Archive for Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Sprint says ‘network capacity’ issues from the return of KU students are the cause of delayed text messages, lost hours

August 24, 2011


On the street

Who is your current cellphone provider, and what grade would you give its overall service?

AT&T; and probably a B. Kind of limited access in areas around Lake of the Ozarks, where we spend a lot of time. Real good around here.

More responses

Trish Jess said on Tuesday it was something like a kind of Twilight Zone.

While working at the Kansas Union, her Sprint mobile phone was displaying the time one hour behind schedule. She first noticed that last Friday, she said.

“At home, it’s correct,” said Jess, who lives west of Monterey Way.

It wasn’t just her, either. Student employees at the KU Bookstore were going on break at the wrong times, she said. Other co-workers also complained.

Amanda Davis, who lives near Ninth and New York streets, said that while at home, she experienced the issue, too, and had text messages delayed for hours at a time. At work in Overland Park, everything was normal.

On Twitter, several Lawrence residents reported having issues with Sprint phones going back to last week, saying they displayed the wrong times and were delivering text messages hours past the time they were sent.

“It delivers them kind of sporadically,” Davis said. “You can tell they’ve been backed up.”

Her husband, who works in social media from home, and also uses a Sprint phone, had it worse than she did, Davis said.

Melinda Tiemeyer, a Sprint spokeswoman, said she couldn’t say for sure why the issues were occurring.

“The best guess is that it was related to all of the KU students coming back and starting class,” Tiemeyer said. “We had to reallocate network resources to increase the capacity.”

Some phone users reported that the issues seemed to be mostly resolved by Wednesday afternoon.


kantubek 6 years, 5 months ago

The piece of technology I've grown entirely dependent upon isn't working! Wahhhhh!

How did people even communicate before texts? Gosh.

Tim Quest 6 years, 5 months ago

The only person in or near this article complaining is you.

dsplawrence 6 years, 5 months ago

A typical verbal exchange between KU students:

GUY: (While staring vacantly at iPhone) Dude, like, Facebook, Rock Chalk Jayhawk, totally, text message, Facebook, like, dude, totally.

GIRL: (Staring vacantly at iPhone) Yeah, like, totally, Facebook, Ugg Boots, GO KU! Totally...

1983Hawk 6 years, 5 months ago

Sprint, our local company, has fouled their pants spectacularly on this one. Can anyone possibly imagine worse PR? Students have zero tolerance or patience for cyber-inefficiency like this and will change service the first time they can when current contracts are up. And don't think AT&T and Verizon won't save this particular press clipping.

CreatureComforts 6 years, 5 months ago

It's one small event in one small town impacting one small group of people. What are AT&T and Verizon going to do, create a national ad campaign about this? What speaks most to most people is money...they will re-sign in a heartbeat if Sprint offers the lowest price.

And speaking of price, I bet a lot of these students are on their parents' family plans, so they don't really have a choice anyways.

Sharon Roullins 6 years, 5 months ago

I'm not a KU student but my Sprint phone has been going "crazy" for almost two weeks now. My alarm is set for 5:30 a.m. but it goes off at 4:30 a.m. Dropped calls are the norm now and one day it dialed numbers by itself as if it were possessed. Want to drop the service but don't want to pay an early termination fee.

Woop 6 years, 5 months ago

Sounds like it might be a device or software issue, not a network issue. You might try calling Sprint Care, I've had good luck with them.

Hoots 6 years, 5 months ago

Hmmm...all of these kids were here last year. It's not as if all of these people showed up out of the blue. I had Sprint for years. After similar spells of bad service not close to campus and the fact I had to start Babysitting my bill every month to make sure they didn't put some random charge on my it for a service they offer but I didn't sign up for. Not to mention the horrible overseas customer NO service. I dropped them like a bad habit. I'll never sign a contract for service ever again.

TopJayhawk 6 years, 5 months ago

excactly. This ain't new. The kids were here last yr and the yr before. I call BS on this one.

Adrienne Sanders 6 years, 5 months ago

The amount of people who have smartphones and use them for a lot more than calls/ texting has increased drastically over the past couple years, though.

missmagoo 6 years, 5 months ago

I completely agree. Every single month I had to call them for some ridiculous charge on my bill. They added services, took off services I wanted (and therefore charged me out the wazoo), charged fees, etc. I dropped them and went to AT&T to get the 1st gen iPhone.. now to Verizon I go! Between AT&T's spotty reception and Sprint's fees, I don't know which is worse. My first semester at KU I had Alltel (mind you, 10 years ago) and my bill was $450 because Lawrence was roaming and the nearest store was in Ottawa.

There's nothing quite like being 30 minutes away from Sprint's WORLD HEADQUARTERS and having reception problems!

