Next time, No Blackberry, *OR* T-Mobile

This photo illustrates why my next phone will not be a Blackberry, and my next carrier will not be T-Mobile:

The phone on the left is my son’s Samsung Gravity, and the phone on the right is my Blackberry 9780.

That is my second Blackberry. The main problem that I have with the Blackberry is that the cell reception, in a word, is deficient. You could say that the reception sucks.

So the situation in the photo is that we were at a restaurant in Jones, OK. Ian’s phone had voice and data service, and my phone had squat.

Ian actually had access to three networks. My phone could see AT&T, but would not connect to it.

If I’m in downtown OKC, of course, I have no issue at all. But all over while traveling, the kids phones have service, while Raegan and I (we both have the same Blackberrys) don’t.

I’ve talked to T-Mobile about this repeatedly. In every email, every phone call, I describe the problem, and in just about every case, it triggers the script: “I understand you are having trouble making phone calls…”, and they want to tell me how to turn the damn thing on. I’ve posted to support forums, post to the Crackberry forums, and several others. There are no solutions. I’ve tried a new SIM, many settings, T-Mo has looked at the phone configuration, reprovisioned it, etc. It’s not just my phone, since Raegan has the same issues. I also had my phone replaced last summer.

In a lot of cases, one of the other phones would have service (say, 3G), while the Blackberry has one less level (in this case, EDGE).

Why is this? It could be that the basic Blackberry has a problem with its radio, but I don’t think that is the problem. I have been with other people who have Blackberrys, with other service providers, but they get service just fine. I think the problem is how the Blackberry is connected to the T-Mobile network. It won’t roam very often; like I said before, a lot of times I can see one or more other service providers, but the phone won’t connect to them (it says it does, but no voice or data).

We’ve been T-Mobile customers since 2005. We had been AT&T customers since we got our first cell phones back in 2002, and when AT&T merged with Cingular, the customers in two markets (OKC and Tulsa) were given to another company (Alltel?) under some term of the merger. That company didn’t do international texting (which Raegan does a lot of), and so we went with T-Mobile.

T-Mobile has really not been of any help in the four years I’ve had Blackberrys, especially in the past couple years, with the 9780. I like a lot of what the phone does. It’s got good battery life, runs a couple apps that I use regularly, and it’s been fairly reliable. But there are times that the phone connectivity that has driven me wild, like when our house was threatened by a wildfire last summer, and it was having trouble connecting from San Diego, of all places. It’s simply unacceptable.

I’ve had it.

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One Response to “Next time, No Blackberry, *OR* T-Mobile”

  1. Raegan Says:

    😦 I love my Blackberry. It’s simple, does what I want it to do, seems almost indestructible. I don’t need fancy aps, don’t use it as a game device, only occasionally listen to music with it. Love the email and the internet, though. But it does this thing when actually using the phone as, you know, a PHONE, where I can hear the other person just fine but they cannot hear me at all. Calls fail to connect frequently.

    I will be sad to have to give it up. 😦

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