My Big iPhone Break-up

343 thoughts on “My Big iPhone Break-up”

  1. I have two phones my iPhone and my krazor from verizon wireless. If you have ever been in SF during any big event the AT&T network breaks down and also sends messages into some wireless purgatory never to be seen again. I agree it is no superphone it is still fun but I’m glad I have a backup phone.

    1. Wow, I have never really had any problems with my iPhone other than on a very few occasions. I live on the peninsula and down by San Jose and it’s always great for me. In fact every other phone I had ever had on the on Sprint network had been a nightmare of dropped calls and slooww services. Even after I got my Treo 650 on Sprint, still dropped calls. So, I have been ecstatic since I got my iphone through At & T. Who knew? Sorry guys…. I hope it gets better out there and I hope I don’t become afflicted.

      1. I seem to have stuttered grammatically with my fingers above. So I will try again.

        I have had the first generation iphone and also have the 3G iphone. I switched to it from Sprint after years of dropped calls and crappy customer service. I couldn’t even get a signal inside my house some of those years. I tried numerous phones as well.

        With both of my iphones I have not had any significant problems related to dropped calls, slow data or problems with email or texting. I live in the south bay area. My husband doesn’t have problems with his either.

        Good luck out there because I will never go back to Sprint. I’ll eat one of my iphones first.

    2. I have been a Verizon Crackberry customer for many years. I finally made the decision to go with the iPhone 3G s after my company added enterprise services for the phone. I have had the phone for about 30 hours and have a hard time getting through a single call without getting dropped. It is impossible to make a call from my house where I never experienced drops on Verizon. I have been out around town all day (Orange County, CA) making calls and there is an HUGE difference between the service providers. I am so disappointed because the iPhone is most definitely superior hardware and software. I am taking the iPhone back tonight and keeping my Verizon service and the BB Curve, as I know that I will not be happy with the service. A very sad day!

  2. It’s sad, really. AT&T has the best phones and worst coverage. Verizon has the best coverage and worst phones. But the number one function of a phone is to be able to talk to someone. I don’t care how cool my phone is and how many gadgets it has if I can’t talk on it.

    1. I have to disagree with you austinandrew. Verizon Droid has been completely solid as a phone and data device for me on Verizon. And the Droid is definitely not a second class citizen. Besides voice and data at the same time on the AT&T network, the Droid matches the iPhone feature for feature minus a little polish of the interface. Whats more, the most important feature that I purchase a phone for, the actual “phone” has been absolutely rock solid on calls. I would much rather have a reliable phone that really can multitask apps than one with shotty service and the ability to do voice and data at the very same time.

      I ditched AT&T before the iPhone was even popular because of dropped calls, horrible service and down right rude customer service. The iPhone would be darn near the ultimate phone but is severely crippled by AT&T’s network. Maybe this flies for teens and 20-somethings, but when you have kids of your own that you need to stay connected with, dropped calls or no service at all just isn’t an option. The longer Apple stays exclusive to AT&T, the more time the competition will have (Android) to come up with the “iPhone killer”. They are almost there now.

  3. And this is why I keep signing over my paychecks to Verizon even though they nickle and dime me to death. The network rocks. A device without a great network is like a pretty girl without any intelligence. She may be nice to look at, but you wouldn’t want her running your life.

  4. Om, I’m in the exact same boat as you. Even AT&T agrees that 50% of all my calls are dropped and when I was in San Francisco over the summer for business, I had to buy a pre-paid Verizon phone to avoid paying outrageous phone surcharges from the Hyatt Regency near Embarcadero. My wife wants to strangle me for switching our service from Sprint to AT&T when we got the iphones.

  5. I am sure you also got those who chimed in with “gee, here in So&So city, I have great coverage” – well good for them. But I have always suspected that a ton of iPhone users either just put up with lack of service or don’t care or both. I am in Austin, TX and I am supposed to be saturated with ATT 3G – but my 3 day experiment with an iPhone proved otherwise. At the end of the day, if you use your mobile as it is intended (a communications device), you have to have coverage regardless of the latest/greatest handset.

    The good thing is there are going to be lots of great choices in the coming months for all carriers – the Pre, new BB’s and new WM devices – so if one has to give up on the Jesus phone, they will still have some solid alternatives. Maybe you will not be as “cool”, but at least you will be able to make a call (and not have it drop).

  6. In our SOMA office, everyone with 3G iPhones turn 3G off in the office, and they don’t have any dropped calls. Of course, then we have to ask ourselves, “what’s the point of having a 3G iPhone? if you can’t use it?”

  7. Out of curiosity, why not go with the G1? We’ve been having the same problems, but I’ve noticed that my first generation iphone gets better reception and is generally more reliable than the 3G models around the office. It’s a shame that AT&T’s network is so poor. Do you think Apple has some SLAs in their exclusivity agreement that would allow them to open up the iPhone to other carriers given AT&T’s performance.

    1. I completely agree i have the g1 and it works great via att or over wifi with skype. I bought the phone off of craigslist uner a hundred bucks and it works awsome and it is not jailbroken or the like. I love it!!!

  8. Om, I live in the Hollywood Hills in So Cal and the Sprint network is awesome. Looks like the Pre will be available in the next few months which makes those of us on the Sprint net with iPhone envy very happy. The Pre has gotten great early reviews. On the sprint network i can leave my home, get on a conference call and talk for an hour without a drop, or a problem. It is how it should be. I too bailed on At&t 9 years ago. Dropped calls made me pull my hair out.

    iPhone is awesome, At&t HARDLY

  9. Had to jump back in – I am on Sprint and have been for 9 years. I have had very few problems and those spots I did have problems with have pretty much gone away in the past 2 years. I tried Verizon and ATT in the past two months (yep, I was lured by the Storm and iPhone) and neither impressed me more than my Sprint service (as I said above, ATT was bad for me). And Sprint’s plans allow for roaming and they roam on Verizon’s towers – so it is a win-win in my book.

    And now I too am also waiting on the Pre – could be “THE” phone.

    1. Palm PRE! 4G! Sprint is the best now. Don’t you believe otherwise! Have dropped calls in a certain area? Get a dual band phone. Simple as that. 4G is going to make 3G users wish they had it. up to 7mbps? That is faster than AT&T’s fastest home DSL service! AT&T has been behind the curve for a very VERY long time. How they scored the iPhone comes down to one thing. Which GSM network is better? T-Mobile or AT&T? Well, at the time AT&T. So unless Sprint or Verizon is willing to lease or build a GSM network, AT&T is the only choice until a CDMA model is available. I’m sure it is in development.

  10. Much as I wanted to, I did not get the Iphone for precisely this reason, as I had heard horror tales about the spotty coverage. I have had Verizon for many years – and incredibly I have never had a single dropped call ! Also, I have the World Edition Blackberry and it has worked flawlessly for email, even when I was travelling in India. Although not as cool as the Iphone, the Blackberry’s engineering, design and interface is so much more robust that if I wanted to be sure that I never missed an important email, the Blackberry would trump the Iphone anyday. I guess looks are not everthing – in technology as in life !

  11. I have to say that part of the fault seems to be from AT&T, and partially by the phone. At least down here in the South Bay, I have been using AT&T for a while without too much of a problem… when I was using an HTC Hermes (AT&T 8925). When that broke, I went out and got the Samsung BlackJack II, and things definitely got worse. Data was fine, but coverage became a lot worse. My office, with the HTC phone, had very good coverage, but with the Samsung BJ2, I can barely hear the other side since the connection constantly goes in and out.

