This weekend I had the good fortune to visit some phamily in Virginia and was embarrassed at the poor performance of the AT&T network on my iPhone. It would probably sting a little less if AT&T didn't run obnoxious ads touting "more bars in more places" -- which couldn't be further from the truth.
In and around Hampton, VA (and especially during the Phish reunion shows this weekend) AT&T's network was abysmal. Text and phone calls routinely phailed, and voice and text messages that eventually did go through we delayed anywhere from ten to 30 minutes. Nothing like getting that "need a beer? I'm in line" text a half an hour too late.
Twitter was almost completely unavailable at Hampton, at least on iPhones on AT&T. Tweetie couldn't connect at all during the shows and I had to resort to using Twitter's mobile interface (m.twitter.com) which was fair at best. About one in every four Web tweets went out.
Compounding matters was the horrible AT&T reception during Macworld Expo in San Francisco in January. I guess that AT&T doesn't scale very well and/or doesn't roll out the mobile antennas to sites where large amounts of their customers will be congregating. Which is a real shame. Will AT&T phail again during WWDC in June? My advice: don't plan on liveTweeting the keynote.
Dear AT&T: there's a large conference of 20,000+ iPhone-toting Mac heads coming to Moscone sometime in May or June. You may want to truck in a couple of mobile cell sites. I'm just sayin'...
In my part of the the northeastern U.S. (southern NJ) Verizon Wireless has always had the best mobile & data reception with AT&T coming in a distant second (maybe third, behind Sprint) -- especially at the beach. More bars in more places? I don't think so.
How's the AT&T by you? Who has the best mobile and/or data reception in your neck?