or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Mountain/Resort Related Forums › Resorts, Conditions & Travel › Sacramento --> Tahoe cell phone reception?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Sacramento --> Tahoe cell phone reception?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Hello. A friend is new to the Sacramento area and is interested in getting a cell phone. Who has the best cell phone coverate between Sac and the Lake Tahoe area?
This is not about best reception on the slopes, but more about cell phone reception on 50 and/or interstate 80.

Thank you in advance.

post #2 of 13
There is not digital cell phone coverage once you get past Colfax heading to Truckee, There is no coverage for about 30 to 40 miles. Once you can see Donner pass my phone comes back. (Nextel) It is also very strong @ the ski areas. I highly recommend Nextel.

post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the reply MTT. I don't think my friend had thought of Nextel. I will pass it along to her.
post #4 of 13
When we were in South Tahoe this year I had little to no coverage with US Cellular. My daughter has Cingulair and got thru almost all the time.
post #5 of 13
i live in the So. Lake Tahoe area, and driver over Donner i come home off the road. I have Verizon for cell service, and there are a couple of spots i have trouble in. As for at the house, living at the top of Kingsbury, i have more trouble with cell service in my living room(refuse to get landline, phone co. already gets enough$$ from me) Travlin up Kingsbury grade service sucks. Service in/ around the casinos, and so lake tahoe is good. And yes it didgtal.
post #6 of 13
I cant say how nextel work top of Kingbury, But It has good signal sitting in the Nevada side lodge of Heavenly, and all over the moutain, I am one of those awfull people who works while sking, So good cell coverage is important to me. (Nextel)

post #7 of 13
hmm nextell?? My wife's company down on Lake Tahoe Blvd(us50) was going to get those radios/phones till they test drove them, had lousey coverge.
post #8 of 13
A lot of companies use them around the lake for that very reason. Humm?
Thats strange? Sure they were not using Verizon?? Or was the coverage bad around where you live?? Just curious, I don't work for nextel. I am like you about phone service, I do not have a land line (For five years now) Cell phone // Cable Modem. Im connected. Bank and credit compainies are even starting to get it. No home phone number was a big issue a couple years ago.
post #9 of 13
Not an endorsement of any kind, but Cingular currently has nearly continuous coverage on both I-80 and US 50. Just look for all the antennas that look like oversize douglass fir trees. Seriously, they have built a nearly complete digital network using artifical 80 foot fir trees.
post #10 of 13
Cingular is SBC. They have very deep pockets. Its nice to hear that they are improving. Thats the nice thing about technogy, Just because something is bad one year does not mean it bad the next?
post #11 of 13
As a general rule, don't get all-digital phones if you're going near the mountains. Tri-mode phones will give you the best possible coverage. That means your mileage will vary using a GSM or Sprint PCS phone.

The type of phone you have can make a _huge_ difference as well. The best phone I've ever used is a Kyocera 2235. It was a low-end phone that came free with many plans, but has since been discontinued. The reception was so good you could feel the tumor growing on your head while you used it. In general I've found Kyocera's and Nokia's to have good reception. Motorola's are ok, but getting a lot better (the V265 and V710 are good phones.) I've never been impressed with LG's or Samsung. Audiovox and Panasonic have had some great models, but it's hard to recommend them because they vary so much from model to model.

I have the pleasure of managing a cell acct with almost 400 phones on it, so I do know a bit about different models. If I could choose any phone right now, I'd probably get a Kyocera KX2, but I haven't used it enough to know for sure. The Motorola V265 is a solid choice - the amount of features you get is awesome for the price and the reception seems good.

If you're interested in radio, you might want to check out Verizon's service. It's improved a lot over the past year. You'll need to be very careful about your rate plan though.
post #12 of 13
Vinn, the rules about digital TDMA phones is rapidly changing in the mountains. Here in CA, The TDMA and GSM networks have been operating side by side with almost all TDMA in the mountains. Over the past 2-years (since SBC bought AT&T), digital is being phased out with pretty good coverage on the GSM network. Coverage is about equal for both types now in the foothills and Tahoe area, with GSM being clearly superior in the city and along interstate routes.

By the way, you can get GSM phones with 2 to 4 frequency capability (dual, tri and quad mode). Its not generosity on the part of the mobile carriers either. They charge a fortune for internet data transfers, picture transmission and all those features you can download on the GSM network. If someone is buying a phone today it would be pretty foolish to buy the old TDMA network stuff that is being phased out. My pick for a phone is the Motorola MPx220 because it syncs with outlook and can do function as a PDA and camera.

For Sacramento, Verizon, Sprint and Cingular and even Nextel have excellent coverage, but in the mountains, Cingular currently has the best coverage. Nextel has the worst foothill and mountain coverage in my experience, but in town has that cool radio feature.
post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thank you very much to all your responses. I will pass along all the info.

As a side note, for those who don't want to have a land line, but do have a broadband connection, check out vonage.com if you haven't done so. I have the most basic plan ($15/month), bu the list of features is pretty long (500 mins long distance to US/Canada, call waiting, caller id, voice mail, etc.).

Again, thank you to everybody for their respones.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Resorts, Conditions & Travel
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Mountain/Resort Related Forums › Resorts, Conditions & Travel › Sacramento --> Tahoe cell phone reception?