4G not that fast / slow service in New York City
MKarias
Enthusiast - Level 2

I work in mid-town Manhattan but live at the Jersey Shore.  My download/upload speeds are great at home.  I get between 23 - 26 Mbps downloads and 10 - 14 Mbps uploads using Speedtest.net app. 

However in mid-town, I get anywhere from 2 - 7 Mbps downloads and 9 - 16 Mbps uploads.  I find this very strange. NYC should have better speeds than where I live.

Have others also experience low 4G speeds in Manhattan?  I tested this in multiple areas to ensure no dead zones but those are the speeds that I am getting around 42nd Street East and West side.

I have a Galaxy S3.

I assume it is not my phone because I get great speeds at home.

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tcarlisle
Newbie

No, 4G LTE service in Manhattan has been horrible since I signed on to VZW over two years ago, and has gone even further downhill since. I have pressed VZW hard on this, and their position is that there is something wrong with my computer. They want to have me go through their 1st level support process of emptying my internet explorer cache files..... never mind I have been an IT professional for over two decades and know the difference between a browser problem and a connectivity problem, and also because I am smart enough to try the USB stick in more than one computer. Back then there were no 4G LTE devices except the USB stick I bought. Now, of course there are plenty, and I can tell you that a brand new 4G LTE Android device bought from the Verizon store last week also has little to no success getting a reliable connection in NYC -- not just 4G but at all. The reason is because 3G fallback still does not work.

This issue has always revolved around the issue of reverting back to 3G, and still that is the underlying issue. If you can get to the hardware settings and change your device to only do 3G in Manhattan, you will get OK service. 3G of course, but you can at least use it. If you let that device auto detect, it will spend most of its time with all green status and saying you are connected but you can't go anywhere.

Of course Verizon doesn't give you an easy way to change these settings, which would be fine if I didn't need to in order to get service to work.

Now a few years have gone by, and I have learned to adapt my life around this problem. I now use a Cradlepoint PHS300 device. This is a device that you plug your USB wireless stick into it, and it turns it into a wifi hotspot. Now I can connect any device to it, and I don't have to fool around with the VZAccess software (which is crap), and also the cradlepoint gives me somewhat of an easy way to change my settings when I need to. The device has to reboot, but it is do-able.

So my routine is pretty much every day I have to configure for 3G only in NYC, and then change that when I get out of NYC.

Here is my advice to Verizon -- if you are selling a service and want to be profitable, and you can only pick ONE place on the planet where you can invest to make that service reliable..... that ONE place has to be Manhattan, and especially lower Manhattan in the financial district.

User population and density isn't the problem.... lack of deployed capacity to support the population is the problem. That problem is compounded when devices aren't sensing that and reverting back to 3G.

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Not applicable

tcarlisle wrote:

Here is my advice to Verizon -- if you are selling a service and want to be profitable, and you can only pick ONE place on the planet where you can invest to make that service reliable..... that ONE place has to be Manhattan, and especially lower Manhattan in the financial district.

Well don't you think you're special? Guess what Verizon DOESN'T have to pick one place to have service and that's the point. You'll get your improvements shortly. You have MILLIONS of people in a small area and you winder why there is issues?

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thefloyd
Enthusiast - Level 2

Precisely. Millions of PAYING customers in a densely populated area. Millions of dollars rolling in, from business customers, standard retail customers, and pre-paid customers.

Are you saying that it's acceptable to collect the millions of dollars they're getting from all of those people in exchange for lackluster - or in this case, just plain useless service? If so, let send you my address so you can start sending me monthly checks in exchange for nothing.

The amount of money the people in NYC are paying Verizon is enormous. If they can't fix the service, or at least respond with a real and detailed timeline for the fixes they should be refunding people for service they aren't getting. Plain and simple.

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vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

We want you to enjoy the best network performance thefloyd! What specific difficulties are you having? What make and model device? Are you experiencing challenges in more than one area? Is this limited to data?

JonathanK_VZW
VZW Support
Follow Us on Twitter@VZWSupport

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thefloyd
Enthusiast - Level 2

Specific difficulty: transferring any data.

Device make/model: many. Currently Droid MAXX, formerly Droid RAZR MAXX HD, and before that Samsung Galaxy S3 and before that Samsung Galaxy Note 2

Area: anywhere in New York City (Manhattan). Start in zipcode 10019 and work from there

Limited to data: yes. I can make phone calls. If I'm lucky enough for my device to fail over to 3G I get data service. I do not get any usable data when on LTE. Mail clients hang. Web pages don't load. Can't even run a speedtest.

