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Thread: How is coverage in Northern California?

  1. #1
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    How is coverage in Northern California?

    Hi! Currently I live in Central Florida, but will be relocating to Northern California later this year. I'm in the process of getting rid of my Sprint PCS phone because of service problems in both areas and my contract is up. I just got the Verizon Pink V3C RAZR and am still in the trial period. I found some service problems in this area I'm not too happy with. So I'm trying to decide if I should send it back or keep it because coverage is better in Northern California. Verizon NorCal users, what do you think? Thanks.

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    I don't know what you mean by norcal, but here in the bay area vzw is the best, bar none. Every provider has negatives, major ones you will find, vzw I have found to be best, in store corporate cs is vzw's shortcoming around here.

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    I live in San Francisco and travel around the Bay Area a lot. Verizon is by far the best around. When I switched from Sprint to Verizon, I was amazed....amazed at how bad Sprint is and how excellent Verizon is. For the Bay Area, there simply isno better provider than Verizon.

    My girlfriend has T-Mobile and hates it. Another buddy of mine has Cingular, and he's not all that happy with them either.
    Start slow, then taper off.

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    I was in San Jose & SF back in October and and no problems... The only time I did have a problem was when I was in the Muir Woods area...
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    However in northern Northern California, VZW is a bit more iffy. (North of Sacramento/San Francisco, to the Oregon border)

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    Hey, I think Verizon service is excellent in northern California, but I'll give a couple negatives:

    1) The beach area north of Half Moon Bay sucks. I have to analog roam, and cannot hold a consistent signal. T-Mobile has no usable coverage there. This was last summer.

    2) Coverage in the Lake Tahoe area is on-and-off non-existant. I just turn off my phone rather than kill the battery. Sprint and Cingular are significantly better. This was last February.

    3) On the way Yosemite, particulary once you enter Sequoia National Park, coverage is non-existant to sucks. I hear Cingular is strong in that area. I was able to get full bars on top of the mountains (such as Half Dome) but I was unable to make an actual call. But I don't expect cell phone coverage in the trails.

    4) Underground BART stations. Only Cingular works there.

    There are a couple of other minor spots that Verizon is not that good in. Overall, however, it provides the strongest signal over the greatest area.

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    What Metro area of Central Florida did you find the Service issues with? Verizon is by VERY FAR the King in Florida. I can count on 1 hand the ammount of Problem areas that I have encountered with Verizon from Key West all the way up both the east and west coasts to Jax. I carry a Cingular and Nextel phone for work and often find that i have to whip out my Personal Verizon phone as the latter two are terrible. As for T-Mobile and Sprint, lol lets not even go there. Just curious what area of Central Florida you found problems with.
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    Yeah, Sprint sucks. On a cross-country road trip to CA a few months back, I found what seemed like entire states where the phone could not get a signal, but the Cingular phone we had with us always seemed to work even in middle-of-nowhere, Kansas.

    Anyway, I found minor Verizon service problems in north and central Brevard County, the phone can always get a signal outside, but not always inside. It'll barely get a signal in my office, calls get cut off and the phone will show "no service" in some areas while Cingular phones are able to get 3 to 4 bars. I heard Verizon is planning to add a tower to that area, but hurricanes have delayed that. Coverage in CA sounds like it might be better than Cingular though.

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    T-Mobile in the Bay Area

    I'm in San Jose and currently have T-Mobile, contract is up in 2 weeks and going with Verizon. I have polled nearly every one at work, around 100 people, about 80% have Verizon and have no problems. Other providers have better phone selections? I'd rather get better phone coverage!

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    Quote Originally Posted by jumperless
    Yeah, Sprint sucks. On a cross-country road trip to CA a few months back, I found what seemed like entire states where the phone could not get a signal
    Then you must have had your handset set to "No Roaming" or experienced some other kind of handset or user related problem, because if you include roaming coverage, SPCS Free and Clear America actually covers a little more area than VZW America's Choice II. There's no way you will have entire states with no coverage with a SPCS handset. Their roaming agreements are superb!
    Coverage in CA sounds like it might be better than Cingular though.
    It would help if you told us what your idea of "Northern CA" is. If you're talking San Francisco Bay/Sacramento area, then VZW is probably an excellent choice. If you're talking actual northern CA (like Ukiah or Eureka or Yreka or Susanville) then USCC is likely a better choice for you.
    Last edited by XFF; 02-08-2006 at 10:36 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gpatrick900
    I am a little confused. My Verizon phone was able to roam on GSM because they used TDMA. Tell it was shutdown. The phone recognizes it as Analog. If PCS has TDMA, It could be technically be used on GSM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tabla View Post
    Y'know, I'm used to hysterical 14-year-old ******** on the internet, but this is exceptional. Never before in human history have so many nerds hyperventilated so publicly over so little.

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    Quote Originally Posted by penguin_hash
    Hey, I think Verizon service is excellent in northern California, but I'll give a couple negatives:

    1) The beach area north of Half Moon Bay sucks. I have to analog roam, and cannot hold a consistent signal. T-Mobile has no usable coverage there. This was last summer.

    2) Coverage in the Lake Tahoe area is on-and-off non-existant. I just turn off my phone rather than kill the battery. Sprint and Cingular are significantly better. This was last February.

    3) On the way Yosemite, particulary once you enter Sequoia National Park, coverage is non-existant to sucks. I hear Cingular is strong in that area. I was able to get full bars on top of the mountains (such as Half Dome) but I was unable to make an actual call. But I don't expect cell phone coverage in the trails.

