Upstate NY Cell Phone Coverage
With over 4,300 cell phone dead zones located throughout upstate New York, the area is rife with problems for cell phone customers, which is almost everybody. To add salt to the wound, the cell phone carriers in the state report having full coverage. Advertisements in the region tell customers that there is coverage all over the state. Yet, the recent survey showing the numbers taken by New York Democrat Senator Chuck Schumer reports 1,000 dead spots in the Finger Lakes region alone. Across the state, the major cell phone carriers frequently under-perform in network reliability and speed, as well as data performance.
While AT&T says they will look into the issue, it can be pretty difficult to believe that they didn’t know what their coverage maps truly looked like, they are the ones who tested and issued the maps in the first place. In light of all this, Senator Schumer has announced that he will be talking with the FCC about ramifications for this problem if working with the carriers themselves turns out to be fruitless.
How bad is it?
At this point, Senator Schumer says the cell phone coverage is “spotty at best”. More damning is the fact that along the northern NY border with Canada, the Canadian cell phone service frequently out performs American coverage in these cell phone dead zones. Worse still, cell phone dead zones were found inside some of the most populated areas in New York City.
Why it matters
Having good cell phone service is more than just being able to quickly watch our cat videos. Cell phones save lives. Imagine being lost, getting attacked, or being in a car accident in a cell phone dead zone. It’s possible that there may be no way to call for help, and without GPS on your phone, it is also impossible to track you even if you could announce you were in severe danger. Can you imagine if your house set on fire, and as you call 9-1-1 you can’t get a signal. Your house would be left to burn without any chance of saving it, god forbid a living creature should be inside.
What exactly are they doing about it?
Senator Schumer has made his plea for the companies to take responsibility and fix the problem(s). At this time, he has said that he will check back with the companies in a few months to see how their progress is coming along. If nothing changes, Senator Schumer has pledged to get the FCC to use its power to help the citizens.