Previous 1 2 Next 20 Replies Latest reply: Feb 5, 2015 10:52 AM by Triangle Feldenkrais
jeff.davis11 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

ISSUE/SYMPTOMS:  iPhone 5 ONLY: Cellular Data stops intermittingly, cellular data locks up without warning, Wi-Fi data connection not working on occasion, iCloud contacts, calendar and reminders not updating, Find My Phone not working, mail or Internet not available or server time-outs. No error messages though. All of these are symptoms of no data service. Problems seem to be related to iPhone 5 failing to switch between LTE and 4G or 3G data services on AT&T.

 

My iPhone 5 32GB AT&T version (iOS 6.0.2) along with my clients and family using iPhone 5 in the state of Oklahoma are having this issue on their AT&T iPhone 5's:  no cellular data connection re-established if at anytime the LTE connection is lost or weak.  As with iPhone's prior to iPhone 5, the iPhone 5 is supposed to drop down to the next tier of data service and re-connect to cellular data service when the higher speed cellular data service is not available.  Apparently this is not working well on the iPhone 5.

 

What led me to research this LTE issue was that my iPhone was not syncing on iCloud with contacts, calendars and reminders with my other iOS devices.  Other times this issue became apparent was when iMessage quit sending and receiving until I would reboot my iPhone (sometimes it would finally send the message as a “text message”). When I had these problems I also found out I was not getting any cellular data service for Internet browsing, mail, Maps, Find My iPhone, etc.  This would happen without notice. In other words I would not receive any notice or error message that data service had stopped other than the fact I was not receiving any mail, iMessages, or iCloud sync updates. My only resolution was to reset or reboot my iPhone several times a day, and that would resolve it about 70% of the time. 

 

I have talked to Apple Support on 2-3 occasions in the last week and AT&T Support twice in the last 2 days.  If it is really true, only the AT&T Technical Support Advisor informed me of a nationwide issue relating to iPhone 5 and LTE:  iPhone 5's are not re-connecting to 4G or 3G cellular data service once the LTE data connection is lost or dropped... the voice calls continue to work, but cellular data service fails and stays locked up without an error message until the customer reboots the iPhone.

 

Obviously this is very unacceptable. We depend on these data services and at minimum need to know when it stops working instead of finding out from a phone call that someone sent us an important email or something.

 

The AT&T representative also said that both AT&T and Apple are aware of and are working on the issue as it is a nationwide problem with iPhone 5 and LTE. The Apple Support Advisors I talked to made no mention of this "known" issue. AT&T said that it is partly AT&T responsibility because the capacity of LTE is overloaded and cellular data connections are dropping because of the lack of coverage and/or capacity. They actually refunded my data service for a whole month in apology for the inconvenience (I did not even ask for that--I just want my data service to work).  But they also said that Apple has responsibility in this issue because the iPhone 5 should drop down and re-connect to the next lower tier of data service when LTE is not available or lost; instead, it is locking up somehow or it still thinks it is connected to LTE when it is actually not. I don't know how accurate these statements are, but my problem is real.

 

TEMPORARY WORK-AROUND / FIX FROM AT&T:  Disable LTE on the iPhone 5.  Or when you figure out that data is not coming to your iPhone, use Airplane Mode ON/OFF for a few seconds to force re-connection to a tower without rebooting the iPhone.  You can Disable LTE on the iPhone 5 in SETTINGS/GENERAL/CELLULAR. I have disabled LTE on my iPhone 5 and have not had any of these cellular data issues since. 

 

Disabling LTE is not acceptable either, but it is working. At least I seem not be losing connection or locking up without knowing it.  In my office over the course of a day, my iPhone 5 will jump back and forth on LTE and 4G sitting in the same place.  Disabling LTE has stopped this and the problem, but the iPhone 5 should switch cellular data services seemlessly just like the phone switches towers on a phone voice call seemlessly (most of the time).

 

WI-FI ALSO STOPS WORKING SOMETIMES AFTER THIS LTE disconnect / lock-up issue:  That has been my experience along with my clients and family as well. If you use Wi-Fi a lot on your iPhone it will hide this LTE issue until you leave your Wi-Fi and get on LTE and then drop LTE (silently) and then go back to your Wi-Fi.  My experience has been I have to reboot the iPhone to even get Wi-Fi working again after that happens.

