Smartphone in NYC

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Tadatsune
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Smartphone in NYC

Postby Tadatsune » Thu Jul 26, 2012 6:10 pm

Hey,

Quick question. I'm looking at buying a 4G smart phone on my way to Morningside Heights and I'm trying to decide which carrier to go with. I figure any carrier should work in NYC, and AT&T's plan is slightly better than the equivalent Verizon plan, but I keep hearing that Verizon has the better network.

So how is the coverage (esp. the 4G coverage) in NYC? Which carrier should I go with?

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piccolittle
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby piccolittle » Thu Jul 26, 2012 6:12 pm

Tadatsune wrote:Hey,

Quick question. I'm looking at buying a 4G smart phone on my way to Morningside Heights and I'm trying to decide which carrier to go with. I figure any carrier should work in NYC, and AT&T's plan is slightly better than the equivalent Verizon plan, but I keep hearing that Verizon has the better network.

So how is the coverage (esp. the 4G coverage) in NYC? Which carrier should I go with?

I have Verizon and it works perfectly in Morningside Heights. There's also a Verizon store like 5 blocks from the law building (assuming you're coming to Columbia...).

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nealric
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby nealric » Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:28 pm

Pretty much every cell phone company will have good NYC coverage these days.

bhan87
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby bhan87 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:45 pm

nealric wrote:Pretty much every cell phone company will have good NYC coverage these days.


This is generally true. I don't think many people have complained about cell reception. However, AT&T has weak reception in certain apartments. I personally used Verizon, which seemed fine everywhere except in basements.

If you're doing a new smartphone purchase, I recommend you take a look at prepaid data plans and get an unlocked GSM phone. A Galaxy Nexus is $350 off Google's website, or you can spend ~$650 to get other new phones like a Galaxy S3 or an iPhone 4S. The upfront cost is high, but you'll save tons over the course of a typical 2 year contract. Also, if you ever leave the country, an unlocked GSM phone will let you buy a cheapo SIM card in whatever country you visit.

Compare These Prepaid Plans:

T-Mobile Monthly 4G (100 Minutes, Unlimited Texts, Unlimited Data w/ 5GB at 4G HSPA+) for $30 / month.
Simple Mobile (Unlimited Everything w/ Data at 3G Speeds) for $40 / month (Runs on T-Mobile)
Straight Talk (Unlimited Everything w/ Data at 4G HSPA+ Speeds) for $45 / month (Runs on AT&T or T-Mobile)

Against These Contract Plans:

Verizon Share Everything (Unlimited Minutes, Unlimited Texts, 1GB at 4G LTE) for $90 / month (cheapest option now...)
AT&T Share Plans (New Plan is similar to Verizon)
T-Mobile (Unlimited Minutes, Unlimited Texts, 2GB at 4G HSPA+ Speeds) for $80 / month (knock off $10 to limit the plan to 500 Minutes)
Sprint (450 Minute, ? Texts, Unlimited Data) for $80 / month

You pay twice as much for less per month. And, in some cases, prepaid is the only way to get unlimited data on certain carriers (AT&T)

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piccolittle
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby piccolittle » Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:56 pm

bhan87 wrote:
nealric wrote:Pretty much every cell phone company will have good NYC coverage these days.


This is generally true. I don't think many people have complained about cell reception. However, AT&T has weak reception in certain apartments. I personally used Verizon, which seemed fine everywhere except in basements.

If you're doing a new smartphone purchase, I recommend you take a look at prepaid data plans and get an unlocked GSM phone. A Galaxy Nexus is $350 off Google's website, or you can spend ~$650 to get other new phones like a Galaxy S3 or an iPhone 4S. The upfront cost is high, but you'll save tons over the course of a typical 2 year contract. Also, if you ever leave the country, an unlocked GSM phone will let you buy a cheapo SIM card in whatever country you visit.

