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Unicel coverage in MN

Discussion in 'Central US Wireless Forum' started by Buickman, Nov 2, 2007.

  1. Buickman

    Buickman Gearhead/Gadget freak
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    I've been searching all over the interwebs looking for this info, but I can't find much. With VZW purchasing RCC I thought they would only be gaining coverage in northern MN, but lately I've been driving in southern MN and noticed Unicel billboards. Now I've found that they got some towes and spectrum from Alltel when they had to divest, but I haven't been able to find any details on where all that coverage is. It will be nice that VZW will have even more native coverage around here, but I can't for the life of me figure out where it will be. Anybody know where to find some detailed maps?
     
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  2. quarter

    quarter New Member

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  3. MOTOhooligan

    MOTOhooligan Former Mobile Data Addict
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    [​IMG]

    I also included a map from the old Midwest Wireless site to further clarify the area which was divested during the Alltel buyout. I don't have the actual MSA/RSA number for that area, however.
     

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  4. JasonWells

    JasonWells Junior Member
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    I reside in SW Minn and have Unicel. The coverage is good. It stays native, until the Iowa border where it roams on Alltel, at the SD border it roams on VZW and east at about Albert Lea it roams on Alltel. Going north to Minneapolis, it starts roaming on VZW around LeSeur(40miles south of Mpls).

    I very much enjoy the 6pm N&W minutes and free incoming calls and texts and 600mins Nat'l plan ($40). When blasted VZW takes over that will most likely be removed, but customers have the free will, at that time, to end their service without early termination fees. I happily will take the opportunity to terminate-lol. Also, the Unicel phones have no locks or invasive user interface on them, like the blasted VZW phones will.
     
  5. Buickman

    Buickman Gearhead/Gadget freak
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    That map is the area they give customers as a "home area", what I'm looking for is the native coverage that VZW will be taking over. From the sounds of what JasonWells said, that only part of MN VZW won't have after the buyout is the south eastern corner of the state, east of I35 and south of about Red Wing, except for the old Qwest 1900MHz system they have along HWY 52 and 14 in and out of Rochester. I didn't realize that RCC had the whole south western corner of the state now, I though they only had the north half.
     
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  6. JasonWells

    JasonWells Junior Member
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    Yes, it is much of SW Minnesota. I haven't been directly north to see how far it goes, but from advertisements, I think it may continue native north to Alexandria and further. I also think the CDMA network may enter parts of SD around Brookings and Watertown, not much but a few miles into the state.

    As US Cellular recently purchased a Cellular One company in NW Iowa, I haven't seen any native Unicel coverage there. US Cellular has a few COWS setup around the area of Okoboji, Spirit Lake. From what I gathered, it was a smaller geographical area, but with many customers.

    BTW- Is there any experience with USCellular and their roaming partners or limitations. Or do they enforce a 50% roaming rule on national plans?
     
  7. MOTOhooligan

    MOTOhooligan Former Mobile Data Addict
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    Yeah, sorry, that's the best I can do as far as maps. I don't have anything for just the market that UNICEL got but between the maps and what JasonWells says, you should be able to estimate. I'll keep looking for a map, though.
     
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  8. Dogma

    Dogma Senior Member
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    Unicel is now serving customers that were once Alltel/Western Wireless/Hickory Tech. This network overlaps much of was once MIdwest Wireless before Alltel bought them out. Alltel dispanded the A side network to Unicel as was mandated by the FCC. That dispanded network included SW and South Central Minnesota counties. MN-11 was not included which encompasses a large chunk of SE Minnesota, including Rochester. Verizon has about 10 MHz of PCS spectrum in SE Minnesota, including Rochester. From what I understand Verizon does not and will not be able to offer EVDO in Rochester and MN - 11 due to the fact of spectrum shortages. I think Alltel will be shopping MN -11 A side eventually, and both Verizon and Cingular will be after it.

    Alltel is considered to have the better network coverage in the areas they overlap with Unicel. The Unicel network has changed hands so many times in the last few years that few enhancements have been made. I'm not sure Verizon is going to do much either, as they may not put much money into rural MN.
     
  9. BillRadio

    BillRadio Wireless Consultant
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  10. COtech

    COtech Bronze Senior Member
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    I have been roaming across their territory in north Mississippi with my AT&T Mobility GSM phone, on cellular A-band and network ID 310-890. Most of their competition in the same RSAs is Telepak's Cellular South, who already runs cellular B-band with CDMA. I was traveling south from Memphis on US-61 and MS-1, and north on US-51 and MS-7. Without the GSM roaming, there could just be corridors of coverage on US-61, US-82, and I-55 (nearby to US-51).

    COtech
     
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  11. Buickman

    Buickman Gearhead/Gadget freak
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    That's exactly what I've been looking for, except that that one is old enough to not indicate the systems they got from Alltel. That is good though, I didn't realize that this included that large chuck of coverage in SD also. After this goes into effect VZW will have native coverage almost everywhere in the area.
     
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  12. Bill Clinton

    Bill Clinton 10 years scandal free....
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    Yes that map is old and it only indicates where Unicel has licenses. They have not built out their network in all the areas where they hold a license. I haven't been able to find a better map either though.
     

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