Seems we’ve been going backwards. I guess it started with bloatware, then a little bending of the word unlimited, then progressed to terrible performance, then super low quotas, then even more bending of the word unlimited, then crappier customer service, bending of the term 4G, free roaming with a big asterisk, higher cost, fraudulently hidden fees, jacked-up ETFs and the general unknown of how much more the carrier you switch to will suck than the carrier from which you’re switching within several months.

And we seem to get the shiny phones five months after the rest of the world. What’s up with that?

This is on my mind because I just got an email from T-Mobile telling me that I’ve got a hundred megs a month to burn on roaming until I’m completely cut off for the month for roaming. Which particularly sucks because T-Mobile’s relatively poor coverage is compensated by its free roaming. Here’s the kicker, not only does T-Mobile’s coverage sucks, their coverage map sucks.

Sucks especially for me because I burn through the majority of my data on my commutes, sometimes over a hundred megs in a single ride (especially if I have a window seat and can get a signal). This may be a dealbreaker between me and T-Mobile. Which sucks, because I hate AT&T, Verizon’s pricy, Sprint is buckling from being unlimited and slowing down thanks to the iPhone, … argh. Carly, baby, don’t do me like this.

What about you guys, from your experience, of the big four, which US carrier sucks the least?

Doug Simmons


  1. I don’t have a problem with AT&T.

    AT&T used to have poor service, but in the last two years, AT&T has been significantly increasing its coverage and fixing its dead spots.

    • T-Mobile REALLY sucks. I got transferred to six differnt employees today of T-mobile. I got total run-around. I lost an hour of my life just trying to take advantage of an offer they sent to me. I told each representative that they keep transferring me. Finally, they hung up on me. I was kind, I did not raise my voice, nor did I use any negative language. I have been continually treated poorly by this company. I cannot wait for my contract to end.

      Unfortunately, I have three lines, so it would cost me over a grand to switch today to a new company and buy new phones with them. It feels terrible to be treated so poorly by a company that I have been with since 2005.

      I teach business classes as a tenured professor with over a thousand students each year. I will talk about bad customer service and talk about the facts of how T-mobile has treated me on a number of times. I suspect that each of these students will remember my stories and share them with others too.

      It is a total shame to be abused, offered a deal, then transferred to be hung up on in the end.

  2. I have used both T-Mobile and AT&T. I’ve been with T-Mobile for 6 years, AT&T the year before, and TMO the 2 years prior. I would never go back to AT&T for too many reasons to list.

    T-Mobile is great except when I travel. It becomes hit or muss whether I will have quality service. Sometimes I do, others I don’t. Even in the same location. But the value and saving u get on TMO, $133 after taxes for 2 lines with unlimited talk/text/5gb data (I use 2700 minutes a month), can’t be beat. Shabby data coverage 10% of the time doesn’t outweigh the savings.

    I also loathe the idea of going to a CDMA carrier. I enjoy swapping phones too much.

  3. They’re all pretty bad really. I’ve been with Sprint and Cricket and AT&T and then it became Cingular and now it’s AT&T again, same thing I would guess anyway. Out of those basic three I’m still with AT&T only because I can get calls in my home, with the other two I couldn’t, I’d always have missed and dropped calls and usually no signal. For me AT&T sucks the least ONLY because of that one thing, other than that they’re just as bad as the rest.. Customer service is horrible with all of them that I’ve tried, they lie, they cheat, they bill wrong.. they’re all bad really.

  4. I started on Cingular, bacame AT+T
    Never had a problem with customer service except that they don’t know much about the devices.
    Service has improved over the years, but is inconsistant, mostly where I use it the most, at work on break. Sometimes traveling.
    I stayed with AT+T mostly because of restrictions on Verizon like, no Bluetooth file transfer, and voice and data at the same time. And because Verizon would cost more. But maybe has better service.
    T-Mobile had the HD2 I wanted, but service is on question, especially while traveling, and would have cost too much for only 1 line at the time.
    I don’t remember why I dismissed Sprint

  5. Everyone of them suck bad. They all are screwing every consumer who grandfathered Unlimited bandwidth under the name of data throttling top Bandwidth users. That is just one reason, but they want the consumers’ $ but don’t want to serve them. Period.

  6. Been with AT&T for over ten years. They’ve done me wrong before but it’s not something that isn’t expected at some point in a ten year relationship. I use a metric ass load (slightly larger than a standard ass load) of data every month and don’t notice any throttling in my area. Must not be the only one. Plus the phone selection has been decent during my time with them, except for a 6 month period before Windows Phones came out which was also before any decent Android phones had made there way onto the network (starting with the captivate.) Policies regarding new phones are easy to take advantage of if you know how to word your problems. I get an upgrade every 12 months because of my patronage, which is pretty bad ass and how (along with a free 50$ Best Buy gift card) I’m going to snag the Nokia Ace when it hits for only 50$ of my own hard earned cash. Verizon isn’t a bad choice if you’re not a windows phone fan, but something about sprint gives me the creeps. I feel like they’re just the old geezer in the corner that people are waiting and expecting to break and just fall through. I don’t see a lot of stability in that ship. I have a feeling that when carriers introduce family data they may offer an unlimited package with that, but at a very high premium. They definitely need to offer power users more solutions than are currently available. And T-Mobile doesn’t really register to me as a major carrier. They’re basically junior varsity. They’re part of the general pep rally but no one really gives a shit and the cheer leaders are ugly, except in T-mobiles case they actually have a pretty cute spokesperson.

  7. T-Mobile really sucks!!

    Their coverage map is not correct and their coverage sucks. Their customer services is even worse.

    I just spend 3 hours on the phone with them. They’ve transferred me from customer services dept, to loyalty department, to technical department and back and forth. And a couple of the times they drop the phone call. Finally they tell me this is the expected coverage and there is nothing they can do.

    I have been with T-Mobile for 10 years. Their coverage drops dramatically since end of last year (2011).

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