Verizon Wireless still hates North Boulder (but loves our money)

| Jan 12, 2021

Out of frustration, I guess, I tweeted Verizon Wireless after years of being unable to make phone calls on a current iPhone either when driving along Iris Ave. between Broadway and 28th St. or when visiting the complex of stores around Lucky’s Market on N. Broadway.

Guess what: we have a social media dialogue on our hands. Someone at Verizon is watching closely for people who put a little @verizonwireless in their tweets. I’ll report back with any updates should service improve.

In my reply tweet to “^MH” at Verizon, I included a terse “frustration widespread,” which seems reportorial enough given how many people I’ve heard complain about Verizon’s areas of no service in North Boulder.

I neglected to note to Verizon the problems experienced by people who live at the west side of the Newlands neighborhood in North Boulder. When I discussed this in an earlier call with Verizon Wireless tech support, a nice person said she could provide a “network extender” box for $175 but added that, for technical reasons related to network upgrades, it probably wouldn’t help much if at all. As for waiving the $175, “they don’t let us do that anymore.”

It should be noted that we had totally reliable cellphone service in Amsterdam (and in unlikely places like a train zooming through rural Spain) when we were working there — in 1999.

As for the trail where I took the picture “high above Boulder,” I’m not allowed to tell anyone because it’s a gorgeous new Open Space trail and we don’t want it to get crowded.

A screenshot of the Twitter dialogue follows…

* * *


UPDATE July 16, 2015: I now have an official Verizon Wireless Trouble Ticket, No. 7786181. I hope everyone affected by lousy Verizon Wireless coverage in North Boulder goes on Twitter and comments about it. Be sure to include @verizonwireless in your tweet. You can also add “@monopolist” for extra pizzazz.

UPDATE August 12, 2019: – See new reader comment and editor’s reply below.


  1. Jared Hoke says:

    I am a visitor from Minnesota who is APPALLED by the miserable cell service I find in Boulder. In BOULDER! There’s “no excuse for it”, but my own home experience may exemplify the hidden cause. Marine on St Croix is a very small town on the MN/WI border that is below a high rocky ridge, so is in an “electronic hole”; nearby Minneapolis/St Paul signals shoot over our heads, so on air TV service is very weak and so is cell service. So we should build a special tower, right? BUT we can’t, because a small group of luddites stand against it. Given Boulder’s surfeit of self-importance, I suspect you may have the same problem. One man’s opinion ….

  2. JD says:

    On ATT near Jay & 47th. I have struggled with coverage for 2 decades now. Had microcells with 2 carriers. 3 carriers in total. Filed formal complaints with FTC & FCC and ended up having a long conversation with a V.P. a couple years back (Used to work in this industry). He admitted its a cluster. Its all about capacity and carrier reticence to throttle-down streaming more aggressively. Demogs/contracts drive the upgrade decisions- not actual usage- where Boulder is off the charts. FYI- If WiFi calling is important to you avoid ATT: Their implementation of it is terrible such that it will stick with cellular for extended periods when there is zero to weak cell but strong WiFi.

  3. Jennifer says:

    T-Mobile cell phone service is horrible in North Boulder also. 47th and Jay road area

  4. Aimee says:

    UPDATE: (Apple iPhone XR) After calling Verizon and troubleshooting I went from having one bar to four bars instantly by going to Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings. It worked for about 5 minutes then the bars went back down to two. I give up.

  5. Aimee says:

    The Table Mesa area has terrible reception as well, and the weak signal makes it very hard to conduct remote, online work for my employer. I have to leave Boulder because the cost of living here is ridiculous and on top of that I can’t even do my job because Verizon sucks. Why am I renting a place for thousands a month for this level of stress and terrible cell service? Is it overcrowding? Is it the mountains? I am so confused as to why this community of filthy rich people cannot come together and work on this weak cell signal issue. I am so frustrated. Just bought a new iPhone and I literally have one bar anywhere in my house.

  6. Zac says:

    Yea I have version by far is the worse company to have services . I drove to the canion like 2 mile from boulder I have no servise at all I get to one bar after crossing broadway I work in downtown town boulder and my internet is no working I’m so frustrated I wish I can go back to at&t .

  7. Ellen Ross says:

    My Verizon service in Palo Park has been spotty for years, but now seems to have reached an unmanageable low. Calls are dropped regularly or can’t be conducted because either my voice or the voice of the person I’m calling frequently cuts out. Today I just realized I had 5 new voice messages from the past 3 days, but there was no notification that I had voice messages. I can’t effectively manage my business with this service but have been told that T-Mobile doesn’t have coverage in this area and ATT isn’t much better (but may be worth trying them again at this point).

    A friend recently told me that there’s a known issue with a Satellite Radio buff who is using a frequency that interferes with the Verizon signal in our area. He was able to use that information to successfully break his contract.

    • Bob Wells says:

      Our solution for the crappy Verizon signal at our house is to use a landline (for our business) and, for everything else, to use an iPhone and make sure that the option “Wi-fi calling” is turned on (find under Cellular > Wi-Fi Calling). This routes phone calls over your house wi-fi, and it works extremely well.

  8. Chris Goodman says:

    HELP! The service is SO expensive and we are like the neglected step child here on the city edge next to Gunbarrel. Its awful. I drop multiple calls every day, and complain constantly and still no progress … I am so frustrated!

  9. Jethro says:

    I noticed that Verizon actually commented on this initial article above, but what did they do? Service in Gunbarrel has actually gotten dramatically worse in the last several weeks. I have opened many “trouble tickets” over the years and Verizon has done nothing!

