Which wireless carrier provides the best customer service?

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A survey concludes companies with a strong store network are most likely to please

J.D. Power recently declared Verizon, of all the mobile carriers, provided the best and most reliable coverage. But when consumers have a beef with their wireless provider, it’s usually about customer service, not the reliability of its coverage.

So which provider does the best job of helping its customers and keeping them happy? J.D. Power recently asked that question in its 2023 Wireless Customer Care Survey and found T-Mobile came out on top.

In fact, T-Mobile ranks highest in the mobile network operators segment for the 12th straight survey, earning a score of 827. Metro by T-Mobile was first in the full-service mobile virtual network operators segment with a score of 840, followed by Spectrum Mobile, with a score of 829 and Cricket close behind at 822.

Consumer Cellular ranks highest in the value mobile virtual network operators segment for the 15th straight survey, with a score of 878. Mint Mobile ranks second at 828 and Google Fi Wireless, with a score of 815, ranks third.

The rankings are based on responses from 16,163 customers who contacted their carrier’s customer care department within the past three months. The studies evaluate customer care experiences across three factors: store service; phone service; and digital service. In most cases, consumers had better luck when they visited a store.

Hard to beat in-store service

Angel, of Ormond Beach, Fla., gave T-Mobile a 5-star review after visiting a store and was assisted by a sales rep.

“I'm a Sprint legacy customer and she helped me set up an online account under T-Mobile and also add an international plan on my daughter's line who's traveling overseas,” Angel wrote in a ConsumerAffairs review. “She took the time to go over all my questions and had the patience to answer each one of them in detail.”

Ian Greenblatt, managing director of technology, media & telecom at J.D. Power, says wireless providers with a strong brick-and-mortar presence probably do the best job of serving their customers.

“Face-to-face customer care brings a level of connection that other channels cannot bring,” Greenblatt said.

“Within other channels, customers may be dealing with a bot or an overseas call center. In a world where the use of applications is high, those chats and bots provide both speed and economy, the in-person service provides a more complete understanding of a customer’s needs and wants and ultimately, higher satisfaction is achieved when resolving wireless issues.”

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