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Readers Respond: What Is the Best iPhone Carrier?

Responses: 59

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There are many choices for companies that offer the iPhone, but which is the best? Do you prefer Verizon or AT&T? How about O2 or Orange or Rogers? Share your opinion and reasoning here to help others make good choices. Share Your Reason

From a technical point of view

Verizon and Sprint share the limitation that Internet doesn't work when you have a voice call up. This means you cannot check your email and tell your caller if you got it, without calling back. It defeats the point of the smartphone. Sprint started out with the strongest signal in my house, but things have gotten worse since then. We have had flaky cell towers for months and Sprint told me it was because they were installing LTE. Well, months later, service is still spotty, and no LTE at all. They have a solution that would fix my connectivity trouble, but they won't let me have it. When I get a chance to exit Sprint (sometime next year), they will be out of here. Most likely I will go back to AT&T. Also as much as I like the Apple iPhone, I might check out the competition. So Sprint and Verizon are out for technical reasons, and I will take AT&T over T-Mobile, so AT&T it will probably be. In any case it will be traumatic.
—Ichibrosan

TracFone customer service is terrible

A TracFone contract is inexpensive, but the Samsung version is poor quality. I had so many issues that required calling customer service. Tracfone customer service is in India. The young people are so poorly trained, plus the language issues made me cancel my contract. No bargain with Tracfone/Samsung!!!!! Now I have to start over--new phone & new contract!!!!
—Guest Amy

T-mobile

T-Mobile is the best family plan I ever had and the best carrier of my life. It loads data fast and does so many things I can't name. Pick T-Mobile.
—Guest Konner

Consumer Cellular not best

Consumer Cell does not work if you live in the mountains. We had US Cellular but their prices went thru the roof, so AARP members were switched to CC. Cheap yes, but doesn't work in the house AT ALL, and only works outside if you face EAST, do not move or you lose service. We live in the mountains of NH. They should tell you before you go thru all the bull to switch that you won't have service if you live in the mountains. So now we have to switch back. Consumer Cell told me I would just need to stand outside to use the phone!!!!!?????
—Guest Lorri Tremblay

T-mobile

So I've not had problems with T-mobile. The speed ain't bad; it's 75% good. Plus 16GB iPhone 5S is free, 32GB is $100. That's wow. 64GB is $200. For most services, it's 16GB for $200. So I recommend T-mobile, plus $40 per month.
—Guest tmobile

T-Mobile doesn't work 30% of the time

Inside my home in suburban Maryland the T-Mobile service stinks. It doesn't even function more than 70% of the time, and during daytime, that % drops to about 50% or less. When you can't use your phone, you're still paying for it -- it's not like electricity coming into the house.
—Guest mona

Consumer Cellular: iPhone w/ no contract

Consumer Cellular now supports iPhones, and uses the AT&T network. You can get an unlocked iPhone 5S for $150 and then $25 a month for 20 months (the older iPhones are correspondingly less). There's no contract; if you cancel service before the phone is paid off, you only have to pay the balance of the $650 cost of the phone.
—GradivusGraham

All Greedy

One has to remember that all the carriers are in the business to make $. They are not out to provide a free or even inexpensive public service. They have teams of expensive attorneys to ensure contracts and printed or verbal offers are 100% worthless. These big businesses, although large, are not big enough to outright lie. Like the President of the United States, they are masters of deception. They have magicians working to train all staffmembers in the art of deception. In all aspects of their business they want to consume as many dollars as consumers have. After all, the business of communications is not called the "business of honest straightforward communications." All cable, satellite TV, and telephone service providers should be highlighted on American Greed. It is getting to the point where it would be better to drive across this great nation and talk to that person face to face; Or be patient and use a stamp to send your message. Here in Montana, restart the Pony Express!
—Guest Ski

Verizon user

I had done some research myself and I found the same results. But I do want to go back to Verizon. I get 2/5 bars at my house and streaming HD quality with no buffer is possible. It is a very reliable network, but with a high packet loss of 17%. I know a few people with AT&T and they fell short of expectations. They said AT&T is the worst North American cell carrier (I live in a suburban town with moderate 3G /4G and LTE from all carriers). So the speeds and reliability are the only real factors we can see. Sprint is the worst out of all of them so we can rule them out. The two that compete are AT&T and Verizon. They both don't have any variation except maybe that Verizon may be faster, but AT&T towers are closer so they level in speeds. Verizon markets their own LTE to Wi-Fi device to replace your ISP called a jetpack (I think it's called that). If they are able to bring high-speed internet to your home using cellular data, they take the cake on speed. T-Mobile wins in freedom over contract.
—Guest Anonymous

Just for making calls

Go with Consumer Cellular if you're mainly a caller/texter. Use husband's AARP discount (10%) on a 500 min/200text or 2MB data plan for son's phone - also a hand-me-down RAZR from our AT&T days - and it's only $15/month. It was a practically brand new phone when husband was given a smartphone by his work. Their plans start @ $10/mo & they do offer phones. Check them out - very nice for kids/teens & those who mainly call/text.
—Guest Rhonda

Best cell phone carrier

Verizon is breaking the bank, so to speak!! My monthly bills are AT LEAST $250 for 4 lines!! And a ridiculous termination fee of $350!! T-Mobile can save me AT LEAST $110/month!! Now I can afford to buy a house a little easier! :)
—Guest Amy

Verizon's network is far more robust

I'm on Verizon with a Note 3 at the moment. I've been on every carrier bar T-Mobile for either business or personal uses in the past three years (including Virgin Mobile). I'm not sure about the time of writing of this article but now in Dec. 2013 I can say that my best experience by far has been with Verizon. The plans may be more expensive, but the price is totally justified by massive coverage and service. I'm sitting in a tiny town in the middle of the Appalachians thirty miles from the outskirts of the next decently large city and I'm covered by 4G LTE with great speeds and reliability. As far as 3G speeds go, if AT&T is indeed faster than Verizon, it's by a small margin, and on Verizon you'll likely rarely be off 4G LTE anyways.
—Guest That Dude with the huge phone

My dealings with AT&T

I've had AT&T before and dropped calls were a problem. Also if you ever want to switch it is a pain in the butt, 3 hours in a store to give me the free upgrades so they could cancel my plan (I had an old phone that did not exist anymore according the computers). I went to Verizon for a time--no issues there. I switched back to AT&T for a company discount. They got pushy sales people and the Pantech phone they offer you if you just want a talk plan is not really that good. Voice quality is a problem and the button that is right in the middle that looks like the answer call button sends you to the Internet, resulting in web charges. Even if you immediately and repeated hit the get me out of here. I was able to get them on the line to fully close out the web access. Once you have it set up I think it's fine, but you're at least looking at $30-50 in fees and charges not including the $39.99 service activation fee they hit you for at the beginning.
—Guest Chris

Virgin Mobile is better

I prefer Virgin Mobile because my iPhone 5C is only $35 a month.....it's self explanatory
—Guest kik

AT&T

Where are you getting your information? AT&T is the most reliable and fastest network. Verizon does not have the most reliable or the fastest anymore. I used to work for Verizon, so no, I am not an AT&T bot. This is not the AT&T when the first iPhone came out and created the data explosion it could not handle. No one knew it would blow up like this until the iPhone launched.
—Guest JLO

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What Is the Best iPhone Carrier?

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