Cell coverage around San Clemente Island

pbfishes

Newbie
Apr 29, 2018
14
2
San Diego
Name
Peter B
Boat
JC 31
So I fish with a guy and he gets some intermittent cell coverage on his postpaid (i.e., contract) AT&T iPhone as we approach Pyramid from Cortes Bank and then usually again as we are heading from SCI toward San Diego Bay.

I have an AT&T prepaid plan on an (Android) Kyocera DuraForce, and I am less likely to get any signal (presumable the phone antenna), but if it does change from "No Service" it is only to "Emergency Calls Only." In other words, I can't use my phone there.

FWIW, AT&T has separate postpaid and prepaid coverage maps and they are exactly the same for the coverage ON San Clemente Island. (They make no claims about any coverage on the water).

According to various cell tower mapping websites there are both AT&T/"Pacific Bell" and Sprint/"Nextel" have towers on the NE end of San Clemente Island.

Do you get any coverage near SCI? If so, can you post your carrier, type of plan (contract vs. prepaid), and type/model of phone?
 
  • Like
Reactions: butcherboy
Upvote 0

bajabum

Pedo Viejo
Apr 14, 2003
756
480
Vista/La Bocana BCS
Name
Dave
Boat
31 stieger craft 23 striper WAC 24 skipjack open
I get good signal inside 15 mi from SCI.
Verizon contract, IPhone 8 and Samsung s21
 
  • Like
Reactions: pbfishes
Upvote 0

mutu0069

CEO of my own Domain
  • Oct 7, 2006
    799
    350
    los alamitos
    Name
    brian
    Boat
    whatever floats
    Currently I’m through Spectrum ( not prepaid and they use the Verizon network). I was with Verizon before that and I’m experiencing the exact same coverage
     
    Upvote 0

    pbfishes

    Newbie
    Apr 29, 2018
    14
    2
    San Diego
    Name
    Peter B
    Boat
    JC 31
    Currently I’m through Spectrum ( not prepaid and they use the Verizon network). I was with Verizon before that and I’m experiencing the exact same coverage

    Okay, thanks. I used to use Verizon via PagePlus, but had zero data in Alaska where Verizon has no towers/network.

    I like that AT&T's prepaid plan includes full data coverage in Mexico, Canada and Alaska, but I am disappointed about the lack of coverage near San Clemente. And frankly, I currently am in that neighborhood a lot more than any of those others lately.
     
    Upvote 0

    Ali

    Master of Nothing
    Admin
    Apr 24, 2003
    22,780
    7,863
    10
    San Diego
    Name
    That Guy
    Boat
    SeaVee 340Z
    Verizon is insane at Clemente. Don't think a contractvs. prepaid would matter. It's part of their regular network.
     

    pbfishes

    Newbie
    Apr 29, 2018
    14
    2
    San Diego
    Name
    Peter B
    Boat
    JC 31
    Verizon is insane at Clemente. Don't think a contractvs. prepaid would matter. It's part of their regular network.

    I wouldn't think contract vs. prepaid should matter for AT&T, but apparently it does.

    That's why I am asking about Verizon. I would hate to switch to a Verizon prepaid and find it doesn't work out there...
     
    Upvote 0

    Garrison

    Garrison
    May 21, 2008
    420
    237
    Temecula
    Name
    Garrison
    Boat
    Mikelson 43’
    Verizon works for me as well, but there are quite a few places that I have been that don’t have service. I picked up a Delorme now Garmin I believe and am able to text where ever I am, kind of a poor man’s sat phone. Also can leave a bread crumb map for anybody who may need to follow with the added benefit of a redundant SOS button similar to an epirb if something happens. I carry it when I am chukar hunting alone as well. Cheap insurance if something happens. They used to cover a life flight with the plan, not sure if they still do or not.

    Garrison
     
    • Like
    Reactions: kbray001

    pbfishes

    Newbie
    Apr 29, 2018
    14
    2
    San Diego
    Name
    Peter B
    Boat
    JC 31
    Verizon works for me as well, but there are quite a few places that I have been that don’t have service. I picked up a Delorme now Garmin I believe and am able to text where ever I am, kind of a poor man’s sat phone. Also can leave a bread crumb map for anybody who may need to follow with the added benefit of a redundant SOS button similar to an epirb if something happens. I carry it when I am chukar hunting alone as well. Cheap insurance if something happens. They used to cover a life flight with the plan, not sure if they still do or not.

    Garrison
    On my (Commercial fishing) boat, I have a VMS (Vessel Monitoring System) which allows text/email and SOS (and for that weather). The data gets expensive if you are sending/receiving a lot of texts, so I don't want to give the number out to everyone.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: Garrison

    pbfishes

    Newbie
    Apr 29, 2018
    14
    2
    San Diego
    Name
    Peter B
    Boat
    JC 31
    To update my own question, I used a free 7 day trial on Mint Mobile (which resells T-Mobile, which bought Sprint, which used to have an antenna on SCI), and all I got was "emergency calls only". So not ATT and not T-mobile, confirms what everyone is saying that Verizon is the way to go.

    Also This:
     
    Upvote 0

    HBsurf fisher

    Newbie
    Apr 21, 2020
    18
    58
    46
    Huntington Beach
    Name
    Damien Peters
    Boat
    Seadoo fish pro
    T-MOBILE IS CRAZY GOOD!!. Just want to add that my sprint plan just changed to T-Mobile and I just put a new T-Mobile SIM card in my iPhone. I now have perfect cell signal all over the fishing grounds. I have no idea how or why but it’s insane. I never had signal before with sprint and now I have it out past the 277, 289 and anywhere inside of that. I was 42 miles off Dana point last week and had 2 bars. Anyway I’m trying to figure out how so if anyone knows what T-Mobile did I’d love to know
     
    Upvote 0

    pbfishes

    Newbie
    Apr 29, 2018
    14
    2
    San Diego
    Name
    Peter B
    Boat
    JC 31
    Just tested the Verizon network via a $10 Pageplus plan on an LG v40 Thinq (which has a good reputation for signal strength for a not super new and expensive Android phone).

    I called home when we were heading in from the SW side of SCI, talked to my wife like I was next door. My buddy with AT&T and iPhone 12 had no service there. I am planning to port my regular number to a Verizon prepaid plan and use that phone.

    I just hope Verizon's coverage maps for prepaid are correct and they have service with data in Alaska (PagePlus has no data roaming in Alaska, only talk and text, no picture texts or group texts).
     
    Upvote 0

    jackhole

    Almost A Member
    Apr 29, 2010
    191
    129
    HB
    Name
    jack
    Boat
    30 foot skipjack “Paddywagon”
    T mobile is terrible and non existent at SCI. My buddies have Sprint and get service at SCI.
     
    Upvote 0