I have long opined on the fact that while ATT offers the really cool phones (including the venerable iPhone), its network is absolutely terrible. Apart from really bad voice coverage(and spectrum planning – because calls even with multiple bars drop all the time), it has a very pokey 3G network. Actually, the network shouldn’t even be called 3G because its speeds are one-fifth that of Sprint’s EVDO Rev A data network – the fastest in the nation. And its not really widespread. Sprint, followed by Verizon have the fastest and the biggest broadband data networks in the country.
I have received many comments based on the observations I have made about ATT, Sprint and Verizon. So I decided to post a link to this article from the Time for the sake of mainstream validation.
The main line of argument is – if you want a cool device (which the iPhone undoubtedly is), go for it. But remember the caveat – that a cell phone and a web-connected device is only as good as the network that supports it – and ATT is pretty bad in both those areas.
Update on my Sprint broadband experience: Sprint recently published a network update document and I was happy to see that they had upgraded my town to EVDO Rev A. Now, I can use my broadband card at home to not only browse at very decent speeds but view YouTube and other online videos without any stutter at all.