Friday, May 27, 2011

Is Sprint coverage getting worse?

In the past month I've noticed that I lose 3G data service in lots of places, and more importantly in places where I used to have plenty of coverage.  I decided to google "is sprint coverage getting worse" and learned that I am not alone.  In the past couple of months there have been lots of similar discussion threads, e.g.

The really significant one seems to be this detailed post on the Sprint Community forum,

My initial suspicion had been that Sprint was preparing to announce their "new 4G service" here in San Diego, and that they were re-purposing existing 3G towers for the effort.  Now I'm not so sure.  Even in areas with existing 4G service, the coverage map has dramatically shrunk recently.  The discussion on Sprint Community is too long for me to read right now but the gist seems to be that Sprint never really had full 3G coverage -- instead they were paying for 'seamless' roaming on other networks (cough*Verizon*cough) and now they're not.

I was already thinking of switching to T-Mobile for their better selection of Android phones and existing '4G' coverage.  This is now yet another reason to do so.


TM said...

Yeah, Sprint in Denver has gotten terrible. I live a mile from downtown and no longer get data at my house. On I-70 between the airport and downtown i can't pull up Googlemaps ("Network Unavailable") and routinely drop calls. I've been with them for 10 years but will be switching to Verizon.

Stooxie said...

Ha! I came upon your post buy Googling "Is Sprint coverage getting worse"!! I am in Virginia and have had Sprint for 12 years. I travel on the east coast quite a bit and it used to be great. Lately it seems I find myself with 0-2 bars all the time while the Verizon people have no trouble. This is even more true inside buildings. With Sprint, forget it. You want two feet into a building and it's over. I keep wondering what is going on.

Unknown said...

I came across this while Googling "Is Sprint coverage getting worse" as well.
I'm pretty frustrated. Across the Country, in places I used to get good service (most interstate hiways and metropolitan areas), I now drop calls and 3G data coverage is increasingly spotty.
I believe they have, in an effort to cut costs, not renewed their leases with many Verizon and AT&T towers.
Contractually, I'd think that was an issue, as I'm still paying them the same amount as before they began decreasing available coverage.
No doubt there is some small print that allows them to do so.
I'm at a loss. The other carriers are more exspensive for the plan I have but perhaps it's it is worth it. What good is a $30 savings if the service is unreliable.
Sprint customer care has improved greatly in the past few years from when I used to have to steel myself against contacting them because I knew it was going to literally ruin my day, but again, what good is that if I can't use my service reliably?
I really don't want to switch, having been with them for years but nor do I want to feel taken advantage of.
I think I may give them until after Sept. and the release of the newer iPhone with 4G. If after that, I continue to see a decline in will be a parting of ways

YRaj said...

I came across this too after googling. Today I began to be unable to make calls or text. I could use internet and email. Previously, I had noticed the speed was getting slower. I thought to myself, it is because they are going through a transition to 4G LTE...but this is ridiculous that I can't even use my phone.

If this keeps up, I will terminate my contract and go with Verizon since I can use my CDMA phones there.

Technical Tony said...

@YRaj, actually you CANNOT re-use your CDMA phone with Verizon. The carriers have been allowed to block that! Instead, I would suggest switching to T-Mobile, that's who I'm using now and I love it. Their faux-G network (HSPA+) is much faster than CDMA even if it's not true LTE 4G. You just need to confirm that they have sufficient coverage where you are.