I recently had an experience with Sprint that I felt was only fair to report on this forum. I have often taken a stance on the quality of the top tier wireless providers in the United States based on my experiences as an industry insider and my personal experiences as a user who unfortunately for work purposes travels all over the country on a weekly basis. Since I choose to publicize those views via this forum, I think it is only fair to report periodically my experiences both good and bad – and leave it to each of you to decide for yourself if your experiences match mine or differ substantially.

So back to the topic of my post. I happen to live in a very strong Sprint coverage area. I live in suburban central New Jersey – and based on my experience – all tier 1 providers other than ATT have a strong coverage at my home. As mentioned, I travel very extensively for my work as a management consultant and consequently am home only over the weekends. However, over the holidays, I was working from home for a period of 10 days – which entailed day long conference calls from my Sprint work phone – since I have disconnected my land / VOIP lines a long time ago.

So I was unpleasantly surprised to see no bars on my phone the first work day from home – I would constantly be switching between very weak Sprint coverage and medium Verizon coverage on roaming. That wouldn’t have mattered so much since Sprint has free roaming – however, with the constant switching, I would keep dropping call.

So I call Sprint Business Care – and on my first call – was informed honestly that out of the 4 towers in my area, 3 were down and one was operating at 40% capacity for the last 10 days – and that Sprint had a ticket opened already. By all wireless industry metrics, that is an unacceptably long response time to resolve network issues – so I insisted with the rep to open a service ticket under my account, which she promptly did ( and provided me with a trouble ticket #). This was on the friday  right after Christmas – so I didn’t see any action over the weekend – however, I woke up Monday morning and things were back to normal at 8 am on the Monday morning. What was even more surprising was I got a call from Sprint Customer Care at around 9 am EST to confirm everything was ok. Very impressive indeed.

However, this is where it gets interesting. After 2 days of perfect level of service, the network started acting up again – on Tuesday evening. This was a problem given that I had some huge meetings lined up for Wednesday that I had to take without the constant fear of getting dropped. So I call Sprint Customer Care again – and  I got connected to an extremely nice rep (out of Denver CO) – he was extremely courteous, helped me open yet another ticket – and escalated it to the highest level of severity given the history of issues I had – and then sent me an email (after I had completed the call with him) explaining the next steps.

So I go to bed on Tuesday night with definite thoughts of switching to Verizon Wireless the very next day- but in the morning my service is back up. I get a total of 3 calls from Sprint Customer Service and Sprint Network Engineering to confirm that my service is back up the next day before noon. And since then, there has not been any issues at all.

I know Sprint has a very bad rap on the level of customer service. I posted this because I wanted to fairly bring out both the good and bad. The bad was that it took Sprint as long as it did to get fundamental network issues resolved; that level of SLA disruption is unacceptable anywhere in the world. However, in terms of their customer service – my experience was a demonstation that Sprint has been consistently working to improve its level of customer service and it just keeps getting better.

I leave this post without any further commentary. Please feel free to post your personal experiences both good and the bad.