Sprint provides updates about network service in Sandy-hit states

Summary:The nation's third largest wireless provider has fully restored service to most states hit by Hurricane Sandy.

Sprint has published an update about how far along it is with restoring service to areas hit by Hurricane Sandy this week.

Here's where the current state Sprint service is at now:

  • Fully restored to customers in Washington, D.C., Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, Maine, Vermont, Ohio and Kentucky
  • More than 90 percent operational in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island
  • More than 80 percent operational in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut

However, the biggest problems remain along the New Jersey coastline and the New York City metropolitan area, where three-quarters of the network is working. But Sprint is still working on restoring commercial power, backhaul connections, and gaining safe access to cell sites.

The nation's third largest wireless provider added that it has also reopened more than 160 of its nearly 200 retail stores that were closed due to the superstorm.

To help customers out, Sprint said that it will be "proactively waiving late fees; overage charges for voice, text and data; roaming fees; and call-forwarding fees for Sprint services used between Oct. 29 and Nov. 28."

Prepaid customers with Boost Mobile, Virgin Mobile and payLo by Virgin Mobile will receive extended service if they are at risk of not making their payment due date. Boost Mobile Pay As You Go and payLo customers will also get a $10 account credit.

However, note that these waivers only apply to Sprint customers in the aforementioned states affected by Sandy.

Sprint's announcement follows earlier news that AT&T and T-Mobile were enabling roaming on their networks to customers of both networks impacted by the path of the storm. This means data and voice traffic can be shared across the two networks without any changes to customers' current rate plans.

While landline networks appear to be doing better, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission reported on Wednesday that 25 percent of U.S. wireless company cell sites in the 10 states were knocked out by the storm. Thus, cellular networks are scrambling to get things moving along as fast as possible again, but it appears it's going to take considerable time.

Topics: Mobility, Networking, Smartphones


Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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