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The ins and outs of living in Puerto Rico

Sprint in Puerto Rico

So it is February 2014 and I must admit that Sprint in Puerto Rico is now a big contender in the local cell phone industry from a technology, price, and coverage standpoint. 4G-LTE is available for Sprint customers in Puerto Rico and the signal and data speeds are MUCH better now. Data speeds reaching 30Mbps have been reported and I have personally seen speeds of up to 27Mbps in Bayamón, PR when I was with a friend at the Plaza del Sol Mall. However, Sprint still has a very small customer base and it is not “cool” to have Sprint so I think it will be hard for them to catch up with the other companies (at&t in particular), but if you can get past that, Sprint now is truly as good of company as any other.

So, what I say below regarding Sprint may be outdated but I have to be fair, I have to tell the full story.

Sprint’s data and signal quality has improved tremendously, BUT, it has only improved in areas where it wasn’t really that bad to begin with. If you had Sprint signal before, even if it was a slow 3G, you will see an improvement (huge improvement). Areas that had little to no signal now have slightly more signal, so as opposed to almost no 3G signal, you now have little to no 4G signal, so at least as of today, several areas I frequent still have the signal problem, just not quite as bad.

So bottom line, Sprint in Puerto Rico is really becoming a good company to be with, plus the unlimited data and the cheaper prices just make it that much better. If you want to try Sprint, ask for the satisfaction policy, I think you get 15 or 30 days to try it out, in those days go everywhere you would want to make sure you have signal, if you are not happy then simply return the equipment, but ask them for the return or trial policy.

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July 2012

Sprint in Puerto Rico is good, and bad; if you are considering Sprint, there are some things you should know.

Sprint is probably the cheapest and the most flexible company of them all over here, as it has no limits in minutes or data usage, it also allows you to use your phone as a mobile hotspot and that as far as I know is unlimited as well. When I say unlimited I mean truly unlimited, I mean no changes in speed and no extra charges for data used, that cannot be said with other companies, so if you’re someone who uses a lot of data than this company may be an option for you. However, for the past two years they have been promising that they are changing their towers and putting 4G speeds, and to this day (July 15, 2012) they still only have 3G speeds. On top of that, their 3G speeds are actually very slow, I’m talking less than 300 Kbps. So it is unlimited and the speed won’t go down but the truth is that it is very slow to begin with.

Sprint in Puerto Rico is the same Sprint from the US. The plans and prices are the same and you can go to the US and back or call the US and Puerto Rico without having to worry for long distance charges or roaming charges. They are however one of the smallest companies in Puerto Rico. I think that the reason why Sprint is so small in Puerto Rico, is because their signal is not very good here. Since most houses and buildings are made of concrete, their signal suffers greatly once you are indoors, so missed calls or very late voicemails and being unable to make a call is actually very common unless you have a tower nearby.

Sprint coverage maps in Puerto Rico also seem to be a bit inaccurate, I have seen their maps online show excellent signal and when you check with your phone you have “ok”signal but not excellent by far, and once you go indoors you get little to no signal. However, people have reported that they have called the customer service to express how unhappy they are with the signal in their home, and Sprint has actually mailed to them a device that is basically an antenna to give them signal in their house, it works through their high-speed Internet though, that won’t solve your problems if you are at a different building where you get little to no signal but at least you know that at your house you may have better signal if you qualify to get this device, if you are a current Sprint customer and have problems with the signals in your house you may want to give them a call and see if you can get that.

On the upside, like I said, they are the most flexible. So if you were to come from the US and want to change your plan or extended with the new phone you can do so well keeping your same number and not having to change to a local number, that is of course unless you want to change it, most people seem to want to keep their US number so that they can keep in touch with friends and relatives that would otherwise have to call long distance although that is not that big of an issue now since everybody has cell phones and calling to Puerto Rico should not be long-distance calling if doing so with a cell phone.

