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This is the Mountain Wireless comprehensive report of wireless and cellular networks across the US. This is information gained from personal experience, user interviews, press releases, advertising material, newsgroups and wireless web sites. This list includes all US carriers that we research, listed alphabetically, C-D.
CAROLINA WEST WIRELESS
Carolina West has good Local coverage in their service area of western North Carolina. They offer a variety of plans that are priced about average. Data plans are reasonably priced. They have a good selection of CDMA phones including smartphones, the iPhone and air cards. Carolina West is owned by a partnership of 3 local telephone cooperatives which means they should have better than average customer service, but there are no bundle discounts that include wireless. They are adding 4G service in their coverage area in cooperation with other wireless carriers including 4G roaming agreements. They offer LifeLine low-cost wireless service but at an abnormally high price.
Cellcom provides excellent coverage in Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. We thought they couldn't make their plans more complicated than before, but they have. There is no hint of an individual plan on their price list although you certainly can get one of their "shared" plans and share it with yourself! Fortunately, they offer a long list of sophisticated CDMA phones including smartphones, the iPhone and home phone devices. They have upgraded most, if not all, of their network to 4G. They also offer a good selection of their phones for Prepaid accounts. Their prepaid charges are fairly high but include Nationwide unlimited calls and reasonable Data add-ons. They have a "security" plan for $100 a year. Their Lifeline Plan is priced above average and their Tribal Lifeline Plan includes many more minutes and features at a slightly lower price.
CELLULAR ONE (MTPCS)
This Cellular One was made up of parts of the former Centennial Wireless in the South, and parts of AT&T and Cellular One in Texas. Cellular One completely shut down their Montana and Wyoming network. They still have very good GSM coverage in rural areas of Louisiana and Texas and in the Gulf of Mexico. They offer all the digital goodies and have a good selection of phones including smartphones and home phone service. Their plans seem to be more expensive than average. They have reasonable plans for local wireless Internet access and they support Lifeline plans.
Cellular One Coverage Maps
Cellular One has the best, or only coverage, in and around the Native American lands along the northeast Arizona and northwest New Mexico border with additional coverage in the extreme southeastern corner of Utah. They have a number of special, low-cost wireless programs. They also support fixed wireless service for homes away from wirelines. They offer a number of reasonable plans with various levels of Data add-ons. They have a good selection of phone models including Smart phones and older iPhones. Their prepaid plans are only available with a few phones but there is a huge number of Data and Messaging add-ons. They have a few creative programs including a "Free Phone for Life" plan. Most of the network offers 3G coverage. They support Lifeline plans and, in some areas, a separate high speed wireless broadband service.
CHARITON VALLEY WIRELESS
Chariton serves the north central part of Missouri. They offer Local, Regional, National, Unlimited and Lifeline plans. Most plans are reasonable, especially since most features are Unlimited, but data is overpriced. Their Prepaid and Lifeline plans are expensive. They have 4G LTE coverage available on their own network as well as roaming where 4G is available. There is a limit for excessive off-network roaming. Since they are a local telephone cooperative we expect customer service to be better than average and they offer bundle discounts. They have a good selection of handsets including smartphones, iPhones, air cards and wireless home phones.
Offering service in southwest Iowa, Chat Mobility offers generous plans with everything included like long distance, roaming, free incoming calls, Nights & Weekends and Mobile to Mobile. Adding Data to their plans is somewhat overpriced. They have a moderate selection of CDMA phones including smartphones, iPhones and air cards. Coverage is adequate and they claim all 4G coverage. They have Unlimited plans which are priced a little high. They offer "Lifeline" service (based on support programs) but they are expensive.
Choice serves rural and small-town customers in 9 western US states and the entire US Virgin Islands. They offer mostly National "Unlimited" plans at a fixed price, starting at $20 a month, $30 with some data included. They use CDMA phones, they have excellent coverage, and their plans have a simplified structure that includes a certain amount of US roaming minutes. They have a moderate number of phone models including Smart phones and they allow you to bring your own phone from another CDMA carrier. All plans are prepaid so there are no contracts, and they offer monthly, pay-as-you-go and pay-per-day plans, and an Unlimited Data plan. Most areas support 3G broadband, 4G in USVI, and 4G-LTE in the Navajo Nation. They offer wireless Internet devices which could give you the fastest broadband service available in a rural area. Choice supports Free or low-cost LifeLine service. Choice has acquired Innovative Mobile in The US Virgin Islands which should dramatically improve coverage and technical support in the islands. There is no relationship between this Choice Wireless and the Choice Wireless in northern Texas.
CLARO- PUERTO RICO
Claro has very good coverage. The network is owned by America Movil and is operated like other America Movil companies in Latin America and not like their prepaid-only services offered in the mainland US. CDMA voice and text coverage is very good. Using an expanded GSM-based broadband network, data works at 3G speeds with 4G LTE now available in most populated areas. We have no information on phone model availability and customer service, but the owner is a large Latin America-based wireless company so they have the advantages of a major wireless company. Claro does not offer an English language web site.
