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VZW or T-Mobile in Brookline MA - and phone?

Discussion in 'Northeastern US Wireless Forum' started by reg, Sep 19, 2005.

  1. reg

    reg New Member

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    Greetings -

    I'm switching carriers. Have been with AT&T/Cingular for years, but have nevery been overly thrilled - lousy to no reception at home and in the neighborhood (Coolidge Corner, Brookline, MA).

    Have heard better things about Verizon Wireless & T-Mobile, so I thought I'd give one of them a try.

    The trick seems to be finding a phone. Seems there are complaints somewhere on the net about them all.

    I've been a big fan of the Nokia 6000 series (I've got a 6560 and before that a 6100).

    My needs are simple:
    - solid reception,
    - good quality sound,
    - solid construction (I'm clumsy, and tend to drop things),
    - battery life,
    - battery life and
    - battery life (I'm used to charging my Nokia once a week.)

    GSM would be a bonus.

    Any & all suggestions most welcome.

    Thanks.

    - Richard
     
  2. saturnsl01

    saturnsl01 Junior Member
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    Location:
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    My Phone:
    V710
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    Verizon
    GSM is not a bonus in Mass., go with Verizon, the northeast just opens up when you have it. T-mobile has lots of weak spots in the NE
     
  3. Jerro

    Jerro Bronze Senior Member
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    Friends have Verizon in Boston and like it, I have used my Verizon there too and its fine. Also; T mobile is reported to work well in Boston.
     
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  4. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    reg,

    Perhaps I am missing something. You say your phones are a 6560 (a TDMA/analog phone) and the 6100 ( a GSM 900/1800/1900) which is missing the mandatory 850 Mhz band for Cingular. The 6100 is a Cingular phone, but tri band for the European market.

    If that is the case, your phones do not match the currently excellent 850/1900 Cingular coverage in Boston and MA. It is very common knowledge now that the GSM Cingular network is far superior to the older TMDA network (which has been mostly replaced by GSM), and the 6100 phone is missing the important 850 band. The 6560 will not work on the new GSM Cingular network.

    I travel to Boston very often, and even though I have not been in Brookline, at your area, the coverage is really the best.

    Go to your cingular store and verify that you have the right phones. It could make a world of difference. GSM in the NE is very good, except perhaps in VT and upper parts of ME. Cingular requires that you have a dual band 850/1900 at the least. 850 is not the same as 900. Triband phones should be 850/1800/1900 or a quad which has 850/900/1800/1900; Cingular sells both.

    Get the right phone, and you should be alright.
     
  5. reg

    reg New Member

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    Hmmm.

    Cingular sold me the 6560 earlier this year.

    It is indeed a TDMA 850/1900 phone.

    Am I to understand that they sold me a phone that isn't optimal for their network where I live? That strikes me as being all the more reason to switch carriers.

    - Richard
     
  6. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Well, that depends. If you were currently on an ATT TDMA plan before the merger(seems to be the case) and didn't wish to upgrade to GSM then they did the right thing. I read that many people are holding out because they like their cheap plans or whatever. I have a few Cingular friends like that. They whine about coverage, but don't plan to move to GSM. But ATT/Cingular should have at least offered you new GSM plans post the merger.

    If your on a GSM plan, then they sold you the wrong phone...that would be hard to believe though. Do you have a SIM card? The TDMA phones don't use them, only GSM.

    Cingular will allow you to keep the TMDA plan if you wish, but they will not sell you new phones...they want you to move to GSM...makes sense since that is were all thier money is for improving the network, and ATT switched heavily to GSM before the merger. Staying behind with TMDA is a mistake...that service is degrading fast.

    I don't understand how you had the 6100 (GSM) before the 6560 (TDMA). Did you go to a corporate store or an authorized dealer?

    Yes, the 6560/TDMA is not optimal where you live anymore, and Cingular hasn't sold or renewed TDMA phones or service for a year or more now...unless the customer insists on keeping the TDMA contract. Towards the end of this year or earlier next, they will not even do that.
     
    #6 viewfly, Sep 20, 2005
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2005
  7. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    I would say that in the fall of last year the tdma/gsm serivice was about equal, but that has dramatically changed since the merger/acquistion. tdma electronics in towers are being replaced with gsm electronics in towers, and Cingular was able to merge in the ATT towers. So in MA the GSM service exceeds the old tmda.

    You may be in luck however.

    If your still a ATT or Cingular tdma customer, they should allow you to get a new GSM contract and do it with the normal 30 day trial that new customers get: new phone and all. Insist on it. That would be risk free for you to compare Cingular GSM with say Verizon (15day trial) or Tmobile.

    Good luck.
     
    #7 viewfly, Sep 20, 2005
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2005
  8. reg

    reg New Member

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    > I don't understand how you had the 6100 (GSM) before the 6560

    Had the model # wrong (going from memory - haven't used it in quite some time). It was the 6160.
     
  9. jones

    jones Silver Senior Member
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    Cingular Wireless Invests $250 Million in New England Network
    TURNING ON 150 NEW CELL SITES IN 2005


    WESTWOOD, Mass., Aug. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Cingular Wireless, the country's largest wireless provider, today announced it intends to invest more than $250 million this year in New England, integrating the Cingular and AT&T Wireless networks; increasing coverage and capacity; building new sites; adding portable generators and batteries; and offering enhanced new features. Nationwide, the company is spending more than $6 billion on its ALLOVER(SM) Network*, the nation's largest digital voice and data network.

