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Cingular in Jersey.. and they are screwing me :(

Discussion in 'Northeastern US Wireless Forum' started by ryeookin, Mar 1, 2005.

  1. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    I have had nothing but dropped calls since I upgraded my plan last november and got a new phone My new phone (a motorola v180) doesn't support tdma.. only gsm. I didn't pay too much attention the first month (I had cingular before and didn't have a problem.. so I didn't see why I would start having one.. little did my ignorance would come back to kick my bite me in the **** as my 30 days expired).

    Now with my phone I get dropped calls allllll the time where I live. Cingular of course tells me its not a service issue.. yet I've tested this as I've made an hour+ phone call in a near by town that has several gsm towers and didn't get dropped once! Cingular had me take my phone into tech support.. the tech checked out my phone and said my phone was fine. Then another time I was told it was the databases on my phone.. so they uploaded those and I made it a point to turn on/off my phone regularly.. Then I created a case with their engineers giving specific dates/times of my dropped calls.. I called back later to find they said it was a softwear issue with my phone and that I need to power cycle my phone every 3 days to keep this from happening. Well.. I have been power cycling my phone and it HAS been dropping me just hours from turning it back on.. I called back and spoke with their techs and NOW they want me to get a new phone..

    I don't want to have to pay the termination fees.. so I'm hoping that if I go through this nonsense (because I know a new phone won't fix this problem) when I call back they will waive my $150 termination charges.

    I mean I've told them on the phone.
    "I pay money to have a relaible service.. your not provideing a reliable service so you should not charge me a termination fee because the failure is on your part" However they will never admit their service is lacking..

    Maybe cingular works in come areas.. but in my area I'm getting screwed.. I'm frustrated as all hell.. and totally fed up. If I get this replacement phone and they still charge me that fee I'm gonna be pist and bitter as all hell and never use cingular again. :mad:

    Anyone else having these problems?
     
  2. Gideon H

    Gideon H Quase Três Anos Com WA!
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    I've had my Cingular phone around Arizona, Southern California, Minneapolis, Detroit, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Chicago, Denver... the list can go on! Only once did I have a problem with my Cingular service (New Hampshire around Lake Winnipisauke). Bascially... you shouln't keep calling CS about your coverage issue because most of them are unqualified and will just give you the "get a new phone" bit. To get to the source of the problem, try contacting the regional vice president of your market (I don't know if New Jersey has it's own market or if it's part of an agglomeration, I'll find out). Usually they can mark a site in your area where a tower can be built that quarter, for example. Like I said... I'll try to find out what market you are in and maybe even give you a phone number :).
     
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  3. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    Wow.. If it could be that easy it would be great. I would prefer to keep the phone I have now then to have to get a different model phone or plan with another carrier.. it just didn't look avoidable so if you have some tricks up your sleeve that can help it would be great!

    I appreciate your help, thanks! :)

    Ryan

    If you want to email me the info: ryeookin@hotmail.com
     
  4. Andy

    Andy Diamond Senior Member
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    Ryan,
    don't publish your email on public forums. A better idea would be to PM people your email, but not make it available to everyone, unless you want a lot more spam ;)
     
  5. Airb330

    Airb330 Silver Senior Member
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    Ry, I'd email Bobolito with your zip codes. He has access to Cingular maps that could show you the situation. It's odd how GSM is worse than TDMA. That being said, I am not a fan of the v180. My friend has it on T-Mobile, and it makes a weak network almost useless in places where T-Mobile works fine on a nokia.
     
  6. mendel

    mendel Junior Member
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    it would help if you wrote, where in NJ do you live?!?

    in North Jersey AT&T has a much better network than Cingular (which uses T-Mobile's towers...)

    so if you have a 64k sim card, CS should be able to get you "color swapped" to blue and prefer AT&T's towers... (if you don't have a 64k sim card, than ask CS for one, they may or may not give you one for free.... its a matter of luck...)

    in general Nokia phones do much better RF wise than Motorola's....

    if none of this helps you, write an email to stan.sigman@cingular.com (and someone from a much higher level of CS will get back to you within 24 hours..)

    Let me know what happens....
     
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  7. Gideon H

    Gideon H Quase Três Anos Com WA!
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    While emailing Stan works, it does get a little hectic for him. I emailed him once and he personally read it, and I talked with him and VP Jay Fields in the AZ/NM market. It's much better just to look-up a VP phone number (which I will get for Ryan), and call the person directly. I also agree with that the v180 is not a good phone when it comes to holding a signal. But not all Motorola's are bad... my V600 holds a signal very well.
     