 

I do not know if some of these comments and analysis are really accurate or valid or not... all I know for sure is since I upgraded my iPhone to the 5 along with my other family members and clients, we have had "no data" on many occasions and are continually rebooting our iPhones and looking for what is wrong. 

 

My questions to the support community are these:

 

     1. Is anyone else having this issue? Or is it just me and my few? Maybe a lot of people do not realize they are not getting their data because they are on Wi-Fi most of the time or they are just rebooting and not trying to identify the real problem. AT&T said it was nationwide iPhone 5/LTE issue.  Anyone else heard that from either Apple or AT&T?

 

     2. Is this an iPhone 5 / Apple issue or is AT&T solely responsible? Or is it both? Where do we get a solution??? Is AT&T LTE holding false connections with iPhone 5 or is the iPhone 5 failing to recognize a dropped LTE cellular data connection and then failing to attempt to re-connect with 4G or 3G?

 

     3. Did I miss where this issue is posted? I searched Apple Support and Communities and did not get any hits.  Any updates or further insight on the issue? Any other fixes other than Disabling LTE?

 

      4. If this is in fact a real issue belonging in part to the iPhone 5, we need to escalate Apple’s attention to it.

 

Thanks in advance for your help and feedback.


iPhone 5, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2), iTunes 11.0.1 (12) 64 Bit
  • KiltedTim Level 8 Level 8 (43,115 points)

    FYI, the extremely large font makes your post very difficult to read.

     

     

    1. Is anyone else having this issue? Or is it just me and my few? Maybe a lot of people do not realize they are not getting their data because they are on Wi-Fi most of the time or they are just rebooting and not trying to identify the real problem. AT&T said it was nationwide iPhone 5/LTE issue.  Anyone else heard that from either Apple or AT&T?

    Neither I, nor anyone I know has experienced anything like this. That includes at least a dozen friends and family members all with AT&T iPhone 5's, mostly in North East Ohio.

     

      

      2. Is this an iPhone 5 / Apple issue or is AT&T solely responsible? Or is it both? Where do we get a solution??? Is AT&T LTE holding false connections with iPhone 5 or is the iPhone 5 failing to recognize a dropped LTE cellular data connection and then failing to attempt to re-connect with 4G or 3G?

    If there is in fact, an issue, it sounds like it is localized to the AT&T LTE network in your area based on my experience and the experiences of those I know with AT&T iPhone 5's.  

     

    3. Did I miss where this issue is posted? I searched Apple Support and Communities and did not get any hits.  Any updates or further insight on the issue? Any other fixes other than Disabling LTE?

    I doubt it has been "posted" because I doubt if it is a widespread issue. 

     

        4. If this is in fact a real issue belonging in part to the iPhone 5, we need to escalate Apple’s attention to it.

    Feel free to do so. The "Contact Us" link can be found at the bottom of the page.

     

    Apple does not read or participate in these forums.

  • AusTxNerd Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Jeff, Yes, I'm seeing the LTE data problem you described. I am not seeing any WiFi issues.

     

    When my LTE data stoped working, I turn on and turn off Airplane Mode and it's ok. I do it quickly and forget about it. Today I finally remember to Google for the problem. This thread is the only mention I could find.

     

    I'm in Austin, TX, since it sounds like this is probably location dependent.

     

    Not sure what my next step it going to be. I always dislike talking with AT&T. Perhaps I'll start with a Genius at my local Apple Store.

  • Hopsrx Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    It seems as though we're having the same problems.  We only noticed it driving in rural Arizona from Gila Bend to the Mexico border at Lukeville.  Once we lose cellular data, we never get it back. We used to have data service (although very slow) on our iPhone 3GS in this area.  We are going down again in a couple of weeks so we'll try the work-arounds but this problem needs to be addressed.  We were wondering if it was just our phones. We have AT&T unlimited data plan and the Mexico plan so we can make and receive calls while in Rocky Point.