Once Sprint in Puerto Rico catches up with the US, that is, they finally get the 4G speeds, you can also take better advantage of their Sprint TV package that is included with your subscription. But until then, even though you can still take advantage of it, the slow speeds cause a very poor picture quality and pauses constantly.

So to summarize, Sprint in Puerto Rico is the same as in the states, with the exception that there is yet no Sprint 4G service in Puerto Rico although they keep saying that they are in the process of updating their towers. Actually if you go on the web they show you a map of towers that there updating and that they hope to finish within the next six months, so it looks like they’re actually doing something. They tend to be flexible and truly unlimited, which doesn’t really matter right now because the speeds are so slow, but if they actually were to upgrade their system and we get 4G speeds then all of a sudden unlimited data does not sound too bad, especially if they do upgrade to 4G LTE which is what they have been promising.

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4 Comments

  1. I think this article should be updated. I am an AT&T customer and just spent a week in PR and the Virgin Islands with several friends who are Sprint customers and the Sprint Network is top notch. Coverage was outstanding, similar to AT&T (which grossly over-rates it’s coverage in their online maps) and better than Claro and T-Mobile.

    In researching providers and talking to friends, Sprint is currently in the process of rebuilding it’s entire nationwide network from the ground up which takes much more capital and time than competitors. Unlike other wireless providers in the US and PR who just added new equipment on top of old equipment and did patch work, Sprint is rebuilding their entire network and replacing all old tower equipment with much more efficient type for easy upgrades and future-proofing the network. That’s an ambitious task and you have to give them credit for being one of the greenest companies in the America. I found a good website about Sprint’s new network upgrades which pretty much explains it all, even down to local markets like PR: http://www.s4gru.com

    4G LTE data speeds were also very fast in PR. Consistently 6 – 30mbps (depending on location and obstructions) which is faster than my AT&T connection. In my opinion, the huge advantage with Sprint is you get unlimited data. I can never stream music or watch videos when I want to as I am constantly worried about going over the data limit on our AT&T family plan. I have some Sprint friends in the states which are happy with their service so I will probably be jumping ship from AT&T to Sprint as soon as my contract is up.

    Note: One of our friends had Verizon service which does operate in PR. You will be roaming on the Sprint CDMA Network.

    • Jay-Webmaster

      Yes I do agree Sprint is getting MUCH better. I have heard people comment on the fact they they like the unlimited data and the fact that 4G LTE is available in more places now.

      HOWEVER, The same locations that I heard complaints about poor signal are still getting poor signal. As recent as last week I went to visit a family member who has Sprint and the signal was just as bad as it has always been, compared to AT&T who has full bars in the same location. In addition, where I currently live, Sprint’s signal is still pretty bad, in fact it has not gotten any better in the last 5 years.

      But, just about any other place, their signal has improved tremendously, for some reason, the locations I frequent the most are the locations that has seen little to no improvement.

      Sprint is cheaper and data is unlimited, which is a win-win for me!

  2. I left Sprint about 2 years ago because their internet speed was atrocious. They kept promising since 2009 this 4G technology that never materialized. I see they continue with their horrible service and promises. Do yourself a favor and leave Sprint and file a complaint at the Junta de Teleconumicaciones and at DACO. The only thing Sprint does is give promises, they are a very bad joke of a telecommunications provider. Right now I have 10MB internet speed and couldn’t be happier. With Sprint I used to get .3 MB constantly.

    • webmaster

      Jose,

      I am not one to defend one company over the other but what I have seen lately is that AT&T still has the best coverage, however I have yet to see speeds from other carriers as fast as Sprint has now with their new 4G LTE. A friend of mine sent me a screenshot of his Sprint 4G that clocked 30Mbps, while the most anyone has sent me with AT&T has been 18Mbps and TMobile 13Mbps. Plus Sprint is unlimited, works great for friends of mine who are marathon runners and run with Pandora or SiriusXM on their phones playing music while they run daily without having to worry about data usage. So not to defend Sprint but there are some positives to them now I think. Having said that, I think AT&T still has the best coverage but it is also the most expensive.

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