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Verizon & StarTac NYC

Discussion in 'Northeastern US Wireless Forum' started by DarthVader, Jun 10, 2002.

  1. DarthVader

    DarthVader New Member

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    Verizon & StarTac NYC

    I use Verizon Wireless here in New York City. I have a dual-band StarTac with miniwebbrowser built in. I think the model number is 7860, though I am not sure. I know it is NOT a 7760. I wanted to get a sense from those of you out there with experience as to how you feel my StarTac measures up to more modern phones in terms of:

    1. sound quality
    2. reception quality.
    3. How do I lock (ie: force) my StarTac into analog mode? I recall on a 7760 it was possible to punch in a code and force the phone into analog mode permanently.
    4. What are the advantages to having a tri-band phone vs. a dual-band phone?
    5. Is there any advantage to 1900 vs. 800?
    6. Why does Verizon only want to give good rate plans with tri-band phones?
     
  2. IdiOTeQnoLogY

    IdiOTeQnoLogY Bronze Senior Member
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    4)well for much of their coverage verizon relies on other carriers networks that operate on other frequencies such as 1900, especially sprint pcs......and some of verizons own newer coverage is on the 1900 mhz frequency.....so that without a phone that worked on 3 bands your phone would work in far less places, and in those places would work on analog far more frequently (which would not be a good thing)

    5)the biggest advantage of 800mhz over 1900mhz is that its wavelengths travel farther and penetrate buildings better so that a carrier building out an 800mhz network has tobuild towers less condensed. the biggest advantage of 1900 mhz is that there is lots more of that spectrum left unused [​IMG] while the 800mhz spectrum as far as i know is maxxed out or close to it

    6) see answer to question #4

    1 &2)as far as from verizon users i know (1 in real life and many on forums) they all love their startac for reception and sound quality......though i am sure you can replicate that in newer phones.
     
  3. bobolito

    bobolito Diamond Senior Member
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    1) Startac users love the sound quality but people in the other end don't because the startac microphone is one of the worse I've seen. The Startac user won't notice this but the person he/she is talking to will.
    2) Reception is on a par with most cellphones today.
    3)They don't want you to force it to analog so probably there's no way to do this.
    4 & 5) See post above.
    6) They want to get rid of old phones.
     
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  4. Guest

    Guest Guest

    The 7860(W - if you've got the WebBrowser version) is in my opinion still a viable phone. Certainly if you use it primarily in the NYC metro area where Verizon's signal is 800 Mhz. The phone model itself has been around for 3-4 years, which makes it old and rather dated in the arena of cell phones. It was one of the first, small phones on the market. Except for the dual-mode/tri-mode issue, it is the same phone as the 7868. Note that there are many people out there -- on this and other forums -- who think it is not 'spiffy' enough for them, and they would never be caught dead or otherwise near one. If that is an issue for you, and you are afraid your "image" will suffer if you have the "wrong" cell phone, then you need to change phones! But no one can tell at a distance whether you are using the -60 or -68, and I see an awful lot of -68's around. They are still offered by VZW.

    I DID have a 7860. Gave it to my wife when I upgraded to the -68 and went America's Choice a few months ago. I had previously had the National Plan, but VZW won't activate the AC plan with a dual mode phone. She likes the -60. Better than her previous Audiovox.
    She never complained of sound quality when I called her on my -60, and my messages on our answering machine were always clear enough. I personally find the voice quality of ALL cell phones to be lacking -- moreso at some times that at others and depending more on atmospheric and radio issues than the phone itself. But cell phones designed in the last six months probably will have better electronics -- and thus voice quality, reception, etc -- than those designed earlier. If the microphone is really an issue, try a handsfree kit.... with a good mic. But as cell phones go, my StarTacs have always worked everywhere I've ever wanted them too -- and often worked where other people's (standing beside me!) didn't. I have loaned mine to my boss on numerous occasions when he needed to make a call and his Sprint phone didn't work...

    The biggest DISADVANTAGE to the -60 is that VZW will not activate it on the better plans today. You will be restricted to the historic plan you have (grandfathered!) or to the Local Digital Choice. This may not matter to you, and as long as you stay within the NYC metro area it should be fine. If you travel outside of the Boston-Washington corridor (including to some places in Upstate NY and parts of northern New England), you may not have a VZW 800 MHz signal, and will likely roam analog. You may be charged for that!

    As for "Why?" (your quesion 6): VZW has spectrum in both the 800 and 1900MHz frequencies. They have invested substantial amounts in building their network and they want their customers to use THEIR network. It costs VZW real money when you roam off their network and they have to pay the other carrier. They don't care so much if YOU are paying the roaming charges, but if roaming off their network is FREE to you, they have to pay for it. So to optimize your time on their network, they require that you use a phone that can use their network everywhere -- which means both 800 and 1900 MHz areas. Their incentive to make you do that is the better plans and cheaper rates.

    Your question 3:
    If you MUST put the phone into analog mode (but why would you want to. It will use analog automatically if it is in an analog only signal area, and digital calls are usually much better in all respects than analog)
    Press FCN, 1(Menu)
    Scroll to Phone Options
    Scroll to Analog only [On,Off]
    Toggle to On
    The NEXT call will be placed in analog mode.
    The phone will also be placed into analog mode automatically if you connect an analog data cable -- such as if calling a fax machine. (Feature works fine! I use it all the time.)
     
  5. DarthVader

    DarthVader New Member

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    Everyone, thank you SO MUCH for the fast responses! This is exactly what I wanted to know. This forum ROCKS. The information gleaned from this forum is worth so much more than any membership fee they could ever charge. ;-)

    Thanks again!
     
  6. bobolito

    bobolito Diamond Senior Member
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    Motorola fixed the microphone problem in the Startacs by launching them again as Talkabout and Timeport flip models.
     
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  7. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Darth,
    For analog
    FCN + 2
     
  8. MVL

    MVL New Member

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    Couple of additional points not yet mentioned.

    1) 7860 has the full 300/600 digital/analog power, meaning it work in fringe areas much better than many newer lower power phones
    2) the entire BAM (pre-verizon) network was 800MHZ, so you'll be hard pressed to find any need for 1900MHZ in New York, or most anywhere northeast of Virginia.
    3) analog fcn-2 on my 7868 is particularly helpful in NYC. Analog doesn't lose call quality as quickly as CDMA due to overcrowding of the network. I found forcing analog very helpful on Saturday nights in Manhattan.
     
  9. bobolito

    bobolito Diamond Senior Member
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    Some of the StarTACs you can't force them to analog because some providers (like AT&T who loves to lock things) lock FCN+2.
     
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