    I am ready to throw this phone out the window, it’s such a piece of crap, and while I’m at it, just forget about anything 3G for a while. Twitter angered enough people with outages, when is AT&T gonna be able to learn that if you unleash the iPhone, you’re gonna run into the same problems?

  12. Gave up on mine a few weeks ago Om
    Nothing to do with network, actually O2 is pretty good over here, its battery life, I just couldn’t make it past 5pm on a travel day, its just broke my heart in the end.
    Back now to the old reliable.
    Blackberry Bold for email
    Nokia E71 for voice

      1. Yeah, but it’s $90 freaking dollars! Also big, and I hear it actually makes signal quality poorer. 😀

        ROFL, apparently, with AT&T you can’t win no matter how you try. I switched from Verizon to AT&T for the iPhone, and I’m just in a bad situation now because of it. Sure, our AT&T plan is a bit cheaper, but the service is VERY spotty; no 3G also means that I get data use out of my phone only at home or work, where the wifi is. (Did you know that calls DO NOT interrupt EDGE data connections??)

        It’s just a myriad of stupid things. But I can’t go back to Verizon if they got the iPhone tomorrow; I have a large unpaid balance now because of disconnect fees. Sprint or T-Mobile are about my only option; thankfully enough that lets me choose between the Pre or the G1..

  13. Here in Australia I use the Telstra 3G Next G network, it works flawlessly with the IPhone almost where ever I go. They are expensive but it just works and I have never had an issue. The NEXT G rollout has been a big success, it operates on 850MHz and covers the country well even in often remote places. I have also use the 3 Mobile network here and OPTUS but they are less reliable but still better that AT&T probably because they have had their networks rolled out for a long time. Recently I use my iPhone with great success in the UK on the O2 network, however in Central London I did notice the reception bars were less often that I get here in Oz. I think the 850MHz network roll out here is a great thing even though I hate the monthly bills. I pity my US iPhoners in the inferior 3G experience they get, becasue in my experience the iPhone is the best device I have ever used.

  14. I live in San Jose and while I get an _occasional_ call failure when making calls, I’ve not had a single dropped call on my iPhone 3G since I bought it when it was released. I don’t LIKE AT&T, but the coverage here is fine.

    Contrast that with the T-Mobile network down here, which fails to provide any signal inside my house.

    I won’t ever give Verizon any of my money ever again.

  15. In the greater Seattle area, I keep my iphone 3G in 2G mode pretty much all of the time so that it remains usable. If I don’t, I’m rewarded with dropped calls, calls that go straight to voicemail, or a phone that hangs when I attempt to dial out.

  16. I love Apple, and would love to have an iPhone. But I have never been able to deal with AT&T wireless. My plan is the next trip I have to Germany is to buy an iPhone there through tMobile, my longtime provider, and bring it home unlocked. Meanwhile the iPod Touch works like a champ and my old Razr is still working well.

  17. i would say using the iphone unlocked over 2g is the way to go…..the 3G iphone battery life running on 3G service is not up to par…my office is 90% iPhone split between 2G/3G users and almost all of the 3G users leave 3G turned off. If tmobile coverage is good in you area Om I would think twice against unlocking your iPhone. It only takes 10min to do anyway:)

  18. I ended my relationship with my iphone a couple weeks after the G1 came out. Truthfully, I miss the still as of yet refined interface Apple seems to be able to nail just right. Over the holidays I actually swapped back and forth between my iphone and my G1. The iphone is definitely better when you’re switching from voice/data to music, but the ability to run background apps on the G1 is, well, the thing that relegated my iphone to doing duty as an glorified ipod for my car.

    I still miss the iphone sometimes, but having location aware apps that can actually run and do their job when they’re not in focus is huge for me (not to mention being outside of Apple’s walled garden). (Love ya, Steve, but ur too much of a control freak, and, well, it’s MY phone!!)

  19. Just another data point, I live in Berkeley and work in San Francisco and use my iPhone on AT&T exclusively for all business and personal calls while driving and in the office. I cannot remember the last time I had a dropped call nor can the other people I informally surveyed in our office. I do think that the 3G performance could be better (I leave it on all the time) and would like greater than 1-day battery life, but so far I haven’t gone back to the ‘berry.

  20. I’ve never had problems with my AT&T service. Example – I was in the middle of the 1.8 million witnessing Obama’s inauguration and made 7 calls and only one was cracking! I made numerous emails, never skipped a beat. I received about 30 emails during the entire ceremony. Except for some software problems early on I’ve never had problems with my iPhone including the AT&T service. Believe or not I still make call in the L’Enfant Metro Station which AT&T doesn’t serve (but should).

    1. Charlie-
      “I was in the middle of the 1.8 million witnessing Obama’s inauguration and made 7 calls and only one was cracking!” Do you have any idea how your calls were being monitored and how powerful the signals were that day…..BIG TIME! My point is your signal was highly improved or “delayed” at this location. So it is mute.

      RM

  21. Om. I hear your frustration, I think there is something broken with the 2.2.1 update as well as I’ve seen a noticeable degradation in data connection quality. but the solution doesn’t make sense. You were dropping calls on the iPhone and bought T-Mo and Verizon to replace your one device? The T-Mo network, I can assure you is far inferior to the AT&T network. I run a mobile company of course and carry four phones with me at all times. I can guarantee that after two years of this behavior the AT&T network is clearly superior to the T-Mo network. Why not just buy a Verizon phone for voice and keep the iPhone for web and apps? I use a Nokia e71 on T-mo for voice and e-mail and iPhone for web and apps (except in areas where T-mo coverage is weak and I have to use the iPhone for calls (or the Verizon Voyager or Sprint Instinct I also carry!).

  22. Om – why didn’t you get the Blackberry Curve on Verizon as an all-in-one device? I think it does pretty well for voice from what I hear and should solve all your iPhone issues (that I empathize with….) My [bad] solution is that I use my cell phone a lot less for voice, using office phone or home phone (VoIP) whenever I can….

    1. @Ron

      Since T-Mobile isn’t a contract and is only a month-to-month deal I want to try them out first before I switch to Verizon. If T-Mobile doesn’t do the job I will make the switch. I prefer GSM networks since I do travel a lot and need a phone that roams seamlessly. I know you can get a VZ world phone but I really am testing the waters. The voice call service is working just fine by the way.

  23. I’m surprised at how passive most of these comments are. What has happened to your rights as a consumer? Why do you want to continue to pay for poor service? Is it not up to us to – DEMAND – good service, quality and packages that we can approve of? YOU DON”T NEED TO PUT UP WITH CELL PHONE PROVIDERS WHO CONTINUE TO TAKE ADVANTAGE of customers. Try writing to CEO’s of these companies and let them know what you want. If customers talk with their wallets, companies eventually get the point. I think having this article written is a first step. Keep in mind that companies are never too big to fail. History has proven that competition since the Carter Phone Decision back in the late 60’s has beaten these guys in the past and can do so again!

    1. @courtney benson

      You are absolutely right about demanding better service. unfortunately we never get any of that from the cell phone carriers. Verizon comes as close to being a good solid network in this country. And that says a lot about our state of the networks.

  24. I currently have a Nokia n95 (unlocked) on AT&T and live in the Bay Area and commute about 40 miles one way. I’ve been noticing the service get much more flaky of late. Larger “dead zones” and areas that the phone claims there is signal yet I either get network busy or network errors.

