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Sprint Question - Baltimore Area


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Hello all,

 

Questions for ya. I'm in the Baltimore area and currently with Verizon. I got a Note 2 today with Sprint network testing it out before the 14 days to see if the service is really that bad people say it is. Anyone in the area had really poor service/call drops really? I never had one with verizon but since I can't use my upgrade because I'll loose unlimited data and don't want to pay full price of a phone to keep it I'm looking at alternative providers. Will this new "Network Vision" kick in well before the 2years of the contract? At Glen Burnie I had 4G but was really slow compaired to Verizons and on the ride home the Note 2 would just pick up 3G speeds where Verizon was all LTE. I'm fine waiting few months for LTE on Sprint but having bad or no signal and call drops that would drive me crazy.

 

Thanks!

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Thanks for stopping by and asking the question instead of going off ranting on how sprint is inferior and sucking.

 

Anyways to answer your question...

 

1. Legacy areas (areas without network vision upgrades) tend to have extremely poor data speeds due to towers being overloaded because of insufficient backhaul. Legacy towers had backhaul utilizing T1 1.5mb lines which cannot provide the bandwidth that the modern consumers in this age of smartphones take up.

2. Read up on these stickies.

http://s4gru.com/index.php?/topic/32-network-vision-explained/

http://s4gru.com/index.php?/topic/2120-listing-of-legacy-vendorsnetwork-vision-vendors-by-market/

 

-- Basically, Baltimore is undergoing active network vision upgrades as of right now. There are actually a lot of upgraded towers (according to sponsor maps that show towers that have been upgraded) in the market and I would safely say that it's at least 20-30% done as of right now. Also, our weekly updates (thanks to s4gru [robert] and his sources) show that baltimore has been getting a steady stream of completed towers. I would garner and say that the market will be mostly completed (~75%) by the beginning of Springtime and finishing up to 90% by summer time.

 

-- During NV upgrades, you tend to get a lot of drop calls tend to hand off issues between old and new sites that result in dropped calls. You also get no signal because workers may be removing old hardware from a tower and installing new hardware (NV upgrades -- new RRU's / backhaul / etc). It's annoying but bearable and well worth it according to the people that had NV upgrades in their area.

 

3. Network Vision is sprints multi-year LTE / network overhaul plan. It's replacing every single tower they have, decomissioning Nextels old iDen towers and rebranding its low 800mhz frequency. Right now, Sprint is about finishing its first year of NV 1.0 which is replacing old hardware with new modern stuff. Initial LTE frequency will be 1900mhz while NV 2.0 will utilize the frequency from iDens shutdown which is 800mhz. This low frequency will be highly comparable to Verizons and ATTs in terms of coverage and penetration. Then there is the Clearwire (just bought out by sprint) 2.5/2.6ghz spectrum which is very extensive and is continuous throughout the nation. In a 20+20 configuration, Clearwires 2.5/2.6 can output about 100 mbps and will be used as a hot spot in major metropolitan or high demand areas.

 

-- Sprints FD-LTE 1900 / 800 = 5x5 configuration -- theoretical max 37.5 mbps.

-- Cleawires TDD-LTE 2.5/2.6ghz = 20+20 -- theoretical max of about 100 mbps.

 

-- Basically sprints plan is, LTE 2.5/2.6ghz for very high demand areas where there's a lot of people. The high frequency allows insane data transfer rates and will be invaluable when a lot of people are in one spot. Then there is LTE 1900 which is being deployed right now. It achieves about the same coverage as Sprints current 3g footprint and most people will be using this. Further on will be LTE 800 which is similar to Verizons and ATTS 700/ 850 frequency and will have about the same penetration and coverage characteristics. Where you don't get 3g, you'll probably get LTE 800.

 

Basically. For your market, go for it. It is actively being worked on right now with upgraded towers coming online every week. It can only go better from now on for you and LTE will not get bogged down anytime soon compared to Verizons.

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Actually, He should continue to experience service throughout NV with minimal problems. They don't immediately take down the legacy equipment when they install NV. Otherwise, if there were a problem then it would become a dead spot. Also the drop calls and other issues are only applicable to markets that have Motorola legacy sites. Although am not sure if Baltimore was done by Motorola or not.

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Actually, He should continue to experience service throughout NV with minimal problems. They don't immediately take down the legacy equipment when they install NV. Otherwise, if there were a problem then it would become a dead spot. Also the drop calls and other issues are only applicable to markets that have Motorola legacy sites. Although am not sure if Baltimore was done by Motorola or not.

