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Thread: Percentage of population covered by Verizon vs AT&T

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    Percentage of population covered by Verizon vs AT&T

    From both anecdotal experience with both networks, and fairly exhaustive, pointless obsessive pouring over of Verizon and AT&T's maps, I have always assumed that Verizon has significantly more land covered in the US than AT&T.

    However, on Verizon's own site, a recently updated page says the following:
    "Network reaches 289 million Americans"

    Meanwhile, on AT&T's site, a recently updated page says the following:
    "All AT&T 3G devices connect to AT&T's EDGE network covering 301 million people or 96% of the population."

    Could this possibly be? I have traveled extensively with both networks and found this to be completely opposite. I know that statistics are tricky, and wonder if it's possible that Verizon has significant coverage in areas with nearly zero population (mountain ranges, etc.)?

    I am merely curious as to how this could be accurate when it seems opposite to me personally in my travels ... any ideas?

    Thanks

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    You are correct that VZW covers more land area and (until AT&T acquires the ALLTEL divestitures) more population than AT&T. I believe the 289 M POPS figure from VZW is their native network only, whereas the 301 M POPS figure from AT&T includes roaming coverage as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nadroj
    From both anecdotal experience with both networks, and fairly exhaustive, pointless obsessive pouring over of Verizon and AT&T's maps, I have always assumed that Verizon has significantly more land covered in the US than AT&T.

    However, on Verizon's own site, a recently updated page says the following:
    "Network reaches 289 million Americans"

    Meanwhile, on AT&T's site, a recently updated page says the following:
    "All AT&T 3G devices connect to AT&T's EDGE network covering 301 million people or 96% of the population."

    Could this possibly be? I have traveled extensively with both networks and found this to be completely opposite. I know that statistics are tricky, and wonder if it's possible that Verizon has significant coverage in areas with nearly zero population (mountain ranges, etc.)?

    I am merely curious as to how this could be accurate when it seems opposite to me personally in my travels ... any ideas?

    Thanks
    Verizons Native network covers that much. AT&T nationwide network (with Roaming) covers 301 million. Verizons nationwide network with Roaming covers more then that tho.
    v Speed Test with my Motorola Droid in AL. Droid Does (and so Does Verizon).

    Speed Test with my Motorola Droid in Birmingham, AL. Droid Does (and so Does Verizon).^

    Speed Test with DSL internet with AT&T(Bellsouth). Horrible.

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    Doesn't matter both network will end up covering everything once a universal format comes out. So, it will come down to price and service cause like fuel prices there is no difference between quality between Shell versus Chevron, both will fuel your car like wireless service both will allow you to make calls and do data :T

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    Quote Originally Posted by reddragonprodz
    Doesn't matter both network will end up covering everything once a universal format comes out. So, it will come down to price and service cause like fuel prices there is no difference between quality between Shell versus Chevron, both will fuel your car like wireless service both will allow you to make calls and do data :T
    Arco gas won't run my car.....
    Just sayin...

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    Quote Originally Posted by nadroj
    ...on Verizon's own site, a recently updated page says the following:
    "Network reaches 289 million Americans"
    , on AT&T's site, a recently updated page says the following:
    "All AT&T 3G devices connect to AT&T's EDGE network covering 301 million people or 96% of the population."
    Some folks travel a lot, I don't. So I really don't care about coverage in CA, WA, ID, NM, AZ, etc. What I care about is being able to call my family and my friends and have a nice clear conversation. That happens 99% of the time on my Verizon cell when talking to a landline or another Verizon cell. When talking to someone on an ATT cell, much of the time the voice is distorted and I have a difficult time understanding them. It's more like talking to someone on a walkie-talkie than a phone. Another thread discusses a Consumer Report customer satisfaction survey where Verizon is on top and ATT is on the bottom. That, to me, is more significant than the distorted statistics generated by coverage maps.
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    Quote Originally Posted by reddragonprodz
    Doesn't matter both network will end up covering everything once a universal format comes out. So, it will come down to price and service cause like fuel prices there is no difference between quality between Shell versus Chevron, both will fuel your car like wireless service both will allow you to make calls and do data :T
    I think this is almost certainly easier said than done. I mean, I get spotty Vzw service at my favorite bar, in one of Verizon's EVDO launch and best markets.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jboidc
    I think this is almost certainly easier said than done. I mean, I get spotty Vzw service at my favorite bar, in one of Verizon's EVDO launch and best markets.
    What phone do you have?

