Any recommendations for a mobile phone service provider in the D.C. area?

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Topic: Any recommendations for a mobile phone service provider in the D.C. area?

Food and Dining September 30, 2012 at 11:32 am

Any recommendations for a mobile phone service provider in the D.C. area?

I recently moved to the D.C. from Boston, and I am beginning to think about switching my cell phone carrier. I currently have a cell phone on AT&T’s network through my employer. However, my contract will be expiring soon, and I would like to make sure that I sign a contract with a service provider that provides service. I have been relatively happy with AT&T so far, I just want to make sure that I am not missing some important details.
Thanks for any help/advice/recommendations!

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After 16 years and numerous iterations, I finally gave up on AT&T last week after having no signal in my home (14 & T) for the last year and spotty service elsewhere. So far am much happier with Verizon – signal at home and even underground while riding Metro in many places. Hope this is helpful – good luck.

I think a lot depends on what you’re looking for / how you use it / how much you’re willing to pay. Do you want voice + data or only voice? Smart phone? Do you own the handset already? Do you want a handset that’s only available on certain networks? I have experience with Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile. Verizon has the best coverage and highest prices. AT&T was OK. Just OK. T-mobile, in the metro-area, has proved roughly the same as AT&T in terms of coverage but is much cheaper.
Other points of interest: 1. You can get underground coverage with any of the three, but Verizon is best. 2. T-mobile data is slightly slower than AT&T, but fast enough for me. I would strongly encourage you to consider a pre-paid plan where you bring your own hardware. Much cheaper / better value if you’re willing to front for the device. I went with a Galaxy Nexus ($350 upfront) and T-mobile ($30 / month prepaid) to get unlimited data (with a slowdown at 4GB / month) and quite limited voice minutes. Pro-tip: You can use that unlimited data for VOIP calls.
I’ve been pretty happy with this approach. Other carriers have pre-paid too. Compared with (eg) Verizon, and guessing their plan cost at $85 / month (+$50 for the same phone after subsidy), you’re saving roughly $1000 over the two year contract.
Good luck. Cell phones are a very anti-consumer market place in many ways.


It’s really hit and miss.  I get no service at our house in Petworh on T-Mobile.  My wife’s AT&T reception is OK (not great).  At our old apartment on U Street, T-Mobile and AT&T were great, but there was no Verizon reception.

Unless your employer is going to be terminating the cell phone they’re currently providing, the end of the contract doesn’t mean you have to sign a new contract.  Usually when the contract ends, the plan itself continues ($x per month for y minutes, z texts, etc.), and you can keep going with that until/unless you decide to switch to a different plan or provider.

johnv’s approach is exactly what I have in mind doing in the next couple months.I might also consider an unlocked 4s.
My 2 cents is to try to find the carrier that works best the most places you are most often. Verizon seems best all around, but $. As others have said, ATT is ok. For me it has wide coverage, though sometimes spotty service. I had really excellent reception locally with T-mobile, but no coverage in the rural area where I visit family often. Sprint was ok, but no reception on my block, inside my house.


I highly recommend Pageplus Cellular. Verizon cell towers, no contract, no fees or taxes. Get an unlocked Motorola Droid with extra batteries and pick a plan that works for you. $55 for unlimited talk and text k and tex


Sorry for the typos I was saying $55 for unlimited talk and text plus 2gigs of data. There are other plans too. You can switch back and forth between plans.

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