South Bay mobile carriers: which one?
September 6, 2012 5:24 AM   Subscribe

Is there a "best" mobile provider/carrier in the Mountain View/Sunnyvale/Santa Clara area?

We are moving to the South Bay (most likely somewhere between Mountain View and Santa Clara, exact location still TBD) from Canada, and trying to figure out which is the best mobile provider to go with. Since we are switching carriers regardless, it's a good time to look for the "best" if possible. I guess the choice is between {Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile}.

Is any one of the major providers much better than the others in terms of coverage, speeds, call drops, etc in the area?
posted by Chaotic Bedlam to Technology (5 answers total)
Silicon Valley is AMAZINGLY well covered by cell service. Any of the providers mentioned will be good in that area (think about it, would you want to piss off Larry Ellison?)

The only place you may have an issue is on 285 over the Super-Collider (this may just be anecdotal, but that used to be a dead zone back in the day.)

Just find the deal that works best for you money, coverage/roaming and feature-wise.

You'll be fine.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 6:38 AM on September 6, 2012

Funny you should mention Larry Ellison, since I work just down the street from the Oracle building in Redwood Shores and the entire first floor of my office building is a dead zone for me (Verizon iPhone 4). But this really surprises my co-workers, who tell me that Verizon is the best carrier in the area, so YMMV.
posted by phoenixy at 7:52 AM on September 6, 2012

I'm a little farther north (Menlo Park) and my complex used to be a Verizon dead zone, but it's fine now.

If you spend any time in the more rural bits of California, Verizon still has the best coverage.
posted by rtha at 8:26 AM on September 6, 2012

I'm in Santa Clara and on AT&T for my iPhone 4S, and I can't say that I've had many issues so far, though to be fair, I rely more on text messages. A few weekends ago, we travelled to a fairly rural spot in NORTHERN northern California (near the Portland border) with friends on Verizon, and there wasn't any discernible difference in coverage.
posted by peripathetic at 10:46 AM on September 6, 2012

Zero problems on Sprint for the past 5 years here. Sprint has no LTE coverage in the Bay Area currently but they've done some trials recently so it's probably coming soon (maybe in time for the upcoming iPhone launch...).
posted by zsazsa at 1:15 PM on September 6, 2012

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