Not The Best News for us former iDEN Users
I've been with Boost Mobile and formerly Nextel for more than 8 years, and now that iDEN is being shut down in June, I moved to a new phone and ended up back on the awful PCS network. Went from good coverage to no service and I'm not happy about that. None of the carriers have usable signal at the house.. not VZ, not T-Mobile, not AT&T. Ironically, the Nextel tower is 1/4 mile down the road here. But nothing Sprint is on it.
It was necessary to invest in a Wilson DB Pro booster system with high gain directional antenna for external and a panel antenna for indoors, to get a marginal signal. I'm still in the -99dBm range in many parts of the house, except -74dBm right under the panel antenna in the central hallway. But I still get dropped calls, and the handoff from outdoor to indoors is really odd. I go from -98dBm outdoors to -128dBM indoors, and then after a minute, it ramps back up to -88dBm and service is reestablished. Drives me crazy that I spent all this money and cell calls keep dropping and only work if I put the phone on a table, propped up at a certain angle. Even though the phone shows 4 bars of signal with the booster, calls drop at random.
I never had this problem with the 800MHz iDEN system. But the tower next door does not seem to have any PCS antennas aimed my way. I'm in a deep, deep null here. -98 to -105dBm on the rooftop, depending on how the wind is blowing. I'm hitting a tower several miles away in another town for my service with the directional Yagi Wilson antenna. Oddly, aiming at the tower down the street gets no signal at all. Just a couple degrees rotation makes a 20dBm difference in signal. I spent much of Thursday tweaking the direction for strongest signal, but it's still not reliable. Very frustrated and waiting for LTE.
Same happened in my area. Nextel tower a mile down my road and no one else around till a couple of years ago when Verizon built out in my area. The ones that had Nextel had to go to Verizon here because Sprint no longer serves my rural area. Just a shame Sprint killed Nextel the way they did without ever putting PCS on the old Nextel locations. They will never change all Sprint wants is major cities and major interstate coverage. If Nextel was alive today they would rival Verizon and AT&T in rural coverage.