I am in an area without Sprint LTE.
I'm happy with 3G... If only Sprint would reliably provide me with 3G service.
I can often get 3g by either resetting network settings... or going into airplane mode and out again.
Unfortunately, I only notice after I realize I haven't been receiving e-mails, or I can't sent messages.
Last week I got stranded without a map... called Sprint spent a half hour on the phone that ended with them transferring me to Apple.
Apple has done several diagnostics on my phone, Sprint claims their towers are fine.
So I started a blog collecting the screen shots documenting the "Things I can't do with my Sprint iPhone."
But I'm looking for more submission.
Please submit them to: email@example.com
I included the e-mail to submit screen shots, but not the blog.
Here it is: http://sprintmess.tumblr.com
There are so many "solutions" posted on these forums, and I'm sure many work, but here's what worked for me, for what it's worth.
By the way, I'm in Nashville.. one of the few cities with 4g - it's sparse, but here.
First, if you have not exchanged your phone (and changed IMEI's/etc), then it's not an Apple problem. It's Sprint.
There is a department within Sprint specifically for iPhone users and it's hard as heck to get through to ----- To do it, you have to get through to the "Activation" department first, and then insist on speaking to an iPhone Sprint tech for the Activation. Just tell them you are stuck in the Activation process, and don't give any details about 3g or data, just that you're *stuck" in Activation on the iPhone screen, and if you say that enough times, they'll eventually port you over to those specific techs.
One you're there, make sure it's an iPhone tech. Every time I've been ported over, they DO say that immediately, but always double check.
Now, of course, you don't need your phone "Activated" (for the first time) .. but that's not what the iPhone techs "only" do. They do it all.
Here's what I did from there, while on the phone with them:
1) Factory reset my phone.
2) Started with Activate via "Cellular Data" and not WiFi. (wifi is auto-on after resets - and leave it that way during setup)
3) Activate as "New Phone" and not from an iTunes backup.
4) The last step was connecting to Wifi - logging into my Apple account.
---- And then, going back into Settings to ensure Wifi was OFF - which it was. It automatically went off (which was good) and surprised the tech somewhat.
And let me tell you............. that ^ setup is not straight-forward. Meaning, it wasn't just "Choose the option" and "Next" etc etc. I've had iPhones from day 1 and the way the tech had me do it was very different.
As I sat on the phone, I saw my connection go from basically 2g (no 3g signal) to a strong 3g.
The tech then placed a call and text to my phone and had me test-text and call a number she provided. It worked.
She also had me check my connection via Safari.
The iPhone 5 techs are very good. "Regular" customer service is terrible - for this problem, anyway.
Since that time, about 10 days ago. I've noticed in my bill that about 1/2 of my data usage is 3g - the other part 4g.
If NOT for insisting for an iPhone activation tech, specifically, I would still be using a brick.