  • KiltedTim Level 8 Level 8 (43,115 points)

    Hopsrx wrote:

     

    We used to have data service (although very slow) on our iPhone 3GS in this area.

    It sounds like you were on the EDGE network when you got the slow data connection.

     

    AT&T is killing off their EDGE network entirely. It may already be completely gone there. You may want to check with them and find out.

  • jeff.davis11 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you fellow users and experts for your feedback and updates. Sorry about the large font on the original post... accidental via cut and paste.

     

    I have escalated the issue with both Apple and AT&T.  I actually got senior level troubleshooters from both Apple and AT&T on the phone at the same time... rare moment. Here are the key points of the update:

     

         1. AT&T did NOT confirm the earlier statement by another AT&T Technical Support Agent that this was an emerging nationwide issue about iPhone 5 and LTE losing data connection and not reconnecting at a lower level or re-connecting to LTE once the signal came back. So that earlier statement was not accurate as suspected by all of us. The senior tech at AT&T said he has seen this issue sporadically over the last month or so, but only with about 3-4 customers.  He said it seems to be location or phone dependent (some phones not all phones).

     

         2. The Apple Tech was satisfied that all that could be done to eliminate my issues possibly relating to my instance of software / iOS had been accomplished except erasing my iPhone and restoring as a new phone (I have avoided this inconvenience with the argument that other family/clients with the iPhone 5 have had the same problem).

     

         3. AT&T went so far as to examine which towers I had been connecting to over the last week and looked at other technical data that could possibly explain the issue. I now know I have 3 towers that provide LTE within 4 miles of my home/office, one within a half mile.  But so far there is nothing to explain or even properly identify the issue.  AT&T offered me to take my phone to an AT&T store, try to force replicate the problem there, if so, the store would put my SIM card in a brand new iPhone 5 (just to test) and try tor replicate the problem again. If replicated on a new phone, there is a deeper issue; if resolved on a new phone, the answer is obvious. I have not taken the time to do this yet.

     

         4. On Friday, Jan 4, 2013 while talking and between the tech support calls (on a different phone), I was able to re-create the problem 2 separate times in my home/office by forcing my iPhone to weaken its connection to service (burying it under electronic gear) and then waiting a few minutes, then trying to browse the Internet--no data service unless I manually reset the connection.  I am only able to cause the issue to occur if there is at least 15 min of idle time after a weak signal condition AND only if I don’t completely lose a connection to cellular voice service. It seems that if you go down to NO SERVICE the phone will do new a search and keep searching until reconnects to LTE or other signals correctly, but a weak connection seems to be strong enough for voice service but can sometimes cause the LTE data service to stop without reconnecting to LTE, 4G or 3G unless I manually intervene. It also seems that idle time with a weak connection is also necessary to re-create the problem manually.  Since Friday, I have not been able to re-create the problem. This has been an intermittent problem, so who knows.

     

    FYI, I have never had this problem with my new iPad (also on AT&T LTE) that has been with me when the iPhone fails to have data service, but my iPad is never in my pocket or other places with perhaps less signal.

     

    Again, if you are connected to Wi-Fi on your iPhone 5 most of the time, you may never notice this issue if you are even having it.

     

    So far no progress on the real issue or resolution, but both Apple and AT&T have put forth very admirable effort.

     

    If you or others you know are having this issue, please take the time to post a reply to this issue. Thank you.

  • dc1515 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I too am having this issue in my office. I get a weak LTE signal at my desk and have had data services knocked out. I have reset it by turning cellular data off/on in the Settings -> General menu.

     

    I am looking forward to any progress you can make.

  • strebman Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I am also having this issue with my AT&T phone.  I thought I was crazy.  For me time doesn't seem to be a factor.  It seems to be just locking the screen and then after a minute or two unlocking the phone.  I just turn Airplane Mode on, and then Off and it forces the phone to find a new signal.  This issue is preventing iMessages from being delivered as well.  Once the phone gets its data connection back I will get a bunch of iMessages all at once.