    Given I live in Santa Cruz, TMobile really isn’t an option. When I’ve tried their service, I need to align my chakras, pray in the proper direction, and sacrifice a goat just to get signal outside. I have not tried Sprint and Verizon’s selection of phones is pretty lousy.

    I am still waiting on my dream setup:

    1. A basic phone on a reliable network that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, for when I am travelling/moving/not near wifi.
    2. An iPod touch that has a GPS built-in, replaceable batter (GPS sucks batter), and a good VOIP client for a primary number.

    I’m not a fan of the n95 — it’s too slow, but it isn’t WinMo — until there is an Android phone that isn’t an embarrasment ergonomically and visually, I am probably stuck where I am. Since the above isn’t likely to happen either.

  25. There is no device that can do everything that you want? What a stupid comment about the superdevice. The comment should be there is no Apple device that can do everything you want on a better network. What a biased blast on AT&T, this guy is an idiot. AT&T may not be great but these Apple fanboys need to quit whining.

  26. Om, would it help or even make sense for Apple to review this?…as in have iphone available for other networks and not just remain tied down to AT&T. I am sure this experience of yours(and countless others) should be hurting Apple indirectly.

  27. I agree to a degree. My experience with ATT has been very good since giving up on the iphone. I have been using that same 8900 for a month now and it is fantastic. No 3g, but I believe that to be the major issue with both Bold and iphone.

  28. Why not just use your iphone on T-Mobile? It’s what I’ve done, and it’s tons better than AT&T has ever been for me. The joys of the iPhone along with the joys of dependable, if albeit behind the times in terms of 3G coverage, service.

  29. I live in Palo Alto and switched from Verizon to AT&T and I’ve regretted it from day on. Unfortunately, I love the data features of the iPhone too much to part with it. As sad as it is, I ended up adding myself to my mom”s family share plan so I can place calls without fear of the constant “Call Failed” message.

  30. One more struggling with finding the iPhone love. After waiting for so long to jump in the pool (cleverly thinking that they’d have worked out the kinks by now) I’m dropping calls on a daily basis. The odd web, SMS and e-mail problem are enough to make something that should be simple….tedious.

    You know the feeling, sending a text and the progress bar..just..creeps..along..and then. Fails. However isolated, I now have to make sure things are actually sent when I think they are.

    I hope my saga ends well.

    1. I think it may depend on your location quite a bit. I live in the western section of my city (in the Northeast), and have no major issues. Yet in the downtown area and other small towns outside of the city, I have noticed a few calls getting dropped. SMS seems pretty reliable, even when email isn’t. 3G, well, could be better. I find myself turning it off sometimes. Maybe that will improve your calls.

      (I’ve been a customer of T-Mobile and Sprint in the past, no device they could ever sell will convince me to return. )

      Hopefully you’ll find a solution that works for you.

  31. I have a 1st Gen iPhone here near San Diego. It seems like the call quality has been going downhill for a few months now. I’m getting lots of dropped calls, poor call quality and I’ve been having issues with calls going through, inbound and outbond. Many calls to me never ring and go straight to voice mail and sometimes voice mail takes up to several hours to show up.

    I love the iPhone, but as many have said, AT&T leaves a lot to be desired. My contract with them is up and I’m looking now at a Blackberry. Just trying to decide which network to go with as I no fan of Verizon as I’ve heard to much negative about their costs. It’s not out of the question though.

    Apple had better do something about AT&T soon or there may be a backlash they may not recover from.

    Om, I’m curious to see how T-Mobile works for you, please keep us updated on your new services.

  32. I have the same problem. Just had my iPhone 3g replaced at today, because I drop calls a few times every single day in Chicago. The service is so bad that I cannot even make a call in my apartment, and I live in the City. Like a major urban area, I am 5 minutes from Wrigley Field. Seriously Att!!! I always talk a big game to my non-iPhone friends, but now fear I may either have to pack up my life in Chicago and move for my iPhone or abandon it for another service provider. The problem is, Chicago is amazing!

  33. @Stacey: “She may be nice to look at, but you wouldn’t want her running your life.”

    If *somebody* is going to run your life, wouldn’t it be better for her to be nice to look at? On a more trivial point: is poor AT&T service mostly a San Fran issue?

  34. Must be AT&T issues versus iPhone issues. I have an iPhone on Rogers in Canada and it works very well – voice and data. There were serious voice issues on both Rogers and with the iPhone last year as Rogers was working out issues on their HSPA network and Apple was fixing iPhone issues.

    Om, did you consider jailbreaking and moving over to T-mobile. Stay with just a single device?

  35. I wonder how long will Apple continue to suffer at the hands of AT&T. And how long will the consumers continue to be behind Apple. This is probably the 5th instance I’m reading of this week of a user moving to another platform, either because of the carrier’s fault and mostly because of the iPhone’s fault (missing features etc.).

    This year is going to see the launch of a lot of new phones based on Android, and the Palm Pre and if Apple and its chosen carriers don’t get their act together, the honeymoon for them might as well be over.

  36. Kontra, I think you have something. I don’t have one single problem with 3G in Manhattan, and in fact my iphone gets better reception here than my CrapBerry. It’s remarkable how many problems in life melted away when I moved out of the SF Bay area. LOL

  37. A question from DownUnder. Are all brands of phones having problems with AT&T? I’m only hearing on the wires that it is the iPhone. If it is the iPhone only, then surely the ball is in Apple’s court to get their phone to work with AT&T as other mobile manufacturers seem to be OK. As I said, I am from Australia, so this perception could be totally wrong and AT&T’s entire mobile network is crap for every type of mobile phone (which would be hard to believe).

  38. @kontra, in Austin where I am, AT&T’s network is terrible. And while Verizon’s phones are not drop-jaw gorgeous, I’ve always found a phone that I don’t mind looking at 🙂 Even if I do wish for Wi-Fi….

  39. I figured either you had a better network then we do here in the DC area, or this would eventually happen. With all of that new iphone revenue you’d think they’d invest in beefing up the network.

    That said, I think that on average AT&T’s 3G network outperforms Verizon’s EVDO for data applications. But the constant dropping of voice calls is an issue.

    What would be worse than having two carry two devices:
    ipod
    AT&T cell for 3G data
    VZW cell for voice

    yup, that was me for 3+ months. The good news is that although WiFi ramp up has slowed, it’s still moving forward and that ipod/touch/wifi could have legs. Overall I find skype over wifi (on win mobile) to be about the same quality as AT&T wireless.

    -Victor

  40. Maybe Apple is LISTENING but not publicly doing anything so that ATT can either improve or default in a way that breaks the contract. But, Apple has been know to turn a deaf ear to customer complaints for long periods of time until they fix the problem as they see fit to do so. However, if iPhone v3 comes out in June with similar problems, the honeymoon could be over for many.

  41. It must really depend on where you are. I live in Cleveland and after 18 months haven’t had any problems with AT&T and my iPhone. Other markets I’ve hung out in include Orlando, Las Vegas and Twin Cities, also with no issues.

  42. I live in Washington DC area and have been with T-Mobile for almost 7 years and have had no major problems. I do believe that each carrier has some dead spots but T-Mobile’s service and customer care has been good so far. I, just like Om, went to the store yesterday and picked up the new 8900. I love it and wouldnt switch to the Iphone even if they paid me.

  43. hate the network, hate their attitude, hate their customr service. such commendable research & innovation by Apple and other brought to its knees by people who are 2 generations behind in their thinking.

    time for Google to be an ISP + wireless data carrier and all voice on IP on Google/Apple network.

