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Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: wave rider
Date: August 01, 2021 01:46PM
TL;DR…
I have been without cell service to the property upon which I live for 10 or so days. After calling four consecutive days, three different tier 2 support personnel, and two trouble tickets, I am completely unsatisfied with Verizon's response to my lack of service. Some questions I have for your collective experience are:

  1. Know of any useful strong-arm tactics I can use to bend Verizon to my will/needs?
  2. Any good resources for alternate cell providers, detailed coverage map is a plus.
  3. Will my "Verizon" 12 Pro Max be easy to port to another provider?

I am sure I will have more questions as I think further through this dilemma…

Longer Version

I discovered I had no cell service four or five days after it went missing. No cell level bars inside my residence or outside on the property. This was very puzzling as my Verizon (my first and only cell provider, so far…) cell signal had always been quite adequate and ROCK SOLID for the 6+ years I have been with them. Well, except when the power goes out.

Did some troubleshooting via the Verizon website which was mostly to see if the device was the problem. Realized I could enable WiFi calling on the iPhone and got into the Verizon phone support system. Tier 1 and 2 personnel ran me through most of the same troubleshooting steps I had already done. The tier 2 could not find any issue with the one and only cell tower near me. She agreed to call me back later in the day after my trip to town, I would check my phone's cell reception capability there.

Wish I had talked to my neighbor first, she was having the same no cell bars problem. And in town, my phone got excellent signals. Tier 2 lady never called back.

Reached Tier 2 fellow the next day, related what I had discovered, and he issued a Trouble Ticket. He told me it could take 4-7 business days for the ticket to be assigned. The ticket response came by much faster than expected with this link on the text: [www.verizon.com]

It would seem Verizon would like me to use a "Network Extender" for their cell signal piggybacked on my Comcast internet connection. A) The Comcast internet is often high speed but is sometimes sluggish and B) The extender seems more designed to give indoor cell service when the signal isn't coming though the housing structure but does nothing for cell service outside the structure.

I've already proven myself a touch frail (see sig image) and would prefer to have an outdoor cell signal too, thank you very much. I might injure myself with a garden trowel or something…

My neighbor is SOOL as her internet connection is often not high speed.

Third tier 2 person write new trouble ticket asking about outside cell service. Support has not responded to second ticket but has texted useless to me link again. Sigh…

I live five or so miles out of town near the coast in a cluster of residences adjacent to some ag land. Took a walk in the field a near me and sure enough, plenty of cell signal. I kept testing as I walked around the field and noted varying signal strengths including another place where the signal disappeared. So, the signal finally disappears about 200 feet from my property line. MFers! I suspect Verizon has reconfigured their cell tower as I ran into a touch of 5G while doing my testing. If I can't get them to modify their configuration, I'm speculating that Verizon is breaking up with me…

I will be contacting my State Senator's office, a staffer there did AMAZINGLY EFFECTIVE WORK liaising with the EDD unemployment benefits system and got my funding flowing miraculously. Perhaps they have a direct means of contacting Verizon for me and my coverage issue.

I will also contact Verizon sales to find out exactly what I need to do to terminate my account with them. I know AT&T has a good signal on the property, if I can port my phone to them, I will be good to go. And take my friend who lives in town with me since we share the account. Sometimes sales folks will reach out to engineering to save an account, or so I fondly wish since Verizon restoring my signal would be the easiest solution for me. I'm the customer, dammit!

I know I can get AT&T here but am interesting in finding out if any other providers cover my area. I am under no illusion AT&T is any less "evil" than Verizon, they provide my landline!

Thanks in advance folks!



=wr=
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: mattkime
Date: August 01, 2021 01:49PM
Honestly it sounds like you're on top of it and the only thing I might be able to offer would be extending your wifi signal outside your home. I specifically set up my wifi so that I'd have coverage everywhere on my medium sized lawn.

Assuming its unlocked you should be able to use it with AT&T - mac tracker only lists one US model number for the iphone 12 pro max (although different capacities)







Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 08/01/2021 01:52PM by mattkime.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: Markintosh
Date: August 01, 2021 01:55PM
In our area, Verizon beats everyone for coverage. That seems pretty typical for rural areas in California. Two blocks from our house is fine. Our house typically gets one bar indoors or two in the back yard.

