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iPhone 5 lte signal/reception problem

319462 Views 605 Replies Latest reply: Feb 7, 2014 6:57 AM by Ypswytch RSS
  • sbs59 Calculating status...
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    Oct 21, 2013 5:52 PM (in response to omsterathome)

    I've seen some very strange behaviour on the 5S as well - for example, this afternoon in Canada, I drove into my driveway while on a call without any reception problems.  But when the call ended, the signal immediately dropped and then, when I wanted to quickly make a call to my son, No Service appeared and sat there for roughly 20 seconds before then somehow two bars appeared and the call, via Rogers was then completed, and I got through to him.  Neither I nor the phone moved at all during this time.  This type of thing seems to be happening often since I upgraded from the 4S, with the bars of reception on the 5S jumping around like popcorn.  I think that there is an attempt by the Apple programmers to deal with the issue as the phone is obviously resetting the chipset... I have the Apple leather case installed on the phone - so it can't be a case problem

  • Crister23 Calculating status...
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    Dec 6, 2013 3:35 AM (in response to Steven Furegno)

    I totally can relate to this. How do we fu**in resolve this?

  • lifetimeboater Calculating status...
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    Jan 8, 2014 1:15 AM (in response to omsterathome)

    Just for the record, I have an AT&T iPhone 5, iOS 6.1.2 on StraightTalk with a brand new LTE compatible SIM card, running on AT&T's network. This does not make any difference, what kind of phone or carrier you use. All combinations have been reported to have this problem. Apple, AT&T, Verizon, Sprint...all of them deny to acknowledge the problem and fix it. Is it the phone, is it the network, is it both? We as consumers don't know, but they DO, YES THEY DO. They just won't acknowledge it.

    I've read this whole thread and MANY alike. I found a workaround of the problem. It won't fix it per se, but it switches to LTE every time you do this.

    The problem I have is that the phone defaults to 4G instead of LTE, and this does not bring only Internet speed issues, but drains down battery like crazy. Literally, if I leave my phone in this state, battery will go from 100% to 5% in a few hours only, without touching the phone (let alone using it). If I get it to connect to LTE, I get awesome battery life. I am not an expert, but I explain this with iPhone's constant search for LTE signal and when not able to switch and stick to it, it gets stuck with 4G. This loops forever causing the battery to go dead very quickly even if fully charged.

    Those with the same problem already know that carrier WILL NOT help, flipping Airplane/LTE/Data switches or rebooting does not help either. Nor will reset network settings do any good. Replacing SIM card does NOT help. Replacing the phone with a new one does NOT help...

     

    Here's what does.

     

    While the phone is trying to connect to LTE and can't, it falls in a deadly loop which seems endless. What happens is that phone will have a normal signal strength with 4G, then all of a sudden signal drops to 1 bar and data connection is completely lost. This will last about 5 seconds. Then everything is lost, phone displays No Signal for about a minute or so and then reconnects with normal signal strength and 4G data. This loop won't happen hourly or daily, it happens every 5-6 minutes...you can't normally use your phone, if anyone calls you it would go straight to voicemail. It's THAT ridiculous. The trick is to catch that 5 seconds time frame when the loop begins, the phone will drop off the data connection and signal will go down to 1 bar, these 2 events happen at the same time. You need to make a phone call right at this moment. If you do, you will notice that signal strength will be restored to whatever it was before the loop started (say 3-4-5 bars) and in a second 4G connection will come live while in call. The call will go through, make sure you don't call a random number but you can call for example your voicemal. If you wait 10-15 seconds and hang up, LTE will come back, GUARANTEED.

     

    Here it is summarized:

    1. Lock your phone so you'll trigger that connection loss cycle.

    2. (You may need to wait a few minutes, you have to try). Unlock it and catch it when it drops data and signal goes to 1 bar (these happen simultaneously).

    3. Before it looses connection completely, quickly place a call (say voicemail).

    4. Notice how signal bar goes back immediately to whatever it was (3-4-5 bars) and 4G data connection is restored. Loop cycle is broken at this point and the call will go through.

