We fixed the 3G problem on one of our iPhones this past Sunday. I would've posted earlier, however, I was advised to wait until today to confirm that the fix works (and it has worked flawlessly since). It turns out Apple never loaded the "activation policy" that links the serial number of your phone to work on the carrier on our phone. This is not the same as the SIM lock and is something done on iPhones on their own internal system.
We finally reached a Sprint Tech (ky158151) whom had the foresight and acted on his inclination. He called Apple on our behalf and was advised indeed the activation policy short. The tech put the request in to load the activation policy on the phone. After we got the confirmation that the policy has been loaded we performed a factory reset and set up the phone as new. 15 min later, VOILA! Data!
I would contact Apple first. The senior rep that I dealth with (REDACTED) whom also can be reached at 1-877-REDACTED.
Please provide them your serial number, ICCID, MEID, as well as your phone number when you contact them to request loading the activation policy that's linked to your phone.
I really hope this fixes it for all of you out there. The frustration going through this really was something. I just cannot something like this actually fell through the cracks before shipment.
Is any body still having this issue? I just started using my iPhone 5 on Sprint and have followed all the fixes in this thread to no avail, though I can't get through to senior reps at Apple. The lower level ones keep telling me it's Sprint's fault. LTE on the other hand, works fine when it's available. My problem is just 3G. Showing full bars and the 3G keeps going on and off but usually just the circle.
This is simply not true, this is diffinately a SPRINT network issue. I beleive a class action suit might be the answer. Anyone having issues should contact the FTC and file an on-line complaint. I'm having the same issues as everyone eles on this forum. Trouble shooting many many times to no avail.