Curtis Lange 6 years, 5 months ago

Should be fun in Oct with all the new Sprint iPhone activations then. :)

Orwell 6 years, 5 months ago

Like most of the wireless biggies, Sprint's business plan calls for investment in as little capacity as they can get away with. If it works most of the time, the company assumes most customers will just keep paying.

Sprint's only the worst of a bad lot. Most of the wireless services were unable to handle the traffic around the Virginia earthquake. What's the point of a "communications" system that fails when it's most needed?

Tim Quest 6 years, 5 months ago

Landline phones suffer(ed) the same fate at times of maximum use - remember "All circuits are busy - please try again?" It's completely stupid to expect ANY infrastructure to be built to withstand maximum usage. Are roads built to accommodate every car in town at the same time? If everyone in the country turned on their AC and lights at once, the power grid would be overloaded. That's just not how infrastructure is built, and your lack of understanding of this relatively basic issue belies ignorance on your part.

justajoe 6 years, 5 months ago

I don't dispute your point about the limits of infrastructure, but saying someone is "completely stupid" and calling them ignorant is a bit over the top, don't you think? Orwell will get plenty of support for his assertion that "Sprint's only the worst of a bad lot." It's an inferior provider in both service and support and, to put it your way, anyone whose not aware of that is completely stupid.

Now, tell your boss at Sprint tthat you'd like the rest of the day off, go home, get into bed, roll out the other side this time, and try again.

MarcoPogo 6 years, 5 months ago

Oh, come on! That was back when poor Sarah was the only operator in Mayberry and couldn't keep up with the demand when everybody decided to ring up Floyd's Barber Shop at the same time.

We're in different times now, my friend.

Steve Bunch 6 years, 5 months ago

Hmm. I've noticed no problems with my rotary phone. (Knock on wood.)

dogsandcats 6 years, 5 months ago

I have Sprint and I haven't noticed any problems.

Paul R Getto 6 years, 5 months ago

There has been some interesting coverage of this issue lately. 5% of texts never get delivered (on average.) 90 some percent are delivered in a few minutes, but not all of them get through. Texting was an add-on when they started selling lots of phones. Apparently it's not particularly efficient. So, next time you are late or forget to buy the milk, tell people your message must be one of the 5% that got lost in the digital ozone.

Adrienne Sanders 6 years, 5 months ago

I used to have similar problems with AT&T (right after it stopped being Cingular) when the students would come back; it happened two years in a row. Haven't had any problems in the past several years though.

gccs14r 6 years, 5 months ago

I thought spotty coverage and lost texts were the norm with Sprint. Oh, and now maybe some of you will understand why some of us continue to have watches and alarm clocks. Some of us know enough about technology to know better than to rely on one device for everything. (Seriously? Going on break at the wrong time because your phone is wonky?)

kthxbi 6 years, 5 months ago

I call BS. My co-worker and I both have Sprint and began having these issues in Topeka over a month ago. We called Sprint and they told us to power cycle our phones. Thanks Sprint! Never thought of that. Both of our phones display the same wrong hour, but separate reboots should fix it. Of course it didn't. And we still continue to have trouble.

Bonnie Cherry 6 years, 5 months ago

"Give it a SECOND! It's going to SPACE! Can you give it a second to get back from SPACE?!"

ihatelv 6 years, 5 months ago

Same thing happened to Sprint back in 2001 in Manhattan....................

Woop 6 years, 5 months ago

Overall Sprint actually has great service and coverage. There were a handful of people who called the newspaper about this and it got this write up over that handful of people. Those handful might have had better luck calling Sprint Care instead of complaining to a newspaper about a local business that provides thousands of jobs. I just think people have become so absolutely dependant on their devices that they blow any little issue way out of proportion.

justajoe 6 years, 5 months ago

"Overall Sprint actually has great service and coverage."

You must be kidding. If not, do a little research and offer an objective source to back up that claim. What your research would reveal is source after source recounting how bad the service is. One of the industry's own trade associations routinely reported how Sprint led the way in customer complaints and the loss of customers, primarily because of poor customer service. These reports can be found in the archives of most major news organizations. I will concede that, based on my own experiences, Sprint's customer service has improved slightly in the past two years, but only because it had nowhere to go but up, and probably only because management finally realized that the continued bleeding of hundreds of thousands of customers every quarter threatened to drive the whole pathetic operation into oblivion.

Here's some advice for Sprint customers who can't get their issues resolved. Call customer service again and tell them you want to discontinue service now, period. They're under pressure to not lose any more customers, and chances are very good they'll finally do what it takes to keep you just happy enough to not lose you. It worked for me. Good luck.

gccs14r 6 years, 5 months ago

I was a Sprint customer for a year once. Service started out bad and got worse. When my contract was up and I wanted to cancel my service, I had to drive to Kansas City to do it. At least they couldn't "lose" me in the menu system or drop the call that way, which means it probably took less time than if I had tried it by phone.

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