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Gutterstink
Newbie

This is from Nik working in and around Grand central NYC station , have a moto x device purchases for the labour weekend.

I can barely get my data up(neither 4g,3g or 1x work) and running here around this area. my Smart phone is as good as a basic phone while working , the moment i get out of NYC my data comes back to life.

I find it difficult to place calls too here , i have reported this issue to customer care, they came back saying there is a network improvement in progress but nothing seems to happen .. can you please let us know of the timelines for network improvement.

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milan03
Newbie

Excuse me? Is that how you'd respond to paying customers? Good thing you're not in charge of Verizon's PR...

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Not applicable

I'm just a Verizon customer myself. So I'm not sure what your point is. I would certainly hope you pay your bill.

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tcarlisle
Newbie

I really didn't mean to ruffle feahters, and can see how my statement could come off rather arrogant. For my forceful wording, I do apologize.

I find it frustrating that other customers give Verizon an easy out by insisting it is unrealistic to expect service to be reliable with such dense population. Being an IT professional myself, and in particular one with experience with service management -- including capacity -- I find it really hard to swallow that a brand new technology has a capacity ceiling that NYC exceeds. What might be going on is that Verizon hasn't been able to fund the infrastructure to support the capacity. But if that is the case then it was Verizon's job to manage the capacity by limiting subscription, throttling transfer rates, etc. to bring all customers a reasonable user experience for the money paid.

I personally find the user experience to be mostly unusable in the lower Manhattan area. I am not talking abotu not being able to get 4G throughput -- I am talking about no throughput at all. Signal locked on, diagnostics say connected on LTE, but nothing is moving.

I find that on days with clearer weather it is better. To me this indicates they don't have enough radio coverage, and towers are too few and too far between. 

And if I manually configure my device to 3G only and ignore LTE altogether, that works. So again, if the revert back to 3G worked, it wouldn't be that big of a deal.

I don't know enough about Verizon's infrastructure to say what will fix this. But I am saying as a paying customer of this service since 2010, I find it unacceptable, and it should be a priority to fix it. Interestingly, if I walk across town to the east side where the Verizon store is on Water street, it works.

I fought with Verizon on this back in 2010/2011 and finally gave up and accepted it is what it is. I never would imagine in 2013 it would still be the same.

My own home area did not have 4G coverage in 2010, and now it does. While this makes my own situation better -- I at least can use my devices in my local area without frustration -- it also shows Verizon is continually investing to expand LTE coverage, which has to cost money. Why they wouldn't put some of that into getting Manhattan right is my question.

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mc_365
Enthusiast - Level 2

I have similar experience in mid town Rockefeller Center area.

I am connected to 4G but my apps or my browser can not update or can not find the server etc.

This really became a problem around April 2012. Before that I used to tease my co-workers that they had to buffer YouTube, and couldn't use Pandora, now I'm in the same boat.  The service sucks, and I'm being extorted to fulfill a 2 year agreement.

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Gutterstink
Newbie

Just got myself on Moto x on verizon on labour day weeekend. i was so excited using it in Connecticut and Jersey and today when i went into NYC for my new job ,i just was not able to connect to internet the entire day and i badly had to reply to couple of mails which i missed out . wth ????? i think my Virgin mobile was way better than this.. Is this how the network is in NYC ? i m still in the 14 day return period. was wondering if i should return this and move over to ATT .

Please advise !!

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vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

Gutterstink, congratulations on your upgrade to a new Moto X device. We're so excited for you. It's our goal to keep you connected where ever you go! However, service can be tricky indoors sometimes. Did you power your device off/on to soft reset it? Are you still experiencing this service issue? Keep us posted. We're here to help you.

Your satisfaction is so important to us. You have a 14 day Worry Free Guarantee which allows you to return or exchange your device for any reason. Please be advised that your device has to be in like new condition and be returned with the original packaging and accessories that came with it.

LasinaH_VZW
VZW Support
Follow us on Twitter @VZWSupport

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VZWNY
Enthusiast - Level 3

I cannot speak for the Conneticut/NJ areas, but if you are primarily concerned with NYC...unless by miracle, VZ gives a roadmap or any real indications that the capacity issues are being addressed in NYC, I suggest ATT (or TMO/Sprint are even better...if NYC is your only concern).  See this post https://community.verizonwireless.com/message/981079#981079

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Not applicable

tcarlisle wrote:

I really didn't mean to ruffle feahters, and can see how my statement could come off rather arrogant. For my forceful wording, I do apologize.