 

Baltimore is an Lucent market being serviced by Alcatel-Lucent. Service interuptions are basically in all active NV markets be it Alca-lu, Sammy, or Eric. Just part of the growing pains.

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Baltimore is an Lucent market being serviced by Alcatel-Lucent. Service interuptions are basically in all active NV markets be it Alca-lu, Sammy, or Eric. Just part of the growing pains.

 

There are a few service interruptions, but they are minimal. There are only a few instances where they have to take the legacy equipment down before putting up the new NV equipment.

 

Samsung equipment does have hand-off issues with legacy Motorola equipment, which has resulted in a large number of dropped calls in places such as Chicago, but this is not an issue in Baltimore since Alcatel-Lucent is doing the upgrades.

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There are a few service interruptions, but they are minimal. There are only a few instances where they have to take the legacy equipment down before putting up the new NV equipment.

 

Samsung equipment does have hand-off issues with legacy Motorola equipment, which has resulted in a large number of dropped calls in places such as Chicago, but this is not an issue in Baltimore since Alcatel-Lucent is doing the upgrades.

 

Exactly what I am saying. I can tell you from experience as I am currently in and out of two active markets(Memphis/Nashville) I haven't had any problems and I have also been to Atlanta before it was blanketed with 4g and didn't have any problems. Not saying he wont have any problems but if he does they will be few and far in between

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The improvement is noticeable every week. But I would caution you it will not be Verizon's network in 3 months. I would recommend two tools available to you . 1. Become a S4GRU sponsor and you can get access to current and projected (depending on sponsor level) Network Vision and LTE buildouts. 2. Take a look at Sensorly and you can compare Verizon vs Sprint networks and you can see a representation of the 4g 3g LTE. coverage. Welcome to site.

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Baltimore is an Lucent market being serviced by Alcatel-Lucent. Service interuptions are basically in all active NV markets be it Alca-lu, Sammy, or Eric. Just part of the growing pains.

 

In KC, no noticeable issues transitioning from NV to non-NV upgraded sites. It is my impression that was really just a Chicago/Motorola issue.

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Thanks for stopping by and asking the question instead of going off ranting on how sprint is inferior and sucking.

 

Anyways to answer your question...

 

1. Legacy areas (areas without network vision upgrades) tend to have extremely poor data speeds due to towers being overloaded because of insufficient backhaul. Legacy towers had backhaul utilizing T1 1.5mb lines which cannot provide the bandwidth that the modern consumers in this age of smartphones take up.

2. Read up on these stickies.

http://s4gru.com/ind...sion-explained/

http://s4gru.com/ind...dors-by-market/

 

-- Basically, Baltimore is undergoing active network vision upgrades as of right now. There are actually a lot of upgraded towers (according to sponsor maps that show towers that have been upgraded) in the market and I would safely say that it's at least 20-30% done as of right now. Also, our weekly updates (thanks to s4gru [robert] and his sources) show that baltimore has been getting a steady stream of completed towers. I would garner and say that the market will be mostly completed (~75%) by the beginning of Springtime and finishing up to 90% by summer time.

 

-- During NV upgrades, you tend to get a lot of drop calls tend to hand off issues between old and new sites that result in dropped calls. You also get no signal because workers may be removing old hardware from a tower and installing new hardware (NV upgrades -- new RRU's / backhaul / etc). It's annoying but bearable and well worth it according to the people that had NV upgrades in their area.

 

3. Network Vision is sprints multi-year LTE / network overhaul plan. It's replacing every single tower they have, decomissioning Nextels old iDen towers and rebranding its low 800mhz frequency. Right now, Sprint is about finishing its first year of NV 1.0 which is replacing old hardware with new modern stuff. Initial LTE frequency will be 1900mhz while NV 2.0 will utilize the frequency from iDens shutdown which is 800mhz. This low frequency will be highly comparable to Verizons and ATTs in terms of coverage and penetration. Then there is the Clearwire (just bought out by sprint) 2.5/2.6ghz spectrum which is very extensive and is continuous throughout the nation. In a 20+20 configuration, Clearwires 2.5/2.6 can output about 100 mbps and will be used as a hot spot in major metropolitan or high demand areas.

 

-- Sprints FD-LTE 1900 / 800 = 5x5 configuration -- theoretical max 37.5 mbps.

-- Cleawires TDD-LTE 2.5/2.6ghz = 20+20 -- theoretical max of about 100 mbps.