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  8. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    andy:
    Thanks, am new to these forums so I wasn't sure.
    Just in case my hotmail email is my spam email address I use. :)

    airb330:
    I'll email Bobolito when I get off work.. at the moment I only have a sec since I'm on my break. Hmm.. so the v180's are weak signal wise aye?

    mendel:
    You need an exact address?? My location is just below my username to the left. I live in Lumberton NJ. My zip is 08048 or 08060 (they just changed it to 48 and it doesn't show up in some databases yet).

    gidon:
    Appreciate the help. :)

    I'll write a bit and be more proactive after work..
    Thanks for everyone's feed back :)
     
  9. Fire14

    Fire14 Easy,Cheap & Sleazy
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    Lumberton is in South Jersey Burlington Cty. Correct? If so that area shouldn't be giving you problems like this, unless coverage is poor in 1 specific area. I have been down that area & coverage has been good for me, Cingular is using the 850/1900 band down there & AWE's old system is using 1900 only, so you should between the 2 you should be good for coverage.
    I have heard some poor things about the 180 & heard the 220 is a better phone & the V551 is the best for the money for Moto's.
    The Nokia's are all good for Rf & are another good choice for a phone, the only bad thing is no clamshell models.
     
  10. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    Well... cingular doesn't offer detailed info on the areas they cover. At least not on their public site that I can find.. However I see tmobile also uses gsm and so I did a search on their site of what towers were in the area (assuming that one gsm tower could be used by all wireless gsm using customers). This is where I'm at:
    http://compass.t-mobile.com/Compass2/MapPage.asp
    address is 744 eayrestown road. 08060 (if you enter in that info its to the right of the X.
    (thats the apartment complex)

    According to the chart it looks like it gets average signal. Now I do get like 4 bars but then it drops down to no bars and I get dropped calls.. I also talked to a coworker who has the same problem and lives just down the street from me (she has a different phone, but I'm not sure what model).. sooo that has me thinking its the towers? or 2 bad phones.. but I'm thinking that’s just too much of a coincidence.
     
  11. Fire14

    Fire14 Easy,Cheap & Sleazy
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    Send dallison a PM with your zip code and ask him if he could provide you with a Blue (AT&T) & Orange (Cingular) coverage maps for your area, if the maps show you have average or above coverage, then there might be a problem with the network, or there is no coverage with the network. And most maps only show outside coverage & not indoor coverage.

    Also consider this, if your picking up a 1900 Mhz only tower say on Blue, then inside coverage can suffer big time if the tower is a distance away from the building, there coverage area is around 1 mile & not very good building penetration vs 850 Mhz.

    T-Mobile's map will not help you if you are not roaming on there network, or if you can manually select them, which I am not sure if you can in South Jersey, I know in North Jersey we can't select or roam on them.
     
  12. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    Ok.. I'm a noob here but how do I know what frequency my phone towers use?

    Also.. as for it being a building issue, well that could be a small part but I've been outside in a veritable open field where I work and have had the same problem I have had while inside my apartment complex. That is, the signal looks good one sec but then drops to nothing. Up and down like a sea saw.. untill it ends up dropping my call. This is with me not moving, and seems to not matter if I'm at home, in my car or outside around where I live..

    .. Now If I went to say around Moorestown mall area I get a consistant 4 bars the whole time and can make calls with no problems. (I don't notice my signal fluctuate)

    Oh and thanks fire14. I pm'd him.

    Ryan
     
  13. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    .. maybe its my phone that gives me crap reception. Along those lines, the more I read the more that v551 looks great. Since I have an account already it would run me the full price.. plus I'm still not 100% sure my phone is the cause. I'll see what those maps look like and test my new replacement phone and maybe even try to borrow my friends cingular cell phone to compare its bar strength to mine at home.. we'll see. If it turns out to be the phone then I'll likely get something I KNOW will get reception like that v551 (as all the reviews I'm seeing tout its remarkable reception).
     
  14. bobolito

    bobolito Diamond Senior Member
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    I believe the problem is on the network. Try to e-mail stan and carefully explain the problem. They might need to increase the number of channels available so that hopping works more reliably and handoffs don't end up putting you on a tower that's too far away. Something's gotta be wrong with the towers there.

    Now, there might be a workaround: Do you have a 32k SIM or 64K SIM card? Your card will say which one it is. If your phone is using Cingular's network, there might be a way to force it to switch to AT&T network to see if you get better service.
     
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  15. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    I finally found it under the battery. Its a 32k sim. Do you need any of the other numbers?
     
