Skip to main content
AT&T Community Forums
Announcements
Celebrate all that he does with a gift for every kind of dad!
gr8sho's profile
gr8sho
#1 Star!
Supersonic 25!
Picasso
ACE - Professor

ACE - Professor

 • 

2.6K Messages

Thu, Jan 31, 2019 6:32 PM

WiFi Calling stability on ATT Network

Opening this thread to document issues I've been experiencing with instability of WiFi Calling in my residence. 

 

I can see my iPhone X either wander in and out of WiFi Calling during a phone call, or have WiFi Calling switch off completely and hand-off the call to cell tower usually with the result of losing the call.  I've also seen cases where a call comes in, I go to answer with the ATT WiFi indicator on, and no sound can be heard by the caller or callee.  Given the poor cellular coverage we have here is the reason why I place a premium on WiFi Calling.

 

After several calls to get to the bottom of this situation, many of which were with the mobility side, the solution still evades but points to the WiFi network in the house.  Service is also provided by ATT via a BGW210-700 residential gateway.  Channel is manually set to 149 to allow Amazon devices to connect.

I also have a TP-Link RE200 repeater I've configured both as an extender and as an access point, but presently as the former. It is set to only receive 5GHz signal from host and transmits only 5GHz signal to clients.  The extender uses the same SSID and password as host.  Upon further review, this is not allowed so reset back to default naming.

The house also has a VAP2500 WAP for Uverse TV.  There is no signal congestion on WiFi verified with instrumentation.  I have it configured to transmit on channel 112.  I'll also mention as a secondary problem that the wireless set-top box will lose signal once or twice a day.

The iPhone X is connected on 5GHz radio.

 

Based on a call to internet tech support yesterday, we agreed trying an AirTies might better handle preventing errors on 5GHz by using Mesh technology, so tomorrow have an appointment to give this a try. 

 

I'm tagging this in the wireless/Apple area of the forum based on primary usage of affected problem although this could easily be listed in other areas as well.

 

edits in italics and strikethrough

Award for Community Excellence 2020 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.

Responses

gr8sho

ACE - Professor

 • 

2.6K Messages

2 y ago

Still in the process of troubleshooting the WiFi Calling issue in the hope I'm able to use ATT supplied hardware.  I've had the Airties 4920 for about a week and the situation remains unchanged.

After another call to tech support it was suggested I spend more time doing a more thorough site survey.  Using an Android tablet and WiFi Analyzer, signal strength is always better than -60 dBm, and most always better than -50 when factoring in both the RG and the extender.

I've also repositioned the Airties 4920 to a location that should be practically perfect as there is clean line of sight between the RG and the 4920.  Still after a few hours of up time, the following basic data is visible to me.  Still a large number of errors being presented.  If anyone wants to lend a hand with this and would like to see additional data provided, ask away.

I've tried to do some additional research on this type of problem and found this article on Gizmodo.  The comments are also interesting.

Based on similar threads and feedback from other users, I'm thinking I'll end up having to invest in an alternate WiFi solution.

 

Capture.JPG

Award for Community Excellence 2020 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.

Tutor

 • 

7 Messages

2 y ago

Wow actually i loved your blog man..Thanks for sharing awesome content..

gr8sho

ACE - Professor

 • 

2.6K Messages

2 y ago


@iosman123 wrote:

Wow actually i loved your blog man..Thanks for sharing awesome content..


No problem. 

 

While I'm in here, I'll try to describe the procedure I use to perform a controlled full home network reset.  This isn't something ATT would ever want to do on their own, as the service they provide ends at the gateway.  Anything after that is on the end user.  The one notable exception I think is when using one of their WiFi extenders, they seem more willing to offer home networking help, at least the US based ones I've been able to reach however knowledge is limited.  I also realize this is a long and painful read, so apologies in advance.

 

Before describing the steps, it's worth noting that certain devices have a memory of sorts to retain the IP given to them by the DHCP server in the gateway and will attempt to reestablish the lease even after cold start.  Devices from Apple and Amazon seem pretty good at doing this.  Windows PCs typically do as well.  It's a handy feature if you like to organize your devices.

It is extremely helpful to use instrumentation when possible.  ATT Smart Home Manager (aSHM) is one such tool. 

These instructions have some optional steps which I include if Uverse TV is present.  As this hardware is now long in the tooth, I treat them with special care.  Also includes Airties 4920.