 

-- Basically sprints plan is, LTE 2.5/2.6ghz for very high demand areas where there's a lot of people. The high frequency allows insane data transfer rates and will be invaluable when a lot of people are in one spot. Then there is LTE 1900 which is being deployed right now. It achieves about the same coverage as Sprints current 3g footprint and most people will be using this. Further on will be LTE 800 which is similar to Verizons and ATTS 700/ 850 frequency and will have about the same penetration and coverage characteristics. Where you don't get 3g, you'll probably get LTE 800.

 

Basically. For your market, go for it. It is actively being worked on right now with upgraded towers coming online every week. It can only go better from now on for you and LTE will not get bogged down anytime soon compared to Verizons.

As a sprint customer right now Baltimore in my experience hasn't seen any progress...i actually run around in Baltimore quote a bit and the NV upgrades aren't noticeable yet..and this was supposed to be a primary launch market. yes it's going to get better but it is truly taking quite a bit of time. I think their schedule was..."ambitious". Frankly i WOULD pay full price for the phone and stick with vz because their 4g is kicking serious butt. Frankly when i'm ready to buy a new phone whether it is Sprint or not i'm going to purchase full price...why? Stay on month-to-month and you control your money destiny and don't overpay for the phone by more than 100% over the life of the contract..:) this goes for any of the post paid carriers..:) You can also check gazelle or ebay to see if there are any SG notes available already and save some serious cash...

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Thank you everyone for taking the time and replying to my questions/conerns. As of now I really can't spend $600 for a phone just to stay with Verizon for just unlimited data.. Like I said before I'm willing to sacrifice Verzion LTE for few months as long as I don't get constant drop calls and poor service. From what is said is true then that shouldn't been much of a problem. Got a day or so before I make my decision.

 

Thanks again.

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Thank you everyone for taking the time and replying to my questions/conerns. As of now I really can't spend $600 for a phone just to stay with Verizon for just unlimited data.. Like I said before I'm willing to sacrifice Verzion LTE for few months as long as I don't get constant drop calls and poor service. From what is said is true then that shouldn't been much of a problem. Got a day or so before I make my decision.

 

Thanks again.

 

To add to what was stated above, I haven't noticed any service disruptions in my market which is under deployment. Also, whenever I visit Baltimore I haven't noticed anything out of the ordinary.

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Thank you everyone for taking the time and replying to my questions/conerns. As of now I really can't spend $600 for a phone just to stay with Verizon for just unlimited data.. Like I said before I'm willing to sacrifice Verzion LTE for few months as long as I don't get constant drop calls and poor service. From what is said is true then that shouldn't been much of a problem. Got a day or so before I make my decision.

 

Thanks again.

 

Another comment is that despite all of sprints issues with data, their voice network has been solid. And Sprint has good roaming agreements to cover their non-native service areas. I've had a few instances where my phone worked fine on roaming, and all the verizon/alltel folks were SOL

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Thank you everyone for taking the time and replying to my questions/conerns. As of now I really can't spend $600 for a phone just to stay with Verizon for just unlimited data.. Like I said before I'm willing to sacrifice Verzion LTE for few months as long as I don't get constant drop calls and poor service. From what is said is true then that shouldn't been much of a problem. Got a day or so before I make my decision.

 

Thanks again.

 

Whoops, accidentally pressed submit.

 

I live in Baltimore (Catonsville area) and I have to say, I completely disagree with hescominsoon. The service has been getting a lot better. I got my first Sprint device in mid-September when there weren't many upgraded towers, and have been noticing better service each day. I have never dropped a call, ever. 3G is bad in some places, but mostly, it's good. 1Mbps at least in most places (which is a LOT better then Verizon 3G around here). LTE is pretty available, but their are patches with no LTE service. LTE is 25Mbps or so with a good signal (again, better then the 10Mbps or so my dad was getting on VZW). I agree that we should be around 75% done by Spring and 90% by Summer.

 

TLDR: Its getting better.

 

EDIT: Voice is really good. There is at least a voice signal everywhere.

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Whoops, accidentally pressed submit.

 

I live in Baltimore (Catonsville area) and I have to say, I completely disagree with hescominsoon. The service has been getting a lot better. I got my first Sprint device in mid-September when there weren't many upgraded towers, and have been noticing better service each day. I have never dropped a call, ever. 3G is bad in some places, but mostly, it's good. 1Mbps at least in most places (which is a LOT better then Verizon 3G around here). LTE is pretty available, but their are patches with no LTE service. LTE is 25Mbps or so with a good signal (again, better then the 10Mbps or so my dad was getting on VZW). I agree that we should be around 75% done by Spring and 90% by Summer.