  16. Fire14

    Fire14 Easy,Cheap & Sleazy
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    The only way to tell what frequency is being used is to modify your phone, with what is called Flexing the phones software to get the engineering program on it, which I wouldn't worry about at this time.
    I am sure bobolitto will be able to help you with a work around on this to hopefully help.
    As for the 551, everyone i have heard from say's the same thing, the Rf is top notch and you could check out eBay to see if you might win one cheaper then buying one at Cingular. But if you have a friend with a Cingular phone that is a Nokia or the 551, try there phone 1st before spending the money.
     
  17. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    Thank you dallison!

    I have the maps and according to the 4 that dallison gave me of where I live, orange signal is good and blue is a little below average.. sooo.. according to this, signal should pretty much be good so that removes that as a possiblility.

    So its either my phone or the towers..
     
  18. bobolito

    bobolito Diamond Senior Member
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    As a first suggestion, I would investigate if your V180 supports ENS (I believe it does, but we have to make sure). You can probably go to the store you got it from and they should be able to tell you. If they don't know what the hell is ENS, then you should try and talk to someone else or go to another store. Bringing the original box might help them identify the phone.

    Then, once you verify your phone is ENS capable, try to get them to switch you to a 64K SIM card. They will probably charge you no more than $25 to do this, but sometimes depending on how they feel that day, they may give you the 64K SIM for free ;). So try and convince them of the fact that you are having a problem and you just want to solve it. The 64K SIM in combination with a phone that supports ENS, will give Cingular more flexibility to switch you from the orange to the blue network. Once you've done this, you can request Cingular to make your phone prefer either the blue or the orange towers. This way you can test to see which one works out the best for you.

    Now, I read that the map Dallison gave you says blue coverage to be inferior that orange's. So switching your phone to blue may still be a problem for you. However, if the blue network doesn't have the "bars up and down" problem, then even with a weaker signal it may end up being better for you.

    As a pre-test, if you know anyone who has an AT&T Wireless account, you can just ask them to come over to your place and test out their phone. This way you'll know how the blue network actually behaves before you go on doing all this.

    Good luck...
     
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  19. dallison

    dallison Senior Member
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    no problem
     
  20. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    Thanks bobolito for the good info. :)

    Last night however I got to the point where I decided to buy a new phone so I bought on ebay a v551 (it was recommended on this thread and all my other searching online looking up evaluations of its performance with reception and most everything else appear stellar!)

    Should arrive in a week. If that doesn't help then there IS only one thing left and that is something wrong with the towers. At this point since I tried all the other options I believe I would have a strong case to email that stan guy and explain my story so he could check the towers out and get behind the mystery of my fluctuating signal and dropped calls.. sooooo.. I just have to wait for my phone to arrive now and then I'l test it out and report what I find. :)
     
  21. bobolito

    bobolito Diamond Senior Member
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    That's good....let us know what happens.
     
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  22. Gideon H

    Gideon H Quase Três Anos Com WA!
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    Lol I called the person in New Jersey but all that he said is basically covered here! Hope it all goes well :).
     
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  23. lets4567

    lets4567 Junior Member
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    I work in Hainesport,NJ and go through Lumberton. I know of no problems. Now,My boss' phone is theV180 and he has some trouble getting signal in the office. However, the Nokia's for our business seem to have slightly better RF.
    (I am more familiar with Verizon,however).
    Actually,in that area I will rarely drop a call (with Cingular)...granted, I'm not using our business phone nearly as much as my personal phone. I know there is a tower near the Lowes on RTe 38. How far are you from there?
     
  24. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    I'm just down the road across from the super fresh on the lumberton side of 38 (right across from the burgerking at dorado gardens apts). So that again supports that it could be my phone if you live in the area and have no problem with signal..

    Well I guess I'll find out when I get the v551 I ordered.. I'll keep everyone posted. :)
     
  25. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    UPDATE:

    Ok I have my new Motorola v551. I've talked on the phone at my place for an hour (no fluctuation of signal like my v180) and at other places I would usually get cut off.. and so far the signal is great at at the worst it hasn't gone below 2 bars where ever I've been. :biggrin: I'm likeing this!

    So far I would have to say my problem was my crappy v180..
     
  26. bobolito

    bobolito Diamond Senior Member
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    Glad to see it is working out for you. If your V180 is still under warranty I would ask for an exchange.
     
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  27. ryeookin

    ryeookin New Member

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    Thanks bobolito. I did actually. I got a replacement 180v in the mail. I love my v551 though (still getting great signal with no dropped calls!) so I have an extra v180 laying around.. Think I'll give it to a coworker.

    Again, thanks for all your help everyone! :biggrin:
     

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