It is so frustrating to live in a community in Western WI that is not far from the Twin Cities metro area of MN, where our cell phone coverage for Verizon is awful. Many people in this area commute to/from the Minneapolis/St. Paul MN area and rely on their cell phones. We recently moved from an area in Western WI where we were lucky to get 3-4 bars of service with Verizon, to an area seven miles away (yet closer to a larger town) where we are lucky to get 1, possibly 2, bars at any given time (as poor as -105 to those who use the field test mode on their phones). Sadly, with my work AT&T mobile phone, I get 4 bars of 4G coverage at our new house. Who knew? I have been a customer of Verizon for years. I actually started with Alltel back in 2004 and stayed with Verizon when they acquired Alltel. Of course, I renewed my contract and actually expanded service to smart phones this past May, only to move to the new place and have horrible signal strength. I'm locked in for two years to a company that is not interested in expanding service to this area, in a time when cell phones are becoming the "only" phone that people have, as land lines are becoming obsolete, and people are locked into contracts. We are just a drop in Verizon's bucket in this area, and it's sad that they don't seem to care about coverage here. If I wouldn't have to pay exorbitant cancellation fees (four lines) with Verizon, I would switch to AT&T in a heartbeat. Verizon doesn't offer anything to its customers to keep them, so AT&T will be our next choice...when we can finally leave Verizon...I think it'll take a miracle for Verizon to ever expand service into this region; people have already been waiting for years. Yet, we have vacant land in an even smaller town in WI, even further away from a larger town, and we get 3 bars of service on 40 acres. Really? Because it's such a populated area? Ridiculous. I'm not even asking for 4G service here...just 3G for making phone calls. Ugh. I feel like I'm living in the Dark Ages here.
I suggest that you sell the high priced phones that were subsidized by Verizon (that is why you signed the contracts) and use those proceeds to pay the ETF on those contracts and switch to AT&T.
Coverage is paramount in the wireless phone world and if you don't have it, you will never be happy.
I would talk to customer service about a Verizon Network Extender box, as your coverage is so poor in your location. Locked into 4 lines for 2 more years...I would keep hounding them for a solution myself. Give me acceptable service or let me out of the contract.
See the thing is, you upgraded your phones right before you moved and Verizon isn't going to buy devices at a $400 or $500 discount and let you leave without an ETF. Second of all I lived in Minneapolis for most of my life and never had a problem there. I could see it, that if you went west into Wisconsin with all of the trees and hills how hard it could be to get service though : (
Well, here I am close to a year after my original post and my signal strength is just as bad, if not worse, than before. We have a Wilson Booster installed which does help to maximize the weak signal it can find, but it can only boost what is available outside. After reading a bunch of reviews on folks using the Network Extender by Verizon, it is not a route I choose to follow. The Extender has very limited coverage within a home and it uses the Internet - I work from home and need fast, uninterrupted Internet speeds and won't allow for a device to interfere with that. It also doesn't solve the problem of walking outside and having no service at all. I have communicated with Verizon and was told that they don't foresee any plans to expand into this area with towers and they are sorry, they can tell that I'm "on the edge" of their service area..."but there's nothing we can do". I also have heard from others that their Verizon signal strength fluctuates a lot lately and 4G? What the heck is 4G? For that matter, what is 3G like? I'd love to find out, personally. I'm trying to work with AT&T (my work cell phone is through them and I get full bars of 4G here) to see if they have any deals which will help me in terminating one year early on my stupid Verizon contract (4 lines-ugh). My recommendation to anyone reading? Do NOT ever, under any circumstances, sign a contract with Verizon or any other carrier for service. Pay the upfront fee for your phones so you can easily ditch one carrier and move to another which will meet your needs and actually let you use your phones. My phones are worthless at my home, outside of using them for web-browsing with WiFi. I believe Verizon has gotten way too comfortable with its market share of customers and is not reinvesting into its equipment nor expanding coverage into poor service areas. I can't wait until the day that this poor business model turns on them. I'm a drop-in-the-bucket to them and I know this. I've been with them for 10 years and I know it means nothing. I just hope that posts like mine will encourage people to take a long, hard look at Verizon and the misleading coverage map they provide online (do not be fooled by it!) and to really investigate other carriers to ensure they are getting the best service and signal strength possible.