    "Better coverage is what wireless customers want, and better coverage is exactly what Cingular is delivering," said Mark S. Collins, vice president and general manager, Cingular Wireless, New England. "We continuously expand and improve our network to give our customers a quality wireless experience."

    Throughout New England, Cingular will build approximately 150 new cell sites this year. The company has already turned on 57 new sites throughout several states:

    - In Massachusetts, 30 new sites are now providing expanded coverage for
    customers. Cingular has more cell sites in greater Boston than any
    other wireless carrier, as a result of its merger with AT&T Wireless.
    In just the past few months, four new sites have been added in Boston
    along Commonwealth Avenue, the Jamaica Way and in downtown and Roxbury
    neighborhoods. In Cape Cod, five new sites have enhanced service in
    Chatham, Hyannis, Nantucket, Provincetown and South Truro. Shoppers
    visiting the Cape Cod Mall now enjoy expanded Cingular coverage inside
    buildings and stores. And in Attleboro, Cingular customers now
    experience enhanced coverage inside the Emerald Square Mall.
    - In Maine, eleven new sites improve service in Waldoboro, Yarmouth,
    North Yarmouth, Limington, Scarborough, Naples, Sebago, Gardner,
    Kennebunkport, Cornish and Cumberland.
    - In New Hampshire, several new cell sites enhance wireless coverage in
    Pembroke, Dublin and Belmont.
    - In Connecticut, new Cingular sites improve service in Cheshire, Canton,
    Woodbury and Southington.
    - In Rhode Island, new sites provide expanded coverage in Cranston,
    Foster and Warwick.Cingular's ALLOVER(SM) Network now covers more than 270 million people and is growing. It will have access to some 45,000 cell sites by the end of 2006. The company's EDGE network - the fastest national high-speed data network in America - provides average data connections of up to 135 kilobits per second in more than 13,000 cities and towns and in areas along nearly 40,000 miles of highways.

    In New England, Cingular's network technicians drive approximately 80,000 miles every month throughout the six-state area, monitoring the company's network and the service of its competitors. That's equivalent to three complete trips around the earth. Nationally the company and its third party vendors expect to log nearly 30 million miles over the next year - the equivalent of more than 50 round trips to the moon.

    Cingular's interactive mapping tool, available at all company retail locations and by calling 1-866-CINGULAR, can answer specific coverage questions based on a customer's address, a street intersection, zip code, state or landmark. The service can even estimate the likelihood of coverage in various scenarios - inside a building, for example.

    The company's network growth relies on advanced GSM/EDGE technology. GSM is the world standard for wireless communication, used by more than a billion people in 200-plus countries. Cingular customers can make calls in more than 170 countries and access data services in more than 70 countries.

    For more information about Cingular, please contact 1-866-CINGULAR or visit http://www.cingular.com/.
     
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  10. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    A nice post Jones. Even before this latest addition, I have found the coverage in Boston and the surrounding area very good. Thanks
     
  11. reg

    reg New Member

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    Well, at the end of the day, I went with Verizon.

    The only current Cingular phone I wanted was the well-regarded Nokia 6230, but as it's near the end of its life cycle, I could only get it from a 3rd party vendor (letsTalk).

    I asked Cingular support whether, if I bought the phone (thus renewing for another two years), I could port my existing number. They said 'maybe'.

    Hmmm. Wrong answer. I guess they really didn't want my $800+/year.

    Went to the Verizon store by my office. Fifteen minutes later I had a cheaper plan that gave me the North America access I wanted, *and* my phone number, on a generally well-regarded phone, the LG VX4650.

    I can't help but think that Cingular, when they bought AT&T Wireless, really didn't want the existing customer base. I'm still marvelling at the inefficacy of their customer service.

    All that said, let's see how reception is when I get home ... :70
     
  12. Jerro

    Jerro Bronze Senior Member
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    Location:
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    OK; you are "IN." Please let everyone know how coverage is and where it is better or worse than the other carrier. Also; how you like the phone.
    good luck.
     
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  13. reg

    reg New Member

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    Sure thing.
    By the way, what *is* this "IN" thing?

    - rg
     
  14. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Maybe you should have spent 20 min in the Vz store instead of 15min. :) If The verizon store didn't explain 'IN' to a new customer, you may have had your first taste that Vz C/S is not so great either! IN is free mobile to mobile calling, as long as you don't roam on the Vz network.

    BTW, you could have acquired the 6230 for free from the Nokia web site, plus cingular service.

    Anyway, good luck and I'm sure it will work out for you.
     
  15. Jerro

    Jerro Bronze Senior Member
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    Its free Verizon wireless to Verizon wireless airtime. Each carrier has it by another name.

    Everything will work out fine with your selection. Good Luck.
     
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  16. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Thanks Jerro for clearing that up.

    Cingular call it M2M or Mobile to Mobile, free calling between any Cingular customer, nationwide, any time of day. Cingular also has something called 'Rollover', which allows you to carry your unused 'anytime' monthly minutes (not free Night and weekend) to the next month, and the next. I have about 4,000 rollovered minutes since last year in reserve.
     

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