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Cell phone carriers Wed, Jul 25, 2007
It's hard to get honest and useful opinions about cell phone carriers.  What do we expect -- we're overcharged for an unreliable, poor-quality service.  But it's a service most of us would rather die than be without.  While that sounds like a stupid statement, it's at least partially true.  I've been having some cell-phone-company-switching issues lately, and I concluded, "I'll just go without a cell phone for now."  But the more I thought about it, the more I decided that if any life-threatening event were to happen to me, it would undoubtedly happen when I didn't have a cell phone.  Damn those stupid little radiation-emitting gizmos! 

But anyway, it's hard to find out which carrier is the best.  If I surveyed a few people and read a few things online, here's what I would discover: 
  1. Sprint sucks.
  2. T-Mobile sucks.
  3. Cingular/AT&T sucks.
  4. Verizon has the best coverage.
I've found that most opinions include the word "suck", and even the best one doesn't necessarily "not suck", it just has the best coverage so you can get the same "sucky" service in more places. 

A lot of these opinions are based on data and secondhand opinions from several years ago.  These days, the major companies are all generally the same in terms of coverage because they share towers (Verizon/Sprint, Cingular/AT&T/T-Mobile).  So if you can't complain about the service, complain about something else.  The thing most people mention in their criticism of cell phone companies these days is that the customer service is terrible.  I personally haven't had many good experiences with customer service; I thought that was the deal:  You waste the company's money by calling customer service, you don't deserve good customer service.  Actually, the one time I called Cingular customer service, I had a good experience.  I think it was a fluke.  Several years ago, I dealt with Verizon's customer service, and even though it was a hassle, they fixed my problem.  My stance on customer service is that there's really no need for it as long as everything works the way it's supposed to.  And most times it does.  But the times your phone doesn't work and you have to subject some poor idiot to your angry tirade against "the man", it's a big deal.  I'm currently going through this with Sprint.  For that reason, I don't recommend Sprint.  Maybe I'll change my stance if they finally fix my problem.  So in terms of customer service,
  1. Sprint sucks.
  2. I don't know about T-Mobile.
  3. Cingular is pretty good.
  4. Verizon is ok.
Again, I don't recommend Sprint to anyone that doesn't want to deal with a problem that takes more than 6 weeks to get resolved.  If that's your thing, go for it.  I personally would rather avoid it. #technology


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