  44. The other issue that’s yet to arise is what this means for competition. On one hand, it sucks that the iPhone/AT&T offering doesn’t deliver, on the other hand, it’s great that we have a ton of options and switching is relatively easy. When the iPhone came out, I thought it was game over (at least in the consumer market), but that’s hardly been the case. What’s worse: sub-par products and consumer choice, or sub-par choice and a monopoly. I’ll take today’s situation any day…hopefully healthy and fair competition will make everyone’s experience better sooner rather than later.

  45. I live is S. Orange County CA and ATT is horrible. I’m on Sprint now and it’s a better but not as good as Verizon. I’m switching back when my contract expires.

    ATT = Suck
    Sprint = Ok
    Verizon = Rocks

    Om, I wonder if anyone outside of Apple has done the math on the ATT/iPhone exclusive deal. I know a lot of people would have purchase an iPhone if you could choose your network, so is the revenue lost on iPhone sales made up by the ATT subsidy? Just curious.

  46. I don’t have an iphone but I use AT&T. Has anyone given thought that it might be the iphone rather than the service provider? Although AT&T is not perfect, it is not (that) bad either — can’t complain because i haven’t had dropped call on my motorola phone yet unless ofcourse I am going into a tunnel (which is expected).

    The reason why i say it may be the equipment rather than the service is because couple of my friends have AT&T but with a different phone, their coverage is really crappy compared to mine. I have 4 bars standing next to them in the same area and their phones only have 2 (and they have trouble calling out) — figure that one out!

    Maybe it’s AT&T, maybe it is the equipment … maybe it is a combination of both. I think there are areas which AT&T excels at and Verizon/ Spint/ Tmobile is worse (and vice versa). Over here, Sprint/ Tmobile pretty much sucks and Verizon is just ok… all depends on which part of the US you are staying in I guess.

    With how the iphone is in demand and Apple scurrying to fill that demand, I would not rule out that there may some kind of firmware bug or mechanism that makes the communication buggy with the telco (AT&T).

    Saying that, I can’t wait to get myself an iphone when my service plan is up for renewal mid 09.

  47. Having used T-Mobile for 2 years, I’m happier with an iPhone and AT&T. Our coverage is very good in Honolulu.

    I’d never use a mobile phone as my main business line.

    IIRC, Apple offered the iPhone to Verizon first – and V said no to Apple’s demands for control.

    1. Thanks Bill, I travel to Honolulu every week and was wondering about coverage. I wonder if you can get an unlocked iphone there or if you had to sign up for a 2 year plan? I currently have a (prepaid) tmobile sim to use in Hawaii. Did you ever try to use your old tmobile sim with your iphone?

      Thanks

  48. People never listen to me when I tell them that no phone/PDA hybrid will ever fill all the niches that a really good phone and a really good PDA (or NetBook) will. Om’s the authority. Maybe someone will finally take HIS word for it.

  49. I use a blackberry curve 8330 and Touch, it works great. It would be nice to carry one device but the Touch is slim and doesn’t add much to weight. Good luck Om with the new setup.

  50. Well, as soon as the AT&T MicroCell is available (http://i.gizmodo.com/5140307/the-3g-microcell-brings-an-att-cell-tower-into-your-home) there will be a simple solution. All you need is: (1) your iPhone, (2) the AT&T MicroCell, (3) a small laptop running Linux, (4) a Sprint EVDO card, (5) a car battery, (6) a power inverter, and (7) a large backpack.

    Check it: you simply plug the EVDO card into the laptop and configure it to do NAT. Connect the MicroCell to the laptop, and use the car battery + inverter to power the MicroCell and the laptop. Now you’ve got quality 3G coverage everywhere you go!

  51. Om my desi brother, you are so 2006.

    Me:
    Cradlepoint 350 WiFi 3G router with AT&T ExpressCard, Verizon USB backup. Always on a 3G network for data.
    T-Mobile G1 (jailbroken) for voice, WiFi tethering as a second backup
    Eee Netbook 8GB/Linux

    All fits in my carry-all. I can write from anywhere.

    I am also on plusgsm wireless for Poland travel, and in Mumbai I get a throw-away SIM on the black market shops on Napean Sea road across the street from my house. All I need is a reliable SIM for France and Dubai now ad I’m set.

    The iPhone is for wimps. Real techies use multiple GSM paths!

    😉

  52. I guess need to reset my expectations for ubiquitous mobile coverage because I’ve had the opposite experience with AT&T network than many of you. I live in the East Bay and own both IPhone models. I haven’t had coverage issues despite the normal pockets of poor coverage e.g. in between buildings in the financial district, switching between towers, etc. Only good news is one less person taxing the network. 🙂

  53. Om, I totally have to agree with you on the AT&T network. No point having a 3G network if no-one can get onto it !! The whole net outage the other week just confirmed to me how useless they are. I never had the problem with T mobile or Verizon on data but AT&T really is bad.

    BTW I’m looking out of my office window and can see an AT&T tower across the road and my connection is spotty and slow at best (the tower isn’t even 500m away as the crow flies)

  54. A.B. Dada I am not sure I quite understand your multiple GSM comments and iPhone being for wimps….I can already do all of those things on my unlocked/jailbroken iPhone which should work just fine when I’m in Mumbai too off a throw away SIM card

  55. I was shocked when Apple announced exclusivity with any carrier, let alone AT&T. Do you remember now how much cell phones, in general, suck? Apple had a chance to make a difference, and they sided with the status quo exclusivity…now that the honeymoon’s over, maybe someone at Apple will get the guts to open the iPhone.

  56. Were you using 3G? I have found too often dropped calls to be my main concern. Your location and proximity to 3G also makes a big difference. I recently switched from Verizon. What have I learned? They’re all overcharging us for mediocre services in one regard or another. Choose the lesser of the evils.

  57. Living in Santa Clara area and ATT network is actually not bad, compare to Tmobile, in my opinion. I have had a couple drop calls once in a while which I don’t know is because of iphone or the network. My friend who switches from Tmobile to ATT even praises the ATT edge network. 😉
    Mind you I use it not that much esp during weekday, but I do need to carry a extra battery for weekend as I use it a lot more.
    YMMV

  58. Don’t want to jinx myself, but this post really is not a reflection of AT&T for everyone. I live in the suburbs of Boston and I get 5 bars at home and the majority of places I visit in MA. Recently was in NYC for a week, no issues at all. I’ve had 1 dropped call since using my Iphone.

    I think potential buyers really need to use their head and check out AT&T’s coverage in their area. It’s quite simple if they visit the wireless AT&T website.

    1. @Carlo Sostilio,

      I am so jealous of you and your five bars. I agree with you — people should make decisions based on their locale and the network coverage. Still, the broader problem of less backhaul bandwith still remains and AT&T will have to work hard on addressing that issue.

    2. Not true about the coverage map on AT&T’s website. My apartment area is supposed to be in the “good” coverage area, just one step below “excellent”, but I never EVER have service in my apartment. Even on the street across from my building, I’m lucky if I get one bar, and all my calls drop. That map is worthless.

  59. Are you sure it wasnt the iphone and not the network. I have been with cingular (now att ) for maybe 5 years or so and havent had any reception problems.

    Some phones though have worse reception then others. The reception on my att fuze (touch pro for you verizon people) is Great . The lg I had was worse reception wise.

    Heck here on long island there are some places that att gets service that verizon doesn’t.