Compare These Prepaid Plans:

T-Mobile Monthly 4G (100 Minutes, Unlimited Texts, Unlimited Data w/ 5GB at 4G HSPA+) for $30 / month.
Simple Mobile (Unlimited Everything w/ Data at 3G Speeds) for $40 / month (Runs on T-Mobile)
Straight Talk (Unlimited Everything w/ Data at 4G HSPA+ Speeds) for $45 / month (Runs on AT&T or T-Mobile)

Against These Contract Plans:

Verizon Share Everything (Unlimited Minutes, Unlimited Texts, 1GB at 4G LTE) for $90 / month (cheapest option now...)
AT&T Share Plans (New Plan is similar to Verizon)
T-Mobile (Unlimited Minutes, Unlimited Texts, 2GB at 4G HSPA+ Speeds) for $80 / month (knock off $10 to limit the plan to 500 Minutes)
Sprint (450 Minute, ? Texts, Unlimited Data) for $80 / month

You pay twice as much for less per month. And, in some cases, prepaid is the only way to get unlimited data on certain carriers (AT&T)

My only caution about those prepaid plans is that T-Mobile has terrible reception inside some Columbia buildings (like, no bars and no received calls kind of bad reception).

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dingbat
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby dingbat » Thu Jul 26, 2012 9:07 pm

nealric wrote:Pretty much every cell phone company will have good NYC coverage these days.

Not T-mobile

bhan87
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby bhan87 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 9:21 pm

piccolittle wrote:My only caution about those prepaid plans is that T-Mobile has terrible reception inside some Columbia buildings (like, no bars and no received calls kind of bad reception).


Ah, this is good to know. Do you know how AT&T fares?

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Dayan114
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby Dayan114 » Fri Jul 27, 2012 12:01 am

Have lived in morningside for 5+ years. Verizon is absolutely the way to go.

drbarry987
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby drbarry987 » Fri Jul 27, 2012 6:41 am

Heading off to Greenwich Village. Have a Verizon iPhone4s. Decent coverage in the area?

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rickgrimes69
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby rickgrimes69 » Fri Jul 27, 2012 7:59 am

Sprint has good reception outdoors but has trouble in buildings, especially their 4G. AT&T is about equivalent outdoors and slightly better indoors, but drops calls like none other. However, their data speeds are much faster.

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top30man
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby top30man » Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:03 am

rickgrimes69 wrote:Sprint has good reception outdoors but has trouble in buildings, especially their 4G. AT&T is about equivalent outdoors and slightly better indoors, but drops calls like none other. However, their data speeds are much faster.

I agree with this regarding sprint. Good, but not great coverage virtually everywhere in manhattan.

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shumpshump
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby shumpshump » Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:20 am

bhan87 wrote:
piccolittle wrote:My only caution about those prepaid plans is that T-Mobile has terrible reception inside some Columbia buildings (like, no bars and no received calls kind of bad reception).


Ah, this is good to know. Do you know how AT&T fares?


I have AT&T through work and Verizon as my personal phone. I never had a dropped call on Verizon near Columbia but often had dropped calls with AT&T all around the campus (even outside).

Verizon is a bit expensive though so the dropped calls shouldn't be a deal-breaker.

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Tadatsune
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby Tadatsune » Sat Jul 28, 2012 5:34 pm

Thanks, guys.

I'll probably end up going with Verizon, I think. I'd prefer to have phone in hand before coming to NYC, and I don't want to show up and find out that I don't get a signal in my apartment building.

I took a look at the prepaid plans from 3rd party carriers, but there were a lot of complaints about terrible service, so I'm not sure I'm willing to risk it...

dixiecupdrinking
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Re: Smartphone in NYC

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Sat Jul 28, 2012 10:34 pm

People used to complain a lot about AT&T service in NYC a couple years ago (I think they were overwhelmed by being the only iPhone provider). It seems to have gotten a lot better, though I've never had them so can't say for sure. Verizon has never given me any problems in New York.




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