best service provider in oregon
October 13, 2009 8:54 AM   Subscribe

what cell phone service provider will have the best coverage in Portland, Oregon.

i'm moving and my verizon plan is almost up, and i want to know if i should renew that or if other providers have better service in the area.
posted by slograffiti to Technology (10 answers total)
I've had Verizon and ATT. Never remember having a cell issue with Verizon, but have had numerous problems with ATT lately (dropped calls, not getting txt, etc) Probably due to the iPhone overwhelming the network here. (Lots of iPhones here)

If you look at the coverage maps, I think all providers have full coverage for the city limits/downtown. Sprint just built a 4G network here as well, not sure if their phones use it or not, but it's here.
posted by mattdini at 9:47 AM on October 13, 2009

Best answer: I have Verizon in the Portland area and I have never, ever not had a signal. Other people have occasionally had to borrow my phone because I had a signal and they did not.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 9:47 AM on October 13, 2009

I live in the west hills area of Portland in a bit of a valley. I have AT&T and have had good coverage although there is a major dropout on Cornell Road just east of Skyline Blvd. However, my GF, who recently moved in, had to switch from Verizon since she could not get a reliable signal from our house.
posted by elmay at 10:03 AM on October 13, 2009

The people I know with AT&T do have issues. I agree with the lots-of-iPhones theory.

Verizon has good coverage, and as an alternative, I have had T-Mobile for years and the coverage area has improved a lot. They added more towers about 2 or 3 years ago and now I have yet to find an area where I can't get a signal.
posted by DrGirlfriend at 10:18 AM on October 13, 2009

I used to love T-mobile, but have no coverage at my house (in the middle of the city) and didn't have any at an old friend's house (also somewhere you would think there should be). T-mobile also used to drop my calls EVERY day as I crested the top of the West Hills on Hwy 26.

Since I switched to ATT, as my work pays for it, I have been very happy with it.
posted by MonsieurBon at 10:23 AM on October 13, 2009

Response by poster: looks like i'll stick with verizon. thanks all
posted by slograffiti at 10:35 AM on October 13, 2009

PC World recently did a study of 3G coverage, and Sprint won the Portland area, although Verizon was a close second.

Anecdotally I have T-Mobile and am less than satisfied with coverage, although they're leaps and bounds better than AT&T who I switched away from (for shitty coverage, service, and price, AT&T: The Trifecta of Suck) about four years ago. Based on people who've visited my house either Verizon or Sprint would be my choice. Given the available handsets and the price of plans I'll likely be switching to Sprint when my contract is up next year, as much as I'd love an iPhone the people who have them and have visited my house have universally had to go outside to make calls, and I live close in to downtown...
posted by togdon at 10:51 AM on October 13, 2009

Define "in the area". I am in Portland, and I have Verizon and my wife has AT&T. We go to the coast (Tillamook area) a lot in the summer, and as soon as we leave the Portland/Beaverton/Hillsboro area my wife doesn't get reception at all, and on the coast hers is only sporadic at best. My Verizon doesn't have a problem anywhere I've been.
posted by pdb at 10:56 AM on October 13, 2009

I'm in Portland, I miss Verizon. If it's working for you now, I suggest you stick with it.
posted by amanda at 12:28 PM on October 13, 2009

You can't really ask people to make a blanket statement in this situation and expect it to mean anything.

Coverage is based on the carrier, the immediate locale, and the phone being used.

The best way to determine the phone coverage for your new location is to invite people over and check out their signal, and note which phone and provider they have. Once you have a good sample, you can make a decision based more on reality than broadly generalized opinions that may have very little bearing on the signal you see in a given area.

Case in point. My last house (unincorporated Beaverton) provided great reception for every person with a semi-recent phone who used Sprint, T-Mobile, or AT&T. Verizon was completely hit or miss. My current house (SW Portland), has terrible signal across all the big providers, due its location and the heavily treed surroundings. I have AT&T now, but my last house, had phones on the AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile networks. Each of these houses is fully covered according the coverage maps from the providers.
posted by terpia at 4:00 PM on October 13, 2009

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