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PA - Boston trip coverage report

Discussion in 'Northeastern US Wireless Forum' started by Barciurek, Apr 7, 2008.

  1. Barciurek

    Barciurek Junior Member
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    Recently took my phones - Nokia 5300 GSM 900/1800/1900 with T-mobile TO GO SIM Card and Nokia 6610 GSM 900/1800/1900 with polish prepaid sim card roaming. About 95% of the time I had coverage with T-Mobile. Once I lost coverage at some rest area in Connecticut about 20 miles before the MA border. Once I entered Boston, I wasn't able to find ATT with neither phone - most likely there was GSM 850 there - but T-mobile worked great.
    Took the route which is proposed by Google maps.
    Thank you and have a nice day.
     
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  2. Jerro

    Jerro Bronze Senior Member
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    I have done that trip and Verizon had no problems. Most carriers work on this route because
    95 is well covered.
     
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  3. Barciurek

    Barciurek Junior Member
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    I would also like to add that I have visited Martha's Vineyard island in Massachusetts - both carriers worked good in the port, but as soon as I left town and went into the woods, both of them were either 0 or 1-2 bars... very bad coverage.
     
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  4. Eric47

    Eric47 Bronze Senior Member
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    1-2 bars is typical rural coverage in the US.

    in the US as long as you can make and hold a call we consider that "good enough" coverage.

    In my opinion that is.
     
  5. Barciurek

    Barciurek Junior Member
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    well as i got into the town i couldnt get even 1 so.. Martha's Vineyard is not a good place for cell phones :p
     
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  6. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    So you ARE hurting without the 850 band. I drive a lot between NY and Boston, and the coverage is excellent on I84, I90 into and in Boston with ATT. In the US, you really do need both frequencies for ATT.

    I cannot not say anything about T-mobile and perhaps the Polish prepaid SIM is not allowed to roam completely on even 1900 ATT. Even ATT prepaid SIM's do not roam on all of ATT's network.

    Enjoy your trip. I can say that the coverage for ATT is good on Nantucket!
     
  7. clock3687

    clock3687 Cell Signal?????? Use it!
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    Martha's Vineyard isn't rural, its just NIMBY. T-Mo has a few coverage holes on I-84 (dropped a call in the same area as Barciurek a few weeks ago.), but for the most part, coverage is seemless from Bos to NYC.
     
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  8. mframe

    mframe Senior Member
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    PA, NJ, NY, CT, RI, MA, AT&T has strong 850 Mhz coverage in all these places. Sorry, but I can't put much credit in a coverage report involving AT&T, with phones that don't have 850 Mhz.
     
  9. Barciurek

    Barciurek Junior Member
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    Yes. But my main service is T-Mobile Prepaid which only uses 1900 and is not allowed to roam on 850... so with T-mobile i dont.. when I will be getting either T-mobile postpaid or ATT, i will get quad-band or tri-band from US.
    Actually it is as now I put my Polish prepaid simcard into 6610 that has 900/1800/1900 and it's working normally.. picks up 1900 ATT. it's the fact that in Poland there is no difference with roaming between prepaid and post-paid (coverage-wise, there is different pricing) so they sign agreements to not make a difference between prepaid and post-paid.. but thats weird that with foreign prepaid i can use their network while their prepaid cant use their native network.. lol.. here's a screenshot of polish operator's here's my providers roaming partners in US.. that applies to both postpaid and prepaid.
    [​IMG]
     
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    #9 Barciurek, Apr 9, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2008
  10. bobolito

    bobolito Diamond Senior Member
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    Anyone using a phone without 850Mhz in the Americas is just torturing themselves. I don't care if you use Sprint, Verizon, T-Mobile, AT&T, Telcel, Claro, Comcel, Bell Mobility, Rogers, etc., you'll still need 850Mhz at some point in order to roam on 850Mhz networks which will always be more widespread than 1900Mhz. That's why I will never understand why manufacturers insist on making international phones with 1900 instead of 850.
     
