I posted the below on the essential subreddit. Wonder if others on sprint have the same issue?
"It is well noted that the essential has reception / radio problems but today, when I roamed on to US Cellular, it completely abandoned 1x and connected to LTE only. Which is fine when connected to Sprint because the phone can pass text messages over LTE.
However, while roaming, the phone would not send or receive text messages and could not make or receive calls because it was latched to USCC LTE and needs a 1x connection to do this. My 5X (and I assume every other phone), when it connected to USCC LTE, would somehow get notification of a text or call and idle back over to 1x to take care of things and then dump the 1x connection until needed again (signal check shows all of this happening). Same deal when I would try to send a text as well. Seems the essential is dead in the water under these conditions and just can not bring it self to go to 1x when needed while roaming, at least on USCC. I do not have other roaming carriers up here to test with.
I am sure we do not need to go into the problems with being completely unable to make a phone call in the very large areas that Sprint uses USCC to roam on.
I can accept if it was just the area I was in. So in that case, any other Sprint users roamed on USCC LTE without any voice or text problems recently? I am on Oreo Beta for what its worth."