    4) Underground BART stations. Only Cingular works there.

    There are a couple of other minor spots that Verizon is not that good in. Overall, however, it provides the strongest signal over the greatest area.
    4) VZW has coverage in the first 4 downtown SF stations underground with bleed over to the 5th station. No press around it, but it's been live for a couple months now. 1x and EVDO coverage available, more stations to come.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by penguin_hash
    2) Coverage in the Lake Tahoe area is on-and-off non-existant. I just turn off my phone rather than kill the battery. Sprint and Cingular are significantly better. This was last February.
    I've lived in the north Lake Tahoe area for several years, and I would qualify penguin_hash's comments by saying that coverage varies greatly by location here. Every carrier has dead zones and areas of poor coverage, and there are definitely a few dead zones for the CDMA carriers that are fine for GSM and vica-versa.

    In my experience Verizon's service is more reliable and usable in areas of weak signal than Sprint's, and, in general, I have more usable coverage and fewer dropped calls as a Verizon customer than I did as a Sprint customer. I've also noticed that in those places where my Verizon phone roams onto Sprint's network and Sprint's signal is weak, the phone is pretty much useless: I'm often not able to place a call, and if it actually connects the call is usually dropped a second or two later. With a similar signal strength on VZW's own network I can usually place a call, I won't be excessively garbled, and I'm less likely to get dropped.

    As for Cingular, I haven't used it myself, but Cingular customers I know report better service since the merger. Of course, as with every carrier in the area, they have their weak spots. One friend who has Cingular regularly tries to call me while driving between Tahoe City and Truckee on Hwy 89. Most of the time we can't talk for more than a minute or two before the call degrades to unintelligible garble for long periods and/or it's dropped. Might be his phone, but it's a pretty recent Moto. On VZW I seem to be able to hold a call all the way from Tahoe City to Truckee, with one or two weak spots where I might miss a few seconds.

    One place where Verizon's service has been boarderline is Kings Beach. Cingular probably has the edge there because they have a tower that is considerably closer than either Sprint's or Verizon's. Another weak spot with intermittent Verizon service is the west shore near Sunnyside.

    Don't have much beta on T-mobile for north Tahoe.

    So whether one carrier is significantly better in this area is hard to say. It all depends where you need to use your phone most.

    Finally, analog service doesn't seem to be particularly useful in the north Tahoe area. In those places where there isn't a digital signal, I've seldom found that the analog signal is actually usable.

    A good resource for Tahoe and Reno coverage are the maps and dead zone guides found at http://www.renowirelessinfo.com/ .

    Hope this helps!

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    Verizon is the best in the Bay Area for sure! I had AT&T and Tmobile before and Verizon definately pwns them all.

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    Verizon is the best in the Bay Area -- I've had T-Mobile, Sprint, AND Cingular. Verizon is crystal and works everywhere I go (Except for Chabot Golf Course in Oakland *&#)@)

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    Quote Originally Posted by jumperless
    Yeah, Sprint sucks. On a cross-country road trip to CA a few months back, I found what seemed like entire states where the phone could not get a signal, but the Cingular phone we had with us always seemed to work even in middle-of-nowhere, Kansas.

    Anyway, I found minor Verizon service problems in north and central Brevard County, the phone can always get a signal outside, but not always inside. It'll barely get a signal in my office, calls get cut off and the phone will show "no service" in some areas while Cingular phones are able to get 3 to 4 bars. I heard Verizon is planning to add a tower to that area, but hurricanes have delayed that. Coverage in CA sounds like it might be better than Cingular though.
    Brevard County, well I reside in the Melbourne area so i am VERy familiar with this area. The only areas of North Brevard County That I have trouble with are EXTREAME northern areas of Kennedy Space Center/Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. A new tower is planned for this area and by Q3 so sometime around the summer(was pending DOD approval as it will go on Federal Property). If u look at the Coverage locator you will see the hole I am talking about. As for Central Brevard County, Coverage can get a litle weak in the Rockledge area, but even so I was able to use my phone indoors on native Verizon. Two towers are planned for this area, one just east of I-95 around the Fiske Blvd. exit, this is were it gets iffy(specialy in the residential areas right of Barton Blvd/Roy Wall Blvd ect) and this site will REALY help Rockledge verizon users out. No ETA on this one, but it will be done this year. Another one is planned up by the old Carnival Mall right of US-1 which is WAY north Rockledge, bordering Southern Cocoa area. This one is due anytime now as it is suppose to go live Q1 2006. As for other areas in Brevard County: North Satellite Beach(south Patrick AFB) will FINALY get a ROOF TOP site by Q3 of this year(summer)! This is great news, as anyone who is familiar, Verizon can get weak in this area. Certain Bars along A1A at times have no Indoor coverage. This Site will alleviate ALOT of headaches. Palm Bay area is slated to get 1 Site possibly two. One site is duew up in the Bayside Lakes area(out by Bayside High School). Coverage is decent in this area, but due to all the new development a new site is needed(and has been for a while now) to alleviate cell traffic. This one is due by Q4 of this year, so not till the end of the year. The other *POSSIBLE* site is out in eastern Palm Bay (in the Palmbay rd/Robert J Conlan Blvd/US-1 area) out there by Harris. Again coverage is ok in this area, but towards US-1 indoor reception suffers some. No ETA on this one, and it might not even happen, its *TENTATIVE*. Those are the Buildout/Capacity Addition plans Brevard County for 2006. Verizon did well, as all those towers are going to fix/suppliment some important areas.

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