This update is Part 3 of my journey away from the oppressive grip of two-year contracts to the freedom that comes with a prepaid carrier and my unlocked Nexus 4. If you haven’t yet read Part 1
or Part 2
of this series I highly recommend you do so.
I have to say that I have been most impressed with Straight Talks coverage and service so far. Granted I am using an AT&T SIM card which means that I essentially have AT&T service. Sadly as far as I can tell, I barely squeaked by and grabbed one. As of right now the only SIM cards I can find for Straight Talk run on T-Mobile’s network.
Back to my main point. The coverage I have had has kept my Nexus 4 connected pretty much everywhere I go. I have had only 1 dropped call since I started my service almost two months ago. I also had the opportunity to go fishing in the coastal mountains of Oregon with someone who had a Verizon phone. It was an excellent chance for me to compare networks and I have to say that I had service everywhere he had service. So on the coverage front, I’m not worried in the least.
This is perhaps the biggest gripe I have with my service so far. The speeds don’t seem to be much faster than what I was getting with Verizon 3g despite being connected to AT&T’s HSPA+ network. Here’s a screenshot of my my SpeedTest
As you can see, the speeds have been less than stellar. All of these test were taken indoors in the west Portland Metro area. Outdoor speeds test would probably produce similar results. That being said, at least my Nexus 4 doesn’t hang when loading pages like my old Droid2Global did.
For those of you wondering about Straight Talk throttling, I haven’t run into it at all so far. I listen to Rdio and Pandora on my 30 minute commute without a problem. I also stream or download at least 1 30-50mb podcast a day. Other than a YouTube video here or there, I haven’t watched too much video using cell-data so I can’t speak to that. Last month I used about 1.7gb of data and didn’t experiance any problems. I’ve stopped worry about saving my data and just used my phone as I normally would. For the average person, as long as you don’t stream Netflix movies over anything but Wi-Fi, I wouldn’t worry about it in the least.
As of now I would give Straight Talk 4 out of 5 stars. The customer service and network speed haven’t been the greatest but they are somewhat offset by the fact that I am only paying $45/month for service for this phone. I would still highly recommend this service to most people. Stay tuned for my next update to my adventure on Straight Talk with my Nexus 4.