW has the city covered, but is running into capacity issues in high traffic areas. They need to deploy small cells, increase site density, and get AWS LTE up soon. I haven't seen 25+ mbps LTE speeds in ages with VZW. It's still reliable, but you will get kicked down to a slower EVDO network at times.

    AT&T deployed a denser cell grid for LTE and it shows. I can still max out my LTE connection (60+ Mbps) and its been up for almost 2 years. I get LTE deep in buildings and above all, it always works. If im on a call, the backup HSPA+ network is still very fast. I've seen 10+ mbps. Average around 5-7 though.

    Boston is a major market for both AT&T and VZW. Boston was their first LTE launch city. We got LTE first. We will probably get LTE-A very early on also. :thumbup:
     
  15. adam044 macrumors 65816

    adam044

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2012
    Location:
    Boston
    #15
    I agree. I can constantly smoke my friends verizon LTE speeds in Boston on AT&T
     

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