  60. I also broke up with my iPhone, although I did it within the first 30 days so I got all my money back. I used an AT&T 8525 before the iPhone and am currently using the HTC Fuze, and I have had fine call quality with both. It was only the iPhone that gave me problems.

    However if you want to use your iPhone on another network without jailbreaking it, why not use something like TurboSim (http://www.intomobile.com/2007/08/15/unlocking-your-non-att-sim-for-iphone-just-got-easier-turbosim.html)?

  61. Om, the best part is that UMA works internationally no problem, just connect to a wifi hotspot and UMA kicks in. Sure, it’s VoIP in a way, but it’s saved me a lot of money while abroad.

  62. Using any cellular phone during a job interview is just. plain. stupid! Even more so in the current economic environment.

    Use a land line. The last thing you need to worry about during such a critical meeting is the unknown variable of cellular signal performance.

    That said, if I were interviewing this guy, I WOULDN’T HIRE HIM. Look, if I am paying him to look after my business, and he makes the shitty decision to use a cell phone during the interview, how can I trust his judgement on the job.

    Never put yourself in the position to be let down by AT&T in the first place. And to blame them just makes you look like a whiny little punk.

    You’re fired!

  63. I just turned off the 3G switch, and finally went back to my 2G iPhone.

    You can’t complain about AT&T’s network without saying which one, since the GSM network and the 3G network are built out independently. The GSM one works fine; it’s just slow. It’s the 3G one that lures you with the promise of speed and then delivers utter unreliability.

  64. @Carlo Sostilio – 5 bars doesn’t mean full 3G bandwidth.

    I know ATT engineers that are working to increase 3G capacity inside of route 128 in the boston area. But they admit 3G sux in Boston. The bandwidth is one of the slowest and lowest on ATT’s 3G network right now. Again – they admit it. I don’t fault Apple – ATT should reimburse certain areas for owning a 3G capable phone and not providing enough bandwidth for the device. Not a full refund of course, as I know the technology limitations, but instead of $30/month data plan….charge half until the network is built out and you see the speed that true 3G offers.

  65. @AZ –
    Huh?
    I didn’t see anything about “job” interview in this posting. I think it’s pretty obvious that Om has a job, don’t you? The reference was to giving (or conducting) an interview in the media sense.

    In any case, what a snide, snotty comment!

    So, when you’re paying a guy to look after your business, I can only assume you wouldn’t want him to have a cell phone available at all times for mission-critical reasons? That he should always be sitting right next to a landline phone, never moving, always hovering over the receiver just in case you should call? Sorry, can’t contact you when off on site somewhere ‘cos it would be poor judgement to use a cell phone.

    Don’t bother hiring, who’d want to work for you anyway?

  66. That’s too bad, Om! In Seattle, Sprint is normally the odd one out. In the past 5 years, I’ve only had one dropped call – and that was in a two-week experiment when I dumped (then Cingular) for Sprint. Since then, nothing but good coverage, including on my iPhone 3G, from downtown to my semi-suburban home 1 hour to the southeast. Not always 5 bars, but if it works, I’m happy, and after reading these comments, now consider myself quite lucky too. 🙂

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  68. Om, I feel your pain. Living in San Francisco, my floor was littered with dropped calls.

    But what truly drove me around the bend was a Labor Day weekend cross-country drive helping move my mom from LA to my sister’s house near Boston. By the time we got to Boulder, I was so furious with AT&T and the iPhone, that I raced into Radio Shack and picked up a Samsung Instinct from Sprint. It worked! No dropped calls, and something called “coverage.” I no longer have the Instinct, replaced with a Touch Pro — an okay device for now. But the Sprint network is reliable enough and EVDO Rev. A seems pretty ubiquitous.

    In other words, eating the onerous AT&T cancellation fee was well worth it.

  69. I couldn’t agree more, I’m afraid. I’m about ready to cash in my phone and head for the hills. I wish I’d seen this sooner: I started my own blog to document the troubles I’ve had in NYC: http://www.plzfixmyiphone.blogspot.com and http://twitter.com/plzfixmyiphone

    Problem is, most of the time I’m too frustrated by my iPhone to want to take the time to write out a blurb about what’s happened. I can understand dropped calls when I’m in a building or on a train, but all of my twits and incidence posted on my blog happen essentially in open air with full bars. Infuriating.

  70. Living in San Francisco, I’ve got to say I’ve only rarely had a dropped call in a place I didn’t expect (besides tunnels, where I don’t see why many phones should continue to function). Part of the problem involves network switching; there are certain places in SF where I notice a switch between 3G service and regular Edge service. At that particular point (one of which is maybe five minutes south of 19th Ave on 280), I’d drop the call (the two times it has ever happened). The question is: is this a network problem switching calls between towers/speed networks, or is it a phone problem where the phone is unable to maintain a connection across two networks at differing speeds?

    I’d chalk it up to my phone. The Sony I used to have was much more consistent about picking up calls after a “drop” in a tunnel. The iPhone doesn’t seem to be able to do this effectively.

  71. Thanks for calling out what is among America’s worst underachievers: AT&T.

    Years ago, just over two now, I blogged about Apple’s choice of wireless partners. Then I suggested that Apple’s product would be dragged down by (1) selecting AT&T and (2) by not giving customers the choice of carriers.

    Apple has their reasons for AT&T and for shipping a locked phone. But I can only imagine how better the iPhone experience would be if it were unlocked, and how many more units Apple would sell if it were the same.

  72. I’m sure you tried this Om, but I wanted to suggest it for other readers. Many of the problems with dropped calls are actually due to poor 3G coverage, not the regular voice coverage. The phone always tries to latch on a crappy in-and-out 3G signal instead of a strong and steady EDGE/voice signal. One thing to try, if you can live without 3G speeds, is turning off 3G. Edge coverage (particularly in the old 850 frequency range areas, like San Francisco) should be better.

  73. I too am curious why you chose the Blackberry over the G1 that T-Mobile offers. Some time ago I canceled every service I had with AT&T, their customer support was beyond ridiculous. Insane wait times to talk to a person who would then transfer you to another hour long queue to speak to someone who told you they can’t help you. After several instances of this I just dropped ship. T-Mobile has been fantastic on all fronts..

  74. So, because in certain parts of SF, at&t reception is bad. Everyone should dump their phones and service?

    Keep in mind that at&t is constantly expanding their service or you didn’t notice your recent iPhone update?

  75. I live in Krakow, Poland and use my iPhone 3G on Orange’s network. Both my wife’s Nokia and my phone will occasionally – very occasionally – drop a call when we call from inside of our apartment which is a commie-era blast-proof concrete apartment block with relatively small windows. Everywhere else coverage is pretty good unless we’re in the mountains on the Polish/Slovakian border.

    I don’t think my iPhone’s ability to deal with poor/weak signal is as good as a standard-issue Nokia but it is certainly not bad.

    When I lived in the states I used T-Mobile, though their coverage is also not great out in the sticks. It seemed fine in and around cities, though.

  76. Om, I was having exactly the same issues with my iPhone here in Chicago. For the last couple weeks, I had many dropped calls, and the 3G label just stopped appearing, leaving that sad, sad E in the title bar. Then finally, I saw “Searching…”

    On a whim, I walked into an Apple Store on Tuesday, went right up to a smiling employee (no Genius Bar appt) and explained what was going on. He looked it over, pondered the “Searching…” status occurring right there in the store, and then took it in back. A couple minutes later, he came back out and said “Well, it shouldn’t be doing that. Do you mind if we replace your iPhone?”