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    Quote Originally Posted by XFF
    You are correct that VZW covers more land area and (until AT&T acquires the ALLTEL divestitures) more population than AT&T. I believe the 289 M POPS figure from VZW is their native network only, whereas the 301 M POPS figure from AT&T includes roaming coverage as well.
    Ahh, that makes sense. Thanks for the response (and to others for their responses too).

    I noticed recently that you (XFF) were using AT&T which I found interesting. I saw awj223 is also using AT&T now. I was kind of surprised to see the old school spectrum analysis people switch from CDMA, seems like most of you were on Verizon or Sprint for a number of years and since I've been reading HoFo. Any particular technical reason for the switch?

    I live in Michigan, so Alltel coverage is famous around here and I'm interested on your thoughts about how the divestiture of the Northwest area of the state is going to go. I read that Verizon will divest 2 of their own markets and 1 of Alltel's to AT&T?

    Since wireless contracts are so long, I am interested in coverage coming in the next couple of years so I am poking my head out of the gopher hole to get your thoughts

    Thanks all!

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    Sadly, no matter which carrier you look at, the coverage maps are like playing a shell game. The consumer ultimately has the most to lose and usually loses in the long run. Not trying to blame any single carrier because they all do it.

    The best advice is to choose a carrier that works for you where and when you need it. Too make things worse, many of the "so-called surveys" that are conducted annually (such as Consumer Reports) are radically biased and inaccurate making it all the more difficult for the consumer.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CellKrazeDude
    What phone do you have?
    It says Sholes aka Droid.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jahoobob
    It says Sholes aka Droid.
    That's what I thought, but wasn't sure. I noticed that phone didn't pick up so well. The updated that is coming out very soon may help it.

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    We're all going to have different experiences with coverage depending on where we are and where we travel. Here in Kansas, especially the central part where I live the major carriers coverage is mostly based around the interstates, as you move a few miles away from those coverage gets very sparse and no coverage at all.

    I've had Sprint and TMO and AT&T, Sprint and TMO were decent within ten miles of the interstates but AT&T was terrible just about everywhere until you get close to Wichita or Topeka etc.

    I moved to Verizon three months ago and I now get coverage everywhere, even in some of the most interior and rural areas of Kansas, not just voice but even EVDO data. I do travel a fair amount and my Verizon coverage has been first rate. I don't mind paying a few dollars extra for this. Last night I ended up sliding sideways into a small ditch because of the major snow storm we've been having, and no, I was not speeding, I was going very slow in fact but the road was just totally iced. The driver door was lodged shut. I was able to use my Verizon phone to call for help and got pulled out. That was worth the few dollars more I pay for service.

    Depending on your area and your travel and usage other services can be just fine so it really depends on your needs. I don't really care how much more coverage Verizon has overall, and I could care less that AT&T data may be faster than Verizon. I care that I have service where and when I need it. That was made abundantly clear to me last night. Funny TV ad wars and bickering over what 3G really is or who's is faster becomes a pointless exercise, when the rubber hits the road it only matters that the service you use works when you need it most. For me, that was Verizon, depending on where you live and travel that may be Sprint or TMO or AT&T. I'll just say that buying a service that may not work everywhere you go or may be marginal at times just to save a few bucks can be a dangerous cost savings when you really need that service. I know!

    R

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    Yeah, AT&T *LOVES* to have it both ways -- they pretend "AT&T's network" includes roamers -- while having very low roaming limits (40% of minutes per month, and something like 24MB a month roaming....) They set the phone to say "AT&T" even when roaming, then complain to the customer they roam too much.

    Anyway, I think AT&T's *actual* network might still cover like 270 mil or so. Verizon's is MUCH bigger, but a lot of the area (especially from the Alltel purchase) is very sparsely populated.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jboidc
    I think this is almost certainly easier said than done. I mean, I get spotty Vzw service at my favorite bar, in one of Verizon's EVDO launch and best markets.
    Are you saying you get spotty service as in both 1X and EVDO, and is it in reference to being inside a bar/building, or even outside in that area?

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