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Tutor

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3 Messages

Wed, Nov 1, 2017 4:42 PM

M-cell not working, not displayed in my phone

I have an old white Microcell (Cisco DPH153). I got it several years ago and it worked well for at least a year, when a Tower was added in my area and I no longer needed it. We moved a few months ago to a house where I have weak signal. (It was decent for a few months but when I updated to the new iOS it got much weaker.) I have an iPhone 8. Now nearly every call is dropped or extremely poor quality. I pulled out my old Microcell, reactivated it (twice — I’ve done the whole process twice now), and it still isn’t working. The lights are solid green but I phone indicator does not say “M-cell” or anything like that and my signal is never more than one bar. What’s weirder, it did seem to work for about one minute two days ago. For that one minute “M-cell” appeared on my phone and I had good signal strength — then it went away again. Any suggestions? I’m so frustrated I’m ready to drop AT&T after 10 years and try a different carrier. 

Responses

Accepted Solution

Official Solution

Avedis53

ACE - Professor

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2.2K Messages

3 years ago

Since you have an iPhone 8, why aren't you using WiFi Calling instead of the Mcell?  It is a much better solution for weak cell tower signals than the Mcell.  Are there other cell phones being used in your home that are not WiFi Calling capable?

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MicroCell Technical Guide by Otto Pylot


I am not an AT&T employee.

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Avedis53

ACE - Professor

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2.2K Messages

3 years ago

Since you marked my response as a solution, I'm assuming that you have WiFi Calling phones?  Have you activated WiFi-C? Is it working for you?

___________________________________________________________

MicroCell Technical Guide by Otto Pylot


I am not an AT&T employee.

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Tutor

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3 Messages

3 years ago

Thank you!!!! I didn’t even know Wifi calling was an option!! I can’t wait to try this!!!
Avedis53

ACE - Professor

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2.2K Messages

3 years ago

To activate WiFi Calling on your iPhone, go to:  Settings : Phone : WiFi Calling  and enable the toggle.  You will need to enter your Emergency Address directly below that toggle.  This is so E911 can find you if you call for emergency services.  You may need to power cycle your phone after doing this.  I don't believe I had to do this when I activated WiFi-C, but I added this step just in case.

 

Let us know if you have successfully activated WiFi-C.  I think you'll find it to be an improvement.

___________________________________________________________

MicroCell Technical Guide by Otto Pylot


I am not an AT&T employee.

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OttoPylot

ACE - Expert

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11.3K Messages

3 years ago

@Avedis53 - I'm beginning to think that there are some account issues for some on the iPhone platform. We've seen three very similar issues in the past two months (even this poster physically moved so there may be other factors at play).  We haven't seen any issues at all moving from 10.3.3 -> 11.0 -> 11.1 so I'm not sure why some iPhone users are having issues.

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Avedis53

ACE - Professor

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2.2K Messages

3 years ago

I did not have any issues with WiFi Calling on our iPhones as I migrated them up to 11.1.  Just sayin.........

 

Like I keep preaching, phones, network hardware and their associated firmware continue to evolve yet the Mcell remains the same after 7 years and as a result, problems are bound to arise.  The Mcell has no upgrade path to deal with all these changes and I believe as time goes on, it will become increasingly problematic for users who continue to depend on it.  My advice to anyone who uses a Mcell is to bite the bullet and adopt WiFi Calling, even if it means you need to buy a phone that is WiFi-C capable.

___________________________________________________________

MicroCell Technical Guide by Otto Pylot


I am not an AT&T employee.

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OttoPylot

ACE - Expert

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11.3K Messages

3 years ago

@Avedis53 - don’t know if it’s the MicroCell, the associated accounts or what. According to the Admins there hasn’t been a noticeable increase in complaints so it must be some sort of localized issue. Until more complaints are received AT&T is not going to spend a lot of time on this, as usual. WiFi-C is the way to go but phones are expensive and until that tipping point is hit for capable phones, AT&T still needs to support the MicroCell (whatever that means). 

 

Sittin’ in the airport waiting to head up your way.

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Avedis53

ACE - Professor

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2.2K Messages

3 years ago

I understand that not everyone can afford to throw money at this problem to ultimately move past the inherent shortcomings of a Mcell.  Personally, I would rather spend a little more money on a new phone that embraces current technology than throw good money after bad and buy another Mcell that has the same problems as the old one.