    Wow.

    So, a few minutes later I walked out with a brand new phone, which I had to restore at home, and so far, so good. This isn’t to say that AT&T’s service doesn’t suck. If I’m moving around much, the 3G signal gets dropped, and if I’m in a moderately “thick” building, forget it.

    Also, I have NOT updated to the 2.2.1 OS, nor have I applied the recent carrier update, since I’m thinking that’s when the troubles started with my previous iPhone.

  77. Om,

    I think this is more a divorce from AT&T than from your iPhone. You can still use it on WiFi 🙂

    The issue is simply the AT&T network can’t handle the loads right now. They need $7 billion dollars of work to double the capacity…

    Andy

  78. I get a few glitches with my iPhone, but it’s honestly not that bad. I had Verizon before with the chocolate (which is horrific) and the cheapest phone available in 2006 (which was far superior to the chocolate) with similar results. Sprint is my benchmark for awful service. I guess the key is to not expect perfection from any of them, but do expect them to dick you over (Sprint by lying out right about updating my software–they didn’t–which is why I left and Verizon by jerking you around while I had a contract with them and after leaving them). I’ve had the best results with AT&T customer service, so since my phone service is decent and comparable to all the others I’ve tried (or better, Sprint), I’m sticking with the nice people who seem to know where to look for answers rather than the jerks who can’t find an answer on a silver platter with a giant “here’s the answer” neon arrow pointing at it (Verizon).

    On another note, anyone know who to talk to about getting a $175 early termination fee resolved? It’s been “resolved” 4 times over the last 6 months only to result in another bill showing up demanding money. Verizon will never win me back this way.

  79. Paying an termination fee and buying a 2G Blackberry instead of switching off 3G or unlocking and going T-mobile Prepay…? Not even trying any these options? Maybe being iPhone Drama Queen pays in Ad Revenue… who knows.

  80. I find AT&T coverage throughout my home state of Florida to be excellent. I’m sitting in my home office with fully five bars. I’ve only experienced a few dropped calls.

    In San Francisco, AT&T coverage is a joke. Low or completely lost signal, slow speeds. I also find that my battery drains faster in SF — probably because the phone is doing pushups trying to get a darn signal.

    AT&T probably needs more towers in SF, especially in the financial district and south of Market.

  81. I always have the following recommendations for 3G iPhone users:

    1) Turn off 3G for daily use. The rare times you are away from Wifi, you’re probably driving and shouldn’t be loading your pron on iPhone just then;

    2) If the 2G reception sucks where you are, jailbreak and switch to T-Mobile. Great reception on 2G, and again, the 3G “loss” isn’t a loss – you get back more battery life/talk time, and Wifi is everywhere (especially in crappy AT&T reception areas like SF – even the strip clubs on Broadway have wifi access!);

    I definitely think this article is here for the hits, the reaction, and maybe as a lever on Apple to press AT&T harder, or start floating signals to Sprint and T-Mobile about a “non-exclusive” iPhone. More than a $99 iPhone, an all-carrier version (qualcomm, or their own design is my only question) would be the opposition-crushing move that would kill things like the Pre.

  82. To parrot some of the other comments above:

    Dropped calls? Turn off 3G.

    Settings>General>Network

    Om, do you spend the majority of your day at an office and then home?

    Then, WiFi will handle your data needs. Faster, and more reliably than any cellular network, 3G or not.

    Now, as mentioned, while this scenario helps with dropped calls, it should by no means be acceptable by AT&T/iPhone users in areas with spotty coverage. Paying for a service you aren’t getting is unacceptable.

    Do something about it. CALL AT&T AND REPORT IT.

    Give them your address, log when calls are dropped – incoming/outgoing, time of day, number dialed, etc.

    I’m in the East Village in NYC, and 3G is crap in my apartment, even though there is a tower “about a block away.” Doesnt seem to matter. 3G signals seem to be a lot more fickle over distance/indoors.

    I gave AT&T my landlord’s number and told them to call him and ask to put an antenna on the roof.

    Do it.

    Ask for a $10 credit on your bill. “Im only getting 2G speed…” See what happens.

    Either way. AT&T is rolling with their build-out, but a few more cranky calls from one geneal area may get them to move a little faster.

  83. Just want to add another comment to the bucket about how AT&T sucks ass in San Francisco. I get no signal in my apartment. When I called AT&T about it, they claim that coverage is only guaranteed outside buildings. They tried to tell me that I may have lead paint, contributing to bad reception. However, other carriers seem to work fine in my apartment in the Mission. My roommates have Verizon and MetroPCS which work great. They said they were going to send someone out to check the nearby cell tower, but refused to give me a ticket number for follow up. So how am I actually supposed to know if this was done? I just moved from Chicago where 3G was spotty, but at least I got a signal and was able to make calls.

    Om, I’m gonna follow your lead and switch carriers. Of course they better not even bring up a cancellation fee. As an iPhone developer, it is pathetic that I can’t promote a product and service that I make a living developing for.

    Any lawyers on here? Do we have enough people for a class-action lawsuit?

  84. Cellphone service in the US is a nightmare.
    I’ve traveled Europe extensively with my iPhone, and other GSM phones with no coverage problems.
    But outside of tweaking AT&T, whose service could use serious work, not clear what the point of this post is. I know 30 iPhone users here in NYC none of whom are running to switch to any other service, though they do have an occasional dropped call. And since when is Verizon a panacea? I’ve had plenty of problems with their service in the Bay area, Florida, NYC, Chicago, and Texas. Sprint’s even worse and T-Mobile is a joke. No one service solves all of our service issues in the US.
    And how is paying for both a Blackberry on T-Mobile and a cellphone on Verizon “better” than jailbreaking your iPhone?

    Not defending AT&T here, they have plenty to correct, but still

  85. I think a less “click-baiting” and more accurate title for this post would have been “My Big AT&T Break-up”. But, I suppose this did get more clicks for advertising purposes.

  86. Om,

    I made the mistake of moving to ATT and an iPhone 3G from Verizon when the iPhone 3G was announced. That marked the end of my being a customer with Verizon and its excellent network. I was sick of the lousy phones and excited to move to the best smartphone on the market.

    One month later, I was back on Verizon with a free, complimentarily-provided BlackBerry Curve.

    ATT was bad to the point that if I didn’t know better, I’d have guessed I was using a cellular network from 10 years ago.

    Back on Verizon, I don’t have the sexy phone and the app store and all of the other luxuries that Apple provides as part of the iPhone ecosystem. I do have a network that never, ever falters and a phone that, in many ways, is more feature-rich than the iPhone, albeit not as sexy.

    Very much a bummer that ATT’s lousy — horrid — network so dramatically bogs down what the iPhone really could be.

  87. Same problem here… Been on Sprint forever with great service at home and on the road (especially past couple years) but wanted an iPhone. AT&T sucks. Drops calls constantly, doesn’t work in my Northern Virginia office (at all), and I get my visual voice mails HOURS after they’re left (with the right time stamp).

    It’s a good thing I got it w/a new number and still kept my Sprint BB as my primary phone.

  88. I agree with you quitting AT&T however switching to TMobile will do you no good. Both companies operate on GSM networks which seem to not work for you. You should try a CDMA service provider such as Sprint/Nextel or Verizon (Though I have heard Verizon sucks worse than ATT)

  89. The real issue here in my opinion is not ATT but Apple. Apple chose to make its device available through only one carrier. I prefer Verizon (I have a BB 8830 Worldphone that works for me pretty much all over the world) but other people prefer other carriers. Apple unlike BlackBerry and other device manufacturers decided to lock it’s product to one carrier. People often think of Apple as a progressive company but not in this area.