The bigger issue is that with our population shift and recent growth, the bandwidth cannot keep up. We can have all sorts of bars but get very poor data speeds. Almost never a problem with voice though. The other day when there was the jet crash, circuits did overload. That does not bode well for the day there is a wildfire here.



“Live your life, love your life, don’t regret…live, learn and move forward positively.” – CR Johnson
Loving life in Lake Tahoe, CA
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: wave rider
Date: August 01, 2021 02:02PM
Thanks mattkine. I do get some outside WiFi coverage, but not all over the property and with varying signal strength. The Verizon cell range used to overlap from my place to the next tower down the coast, I could have cell conversations all the way to town.

I'm mostly butthurt that Verizon taketh away…



=wr=
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: wave rider
Date: August 01, 2021 02:04PM
Quote
Markintosh
In our area, Verizon beats everyone for coverage. That seems pretty typical for rural areas in California. Two blocks from our house is fine. Our house typically gets one bar indoors or two in the back yard.

The bigger issue is that with our population shift and recent growth, the bandwidth cannot keep up. We can have all sorts of bars but get very poor data speeds. Almost never a problem with voice though. The other day when there was the jet crash, circuits did overload. That does not bode well for the day there is a wildfire here.

I still think about that scary jet crash…



=wr=
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: space-time
Date: August 01, 2021 02:23PM
what jet crash? I missed it
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: wave rider
Date: August 01, 2021 02:29PM
Quote
space-time
what jet crash? I missed it

[forums.macresource.com]



=wr=
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: Will Collier
Date: August 01, 2021 02:38PM
All the companies are equally terrible in terms of customer service. Pick your service based on price and signal availability, and use a MVNO, not one of the "primes." Much cheaper. Visible is the current cheapest option at $25/month for unlimited everything in a Party Plan, but they do use Verizon's network (it's a Verizon subsidiary), so might not be the best option for your particular case.

I would never use one of the cable companies for cell service. That's like asking to go to Customer No Service Hell.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: space-time
Date: August 01, 2021 02:44PM
(it's a Verizon subsidiary), so might not be the best option for your particular case.

Actually it would be interesting to find out if he can get signal on Verizon using MVNO, maybe Verizon shares different channels with their MVNO and those use different antennas or different beam forming parameters.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: wave rider
Date: August 01, 2021 03:02PM
Quote
space-time
(it's a Verizon subsidiary), so might not be the best option for your particular case.

Actually it would be interesting to find out if he can get signal on Verizon using MVNO, maybe Verizon shares different channels with their MVNO and those use different antennas or different beam forming parameters.

That is an interesting idea, I wonder where I could find out?

Youse guys gots way more experience with this stuff…
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: Will Collier
Date: August 01, 2021 03:06PM
Quote
wave rider
Quote
space-time
(it's a Verizon subsidiary), so might not be the best option for your particular case.

Actually it would be interesting to find out if he can get signal on Verizon using MVNO, maybe Verizon shares different channels with their MVNO and those use different antennas or different beam forming parameters.

That is an interesting idea, I wonder where I could find out?

Youse guys gots way more experience with this stuff…

Just get one of their SIM cards and drop it in your phone (assuming it's unlocked). See if the behavior is any different.

[www.visible.com]
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: rgG
Date: August 01, 2021 03:20PM
If you maybe want to get a higher tier of CS representative, you can try Twitter shaming them.
It seems the big companies really take bad tweets seriously and will usually get back to you after a negative post.





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: Filliam H. Muffman
Date: August 01, 2021 03:21PM
Two years ago I lost two bars of reception when Verizon reconfigured their closest tower to send more bandwidth to a new office building. It runs my battery down 30% faster than it used to because the phone is always struggling for reception. Verizon keeps sending me texts with my bill, saying to enable WiFi calling to improve service. I keep ignoring them. I know it's so they can squeeze a few more bits toward that new office without putting up a new tower.



In tha 360. MRF User Map
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: kj
Date: August 01, 2021 03:21PM
Quote
Will Collier
All the companies are equally terrible in terms of customer service. Pick your service based on price and signal availability, and use a MVNO, not one of the "primes." Much cheaper. Visible is the current cheapest option at $25/month for unlimited everything in a Party Plan, but they do use Verizon's network (it's a Verizon subsidiary), so might not be the best option for your particular case.