    Yes, Verizon is horrible and ATT is not much better. I’ve called them repeatedly (being a telecom engineer) and discovered that our neighborhood is a low signal zone. Ironically, there is a cell tower less than a mile away, but Verizon has chosen to tune the antenna to focus on the diagonal highway and the industrial parks (signal at Avery still sucks!).

    Verizon also claims that they don’t get enough customer complaints to upgrade the network, my response has been “that’s because they have such a terrible [signal that] many don’t use Verizon.” The result is hundreds of people with poor service. Many times my voicemail won’t work until I leave the house and the signal gets stronger, thus many missed calls I’m not even aware of.

    Verizon does not care! The only solution to using them and getting decent service is to use voice over IP, requiring that the customer subscribe to a high-speed Internet connection with WiFi and a special network extender box. Verizon want you to buy these boxes from them of course. I think I have one not in use if anyone’s interested.

    Perhaps if enough of us complain to Verizon (or to the FCC) they will retune the antenna, install a new tower or upgrade their network. Parehaps we could get a petition going.

    Unfortunately for me, I bought my iPhone at the Verizon store in town where they promised that their network worked all over the Front Range. By the time I figured out that there network was/is the problem, the trial period on the phone had expired and I’m stuck with the phone even if they let me out of the contract. Upon further research, ATT also has terrible service, so switching carriers offers little and they know it and encourages them to do nothing.

  10. Jethro says:

    Two years later the Verizon scam continues! Poor service in almost all of Gunbarrel, repeated complaints to Verizon are ignored. This should be a class action lawsuit as Verizon continues to sell service in “marginal signal” areas…This violates their FCC charter!

  11. el Sheb says:

    Why should folks need a “booster” to maintain same level of service? I’m likely going with an “unlocked” GSM phone in near future. I’m certain it will be an adventure. Perhaps this will work.

  12. el Sheb says:

    Comcast ALSO worsened … past 2 yrs. or so. A few weeks ago, I was told to re-program.

  13. el Sheb says:

    I had GREAT reception – in SOBO – for YEARS. Only in 2016, in RECENT months (this summer, perhaps as far back as April) – multiple DROPPED CALLS.

    I have remained in same location, and calling from my desk, as usual. Local, or calls out of state. Does not matter who/where. Calls to Whole Foods Mkt., Pearl St. … 4 or 5 attempts one day. Finally got thru another try, a few days later.

    WHAT … pray tell … is going on Verizon ????

  14. Jake says:

    I live in the Dakota Ridge neighborhood and I can’t make a call unless I walk outside and down to the corner of 10th and Lee. Very frustrating.

  15. Chris McCall says:

    I work from a home office in Valmont/Folsom area. Verizon network is usable for about 33% of attempted calls placed/received. Have been using Comcast wifi calling with somewhat better quality. Considering re-installing land line. Frustrating.

  16. H Smith says:

    The terrible coverage is not limited to North Boulder. I live in South Boulder and it takes me an average of three dropped calls to make a single successful call. I have turned to a landline to make calls of any importance. Verizon – help us all!

    • Bob Wells says:

      Thank you for your input to the discussion, H. One small note of progress: reception seems a lot better (existent) now on the east-west drive on Iris between Broadway and Folsom (a stretch I had complained to Verizon about more than once).

  17. dsladepi says:

    After years of fine Verizon cell service at our home in Palo Park neighborhood (near Jay and 30th) we began dropping calls and getting a weird two tone beep at the beginning of making a call. Inevitably after 30 seconds of conversation I start hearing an echo of my own voice and drop calls. This has been going on for about 3-6? months now, starting @ Summer of 2015. I contacted Verizon and here is what they said,

    “Since I do see that we have a tower that isn’t too far from you and you should be getting good service, I’d actually like to send a team out to your area to inspect that tower. It doesn’t sound like anybody has done that, and it sounds like a lot of customers in your area are being impacted. Does that sound like a plan to get you some better service?”

    Hopefully we’ll see an improvement soon.

    A buddy of mine DID get the booster / extender for his house and he said that is really works, but was annoyed to have to pay around $175 for it.

  18. Ed says:

    Four Mile Creek – North Boulder

    Same issues as noted from others. Impossible to use our Verizon iPhones from home. Visited store and they never informed us of why this issue was happening. Had to read it hear. Probably because they don’t want to give folks credits for no service. Thanks Verizon, “Can you hear me know???”…(probably not, unless I call you from my Comcast landline)

  19. Kate says:

    I’ve been in N. Boulder for 6 years. Signal has deteriorated over the last few months. People are constantly saying I am breaking up. I move around the house, outside, etc. but have little success with any reliable signal. Pease keep Verizon on this!

  20. Kelly Frazier says:

    Wow, we live at about 6th and Grape in the Newlands and our service seems to have plummeted lately. We work from home, so this is pretty detrimental to a sane day.

    Please keep posting if any updates show up from Verizon.

  21. patrick roberts says:

    Long time resident of North Boulder (lower Wonderland Lake/Forest Glen neighborhood near Jarrow Montessori) and long time subscriber to Verizon Wireless. Ditto regarding North Boulder Verizon cell phone signal – roughly equivalent to the North Pole in terms of signal strength and reliability.

  22. Eric says:

    Found this after googling “Verizon Wireless Cell Reception Boulder” out of frustration. I live and work in Old North Boulder and can’t even take calls at my house anymore without fear of miserable reception. Nothing worse than the dreaded “yea, I can’t hear you – sounds like you may have dropped”. Sadly, I even bought the “network extender” for $250 for my house so I could work, but it hasn’t helped one bit. Please post if you make any progress or get any answers. They aren’t exactly forthcoming at the 29th St Mall location on information.

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