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  1. #1
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    Cell Phone Providers

    My contract with Verizon is quickly coming to an end. I was just wondering what providers you would suggest. I like AT&T a lot (basically because I really want an Iphone) but I'm sceptical about their coverage in rural areas. Any suggestions?



  2. #2
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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    We did not have good luck with Cingular/AT&T when we got out of metro/urban areas. They had promised for our whole contract period they were going to be adding towers all over and it never happened.

    We currently have Sprint and no home phone for my wife and I. We only have 550 anytime minutes but we are at work during the day and our night time starts at 7:00 pm so that number is no big deal. We get a discount through our employer but we only pay a total of about $60/ month for two phones. I think it is pretty good since we have no home phone either.



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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    Is there any carrier that is decent in rural areas besides Verizon? I hope there is, because I am in the same boat as cyadict.



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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    When I talked to the AT&T salesperson, he promised me that they had the best coverage around Iowa. But, at the same time he told me that when I go to my hometown (Algona) that I would should be fine unless I'm inside a building or in a car. WTF!!



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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    I currently have Verizon and really like them. But before them I had US cellular and they were actually pretty good outside of town. The only real problem I had with them was there nationwide coverage. They are very good in the midwest and outside of that they drop off a bit. But if I was to ever leave Verizon, I would probably go back to them. My brother had AT&T and hated them. He is a truck driver and was dropping calls, losing calls, couldn't call out...just couldn't call. And I know of a couple guys at work that have Sprint. They say that they have very good plans...pretty cheap and I think they even have and unlimited everthing. But the bad part is is there service. He lives up north toward hubbard and can't get very good reception from his house.



  6. #6
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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    I am with Verizon now but I used to have USCellular. The coverage was pretty good. I travel Hwy 30 from Ames to Cedar Rapids quite a bit and USCellular and Verizon are the only ones that I have found not to have dead spots. My issue with USCellular is their customer service and their selection of phones. I don't think I ever went a year without one of their phones crapping out on me.

    By the way Cyadict, why are you thinking of leaving Verizon?



  7. #7
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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    They all suck, just in different ways. Best bet is to check with people that make calls where you are calling from and see. We use ATT at work, I have a curve from them, and I have never seen service at anything other than the max.


    They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. - Benjamin Franklin 1775

  8. #8
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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    AT&T is great until you get out of the cities... then you can see very clearly why Verizon is the favorite in Iowa.


    Go Sssssssssyclones!

  9. #9
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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    The new sprint simply everything includes free roaming. There are not many areas of Iowa that I have found that my sprint phone doesn't get coverage at.
    Sprints unlimited plan is a far better value than Verizon's or AT&T's since it includes unlimited text, internet, gps and power vision.



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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    I like T-Mobile. Go to their website, they have an excellent coverage map, down to the street level.

    One good thing about T-Mobile is they cooperate with other networks, like AT&T, Iowa Wireless, etc, and there is no roaming charges.



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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    When I was shopping for a plan last summer the guy at Radio Shack told me that Verizon and Sprint use the same technology and towers, and that the coverage should therefore be pretty much identical. I'm not sure whether this is accurate or not as I ended up staying with Verizon because they gave me $150 towards my next phone.


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  12. #12
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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    Quote Originally Posted by cyadict View Post
    When I talked to the AT&T salesperson, he promised me that they had the best coverage around Iowa. But, at the same time he told me that when I go to my hometown (Algona) that I would should be fine unless I'm inside a building or in a car. WTF!!
    The Algona area, and especially northwest of there to about the state line, is a black hole for cell phone coverage. It's gotten a little better, as I usually have some small amount of signal, but I tend to drop a lot of calls in that area with Verizon.

    I'm pretty sure Algona is also ground zero for some of the most expensive gas prices in the state.


    Seneca Wallace.

  13. #13
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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    I've had a cell phone for 15 years. I used a couple different carriers in the begining and coverage in the rural areas was always an issue. I finally settled on US Cellular for the last 11 years. Maybe Verizon and some of the other carriers have improved, but US Cellular had best coverage in rural areas for a lot of years in the midwest. I have been very happy with my coverage.



  14. #14
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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle View Post
    The Algona area, and especially northwest of there to about the state line, is a black hole for cell phone coverage. It's gotten a little better, as I usually have some small amount of signal, but I tend to drop a lot of calls in that area with Verizon.

    I'm pretty sure Algona is also ground zero for some of the most expensive gas prices in the state.
    I travel for work to some pretty remote areas of Iowa and Wisconsin (and a little of sourthern Minnesota) and US Cellular works great for both my personal and work cells. The only bad thing about them is that they are always the last to get a new phone (I think they're still hyping the "new razr" for gosh sakes).

    I'm from Algona and everybody up there uses US Cellular ... the "black hole" you're talking about is actually west of and south of Algona ... I can't remember exactly where, but on RAGBRAI it was like the Spencer / Cherokee / Storm Lake area of the state.

    My brother had Verison for a while and hated it ... it worked in Chicago (where he lives) but anywhere outside the city it was spotty and dropped a ton of calls.



  15. #15
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    Re: Cell Phone Providers

    I have Verizon's Nationwide plan and am pretty happy with it. I have cell reception where everyone else does and reception where some others don't. When I renewed last year I got a free phone, but I'll sure be happy when I can upgrade again because this one is a POS.



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