Sprint Better than Verizon for West-Central Oregon (Bend/Sisters, OR)
So for many years, Sprint and Verizon have had reciprocal roaming agreements here in Oregon. Historically dating back about ten to twelve years and up until quite recently, Verizon could roam on Sprint (including in-market) and Sprint could roam on Verizon (including in-market). The interesting tidbit that's happened in the last couple years is that Verizon removed most of the Sprint roaming in Oregon. Sprint, of course, left Verizon in as a roaming partner.
My wife and I both have iPhone 4S's, mine on Verizon, hers on Sprint. Coverage for us is about the same due to included roaming. The interesting tidbit on my last trip to "Eastern" Oregon -- or at least across the Cascades to Sisters/Bend is that her phone fared much better than mine. Her Sprint phone found Verizon signal whenever needed, and my Verizon phone simply indicates "no service" in the areas Sprint has coverage and Verizon doesn't. This includes many areas in and around Sun River, mount Bachelor, and suttle lake near Sisters.
So kudos to Sprint. This is really the first time I've ever really seen them beat another top-carrier at least in my area.
PS: I do not know which Verizon PRL removed Sprint roaming. I do know the current Verizon PRL does not include Sprint roaming at least in Sisters/Bend and surrounding areas. I've witnessed the differences first hand.
Eugene, OR -- Pacific Northwest
I was just in Redmond, OR. today coming from Portland and back. I'm moving to Central Oregon soon. Sprint coverage is solid out there, in fact a few times my EVO roamed when it didn't need to . I double checked and turned roaming off, 3G speeds today there seemed slower than the 1-2Mbps speeds I get here in Portland.
The concern over there would be 4G coverage. I think Verizon will have LTE turned on over the next 12 months. There is a local ISP (Bend Broadband) who has been offering HSPA+ and now offers LTE wireless internet all over the Central Oregon region.
Bendbroadband Introduces the First 4G LTE Wireless Network to Central Oregon
In and around Eugene, Sprint's voice coverage is about equal to Verizon. Sprint's data coverage is definitely superior to Verizon everywhere I've been. (i.e. test with www.speedtest.net, but also just how it feels).
LTE- It all depends. It depends on how soon Verizon rolls out LTE. It depends on how long Sprint will take to roll out their LTE. etc.
As it stands today, Sprint has had WiMax 4G in Eugene for about 2 years (and available right now). Verizon has only 3G and is slower than Sprint today...
PS: When my line was with Sprint, they had 3G EVDO two years before Verizon. I switched back to Verizon mainly due to my employers preference (and they are paying for my service).
One more comment- Since I like playing with cell phones generally, I also carry a phone that uses AT&T's GSM network. Sprint with included roaming definitely beats AT&T with included roaming in the same areas.