    5. Keep the call on for about 10-15 seconds and close it.

    6. LTE will come back shortly. Can't tell how long your phone will keep LTE on, but if it drops it for 4G, then repeat.

     

    Hope this helps. Apple or your carrier will not help. Only thing they offer is flipping above mentioned switches, upgrading iOS, resetting network settings, exchanging SIM cards or phone itself. None of these will help, tried it.

     

    Cheers!

  • wandathomas Calculating status...
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    Jan 8, 2014 8:08 AM (in response to lifetimeboater)

    Having experienced all the above with both mine and my husbands iPhone5, I can tell you that the iPhone 5S does not have the problem.  Which would lead me to believe that it is a design flaw with the iPhone5.  I even filed an FCC complaint against AT&T (which is about as effective as an umbrella in a hurricane).  But the minute we both got the 5S's, the problem disappeared and I now have an actual battery life again.  That's just my $.02 worth.

  • dnewpix Calculating status...
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    Jan 8, 2014 9:30 AM (in response to lifetimeboater)

    Wow boater! That's a lot of effort to make a call. A bit like taking a cab to visit your neighbour.

    I'll stick with my original analysis, the phone is ****, and you can't polish a turd.

    Apple should admit it and swop all of their i5 customers out with the 5s for free. God knows they could afford to do it.

    But they never will :(

  • luism1023 Calculating status...
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    Jan 8, 2014 10:23 AM (in response to dnewpix)

    Is there any way to sue them for selling a defective model. I was speaking to T-Mobile and they said they would fix the issue but I haven't heard back.

  • Pete boston Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)
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    Jan 8, 2014 10:57 AM (in response to wandathomas)

    Is there a reason why you are not running iOS 7.0.4 on your iPhone 5?  I would upgrade to this version and re-test and you are not running the same version of SW on your iPhone 5 as 5S since the minimum version for the iPhone 5S is iOS 7.  As someone who was the most vocal person on this thread about my problems with my iPhone 5, I can tell you that the significant majority of them have long since been resolved by iOS upgrades and in the case of the largest one that has not been resolved, it is a problem with poor LTE signal strength/coverage from my carrier (Verizon) and is not the fault of the iPhone 5.  The other issue that will impact the iPhone 5, but not the 5S, which is not relevant for you, but is relevant for me is that the iPhone 5 does not support Verizon's AWS band and Verizon's Boston LTE network (non-AWS) is horribly overcongested and results in terrible performance in many locations andm/or overcongestion so bad that VZW forces you back to 3G.  Unfortunately the only resolution for this situation is a new phone that supports the AWS-band (iPhone 5S, GS4, Note 3, etc).

  • lifetimeboater Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 8, 2014 11:16 AM (in response to omsterathome)

    @wanda

    People upgraded to 5s and had the same problem. I believe I saw it on macrumors, google it and you'll all kinds of stories

     

    @dnewpix

    The explanation is long (sorry :) but it's not that hard. I wrote so long post to make sure I target only those with the same problem. Basically you make a phone call at the moment explained above and LTE will come back after you hang up. That's all it's about. Takes seconds

     

    @luism

    Nobody knows if this is a phone issue. I've seen people exchange their phones with new ones numerous times and same problem keeps tormenting them. They replace SIM cards! Flip switches, etc. IMO it's the network and the iPhone together but can't be sure

     

    @Pete

    Yes, there's a particular reason I don't want to update to the new iOS. I hate it! And again, I've read many users upgraded to no avail. It didn't help and they got stuck on iOS 7 since Apple won't let them downgrade.

     

    Apple, macrumors, AT&T, howardforums...they're all full with complains about this or similar issue. And this makes me believe that they know where the problem is upstairs but don't admit it.