Cleartalk is a small CDMA carrier that serves small communities in several states. If you live within their coverage, you'll be doing business with locals. Their plans offer different levels of "Unlimited" features and provide most of the features of an all-digital system. They have a variety of Unlimited plans starting as low as $35 with add-ons for Calling features, Long Distance, Mexico calling, and partial Nationwide coverage available. They provide regional and national coverage with most, or all, service outside of your small Home area provided on the Sprint network. Their phone selection is fairly small and not very advanced, but they can "flash" your current phone on to the Cleartalk network. Data coverage ranges from 2G to 4G-LTE.
Commnet has been building cell sites in locations that have been overlooked by other carriers. Their parent company, ATN International also owns a few other small wireless companies including Choice Wireless. Commnet's current business relies on roaming by other wireless carriers' customers. Some carriers allow roaming on Commnet's sites while others restrict Commnet roaming. So if the closest, or only, cell site near you is owned by Commnet, you need to sign up with a carrier that uses, or allows roaming on, Commnet. They are also known by other names, and their sites offer a combination of CDMA and GSM technology. Since they do not offer retail service directly to customers we do not rate Commnet although their coverage is very good in most areas where they do offer service. In several states and US territories, the Commnet network is available as Choice Wireless.
Commnet Coverage Maps
Good local coverage serving Valdez, Alaska, eastward and northward. They have reasonable price plans with statewide and mainland US roaming included but they get real expensive when Data is added. They have a very small selection of CDMA phones and they offer fixed wireless service and broadband coverage. As part of the local telecommunications co-op, service is above average and bundle discounts are available. Copper Valley, in cooperation with Verizon Wireless, has upgraded most of its network to 4G LTE.
Cordova is part of the Cordova Telephone Cooperative along the coast of Alaska, south of Valdez. They have a good selection of GSM phones including Smart phones and the Apple iPhone. They have a number of reasonably-priced plans including Local, Statewide and National plans. Their Unlimited plan is overpriced. They serve some areas where there may not be any other telephone service available. They offer discount bundles with their other communications services including free cell phone service when tied to your home land line. They are upgrading their network to 4G LTE coverage which will be available for both mobile and fixed wireless services. LifeLine accounts are available for $1 per month with an activation fee of $35.
Cross Wireless is a small CDMA carrier, part of the Cross Telephone Company of eastern Oklahoma. They have Regional and National plans which are a little cheaper than average. They offer a large variety of Unlimited plans including Nationwide Data. They are adding 4G Data but they only offer a small number of phones. As part of the local telephone company their customer service is above average but don't yet offer bundles with their other communications services. . We have no coverage reports for their network. They also offer wireless broadband access for home as well as Lifeline plans with several add-on features available. Cross also offers cellular service as Sprocket Wireless in areas east of Tulsa.
C SPIRE WIRELESS
C Spire has very good coverage on their own network in Mississippi, greater Memphis, parts of Alabama and the Florida panhandle. They have several plans, all of which include Unlimited Talk & Text and nationwide roaming. Some plans are very reasonable for the amount of data they include and some of their features are very creative. Users report very good coverage and like the choice of plans. They offer a good selection of CDMA phones including the iPhone, and have good customer service. Most of their network is 4G - LTE. They also offer a unique batch of consumer-oriented benefits that help integrate wireless devices, plans and features for both customers and non-customers. Even though C Spire has only about 1 million subscribers, it is among the Top 10 US wireless companies, which gives them more clout in the industry.
CTC Wireless is the cellular service provided by the Cambridge Telephone Company of Cambridge, Idaho. CTC offers their own wireless service in Cambridge and surrounding small towns, but in places like Boise, where they offer wireline service, they offer wireless only as a re-seller of Verizon Wireless. CTC offers a moderate selection of plans starting at $10. Most plans are overpriced although the Unlimited plans are reasonable. They offer a small selection of phones including a couple of smartphones with inventory changing regularly. Customer service is very good and Lifeline plans are available. They claim 3G coverage in most areas of their own network. Bundles are available with their wireless service.
CUSTER TELEPHONE WIRELESS
Custer Wireless is the wireless network of the Custer Telephone Cooperative in central Idaho. Their CDMA network provides good coverage for the part of their wireline service area that is not covered by other carriers, mostly in the Salmon River valley. Most of their network has been upgraded to 4G. Plans are reasonably priced. Roaming is available on some of the other nearby area networks and Verizon Wireless. They have a moderate selection of phones including smartphones. Customer service is very good. They offer other communications products but do not offer any bundle discounts with wireless.
Located east of Nashville, DTC has good coverage and is operated by locals as part of the local telephone cooperative. They have National, Senior, Prepaid, Data and Unlimited plans most of which are priced well above average. They have a modest selection of GSM phones with a few Smart phones and older iPhones. Their Prepaid plans are limited and overpriced, except for their "Unlimited" plan which includes Calls, Texts and Data within their Local calling area.. They support Fixed Wireless service for your home phone. We think most, if not all, of their network offers 4G LTE coverage. Their Data plans are pricey and overages incur per-usage charges instead of download slowdowns.
Alphabetical Network List, E - N
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