I remember when Om divorced his iPhone over the AT&T (s T) network issues he was having. I kept telling him that here in the sticks where I live, it’s been a rock-solid experience. When visiting our offices in San Francisco, I feel the pain: poor signal strength with various fluctuation, crawling data speeds, and my very first dropped calls. Luckily, the office visits are just a few days long, and when I return home to wide-open spaces, all is right with my iPhone. (I like going to the office; I just don’t like the phone issue.)
But recently, something happened, and I’m not sure what it is. I started to notice it about a month ago: two signal bars where I used to see five and calls going right to voicemail. Say what? I though it was just me, but then I read Ed Oswald’s recent post about AT&T issues in rural areas. All of the same symptoms are there. What used to be a safe haven for me in the land of cows and farms is starting to become a frustrating exercise in futility, and I don’t know why. Are the recently announced network upgrades causing service issues? Has AT&T sold one iPhone too many in my area? I simply don’t know.
Since I have a first-generation iPhone (s AAPL) and didn’t upgrade to the iPhone 3G last year, I easily qualify for the maximum subsidy, and therefore the lowest price, for a new iPhone 3G S. I’m starting to wonder: Will be worth it? Last month, I thought the network upgrades would cement iPhone exclusivity for a few more years. Perhaps it will, but a solid phone with a shaky network is like driving a Corvette that’s down a few cylinders.