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[Sprint] Need help deciding about getting EVO LTE (worried about LTE availability)

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  1. MandM

    MandM Active Member

    Hi guys and gals,

    I have been on Sprint for awhile (couple of contracts). I still haven't had a smartphone yet. I have been reading up on all the smartphones for Sprint since the Hero and the Moment came out. I currently have an old LG Lotus. I have the 450 minute everything data plan which is a waste for this phone because it only has mobile web anyways and you can't do much of anything with it.

    I already pre-ordered the EVO LTE but I am reconsidering. I am worried about the rollout of LTE in the NYC area (suburbs of NYC) and how long it is actually going to take to get it up and running. I have viewed S4GRU to try to keep up with updates on the rollout. Sprint can't tell me when it will happen.

    I never had a smartphone so I don't know how it is viewing the real web on 3G. I obviously know you could use WiFi until LTE is available to get web access.

    The reason why I am reconsidering is because Virgin Mobile announced they will be getting the EVO V 4G which is essentially the EVO 3D from Sprint just running ICS and Sense 3.6. It would cost $55 a month plus $5/month insurance for a total of $60/month. I know it will only use 4G WiMax, which will be obsolete at some point and is not being expanded. I checked coverage maps in my area on sprint.com and clear.com and Wimax is spotty in my area. So who knows how my data speeds will be anyways even with 4G. Also Virgin has a cap of 2.5gb of data monthly until it is throttled. I would be spending more upfront for the phone ($300) but my monthly bill would be around $60/month. The 3D feature of the phone doesn't really appeal to me and I probably won't use it all that much. It would take about 3 months to be equal with the amount of money I would spend on Sprint due to the upfront cost of the phone.

    Obviously the EVO LTE hardware-wise (and even software-wise due to the newer version of sense) will be better than the EVO V 4G (3D) in pretty much every aspect. It's bigger, it's thinner, it's faster, it has a better camera, etc. I like this phone a lot better but the thing that concerns me is the data speeds on 3G. I would also not have to worry about a monthly cap on data like Virgin (unless Sprint does throttle its data and I am not aware). Now, if I stay with Sprint, I will be buying the EVO LTE for $150 but then spending around $100/month for the 450 everything data plan plus $10 fee and TEP and fees.

    Is viewing the web and youtube and stuff bearable on 3G?

    So do I save $40/month and go to Virgin and possibly get some good data speeds with WiMax 4G and get an older phone with inferior hardware to the EVO LTE and have capped data and possibly still have to use 3G some/a lot of the time

    (In the 3 months, that it takes to come out about equal price-wise I could then possibly move back to Sprint and LTE might be up and running and the Galaxy S3 might be out my then)


    Do I stay with Sprint and sign another 2 year contract and pay an extra $40/month and get a way better phone but have to worry about when LTE is coming to my area and deal with 3G speeds until then and get unlimited data

    Obviously either phone is going to seem awesome compared to a LG Lotus so I don't know.

    I guess answering the question on how viewing webpages and videos on 3G with a smartphone, especially the caliber of the EVO LTE's fast processor and all will help me decide.

    Did anyone have the Galaxy Nexus on Sprint and how was viewing the web on that phone?

    As you could tell I am really stressed about this, so any help would be really appreciated. I have to decide by mid-week before the phone is released because I need a new phone and I will not pay this much monthly for this phone anymore. I am sorry for the book I posted. If you read through all this, you deserve to have a beer or something. Thank you all for understanding.

    Mods please move if you feel there is a better spot for this thread. Sorry if it is in the wrong spot but it is regarding the EVO LTE and since I already pre-ordered I figured I would post in this forum. There was a thread between the EVO LTE and the EVO 3D but I didn't want to hijack it because there is more to it than that.

    marctronixx likes this.
  2. marctronixx

    marctronixx Moderator Moderator

    lengthy post there amigo.

    you seem to be more concerned about the availability of LTE in your area. Also you are asking about a comparison of multiple handsets, so lets keep your discussion here in the Sprint forum since your main concern (the way im reading it) seems to be LTE and if you should invest in an LTE device now.