I would never use one of the cable companies for cell service. That's like asking to go to Customer No Service Hell.

We've had absolutely disgusting problems with all of ours. Flat out, looked straight in the eyes, "yes we are screwing you" deals. We have Verizon 35/mo. (which is a cheapo plan), but it's the only provider that gives service between here and Sun Valley, and up in McCall, ID. , so it's the only choice, really. T-Mobile is a favorite here, but they do some really screwy things. A friend sends video to me on occasion and it's like 4pixels by 4pixels due to something weird with T-mobile. It's tainted a bit by having something to do with Sprint too, since Sprint gets my "most annoying criminals to deal with" award. So I agree with the all of them suck assessment.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: macphanatic
Date: August 01, 2021 03:35PM
Post your frustration on social media, tagging Verizon.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: Dennis S
Date: August 01, 2021 03:41PM
Maybe call the FCC and tell Verizon you're going to.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: Fritz
Date: August 01, 2021 03:43PM
Vz Wireless will not be strong armed .... yet.
Personally, T-Mobile. If you have no coverage at home but the area itself is covered, ask 'em for a cell spot, when they become available.
Or just use wifi.



!#$@@$#!

If there are spelling issues, please pardon, Owen the cat is walking, standing or sleeping on my keyboard.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: Ombligo
Date: August 01, 2021 04:47PM
Check out Consumer Cellular -- $37/month unlimited everything on the ATT network

[www.consumercellular.com]

Going to an MVNO on the Verizon network will do you no good since you don't have a signal.



“No persons are more frequently wrong, than those who will not admit they are wrong.”
-- François de La Rochefoucauld

Growing older is mandatory. Growing up is optional.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: MindMeld
Date: August 01, 2021 07:27PM
Quote
Ombligo
Check out Consumer Cellular -- $37/month unlimited everything on the ATT network

[www.consumercellular.com]

Going to an MVNO on the Verizon network will do you no good since you don't have a signal.

This. We have Consumer Cellular in a small town in the western North Carolina mountains and get excellent coverage. Not sure where you live but if it is in the Truckee, CA area their coverage maps show 4G LTE, 5G and "Other" coverage all over that area.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: Don C
Date: August 01, 2021 08:09PM
When I first signed on with T-Mobile MANY years ago, I had very spotty service and had to stand in the right window or out on the back deck to get a reliable phone signal. Was ready to switch after I returned from a weekend trip. When I returned, I had a strong signal. T-Mobile had installed a tower less than a mile away over the weekend. Problem solved ... for the time being.

Moved to this house near downtown and calls dropped out a lot. It was hard to have a conversation. Called tech support and while they were telling me why it was my problem, the call went out. Guy called me back and that call was disrupted. Third try, he said there was something he could do at his end after all. He did it, whatever it was, and I've had strong signals every since.

None of which solves YOUR problem. Sorry.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: testcase
Date: August 01, 2021 08:30PM
Another vote for T-Mobile. T-Mo's signal AND Customer Service absolutely spanks Verizon.

A while back, an engineer explained to me that cellular voice and data were entirely SEPARATE systems. One does NOT affect the other so, you can have great (or at least acceptable) voice service and poor to abysmal data service (or vice versa). As more and more people move to using cellular data, the quality of said cellular data WILL suffer. At well attended events (sports, festivals, rallies etc) the capacity of the cellular towers will be easily overwhelmed as attendees want to share / sent texts, pictures, videos and more.
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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: mattkime
Date: August 01, 2021 09:20PM
Quote
Ombligo
Check out Consumer Cellular -- $37/month unlimited everything on the ATT network

[www.consumercellular.com]

Going to an MVNO on the Verizon network will do you no good since you don't have a signal.

I had them but switched to red pocket. Red pocket has occasional sales. I'm paying less than $20/mo per line (2 lines) for....I don't know how much data per month. 10GB maybe?



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Re: Cell provider blues, seeking help from your combined experiences…
Posted by: C(-)ris
Date: August 01, 2021 09:51PM
Make a safety issue. Call up and tell them you can't call 911 from your house that should have service. If they don't care, call the non emergency number for your 911 dispatch center and tell them Verizon isn't fixing their tower and you can't call 911. That should get something in motion.



C(-)ris
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