    Also BlackBerry plans offer unlimited data worldwide for $20 or so extra a month. No such plan is available for the iPhone. And I use a lot of data.

    If it were not for these two issues I would have an iPhone. Instead I have a BB.

  90. Hi, I am also using the iphone 3G in Austria with A1 provider an do not have any issues with it. I think your drop of the iphone was no good idea. A drop of the carrier would have done it with a jailbrake of the iphone, which then would have been double fun = good phone + good provider, cheers

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  92. Thank you, Om, and thank you all for your comments and feedback.

    I had an appointment (today!) to meet with an Apple Store Business Manager to buy an iPhone, but I called him and told him I’ll wait until this summer’s new iPhone comes out or ATT’s connectivity gets significantly better.

    Amazing (to me) to read of multiple iPhone owners who have gone back for a free phone from Verizon just to make voice calls they can rely on. My krazor gets & receives call wherever I travel nationally, and I have wireless broadband from Verizon for my iBook, and in my travels nationally it is (95% of the time) great. I can definitely recommend it.

  93. Whenever i see Iphone in writing i stop and read. I want one so bad. I lust over it. I go into the store and just play with it. I came so close but then i hear stuff like bad service, I just dont think its worth it. I chatted with att online a few times i was preparing to buy one. The final nail in the lid was that there is no insurance coverage. Ive had verizon since ive had a cel phone and there are generous warranties that come with the phones. Also for not much more a month your covered for lifes little accidents. The iphone was 300 bucks to begin with. You get ONE month of warranty. for real? I can then pay 60 bucks for applecare. This also does not cover accidents. Cost to replace one? 500-600 dollars. You gotta be kidding. So between ATT coverage and apple arrogance im threw looking at it. I see people with them and i just how silly it all is. Especially if your a student or not really a wealthy person.

  94. “Billy” you might be more convincing if you could write a coherent sentence. OK, maybe not.

    When I first bought the iPhone 3G I had terrible service here in Phoenix. Really bad. I switched to a free Verizon phone for awhile then tried the iPhone again. It works quite well now and I pretty much never have dropped signals anymore. AT&T has beefed up the network here but at the expense of Edge service.

  95. I really regret switching from Verizon to AT&T. In the three months that I’ve had AT&T I’ve had more dropped calls than three years with Verizon. Unfortunately I don’t know if I can give up my iPhone just yet.

  96. hey so does this mean your giving your iphone away or whats going on there? because if so please put me in the hat your going to be pulling out of or whatever because i would love to have an iphone i just never have had the money to buy one

  97. AT&T has terrible service in Palo Alto. I called AT&T and they said they have no plans to improve service in the Palo Alto area. I had no problems when I had Sprint.

  98. I live in Columbus with Verizon. My friends have the iPhone and say they love it and never drop 3G, maybe it’s where you live. For me, I’m sick of VZW’s sad line of offerings and considering paying more for the iPhone. I have a Storm and it is awful.

    VZW is awesome for network and data… but the phones are unreliable and very frustrating. I had a way better experience with T-Mobile and their G1 than I have had with the Storm.

  99. A single phone that will do everything (GPS, SMS, MMS, email, browser, 48Gb memory, mp3, touch screen, 5Mp camera) and isn’t tied in to AT&T?

    You mean like the Nokia N97?

    1. the n97.. I thought the same thing. But this is the worst nolkia phone to date. It is so buggy that it needs to be reset at least 20 to 30 times a day due to the system locking up or becoming unresponsive. When i say reset i mean popping out the battery!!! Nokia is doomed if not dead already. This phones firmware was not ready for release its just not finished. The graphic ui seemed to be designed by person with ADD as there is no flow to it whatsoever. Not to mention nokia has seemed to remove the native sip stack, which for me is a huge deal breaker. Trust that for 700 the device should work. I went through 4 in a 2 day period as they were defective out of the box. Trust me do yourself a favor and stay clear of this BS handset youll thank me later.

      Dont let me get started on att. The MTA tax on the bills “we get no service underground in NY!”. If your late with a payment they have the right to push back the date of upgrade eligibilty. this was new to me and can be done with out notifying the customer. Im sick of ATT and wish they would turn blue in the face. I can not wait for the day the government stops the exclusivity between att and apple as that will be the day people will jujmp ship in boat loads. We the people do have power in nujmbers. If a company is trying to strong arm you as ATT does just come together and make a collective movement. They will take notice if they start seeing people closing the accounts. But until then to them everything is fine and its strongarming as usual.

      Please excuse any typos.

  100. hi. this is kinda of subject, but i need help and this is my last place i would ask for it.
    i have a iphone and i just got it. im trying to get all the songs on my itunes player off of my phone without losing all of my contacts, apps, ect.i guess i should just press the reset button, but i dont know what eccacly that button resets.you see i only wanna reset my music without losing everything else. should i press ”back up my iphone” or just “reset my iphone”i need help and i dont know what to do, my comment is kinda confusing, but can someone just tell me what to do(:please email me your answer at fififitz@gmail.com

  101. I can remember two or three dropped in SEVEN YEARS of using Verizon even if they had crap phones.. Switch to AT&T/Iphone three weeks ago and it drops calls daily in my own NYC apartment. It can’t find a network in one of the most densely populated cities..This is absurd. And the 3G network doesn’t work inside my Financial Area office building. Aaaaarg…I can’t drop AT&T because I’m not prepared to eat the early termination fee and it’s past the two week return period. This is nuts considering what I paid for it and what I’m going to pay monthly. Steve Jobs pawned his customers by signing an exclusive contract with AT&T.

    1. “I can’t drop AT&T because I’m not prepared to eat the early termination fee…”

      That’s where they’ve got you. This is why I have a pre-paid. I have full control over my phone in every aspect. If I want to end service tomorrow, I can. If I want to throw the phone away, no one will call me asking why. I don’t have to pay a dime.

      Perhaps people will get wise and stop tying themselves to expensive contracts that charge them even more if they want to leave. This isn’t an apartment where breaking the lease costs the landlord money – it’s a phone. A telephone. You should be able to end that service without a penalty fee.

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  103. After a week’s visit to Bellevue (Seattle suburb), which had really no AT&T signal to speak of on my iPhone, I ended up making most of my calls on Skype via wifi. This was a great solution.

    Coming back to Southern California, I was met with 2G at my home where I used to reliably have 3G.

    So now a MiFi wireless router provides wifi access from the Sprint network, which is a backup solution when there is no AT&T signal.

    But I think I’ll be running out the iPhone 3G’s contract rather than upgrading… let’s see where they are next summer.

  104. Incredible…iPhones, BlackBerries, I hear nothing but network issues and poor signal and dropped calls with all these expensive, fancy phones. I have a pre-paid TracFone and I’ve never once had a call drop or had no service (except far underground in a subway tunnel once). I’ve even laughed at my friends with their fancy phones, cursing on the beach with no service, and have three bars.

  105. What I want to know is why suddenly all of my email regardless of whose server I am trying to send it through fails? When I am away from my home (NoVA area around DC), I just cannot send email. Nice ATT. It used to work, now it doesn’t. The fact that ATT doesn’t allow teathering used to bother me, but given the recent DROP in network quality and their apparent inability to route traffic (leave it to voice guys to not understand a data network), I have to say I wouldn’t pay a dime more for teathering on my iPhone.