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  11. Barciurek

    Barciurek Junior Member
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    Because you're much better off with only 1900 than with only 850. Plus, if you look at T-Mobile map, you don't need 850 unless you roam which is rare if you live in the right spot. So technically you can be great with 900/1800/1900 in US if you are in the right spot and don't travel to the "wrong" spots. ;)

    I'm still wondering - why am I allowed to roam on the entire ATT network (both 850 and 1900) while ATT prepaid isn't..?
     
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  12. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    You misunderstood, misquoted, some of my comments.

    My comment was that without 850Mhz, for ATT, not Tmobile, your coverage will be crippled or more limited. Tmobile is very large in EU, but in the USA it is not. Among GSM providers, ATT has the largest coverage over Tmobile. Tmobile is actually #3 or #4 in the USA, business and coverage wise.

    I also said that perhaps your Polish prepaid card cannot roam on the entire ATT network. Looking at your screenshot, the number of your Polish roaming partners for the USA is quite small. We have a quite a few small operators that are independent in the USA - it's a bigger country here - that don't show on your screenshot.

    Take a look at the ATT webpage, the Coverage Map Viewer, and compare ATT's Voice (postpay) with the GO phone map (prepay) and you will see the difference. In the Northeast, large parts of Vermont and Maine is from non-native ATT roaming partners. Most likely, however, in your travels from Penn to Mass, this is not a issue for you.

    So when I roam in France with ATT, I have access to SFR, Orange and BT. I'm not limited like a native frenchman might be, with Orange service alone, for example. But I'm a post payer there and these are big carriers. It seems that being a foreign roamer in general is a better deal, coverage wise (but certainly not money wise).

    As for the reason why ATT prepay does NOT roam on non native carriers - don't really know for certain - but it depends on the legal contracts between ATT and those partners. Most likely, no one wants to deal with the cross billing issues and delays. Once the $$ is spent on prepay, ATT the carrier has no claim to the prepay customer if the bill from a non native carrier come a month late and the prepayer is gone!

    So, in fact, you may NOT be roaming on the entire ATT (including non-native partners) with your Polish prepay card. It is not a 850 vs 1900 issue for ATT, but a independent small carrier problem. Drive up to Vermont and see what happens!

    Good Luck, enjoy your travels and the USA - and welcome to the WA forums.


    P.S. In fact, most of Tmobile roaming in Vermont is 850Mhz too, according to their coverage map.

    And Tmobile's definition of 850Mhz roaming is:

    850MHz roaming allows T-Mobile postpaid customers to access roaming service in areas that previously were not accessible. Currently 850MHz roaming is not available for T-Mobile To Go customers.

    So it is the same for T-mobile as ATT prepay, and I would think also true for your Polish Prepay!
     
    #12 viewfly, Apr 11, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2008
  13. Barciurek

    Barciurek Junior Member
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    so i think we all misunderstood ourselves ;)
    To me entire ATT network - ATT towers, not their roaming partners. :)
    i think its clear now. :) i will be able to roam anywhere where there is ATT native coverage and T-Mobile native coverage :)

    thanks for taking time to post that and have a good day :)
     
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  14. mframe

    mframe Senior Member
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    I'm not sure of your meaning, here. AT&T prepaid most certainly does use all of the AT&T network (850 Mhz and 1900 Mhz), but not AT&T's roaming partners.

    I believe that you posted previously about not having good AT&T or T-Mobile coverage at your home in PA, but I don't think you tested the AT&T coverage with an 850 Mhz phone. Might I suggest you try an AT&T GoPhone from Wal-Mart. Even the cheapest phone will show you how much better AT&T is with 850 Mhz.
     
  15. EdwardP

    EdwardP Bronze Senior Member
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    Back in February, I was going from Boston to Marlborough via the Massachusetts Turnpike.

    When I arrived at the Framingham rest area (on I-90 West), I noticed my T-Mobile Nokia only had 2 bars of coverage, out of 4. I thought this was odd, since the Mass Pike is heavily traveled and I believed all of the major carriers would have the entire stretch of the Pike well covered.
     
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