  • knokie Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I don't think that is the issue for the telco but the iPhone itself. I am from Malaysia and we have only 3G and EDGE on our telcos, we are facing this issue as well. I have upgraded my phone to 6.1.2, the issue is still there. Airplane mode ON/OFF will not recover it and I have to reboot the iphone only can get the data service.

  • Tim - it just works Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    In Malaysia too.  Same issue with losing 3G and cant get it back with out reset or resetting network settings.  on Maxis.  Everytime I go to service centre they give me a different story.  Calling support hotline for Maxis gives me different info to service centre.  Knoie, are you with Maxis or other telco?  Anyone want to buy a paperweight, sorry I mean iPhone 5.  Maybe I should keep it as it may well be my last iPhone I ever buy. Tried all the tricks, restoring, restoring as new phone etc. latest firmware.  Yesterday telco told me 6.1.2 would fix it - fail!  Today a new story!!  What good is a smartphone with an unreliable data connection?

  • siaufoong Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Tim, i getting same problem with Maxis as telco, always no signal or had to reboot for signal, had you resolve ur problem so far? need advice what to do next.

  • jeff.davis11 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    My final update unless the problem returns:  After my posting on Jan 6, 2013 and working with senior technicians with both AT&T and Apple, the problem of losing cellular data intermittently just simply went away without explanation. I continued testing and monitoring off and on for several weeks and finally went back to using my iPhone normally with not a single re-occurrence of the issue.

     

    Sorry, in my case. there is no explanation for the problem being solved.  Apparently this issue is happening to others as evidenced by the postings, but there is no known cause, fix or workaround except to toggle Airplane Mode to restore cellular data connection when it goes dormant.

     

    My best guess at what solved the problem would be that my carrier, AT&T, tweaked settings on their side or improved tower signals and settings in my area because nothing was changed on my iPhone 5 from the time the problem last occurred until the time it vanished without re-occurring.

     

    I am now running iOS 6.1.2 on my iPhone 5-32 GB with AT&T with no issues of any sort. I also use an iPhone 4-32 GB with iOS 6.1.2 on AT&T as a backup line with no major issues (voice quality is poor compared to the iPhone 5 and the iPhone 4 always receives less signal than my iPhone 5 in the same location).

     

    If the problem occurs frequently and consistently on your device, I would recommend contacting your carrier and provide them a link to this discussion. It was suggested by the senior tech at AT&T to duplicate the issue in an AT&T store and then let them put my SIM card in another phone to verify if it was the phone or the network. The standard response will be to reset/restore your iPhone as a new iPhone before Apple or AT&T support will escalate your issue.

     

    Best work-around if you are having this issue:  TOGGLE AIRPLANE MODE to force the iPhone to reconnect to the network (and most likely re-establish cellular data service).

     

    Other suggestions are welcome on this discussion, but I will only update/respond if and when I receive any new or helpful information. Thanks to all who participated.

  • jackmfrost Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    i had lte one time on my phone when i went to orlando,fl and ever since i got back to lousiana i have had this problem even with lte turned off restarting the iphone5 works for 5 to 10 min then back to no data call apple they say they don't know what im talking about wanted me to buy 70 service plan? BTW i don't have lte nowhere near where i live i don't think we even have 4g yet .

  • Pcorless1506 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi, I'm in the uk on EE LTE and I am experiencing the same issues that you all are where my phone drops data connection regardless of whether I use 3G or LTE. It seems to work fine over wifi connection though. For some reason I seem to think its something to do with either the iOS software on the handset or the hardware itself. I have made many phone calls to Apple regarding this and even had my case escalated higher to a senior engineer after restoring my phone as a new handset and removing my back up. I have also tried using a new SIM card and all I was advised was that it was a network issue by Apple. However since this issue started over 2 months ago I have had 3 handset replacements and now use a Samsung galaxy s3 LTE handset and don't experience the same issue.

  • MNDO Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Same issue here in MN (MSP metro area) as described in original post. Happens to both my wifes iphone 5 and mine. Occasionally the LTE indicator is lit but phone can't access wireless data (Safari, iMessage, Facebook, Maps, etc) until airplane mode is toggled on and back off or phone is rebooted. Hard to get anywhere with ATT and Apple tech support, no resolution so far.

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