    Until ATT gets their act together the iPhone is doomed in the US. But let’s not keep our venom just for ATT though deserved, Apple needs to grow up about the App Store. That situation is intolerable, sucky features to find apps, random decisions on what is a good app and what isn’t, and their lack of feedback as to why has me starting to look elsewhere. As much as I hate to even think about it I am really starting to think Android might be a better solution.

    To be clear I am not bashing Apple as a whole, just their process for approving apps and their lack of intelligent feedback to the dev community as to what constitutes a valid app or not. Also to be honest. We are adults, what’s the issue with an adult app? You have parental controls, use them on a iPhone that is in a kids hand. Apple being my parent is just not right.

    Anyway not that care about adult apps but give me a break if you are going to stop them, then you need to turn off the web browser too, or you have to start censoring the sites that people can get to from that browser, then aren’t you just being China at that point? I hate governments getting into my life why would I enjoy Apple knowing what’s best for me.

    Get over it Apple, and get your equipment off of ATT. Verizon was the best carrier I ever had, rarely a dropped call with them. I do business over my phone and having calls drop 3 or 4 times while driving down the road is just crazy, especially since I live in a densely populated area.

    But then again the apparent lack of regard by both ATT and Apple somehow seem to go hand in hand. Which is too bad, I love Apple, and have since the beginning so it would be nice to see them both get their acts together.

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  107. No service in my home. No service at my office. City after city through business travel are dead spots galore. I call for a class action suit based on false advertising. I experience dozens of dropped calls day. For Apple loyalists, thrusting at&t on us is stab in the back. We deserve better.

  108. Ok, looks like I am the only one who does not have a problem with AT&T. I live in Miami and the coverage is pretty good. I have not had any problems , drop calls / searching for network , in a year. I love the phone and I know many people who also have it and none of them complain about the provider.

    On the other hand, I believe that if Apple continues its partnership with AT&T, I’ll get another phone and another provider when my contract expires. Because of this partnership, Apple is becoming a new Microsoft. They feel like they can tell you which apps you can and can’t use, they block things that would make the phone way cooler (all the apps that you get when you jailbreak the phone) and they do all that just to protect AT&T interests.

    The iphone has indeed revolutionize the world. Carriers need to realize that they have to become dumb pipes and nothing more. Phones, which is the same to say, small computers are here and they will become better, faster and (hopefully) cheaper.

    I truly hope that google teaches them a lesson. And I do hope that Apple learn. Break up with AT&T or users will break up with you.

    1. I have AT&T, and I actually switched to AT&T BECAUSE AT&T *IS* good. Are they perfect? NO. I switched BEFORE I even cared what iPhone was.

      I see comments about Verizon “I will never give them ANY money every again”. I see that A LOT, I used to work in a phone center, and Verizon had the most IRATE customers I have ever seen, not sure what pissed them off, but there were a few and they were upset.

      Anyway, the point is Verizon is a TDMA, which means you can’t switch, so it’s easy for Verizon customers who love and hate them to say “I will keep my verizon”. Yeah because you can’t move your phone… that’s not exactly a glowing recommendation.

      T-mobile to me personally, sucks! I had a blackberry / motorola razr for 3 years, and I finally got upset and switched (to AT&T). I have been happy for 17 months, zero problems.

      I also love people that say “I have NEVER had a SINGLE dropped called”.

      To that I want to say – B U L L S H I T!!!!! maybe the calls have dropped so infrequently that you don’t remember or its a surprise when it does, but there isn’t a phone company on the planet that DOESN’T drop a call or two.. sorry but it’s not possible. MOST times its not the carriers fault, also a misnomer. There are inferences from every direction, and a phone is largely a very weak signal, and it’s susceptible to MANY things, and drops and signal loss DOES happen, phones are FAR from perfect.

      AT&T for me has been stellar, I like the company and the service, again is it perfect? NO. I have a iphone 3G, i have dropped a few calls, and I moved to another part of the city, NO more dropped calls, so OBVIOUSLY it’s not the network….

      At any rate, one more comment, for those of you that like to blame AT&T for everything apple does, take a REAL GOOD LOOK at your iPhone. Pick it, stare at it, and look it over REAL good.. Do you see that AT&T logo on it? You don’t? Ah.. that’s because it doesn’t exist, and Apple controls *ALL* the content and how it’s be used. AT&T get’s the revenue for it’s use on THEIR network. So the next time you want to bitch about AT&T does this and that, remember that the iPhone is 100% under Apple’s control, 100%!

      GV is 100% prohibited by Apple *NOT* AT&T. It’s an APP, and it was rejected as an APP not a service… and I can prove it.. you can use the SAME functionality on google mobile website.. STILL on AT&T network.. so if it were TRULY blocked (by AT&T) it would not work EITHER way, so therefore this is 100% Apples fault.

      I am tired of Apple telling me what I can wear, eat, and how to use MY iPhone. I don’t go into Walmart one day and see 2 brands of butter, and tomorrow brand A is gone, and Walmart forces me to use Brand B or else.. I have many choices (not just 2). I am switching to something else OTHER than iPhone (or any Apple product from now on), but still on AT&T network, thank you.

  109. If you’ve already decided that AT&T has failed you and therefore presumably don’t care what they or Apple think about you, why not jailbreak the iPhone for T-Mobile – negating the need for your new curve. You get the stylish device that you want that also has music/video etc, plus plenty of extra features – of course you can continue to get your phone service from Verizon. But – now you’ve got service sans AT&T and you can even use the Safari browser if you want, even if it is a bit slower than a fully functional 3G network.

  110. I’m sorry but the iPhone is the best at coverage around my area, I live on the eastern coast in New Jersey and I’ve had no problems with signals at all with my iPhone, I even use edge to save battery and it still works perfectly fine. So hope your problems get fixed, I have a 3gs btw.

  111. Less Bars is a group of consumers who rave about one of the greatest inventions of this century: the iPhone. We are also an *educated* group of consumers who recognize that AT&T is currently conducting billing abuses against the majority of iPhone 3G customers.

    We created this petition to tell the AT&T Fat Cat Executives “We will not stand for your billing abuses. It is our constitutional right to use any and all social media and public relations avenues available to help spread the word about your billing abuse practices. We will not give up until you announce you will credit our accounts for each and every dropped call”.

    Find us on the web: http://www.lessbarsinmoreplaces.com
    Leave a comment on our hotline. We’ll replay it for all of twitterverse 800-574-7032

    Follow all of our research: http://www.twitter.com/atthaslessbars

  112. I was at a conference today including about 80 persons. All of the At&t phones inside the buildind had no network service. It was a good opportunity to survey which network had signals and the result were as follow:
    AT&T no service
    Sprint 5 bars
    Verison 5 bars
    Tmobile 3 bars
    Walmart cheap pay as you go phone 4 bars
    Thanks AT&T for your lies about having the best network.

  113. I have actually done the same thing. A year later but the same. I switched over to Sprint, which has a MUCH better network and clearer calls. I got the new Evo and it makes my old iPhone look Amish. Sure there probably isn’t a high demand on Sprint’s network like AT&T but for $20 less a month, totally worth buying out the contract for

  114. That’s terrible! Damn AT&T!
    The iPhone is not exactly perfect, especially as a business phone, but it’s pretty close! OK the battery life is shorter than your average commute to work, but the design, apps and UI make up for that…as long as your network allows you to make calls that is!
    Maybe one day you’ll come back…

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