    First i would do is look at the LTE map data that shows in your area. head over to the Sprint forums and smoke this thread: Sprint Community: SPRINT LTE Network Coverage

    there you can fine a link to enter you location and see how your area is progressing.

    the LTE is a super smart handset so your money will be well spent if you decide to stay with it.

    if you want to delay that, the 3D is an excellent device and has a lot of life left in it. WIMAX is coming to a close within the next 18 months or so. by then LTE will be in your area (according to sprint they will have millions of people covered by the end of this year alone)

    the 3D is a super great device plus you get the 3D feature that is a good gimmick for most.

    i think you are over-analyzing the situation just a bit too much. if you are in the market for a new device, just grab the LTE now and sit tight and wait on LTE to catch up in your area.

    however, if you want more opinions on other handsets, this is the forum to get that info. plus there are also other handsets coming out:

  3. REEF

    REEF Well-Known Member

    Well, I have been using the OG EVO since day one of release on a 3G network, and have had no issues. I am a HEAVY data user, 20+GB a month, and have been very happy. Browsing the internet and and videos works well on 3G, but don't expect JR videos on YouTube to load up right away.

    Ultimately, you will need to weigh the options and and see if you can justify the extra $40 a month if you went with the EVO LTE. You have never had a real smart phone, so I don't know how much use the extra options on the phone will be to you.

    Personally, I have an EVO LTE on order. But, I use my primarily for business so I need the latest and greatest.

    The Virgin plan sounds good, and it would be a step up, but I have no direct experience with them.

    If you're comfortable paying $100 a month go with the EVO LTE and be done with it. Sprint has many discount programs available, so ask around. With you living near NYC, I don't see a reason for LTE not to be there soon. I don't live anywhere near as densely populated an area as NYC, but we will have LTE by the end of the year. Or so the Sprint reps say....
    MandM likes this.
  4. MandM

    MandM Active Member

    I know it's almost an entire page in itself. I apologize. Thank you for spending the time to read it. I really appreciate it. Have you used 3G on the Sprint Network for viewing webpages and videos and such on any of their new LTE smartphones? Is it really laggy? Do you essentially need to use WiFi to be able to have a good web experience? I can't tell because my mobile web on my LG Lotus is even laggy but that is also a really old flip phone so I can't judge 3G by this phone, right?
    marctronixx likes this.
  5. REEF

    REEF Well-Known Member

    I think your best bet is to go to the Sprint store thus weekend and play around with a new smart phone. Then and there you will be able to see for yourself how well the experience is or is not.

    I have never really had many issues loading up pages on my EVO.
    marctronixx likes this.
  6. MandM

    MandM Active Member

    Yea, I was always wondering why people say Sprint is cheap, it still isn't really all that cheap for a single line. I guess a lot of people get discounts. Compared to Verizon and AT&T it is only like $20 bucks or so cheaper monthly I think to a comparable plan (minus the unlimited data)
  7. MandM

    MandM Active Member

    The thing is Best Buy is doing a $50 gift card for pre-orders plus I called Sprint and spoke to account services and they offered an $80 one-time credit for a one year contract extension which the offer is only good to the end of my billing cycle which turns out to be the day before the phone comes out. Obviously if I plan on getting the EVO LTE the 1 year extension isn't a big deal because it will turn into 2 years anyways if I were to get the phone. The only thing is then if I take the one time credit, and I get the phone I will be locked in for another year (making the 14 day return policy on the phone essentially not matter). So that makes it more complicated too. So I don't know if it is worth the $80 to commit and limit myself. I wish they were able to offer me something better. Last time I was able to get a $20/month credit for the length of my contract through account services (retentions).
  8. BenChase7

    BenChase7 VIP Member VIP Member

    Hope this helps!
  9. MandM

    MandM Active Member

    Thank you marctronixx, REEF, and BenChase7. I appreciate the time you took to read my long posts and for all of your input.

    If I do get the EVO LTE and I cannot keep up with the bill for whatever reason and pay the early termination fee will I be allowed to keep the phone? Do you know if paying the ETF affects your credit?

    Also, as far as discounts go, if I were to start working for a company that offered a discount would I be able to get that applied after I signed up for a 2 year contract (mid-contract) or would I have to wait for that contract to be fulfilled? If yes, would they then make you sign another 2 years contract to get the discount?
  10. MandM

    MandM Active Member

    Also, any advice about the $80 credit/1 year contract renewal and whether I should take it or not. If I were to return the phone within the 14 days I would still be locked into a 1 year contract. I wonder if I should give it a shot and ask if they could make the credit without the contract renewal. I have to call them back early in the week. Any chance of getting the activation fee waived? Is it even worth it to ask account services?
  11. BenChase7

    BenChase7 VIP Member VIP Member

    As long as you pay the ETF in full, your credit will not be effected. The phone is yours. If the ETF is not paid in full.. it will definitely effect your credit in a negative way... and you will have a hard time ever coming back to sprint.

