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Thread: Native Verizon Coverage Vs Total Wireless Coverage

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    Native Verizon Coverage Vs Total Wireless Coverage

    My wife and I are ATVing this weekend in Bayfield County Wisconsin. Both she and I are on Total Wireless. There have been a few times when someone in our group, who is on native Verizon, has coverage and we don't. She is convinced that it is because we are on Total Wireless and not native Verizon Wireless. I am thinking it is the difference in the smartphones used.

    Can anybody refresh my memory on the current differences in coverage between native Verizon and Total Wireless?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post
    My wife and I are ATVing this weekend in Bayfield County Wisconsin. Both she and I are on Total Wireless. There have been a few times when someone in our group, who is on native Verizon, has coverage and we don't. She is convinced that it is because we are on Total Wireless and not native Verizon Wireless. I am thinking it is the difference in the smartphones used.

    Can anybody refresh my memory on the current differences in coverage between native Verizon and Total Wireless?
    this is always complicated, i do not believe there is any definite answers but i would expect total to have coverage on native towers owned by verizon and possible other that tracfone has negotiated roaming with or perhaps that Verizon has included in the 'plan' to the MVNO.

    as far as Verizon itself i also do not believe there is a single answer, prepaid verizon may have certain roaming access, postpaid additional and it may even depend on the specific rate plan or other identifiers in Verizon's system such as consumer versus business account, etc.

    it is also possible that it is in fact the handset being used.

    specifics about roaming and prioritization is not usually made public so only way to find out is likely from experimentation. if it would be appropriate with a member of your group next time maybe you could swap SIM cards for 2 minutes or so and see which it is.

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    i do not know if this is still true but it used to be said that tracfone pay as you go or minute/text/data bucket plans had more coverage than any other prepaid plans out there(including all other tracfone brands) including roaming on nearly every small rural carrier.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post
    My wife and I are ATVing this weekend in Bayfield County Wisconsin. Both she and I are on Total Wireless. There have been a few times when someone in our group, who is on native Verizon, has coverage and we don't. She is convinced that it is because we are on Total Wireless and not native Verizon Wireless. I am thinking it is the difference in the smartphones used.

    Can anybody refresh my memory on the current differences in coverage between native Verizon and Total Wireless?
    Two very important questions:
    1. When you say coverage; do you mean voice, data, or both ?
    2. What model phones are you using.

    Touching on this since if you're still using an older 3G era phone, there will be a difference.

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    I just looked at the maps, and looks like it could be a roaming and/or CDMA thing.

    It looks like that area of Wisconsin has spotty CDMA and LTE coverage for Verizon.

    So if your phone is CDMA-less, you will have no CDMA coverage in that area or even if there is no coverage at all. If you have CDMA phone, you should be able to use those towers tho.

    Then if the other people have CDMA-less phones, I have heard that postpaid CDMA-less phones can roam on other towers in the area, but I am not sure on that tho. I am not sure with the CDMA phones tho.

    It is hard to word this stuff right at times too. So I might have worded something poorly.

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    Total Wireless and most other Verizon MVNO's only use Verizon's native coverage and don't have access to Verizon's roaming agreements like Postpaid customers. The antenna in the phone itself could definitely make a difference when it comes to reception. I stopped using Moto phones for this very reason. I actually move my At&t sim from my Galaxy S9+ to my Huawei Mate SE when I know I'm gonna be in areas of weak coverage. I've done lots of reception testing because I'm a phone nerd

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post
    My wife and I are ATVing this weekend in Bayfield County Wisconsin. Both she and I are on Total Wireless. There have been a few times when someone in our group, who is on native Verizon, has coverage and we don't. She is convinced that it is because we are on Total Wireless and not native Verizon Wireless. I am thinking it is the difference in the smartphones used.

    Can anybody refresh my memory on the current differences in coverage between native Verizon and Total Wireless?
    We need you clarify what you mean when you say the other people in your group are on "Native Verizon". Are they using Verizon Postpaid or Verizon prepaid? If they are using Verizon postpaid then yes, there certainly is a difference because they have access to Verizon's roaming agreements. Last I knew Verizon prepaid does not offer roaming except for some very limited areas of the country but that may have also changed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpz1 View Post
    Two very important questions:
    1. When you say coverage; do you mean voice, data, or both ?
    2. What model phones are you using.

    Touching on this since if you're still using an older 3G era phone, there will be a difference.
    1) Both voice and data.

    2) One Samsung Galaxy S8 and one Samsung Galaxy S9.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dust N Bones View Post
    We need you clarify what you mean when you say the other people in your group are on "Native Verizon". Are they using Verizon Postpaid or Verizon prepaid? If they are using Verizon postpaid then yes, there certainly is a difference because they have access to Verizon's roaming agreements. Last I knew Verizon prepaid does not offer roaming except for some very limited areas of the country but that may have also changed.
    Verizon postpaid.

    Do you know how I can find what areas the Verizon roaming agreements cover?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post
    Verizon postpaid.

    Do you know how I can find what areas the Verizon roaming agreements cover?
    I don't know of an easy way. The only way I know of is to look at Verizon's coverage map on their website & you can toggle between postpaid & prepaid coverage. However, the coverage map isn't as detailed and accurate as it used to be. You can zoom into the area where you're encountering the coverage issue & switch between postpaid & prepaid on the map & see if you notice a difference. But all of their coverage maps take a bit of liberty with actual coverage so if you don't notice a obvious difference that doesn't mean there isn't any roaming in that area.

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    Another thing i don't like about some maps is it may show prepaid coverage. But is that prepaid voice/text only? Or include data?

    And Verizon Prepaid sometimes has better coverage than Visible, or MVNOs.
    iPhone 11 is my current primary phone. But I have more phones than lines. Back to only Prepaid with the changes in the economy.

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    It is a possibility that Total Wireless does not offer roaming or have roaming agreements in that area. They may have signed an agreement to use Verizon's native network. This is what it sounds like to me. Maybe that area could have been covered by Sprint. It could be currently covered by AT&T or TMobile. Or there is not enough signal strength for Total Wireless to bother or spend money and time in that particular area.

    Sent from my Lenovo TB-X606F using Tapatalk

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    Fun to talk about I guess. But it is just guessing. Unless scientific methods are used there's no saying.
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    Last week I was on top of Mt. Mitchell NC. With my Total Wireless phones I had 1x voice and SMS only available on US Cellular up there, but not any data. The VZW coverage map there says "Extended LTE". And certainly TW didn't get that from Verizon.

    The rooming agreements are complicated, and can be done even at the level of tower. So a blanket statement is just that - a blanket statement.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SoNic67 View Post
    Last week I was on top of Mt. Mitchell NC. With my Total Wireless phones I had 1x voice and SMS only available on US Cellular up there, but not any data. The VZW coverage map there says "Extended LTE". And certainly TW didn't get that from Verizon.

    The rooming agreements are complicated, and can be done even at the level of tower. So a blanket statement is just that - a blanket statement.
    But what did a phone directly on Verizon have? Network coverage maps are generally useless in places like that.

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    I see this in one small city in NC close to the Virginia line. People with postpaid Verizon get service. Verizon Prepaid seems to get service. Any Verizon MVNO'S no service. I had the issue with Spectrum Mobile and now Visible. Come to find out Verizon has no coverage in this town and postpaid Verizon customers roam on a small carrier called Carolina West.

    Sent from my SM-T510 using HoFo mobile app

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