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Thread: Cell Phone Coverage

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Biddeford, Maine
    Posts
    311

    Default Cell Phone Coverage

    I was out and about a little bit this afternoon with my girls trying to find a couple of caches in Dayton (no success, they fell asleep in the car and didn't want to wake up to do caching with Daddy ).

    Even though I wasn't that far out, my cell phone didn't work all that great (I have a TracFone mostly because I use it for maybe 30-60 minutes a month).

    What do y'all have for cell phones and service and do they work good out on the trails?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Bangor, ME
    Posts
    6,058

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    The amount of reception you get with any cell phone is always inversely proportional to your need to use it.
    DNFTT! DNFTT! DNFTT!

    "The funniest thing about this particular signature is that by the time you realize it doesn't say anything it's to late to stop reading it..."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Norway, Maine
    Posts
    262

    Default

    One of the funnest things about working at the campground in Waterford is seeing all the Massachusetts people walking around trying to get coverage. I've heard a fight or two between parent and teen because the teen can't get service. There are large areas up our way that don't come in. I don't own a cell phone but tried a trac phone a few years ago. It didn't come in the very few times I tried it so ended up losing $29 for a phone. Unless a job requires it, I will never own another cell phone.

  4. #4
    dí76 Guest

    Default

    I looked for a cell phone that got better coverage a few years ago. THe guy was very excited. He wanted to hook me up with a satellite phone for about 300 $ a month. It was a big no thanks on my end.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    535

    Default

    Cell Phone coverage in Maine? You gotta be kidding right?

    It is getting a bit better, but it's best not to think you can rely on one when you need it.
    I'd really rather not cache, but I am helpless in the grip of my compulsion!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Brunswick, Maine
    Posts
    548

    Default

    Cell phones are great for comunication when you are running around town. I go rid of my home phone last year but then I do not care if people can get aholdo f me most time. I would never trust a cell phone as an emergancy device though just not that reliable when you get out in the middle of nowhere where you really need the help. as far as coverage, I went to t-mobile and have had pretty good coverage of a good part of the state till I got out to the boonies. The bigest thing to consider when you are getting a cel phone is what kind of coverage do they have where to are going to use it most and also if you are looking something to use in an emergancy you are probally better off with an EPERB.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Gainesville, Georgia
    Posts
    3,875

    Default

    For those that don't know what EPERB or EPIRB's are, I have seen both spellings.

    Emergency personal beacons (EPERB) are electronic devices that gives off a radio signal on the emergency band 121.5MHz. Used by people that need emergency assistance or by those lost at sea, the radio signal is repeated every three seconds and can be tracked by every plane, helicopter within 50miles or boat within 10miles. Backcountry skiers use them a lot or people who are hiking way out in the backcountry.
    Just smile it won't crack your face

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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Niskayuna, NY
    Posts
    601

    Default

    If there were no cell phones and you were out in the middle of the Maine woods would you expect to find a pay phone on a tree??

    Why expect more from a cell phone.

    As I understand the system the range of a cell phone tower is about 6 miles and reception is affected by buildings, mountains, hills and , yes, trees.

    The cell phone companies are "for profit" enterprizes. They do not provide service unless there is a justifible revenue expectation for their investment in the system.

    People need to realize that cell phone coverage is not 100% of the area 100% of the time. Those that live in metropolitan areas seem to not realize this more than those of us that live in more rural areas.

    My 2 cents.




    A house is not a home without a cat.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    ME
    Posts
    3,517

    Default

    Long before cell phones, I had a phone in my car for business. It was a car phone through Radio Telephone of Maine. Ahhh, that surely dates me.

    But essentially it was a hard mounted phone with a big box in the trunk, an antenna on the trunk and it provided a radio connection to a dispatcher, who then connected your call and you talked as if using a radio. You had to press a button to talk and release it to hear the answer. That oldie but goodie - worked great everywhere from Ft. Kent to Calais and Kittery as it was going off repeater towers just like the police radios. But of course - you needed to be in the car.

    Cell phone coverage on the other hand - is dependant upon towers, as noted by Sabby, and even with a tower nearby there could be poor coverage. There is a company who has a tower on Verona Island for example. My friends who live there dropped their old company to go with that company as they thought they would have great coverage. Not so - they have to go out on their deck, stand in a special direction to even talk on their cells with the companies tower within 2 miles. The company has not been helpful with them either and they are now in a 2 year contract.

    My phone is through their old carrier and I have coverage all over their property and in their house. The phone you purchase can also effect your coverage.

    As others have mentioned, years ago there were no cell phones - do not rely on these totally for emergency plans. Most HAMS would suggest you join then in the Amatuer Radio Group.

    Cells are just another tool. Just like a GPSr - I still carry my compass.

    JMHO

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Norway, Maine
    Posts
    262

    Default

    Tin cans with a string on them worked fine until I started caching. Do you know how tangled those strings get walking back in forth in the trees to get a GPS satellite coordinate lock?

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