    Yes, you can call Sprint and have the discount applied to your account at any time. And, No, a new contract is not necessary to add the discount.
    MandM likes this.
  12. BenChase7

    BenChase7 VIP Member VIP Member

    Its definitely worth asking about having the activation fee waived. It happens all the time. But no guarantees. If it doesn't work with on the first call, try back again with a new agent. lol
    MandM likes this.
  13. ironbrewer

    ironbrewer Well-Known Member

    I've been agonizing over the same decision with a few different factors.

    I have a non smart phone with Verizon.

    I am thinking of going with either Sprint or Virgin.

    i live in the Denver area which is nor in either the first or second round of LTE deployment. Denver does have good wimax coverage according to the maps.

    If I'm not in the New Vision round 1 or 2 deployments should I go for Virgin for a year or two? i'm a bit concerned about the 2.5 GB throttle point. A friend at work has sprint and netflix and it fires right up at work.

    Its a tough decision, because I don't want to be stuck with bad service for a long time.

    My choice would be simpler if Virgin had a plan with 5gb of data before throttle and 1000 minutes. Virgin would be a no brainer for me though.

    What is up with the roaming for virgine vs sprint?? That is one thing i have not found in my research.
  14. BenChase7

    BenChase7 VIP Member VIP Member

    I think if you're in one of the first two rounds, its a no-brainer... but I agree with you, you have a tougher decision to make since you are not in one of the first two rounds of Sprints Network Vision deployment. In which case, I would highly consider Virgin Mobile and the EVO V 4G. As far as roaming goes, Sprint customers have the ability to roam to another network (i.e. Verizon) if that networks coverage is available but Sprints is not... Virgin Mobile does not have the luxury to roam. I'm sure by Winter time, there will be alot more info available on Sprints Network Vision coming to your home town (Denver)... I dont think you'll have to wait a full 2 years to know whats going on. The Virgin mobile deal really cant be beat, especially if you're in an area with solid WiMax. Heck, even Virgin gives higher data allotments then VZW, at 1/3 the price. With the EVO V 4G getting Android 4.0 and Sense 3.6 at launch... its gonna be a nice phone.
    ironbrewer likes this.
  15. drexappeal

    drexappeal Well-Known Member

    Here's the bottom line answer to help you choose:

    Virgin mobile uses Sprint's network and towers.

    This kinda answers a lot of the questions you have because, if your main concerns are 3G speeds and LTE coverage...well, you're going to be using Sprint 3G speeds for Virgin anyway.

    As far as the extra $40 per month..."Worth" is all relative. If it's in your budget, it's worth it. If it's out of your budget, it's not. I know this isn't really a "black and white" answer and there are a lot of "grey area" factors, but I personally would rather pay the extra $40 per month, just to be on the main Network, rather than the pre-paid network that would be using the same network anyway.
    MandM likes this.
  16. MandM

    MandM Active Member

    What happens if someone signs up for a 2 year contract and during that 2 year period Sprint starts putting caps on data (has different tiers of data)? I am just curious if I were to get into a 2 year contract with a new device on Sprint and the data changes from unlimited to something else. Or what happens if they stay with unlimited data but raise the amount of their plans? Could the customer get out of the 2 year contract? Would you be grandfathered in to an unlimited plan at the price they are currently paying?

    Also if you buy a new LTE capable device and they don't have LTE in your area by a certain time frame would you be able to get out of your 2 year contract? I am guessing this would be very hard if not impossible.

    I am still debating whether or not to sign a 2 year contract for the EVO LTE.
  17. MandM

    MandM Active Member

    Does Virgin get less of a priority in voice and data that Sprint customers though? Will Virgin users see worse voice coverage or slower data than Sprint customers would in the same area? Is their some form of priority that Sprint customers get over Virgin?
  18. KitsapAndroid

    KitsapAndroid Well-Known Member

    Hope that helps you out a little. :)
    MandM likes this.
  19. MandM

    MandM Active Member

    Anyone know?
  20. BenChase7

    BenChase7 VIP Member VIP Member

    I do not know for certain about "priority"; However, I do know that Virgin is throttled after 2.5GB of data, whereas Sprint is truly unlimited with No caps and No throttling. Coverage should be the same, BUT Virgin does not allow roaming in remote areas... whereas Sprint does have roaming included.

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