1. Astrodroid's Avatar
    Summary: Will a 4G phone like the Thunderbolt still do 2G? And if it will do 2G, will it do data? And if that's all I can get at home, is it pointless to go Thunderbolt and pay for 4G?

    I just made a horrifying discovery on Verizon's detailed coverage map. Up until now, my whole area was marked solid dark red on VZW coverage maps, indicating 4G coverage. But that must have been a less detailed map. Now that I check my exact home address on their site, it shows that not only does 4G cut off before it gets to my neighborhood, 3G cuts off a couple of streets away. I'm at the far end of a beach so I guess they didn't want to put any unsightly towers out there, and it's far enough out that the great signal in town just doesn't reach out there.

    The whole point of me switching from Tmobile to Verizon was to get the awesome more extensive coverage everybody talks about, particularly since I'm not in a major urban center (I'm in an outlying area of one). But now I'm wondering whether I should bother to switch at all, or bother to get something like the Thunderbolt. My friend was at my house this weekend and his 3G Droid 2 was getting zero bars for a while, but later had a bit and he was able to take a call. That's just like what happens to me now on Tmobile. It's variable minute to minute.

    I'm wondering whether a phone designed to work on 3G and 4G will even work on 2G. Right now 3G phones are designed to also work on 2G as a backup. And 4G phones are designed to fall back on 3G at least. But have they given up falling even further back to 2G now that they've added 4G? Is there room for all those radios?

    While I can get both 3G and 4G at work in town, I'm thinking it doesn't make sense to get a Thunderbolt or any other 4G phone and pay for a 4G data plan that I can't use at home.

    Tell me what you know about this situation and how the coverage and radios work. Thanks.
    02-08-2011 11:02 AM
  2. upz3's Avatar
    Actually it should, all 3G phones can revert to 2G but your not going to be able to get the phone without the 4G plan because you can't get 3G phones without a 3G plan. It would in a way still cost you because your putting a premium on using data through 2G.
    02-08-2011 11:05 AM
  3. htowngator's Avatar
    technically, 2.5G is the 1xRTT, I believe, and yes that covers almost everyone

    where on earth do you live that you don't even get 3G? That covers almost the entire country for VZW
    02-08-2011 11:08 AM
  4. French's Avatar
    I'm so glad to see this post...not because of the 2G issue but because I just had something very similar happen. All this time my address and work address have had "it's there" or "it works" for 4G (or whatever the message was)...but now that the detailed maps are available, in reality I'm very much in the border area for 4G at home and work is a bit iffy, too. Home I'm not so worried about since I have wifi...work was where I was really planning to benefit.

    This may have just changed everything for me. If I can't use 4G at work (at the very least) then I may as well stick with my Fascinate and hope for improved froyo roms (which I know will come).

    How long ago did the detailed maps get posted? I wish they had been available the last time I checked.
    02-08-2011 11:09 AM
  5. djcyph's Avatar
    dude if ur only a few blocks away in the coverage map i think ull be fine getting 3g
    02-08-2011 11:13 AM
  6. SpaceHippie's Avatar
    You should receive 3g. Even rural areas get 3G. That's why Verizon is so great.
    02-08-2011 11:19 AM
  7. shaddix's Avatar
    4g goes farther than 3g bro! Call VZW and ask them to come test it for you, dunno if they will do it..
    02-08-2011 12:38 PM
  8. whatsadroid's Avatar
    4g is gonna be sweet I think the phone will still do 2g and just work slower
    02-08-2011 12:42 PM
  9. Astrodroid's Avatar
    You should receive 3g. Even rural areas get 3G.
    dude if ur only a few blocks away in the coverage map i think ull be fine getting 3g

    Well I had thought I'd at least get 3g just like you guys are saying, but this isn't theoretical or guesswork - - my friend with a 3G Droid 2 came over and sometimes had zero bars - it went in and out for extended periods of time just sitting there, just like happens to me now with T-mobile. I think I'm close enough that I'll get some signal just like we saw with his phone, but I think what they're saying by not even having me in the 3g area of the map is that they can't promise consistently reliable service there and don't want the headaches that would come with all the complaining about that if they included us in the map.

    4g goes farther than 3g bro!

    I'm just using Verizon's own map. I was actually hoping that 4G LTE being 700mHz would go farther than 3g and kind of make the issue redundant, but now that I think about it, what I've read is that 700 is better at penetrating things like walls - maybe that's not the same as range.

    How long ago did the detailed maps get posted?

    I'm not sure. Maybe it was there all along and I was just looking at non-interactive versions that didn't zoom in close. I guess I last checked maybe early last month.

    where on earth do you live that you don't even get 3G?

    It really is a just a strip right along the beach, a couple streets wide, at one end of the beach farthest away from the town center. Down the beach they are solid 4G. It's a little carve-out and I happen to be unlucky enough to be in it. There's an area right next to my neighborhood that's nothing but wilderness and it's funny because that has 4G. Have fun with that, birds.

    I actually just looked at another version of their map and it shows me in an area that has "digital coverage" for voice and text and "Extended 1x Data" for data. But definitely no 3/4g

    your not going to be able to get the phone without the 4G plan

    I wasn't expecting that I could get the phone without the 4g data plan - I was just wondering whether to get the phone at all given the coverage situation. Why pay for something I can't use?

    Buuut now I'm wondering about wifi. I have wireless going all the time at home. Is the Thunderbolt one of those phones that I can set a preference to have it work off of wifi instead of Verizon's signal whenever a wifi signal is present? Does that work for both voice and data? Or is that some kind special setup where i have to pay Verizon to get a femtocell or equivalent?
    02-08-2011 01:16 PM