  • Pete boston Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 8, 2014 11:24 AM (in response to lifetimeboater)

    I have spent a lot of time troubleshooting this issue. I can tell you that I was convinced my iPhone 5 sucked (because some of the original 6.x versions were bad) until I spent just as many weeks/months w/ the GS3 at the time and numerous other head-sets and was convinced that it was the network. I get you don't like iOS 7, but you really need to do a device wipe, upgrade to iOS 7.0.4 and re-try if you're claiming the iPhone 5S works fine before coming to the conclusion there is a specific iPhone 5 issue.

  • luism1023 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jan 8, 2014 11:31 AM (in response to lifetimeboater)

    I understand your point but the problem seems to be rx hardware issues. So the phone is defective.

  • lifetimeboater Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jan 8, 2014 11:39 AM (in response to Pete boston)

    I'm not claiming 5s works fine. On the contrary, I said it has the same issue. And I didn't say 5 had an issue. I said that in my opinion it's the phone and network together, where the network is more to blame. And if it's the phone itself how come many customers reported that their phones were repeatedly exchanged with new ones by Apple and problem was not resolved? Having a whole batch of bad iPhones? Hard to believe. The most ridiculous thing is that nobody admits anything. Apple may be afraid of another "antennagate", we'll never know

  • Pete boston Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 8, 2014 11:40 AM (in response to luism1023)

    I'm trying to give you the point of view of someone who have been involved since the early part of this thread and probably did hundreds of hours of research across multiple carriers and devices, I was one of the most vocal complainers on this topic.  You certainly could have a bum iPhone 5 HW, in which case if it's under warranty the Apple store will replace it if you can show them what is happening.

     

    However, I can tell you that my home is -110dBM LTE and this ***** horribly on ALL Verizon phones, not just the iPhone 5. This poor signal strength results in flapping to 3G/1X and really poor LTE upload speeds when I do happen to be on LTE.  If *3001#12345#* is reporting -120 or close to it, you have terrible LTE signal strength at your location and your problem is not going to be fixed unless you either switch to a carrier with better signal strength or your carrier adds a new tower to fix your poor signal strength.  I was 100% convinced that my iPhone 5 was the culprit for my problems and as I mentioned, iOS 6 did have its share of flawed releases for which the phone would not recover back to LTE in a reasonable timeframe after dropping to 3G (this transition still takes too long in my book on Verizon's network). I may have missed it in the thread, but how did you come to the conclusion that you have a RX hardware issue and have you used a GS3 (assuming VZ, non-AWS device) in the same location to confirm that the other device works flawlessly in the same location? This is how I was able to come to the conclusion that the problem was the network (Verizon in my case) and not the phone (other than some initial bum 6.x releases re: LTE handling which have long since been fixed).

  • Pete boston Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 8, 2014 11:41 AM (in response to lifetimeboater)

    If the iPhone 5S has the same issue, I suggest you try a GS4 and see if it has the same issues. I tried pretty much very flagship LTE device from Verizon and that's how I was able to convince myself that their LTE network just sucked horribly and that my complaints against Apple were no longer warranted since their numerous releases came out to fix LTE-related issues)

  • luism1023 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 8, 2014 11:48 AM (in response to Pete boston)

    I can't speak about Verizon service but on T-Mobile the iPhone 5S, 5C, Note 3, GS4, G2 Nexus 5 and nexus 4 work way better than the iPhone 5 when it comes to LTE reception or for that matter any other kind of reception.

  • dnewpix Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 8, 2014 12:00 PM (in response to Pete boston)

    Pete, i prefer my original operating system, however several of my colleagues upgraded but NONE said there signal strength or reception issues were improved. Some upgraded (at cost) to the 5s and thought it WAS improved. I agree with your over congested LTE traffic in some areas, (Brookline was hopeless when i was there) and we have the same problems in much of London.

    But. This is a hardware issue. I took the i5 home and was instantly dissappointed to find i had to stand outside the front door to make a call where i had previously never had this problem with my Blackberry. Wifi pickup is also a joke. I took it back to the shop and they said it's fine. They did all the button pushes, wipes, wise old man tricks and even patted it on the head and said please. It's still ****.

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