 

Safe trip and good luck house hunting!

___________________________________________________________

MicroCell Technical Guide by Otto Pylot


I am not an AT&T employee.

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OttoPylot

ACE - Expert

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11.3K Messages

3 years ago

@Avedis53 - I agree. 

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Tutor

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3 Messages

3 years ago

Btw— wiFi calling us working great. Thanks again for telling me about that feature!
Avedis53

ACE - Professor

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2.2K Messages

3 years ago

You are most welcome!  We aim to please!

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MicroCell Technical Guide by Otto Pylot


I am not an AT&T employee.

Award for Community Excellence 2019 Achiever*
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Contributor

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1 Message

3 years ago

Hi y'all. I'm having the same issue where our Micro-cell has stopped working (all green lights, but not showing up on our phones). As far as diagnostics, I agree that it's likely a firmware issue that hasn't kept up with iOS. The simple answer is to use wifi calling, but the big shortcoming is that it doesn't hand-off a call if we drive away from the house. We have a good LTE signal 200-ft from the house (about 2/3 of the way up our driveway), so hand off has not been an issue with the M-cell, but wifi calling would become an issue. 

 

The other thing is that we've bought two of these stupid micro cells from ATT so far. The first one pooped out and I was so mad I switched to Verizon having been told that our signal strength would be excellent at our location...it wasn't. We got out of that and back to ATT for another flogging (buying another micro cell device). It's been more or less fine for a couple years, but, as stated above, I think the iOS has finally out-maneuvered this tombstone of a device. This lack of forward-compatibility is unacceptable in this day and age. Bottom line; I guess we put up with the occasional dropped call with Wifi calling rather than take it on the chin again for a new, out-dated device.

OttoPylot

ACE - Expert

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11.3K Messages

3 years ago

@eleventwelve - our MicroCell works just fine with all of our iOS 11.1 iPhones. In fact, they have never had any issues with any iOS upgrade. There is an issue with with some iPhone users but it's random and apparently Support has not had enough complaints to register it as a priority problem. I will forward your issue to the Admins but I would suggest you send a pm to ATTCustomerCare (link is in my sig line) and report what the problem is, what has been done to try and correct it, your account info, the best way for them to contact you, and your location.

 

We have seen in the past that if there is a strong enough LTE signal in your area that the phones may have a difficult time "letting go" of the LTE signal and connecting to the MicroCell 3G signal. Basic handing off (soft and hard) is covered in my Tech Guide (see link in my sig line).

 

WiFi-C is the way to go and is a definite alternative to the MicroCell if all of your phones are WiFi-C capable and you don't need the MicroCell for in-home coverage for non-WiFi-C capable phones.  Do keep in mind that you shouldn't use WiFi-C within distance of a MicroCell that your phone is registered to because the phone will always preferentially try to connect to the cellular 3G signal instead of your WiFi signal and there will be issues. The only workaround is to place your phone in Airplane Mode to disable its cellular radio so it can only connect to your WiFi. This is not a MicroCell problem but a design by the phone mfrs.

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Avedis53

ACE - Professor

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2.2K Messages

3 years ago

Neither the Mcell or WiFi Calling will hand off a call when you are moving from a cellular connection into the coverage area of your home.  The Mcell will hand off a call when moving from home coverage to a cellular tower.  In order for your phone to hand off to a cellular tower from WiFi Calling, your home's location must be in an area that AT&T provides HD Voice (HD Voice is not available everywhere) and your phone's account has been provisioned for HD Voice.  The provisioning is usually automatic but some have needed to contact AT&T to have them provision their accounts for HD Voice.

 

This may not be the reason why your phone doesn't hand off properly while using WiFi C, but I'd certainly contact AT&T Customer Care and have them verify if you are in a HD Voice area and if your account has been provisioned for it.

___________________________________________________________

MicroCell Technical Guide by Otto Pylot


I am not an AT&T employee.

Award for Community Excellence 2019 Achiever*
*I am not an AT&T employee, and the views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Contributor

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1 Message

3 years ago

I am not able to make calls on my cell phone it says that the sim card is not good.