I find it frustrating that other customers give Verizon an easy out by insisting it is unrealistic to expect service to be reliable with such dense population. Being an IT professional myself, and in particular one with experience with service management -- including capacity -- I find it really hard to swallow that a brand new technology has a capacity ceiling that NYC exceeds. What might be going on is that Verizon hasn't been able to fund the infrastructure to support the capacity. But if that is the case then it was Verizon's job to manage the capacity by limiting subscription, throttling transfer rates, etc. to bring all customers a reasonable user experience for the money paid.

Verizon funds it just fine.

First Verizon isn't even done with the initial 4G rollout. There may be tower that aren't 4G yet in New York.

Second, a cell tower has 3 sectors. I'm sure you know that. With LTE each sector can handle a MAX of 150 Mbps for ALL users. How many users per sector do you think each tower has in NYC? If you have 500 people all trying to use data at the same time in a sector guess what it's not going to be very fast.

Third later this year Verizon will be rolling out 4G over AWS spectrum 1700/2100 MHz. That should eventually help. Of course you need devices that can actually use that spectrum.

Of course spectrum Verizon gets from the OTA auctions and the refarming of 3G and 1X spectrum will help as well as upgrading to LTE Advanced and the deployment of femotcells in high congestion areas as well as MIMO technology should all help. This of course will take time.

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Richbello
Enthusiast - Level 1

I am on 47th and 5th ave NY, NY and I get almost no 4G service (it comes and goes, drops and is unusable) between the hours of 8am and 8PM.I have a DROID Charge and tried everything. My 4G service works fine in Staten Island. I was getting great 4G service in NY about 6 months ago and then it was intermittent and now it is unusable. I used to walk down to Park ave. to get 4g service and now it seems that area is also not good.

I am surprised more people are not complaining and that this issue is not on the front pages of business and tech papers and mags. Verizon did tell me that their 4G service is working but is congested in my area. Also they said that I am not paying for guaranteed 4G service. Irrelevent to me. Verizon is marketing the hell out of 4G service and it DOES NOT WORK IN MIDTOWN MANHATTAN, one of the most premier and expensive places in the world.

One would have to believe that Verizon is aware of the problem is working on it. They are pushing the IPhone 5 which I expect will further deepen the problem. Actually I do  not think it could get any worse. I am with Verizon Wireless over 20 years and would hate to switch but Verizon is not being straight with their customers about this issue and that is wrong.

mc_365
Enthusiast - Level 2

I work in the same Rockefller Center area and noticed in April 2012 it slowed down to the point I get frequent "Connection Lost" messages.  I called VZW more than a few times and they asked "Do you work in a building made of brick, steel, or glass" they explained that the signal has difficulty penetrating these materials. My response was what buildings in NYC are not made of one of those 3 materials? And why did this suddenly start to happen? Now I hardly get dial up speeds while at work during peak hours.  Being force to have a data plan but cant use it!

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vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

mc_365, it's our goal to keep you connected! We're sad to hear that you're staying connected to data on your device. Wireless service can be tricky indoors since the building structure can blocks the signal. As a result, when you're not getting good reception at your home, its due to these limitations  that are sometimes referred to as “dead zones,” “coverage holes,” “dead spots” or “obstructed areas.” Which device do you have? Have you tried powered your device off/on to soft reset it? Meanwhile, let's take a closer look at the coverage area http://vz.to/13N0B6O

LasinaH_VZW
VZW Support
Follow us on Twitter @VZWSupport

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mc_365
Enthusiast - Level 2

Sorry for the late response but my data doesn't work well during the day when I'm at work so I didn't see the email from you. I had a Rezound from the day it launched in November 2011 and it worked great in midtown for the first 6 months then in April 2012 the service started declining. I now have a DNA and I basically have intermittent slow service during 9 to 5. But I work long hours so I see the service starts to pick up around 4pm then it gets consistent around 6pm.

So basically I'm paying for terrible service because VZW, is extorting me with threats of early termination charges, and negative credit report claims.

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vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

Hey there mc_365,

Thanks for the additional information. I absolutely want to make sure that you experience the excellent service that you pay for and ultimately deserve.  I would like to review your account in detail and possibly file a ticket with our network repair team. Please follow me and dm me your mobile number and billing system password.

Visit http://vz.to/17zF2vO for steps on how to send a DM.

NicholasB_VZW
Follow us on Twitter @VZWSupport

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VZWNY
Enthusiast - Level 3

https://community.verizonwireless.com/message/981079#981079

Been there, done that, same area.  This is truly up to VZW to acknowledge at this point.

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