I am currently a Verizon customer. Before everyone jumps and says "wrong forum," I am looking at switching over to AT&T. I am currently on a family plan, however, I am more than likely going into the Military as an officer candidate, and don't want to be stuck with a CDMA phone if I have to be overseas, etc.
I am also a longtime Android user. I had the original iPhone, and then jumped ship soon after. The one thing I like about Android is the notification system. However, I'm getting tired of having to deal with slow upgrades, multiple versions of the OS, etc.
I had a few questions, though. In general, how is AT&T's network? I have heard that it has gotten better.
What I am probably going to do is jump to AT&T and get an iPhone. I'm going to port my number over to Google Voice, and have GV forward all calls to my new AT&T number, and just use GV for texting, etc, to keep cost down on the texting plan.
I wanted to see if anything was already doing something similar to this idea, and what their experiences had been?
- 01-21-2011, 06:56 AM #2
Did you mention your military plans because of domestic location changes or international travel? If international travel was your concern, make sure you get an carrier unlocked phone...have you been in the military at all or are you just enlisting? Make sure you understand military rules when it comes to personal communication devices before you invest in an unlocked iPhone...
AT&T's network is top notch in some areas and terrible in some areas...and the iPhone 4 amplifies this in whichever quality coverage area you are in (both good and bad)...i can speak for 3 cities i've spent significant time in for the last 5 years...Atlanta has perfect, Grade A+ service, Boston has good, B+ service and Langley, VA has a very mediocre C rated coverage...i used my federal phone more there than my personal phone because Sprints coverage seemed to be very good.
Hope that helps a bit!
Thanks for the input. I'm going to be an officer (ideally). I've worked with the military before, very closely, so I'm pretty up on their communication policy. It won't matter at Boot Camp and OCS because my phone is locked away.
I honestly don't even care about using the phone overseas, but I'm more worried about using a legacy technology like CDMA. I'm also sick and tired of Verizon Nickel and Diming me at every turn. They just got rid of their upgrade credits, and I can see them getting worse once they get enough iPhone users onboard.
That said, I know AT&T isn't that much better, but at the very least with GV I can keep MY number as MY number, and forward everything to the iPhone when I'm State-side.
I would just get a dumb-phone, but while I'm here I need a native Google Voice app if I'm keeping my number there. The funny thing (I have an iPod touch, too) is that the Google Voice app works better on iOS. It's faster, and doesn't hang up as much.
Thanks, again. I appreciate the input.
- 01-21-2011, 08:03 AM #4
You should talk to other AT&T users in your area and see what they say. In some areas it's great and some it is not so great. In MD around the DC area AT&T is great.
It looks like with GV they just started letting you port your number for $20, but it is not available to everyone yet. You should check into that before you do it and make sure you are off contract with Verizon so you don't get hit with an ETF when you do port it, as once you port your Verizon service is terminated.
Also, I don't know about Verizon but AT&T gives military personel a 16% discount on their bill and are pretty flexible for them.
- 01-21-2011, 08:57 AM #5
I'm going AD, so the discount will apply. I can also get a 15% discount through my current company.
The most cost effective option at this point is to get a device from another user (Craigslist), and just start service using my company's discount. That way I can see about avoiding a contract (maybe), and also keep my options open if/when a seriously upgraded iPhone comes out in a year or two.
Thanks again for the advice.
- 01-21-2011, 10:46 AM #7
- 01-21-2011, 12:11 PM #8
Verizon has great coverage, and reliable service. Their data speeds leave much to be desired, though, and they are becoming as customer-unfriendly as AT&T, if not worse. I don't want to get a Verizon iPhone and end up locked in for another two years, with a phone that I can't unlock and swap a new SIM in if I, for example, end up living in Germany.
I'm using an extreme example.
Also, my main interest is in porting my number from Verizon to Google. I am going to end up having the primary line on my family plan cancelled, and will end up eating about 150 on my contract. I see that as the "cost" of buying my phone number back, though.
I wanted to thank everyone for their help. I started the port of my number to Google yesterday, and picked up an iPhone 4.
All I have to say is, I didn't realize how much I missed an experience like this...I do miss certain aspects of Android, but being able to connect to iTunes and move playlists over is priceless...
Also, even though my port hasn't completed, I've been sending and receiving text on my Google Voice account, using the iPhone app, and it's flawless. I do hope the app gets some improvements, but it works for what I am using it for, and I don't need a texting plan with it...
- 01-25-2011, 07:45 AM #11
Looks like the OP is enjoying his iPhone already. Did Google say how long it would take to port the number?
Last edited by sting7k; 01-25-2011 at 07:51 AM.
- 01-25-2011, 09:56 AM #12
^^^ Reserves has a different classification than retired or discharged...not to say that you can never get the discount after being honorably discharged from the military, but in my experience, they were sticklers for an active status (reservist, guard, etc).
- 01-25-2011, 10:33 AM #13
Retired or discharged I could see them not giving the discount too. It does seem though that all you need is the email domain of the entity that gets the discount. If they still had their AKO accounts they could do it all online.
When my bro was added to my plan the sales person didn't apply it in store, he sent us home with instructions how to do it online.
- 01-25-2011, 11:17 AM #14
The Google Voice port took about 24 hours or so. Might take an extra day or two to be able to get text messages routed properly, but I now "own" my number.
Forwarding to the iPhone using the Google Voice app/web interface is flawless.
- 01-25-2011, 11:25 AM #16
I checked into At$t and they give 15% discount for LEO and I think Verizon does also. However Verizon is more then AT$T. I have SPrint right now and they used to be cheaper but now with the $10 add on per smart phone my 3 lines will end up being the same price per month as AT&T and Verizon will be about $25-35 more.