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Thread: AT&T Service or Not...

  1. #1
    Default AT&T Service or Not...
    Hey all!

    I've got a whopping problem. More confusing than anything else. I've been bashing my head against the wall with AT&T for the past 4 days.

    I'm wanting to use my iPhone (that isn't purchased yet) on the AT&T network with a legitimate contract. Every time I try and start one on the AT&T site, they say that they don't provide service in my zip code, or any of the surrounding zip codes for that matter.

    (this is where the fun starts)

    I grabbed my handy Blackberry 8100 (T-Mobile) and told it to scan for available networks. ::choir starts to sing:: AT&T shows up as an available network! I can't select it of course because I have T-Mobile reception in the area. I've done this in my zip code and the surrounding zips. Every where I go, AT&T shows up on my list. Now, even more interesting, it seems as if my EDGE reception is directly related to AT&T coverage. For example, if AT&T doesn't show up as an available network, I either loose my EDGE connection, or just get crappy EDGE reception. If AT&T is on the list, I get EDGE.

    I also have some co-workers here that started an AT&T contract some where else and then moved here. It doesn't appear that they are roaming. I even had them check they're bills on line to see if any calls where considered "off-net" and they weren't. Although one person's BB said "edge" and not "EDGE" meaning they didn't have data connectivity. But they also said that they didn't sign up for the BB package so no data for them.

    Then, I checked two different authorized dealers' websites. and Both say that they provide service to a neighboring zip code. So I headed back over to AT&T, no dice. I called both sites up. said "If you can buy here, then you WILL have service and they can't kick you off.", on the other hand, said the exact opposite. "I don't know why we offer that there. I wouldn't do it. I'm sorry." ::scratches head:: Contradicting stories.

    Finally, I checked the FCC (figuring they were the Gods when it came to all this). AT&T Mobility LLC and Cingular have tons of registrations valid in this area. They are even authorized marketing in the area by the FCC. Quite a few of the licenses where Broadband PCS, but there were some Cellular ones too.

    So, armed with all this info, I call back AT&T. They have no idea what to do with me now. I know too much apparently. They just stuck to what the coverage map said that we all can see. I asked if they were planning on moving into the area. Maybe LetsTalk and RadioShack were pilots for the area.

    I finally just said screw it. I used another billing address of mine that has coverage (according to AT&T), ordered a free phone and service on line, and had it shipped here (to the place with "no coverage at all"). I figure I'll use their 30-day trial thing and send it back on the 20th day. The free phone will be here tomorrow so, I'll get the weekend to play with the service.

    So my question to you guys is, am I off my rocker? Am I going down the wrong street here or do you think I'm right and AT&T CS is just confused and isn't up to date?

  2. #2
    Livin the iPhone Life Eurisko's Avatar
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    Aug 2007
    Toronto, Canada
    Thanked 562 Times in 483 Posts

    AT&T can do whatever the bleep it wants, you cannot force them to make you a customer. Speaking as someone who works for another wireless company; the statements made by Radioshack, etc carry no weight. They are resellers and cannot override the decisions of the corporations they are in partnership with. It's a shame, but you can't fight city hall mate.
    Get "iPod & iTunes for Dummies", it'll change your life.

  3. #3
    What's your take on the whole coverage piece?

    I'm thinking AT&T just might not have as much reception here as they'd like too, so they don't claim it as being serviced.

  4. #4
    most they will do is kick u off for excessive roaming
    [CENTER] Honda-Tech FTW

  5. #5
    Well, got my new AT&T phone in just a second ago. Turned it on and activated it.

    From what I can tell, I am on the AT&T network. I get more bars of EDGE connectivity when my T-Mobile has very little or none and is on GPRS. When I call 611 on it, I go straight to the AT&T help line. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if your roaming and you dial 611, you go to the service that your roaming on's customer service line.

    Unfortunately though, my new phone doesn't have a roaming indicator so I can't tell there. I just got off the phone with T-Mobile and I should have my unlock code for my Blackberry today so I can swap the SIM out and be able to do more tests on that phone. (Alot more options are available).

    So, till I get the unlock code for my BB, I'm sniping my AT&T online account till phone calls are posted.

    New ------------------------------

    Ahh, one more thing.... it feels like I have alot more bandwith on the AT&T phone. Either the browser is better, but it honestly feels like the connection is faster.

    Update ------------------------------

    New news....

    I couldn't wait for the unlock code for my BB so I grabed one of my old motorola's that I bought in Europe (unlocked).

    Dropped the SIM in and away I went. There was no roaming indicator on at all. So, to ensure that it wasn't a false positive, I selected one of the GMS networks in the area. BAM! The roaming indicator came on. Called 611 just to test my confusion from above, went to AT&T CS. So, now we (atleast I) know that 611 doesn't really matter.

    I went ahead and forced it back over to AT&T, the roaming indicator went off. This is looking very good for the home team......

    I'm still waiting on my calls to post on my bill online before I'm certain.
    Last edited by EffeXTC; 2007-12-30 at 11:32 PM. Reason: New update...

  6. #6
    Well, got my Blackberry unlocked! Slapped my AT&T chip in and it popped onto the AT&T network. It didn't appear to be roaming. Since my account isn't a BB account and I don't have the WAP info set up, I didn't get a data connection.

    Everything is still looking good. I have yet to see anything posted on my account for minutes yet. I activated it on the 28th and today is the 30th. I called 611 last night to see if they saw anything, they didn't.

    So, now all I'm looking for is the minutes. I'm getting kind of restless. I just wanna order the iPhone and go with it 'cause it feels right.

    Anyone know how long it's supposed to take for calls to be posted to a brand new account?

    And, if you are roaming, would I see an AT&T network at all? Would the phone still show AT&T, show the actual network you're on, or show nothing at all? The new phone I have doesn't have a roaming indicator at all.

    -------------------------UPDATE -------------------------

    Hooray!!!!! Great News!!!! I get to get an iPhone and use it on the AT&T network with a legitimate contract!

    My minutes finally came through onto my bill this morning! Absolutely none of them were "off-net" usage. None!

    So, as it turns out, the coverage map was wrong. I have better reception with AT&T than I do with T-Mobile. And the funny thing is, AT&T doesn't have one store here, but T-Mobile has tons! Maybe we'll see a store here in the very near future.

    I'm even thinking that we have 3G coverage here based off of what was registered at the FCC. From what I understand, the cell sites that can do 3G/HSDPA can do EDGE/GPRS. I just never had a way to test the 3G part.

    If anyone would like, I could post all the links that I used and some mini-guides to help others actually see if they have true AT&T coverage in their area.

    Just let me know! Everyone have a happy new year!!!! (I know I will with my new iPhone!)
    Last edited by EffeXTC; 2007-12-31 at 11:23 PM.

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