 

TLDR: Its getting better.

 

EDIT: Voice is really good. There is at least a voice signal everywhere.

 

Since the recent addition of 800mhz to the PRL for Baltimore I imagine indoor coverage has improved greatly.

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Since the recent addition of 800mhz to the PRL for Baltimore I imagine indoor coverage has improved greatly.

 

The PRL may have been updated but I have not seen anybody say they actually have seen any active 800 Meg signals yet. The phones may be looking for the 800 Meg signal, but mine has not found it yet.

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Since the recent addition of 800mhz to the PRL for Baltimore I imagine indoor coverage has improved greatly.

 

There is no 800mhz voice in Baltimore yet that we know of. I'm not sure when they'll start deploying it, but it certainly will help indoors once they do start.

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There is no 800mhz voice in Baltimore yet that we know of. I'm not sure when they'll start deploying it, but it certainly will help indoors once they do start.

 

Does anybody know why they are not turning the 800 Meg on for CDMA 1X voice?? I have seen speculation about it, but nothing that was really confirmed to be the reason. I have seen some real improvements in the CDMA 1X 1900 Meg coverage.

Placing the RRU's up high with the new antennas did give a significant boost to the 1900 coverage. I have seen better coverage at a few spots where the coverage was extremely weak and it is not just wishful thinking either. If we can just get the 800 meg operational, at least the voice coverage will be superb.

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Does anybody know why they are not turning the 800 Meg on for CDMA 1X voice?? I have seen speculation about it, but nothing that was really confirmed to be the reason. I have seen some real improvements in the CDMA 1X 1900 Meg coverage.

 

I'm not entirely sure. It may have to do with the continued shutdown of iDen. It's possible there won't be any 800 voice until Nextel is completely shut down.... but I really don't know. Someone else should probably comment on that ^_^

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I'm not entirely sure. It may have to do with the continued shutdown of iDen. It's possible there won't be any 800 voice until Nextel is completely shut down.... but I really don't know. Someone else should probably comment on that ^_^

 

Does anybody know --- Can the old Nextel Cell sites be made to NOT broadcast IDEN on the part of the 800 band that is going to be used for CDMA 1X voice??? Can the remaining NEXTEL holdouts be confined to just a small portion of the 800 band??

How did they manage to tun up 800 meg CDMA voice in Chicago?

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Does anybody know --- Can the old Nextel Cell sites be made to NOT broadcast IDEN on the part of the 800 band that is going to be used for CDMA 1X voice??? Can the remaining NEXTEL holdouts be confined to just a small portion of the 800 band??

How did they manage to tun up 800 meg CDMA voice in Chicago?

 

They accelerated the shut down of iDen in that market and repurposed the frequency since they absolutely needed it in that market because it is (was) very limited in spectrum and had a huge problem with dropped calls etc. Other markets are still slowly shutting down iDen but till there is a significant portion of it shut down, they will not deploy anything on the 800.

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Does anybody know --- Can the old Nextel Cell sites be made to NOT broadcast IDEN on the part of the 800 band that is going to be used for CDMA 1X voice??? Can the remaining NEXTEL holdouts be confined to just a small portion of the 800 band??

How did they manage to tun up 800 meg CDMA voice in Chicago?

 

Yes they can. But will they?

 

Also, we have had members connect to CDMA 800, Channel 476 in the Baltimore market. So there are some carriers live there. However, we have only one 800 accepted site in the whole BAWA region. But there is more broadcasting, but not accepted.

 

Robert via Nexus 7 on Tapatalk

 

 

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Whoops, accidentally pressed submit.

 

I live in Baltimore (Catonsville area) and I have to say, I completely disagree with hescominsoon. The service has been getting a lot better. I got my first Sprint device in mid-September when there weren't many upgraded towers, and have been noticing better service each day. I have never dropped a call, ever. 3G is bad in some places, but mostly, it's good. 1Mbps at least in most places (which is a LOT better then Verizon 3G around here). LTE is pretty available, but their are patches with no LTE service. LTE is 25Mbps or so with a good signal (again, better then the 10Mbps or so my dad was getting on VZW). I agree that we should be around 75% done by Spring and 90% by Summer.

 

TLDR: Its getting better.

 

EDIT: Voice is really good. There is at least a voice signal everywhere.

 

I live just south of Baltimore and I am totally happy with my service. I activated my service in Jul 12 and I personally have noticed improvements - 3G & 4G.

 

Sent via Tapatalk from my SGSIII running the hottest ROM right now! ;-)

 

 

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