The steps were performed using an Arris BGW210-700 residential gateway as the host router. 

 

The steps are as follows and can take a lot of time, as much as an hour or more depending on whether or not have to restart the process.

  1. Quiesce the network.  Turn everything off.  WiFi on smartphones and tables should be off.  PCs should be off.  Streaming boxes and smartTV, smart home devices, you get the idea.  Oh and Uverse equipment if present.  Use the Smart Home Manage to verify ZERO devices are active on the network.  The app will work fine to access the gateway via a cellular connection.
  2. Factory reset the gateway.  I'll do this by first disconnecting power, then after reconnecting power hold the red reset button in back for 10 seconds.  Should see all LEDs flash simultaneously.  Once the device comes up and the service LED is active, the Smart Home Manager should show the device connected with ZERO connected devices. 
    • Now is a good time to run a speed test on the device on the gateway using Smart Home Manager.  My VDSL2 service measures 90 Mbps down and 22 Mbps up on a 75/20 profile.  Due to close proximity to VRAD, YMMV.
  3. Power up the Uverse DVR first.  If you have the DVR connected via a dedicated ethernet switch for IPTV traffic, ensure the switch has power so that the link back the gateway is established.  The address assigned should be .65.  Use the Smart Home Manager as a way to check your work progressing through the steps.
  4. Power up the WAP device, e.g. VAP2500.  The address assigned should be .66.
  5. Power up wireless set-top box.  The device should pair automatically if it was working before the factory reset.  This device will take .67 and .68 addresses.
  6. Power up the Airties 4920.  The device should pair automatically if it was working before the factory reset.  This device will take .70 address.  Don't know why it skipped over .69.
  7. Power up hardwired ethernet devices.  PCs, smart home device hubs are examples I have here of such devices. 
    • At this point will have access to management console on a PC and will be a bit quicker than the Smart Home Manager app. 
    • Also a good time to set the 5GHz radio channel to something like 149 to ensure compatibility with Amazon and Apple devices.
  8. Allow wireless devices back on the network.  I'd start with the ones that have memory retention first as described earlier.  Apple and Amazon as examples.

At this point everything should be online.  With one notable exception above, I do not alter the settings within the RG. 

I'll perform this procedure whenever a firmware update occurs, or if something goes awry or if making a significant change such as adding a mesh extender. 

Award for Community Excellence 2020 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.
gr8sho

ACE - Professor

 • 

2.6K Messages

2 y ago

After 4 days of up time, here are some stats.  I'd say this is not a good sign to indicate stability.

 

Annotation 2019-02-13 093253.jpg

Award for Community Excellence 2020 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.
gr8sho

ACE - Professor

 • 

2.6K Messages

2 y ago

Another update.  Apologies in advance for length.

 

Based on numerous calls with tech support, I've heard enough innuendo to push me into doing more research into WiFi functionality.  The following matters more if you have many wireless devices on your network.  Also to be clear, this doesn't have to do with coverage or how far your devices are from the router or access point, bur rather how much work the router has to do to service all the devices it needs to talk to.  Even if your Apple TV is in sleep mode, it still periodically talks to the router.

In researching home wifi systems on offer, there's a lot of technical information condensed into reviews much of which makes my head hurt and sometimes don't fully digest on a first read.  On paper it all sounds good.  At least one I read has a dedicated wireless channel between the base station and the satellite access point that should by itself help with stable connectivity.  And then there's a feature called  MU-MIMO, a topic of some discussion in the more expensive routers worth reading about.  Without going into any detail, suffice it to say the MU stands for multi user. Most certainly any of the routers in att RGs are SU-MIMO, which stands for single user.  I ran across this article from Apple that gives some guidance to users of its products. 

As a band-aid, if a device such as streaming box has a wired option and you can use it, I'd always opt for it.

And finally there's a new standard called WiFi 6, but that's not yet ready for general usage and which holds the promise of a better wireless world.

 

So over here we have 5 people which means 5 cell phones, probably another half dozen streaming boxes, smart home devices, security cameras, and this is probably not as much hardware as others likely have.  I've gone as far as I can with hardware provided by att but I've come to a realization that it's just not going to work with the reliability I need.

I'm going to put one of these more expensive home wifi solutions to the test to see if it cures the WiFi Calling drops I've been experiencing.  I'll be surprised if it doesn't.

 

Award for Community Excellence 2020 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.
gr8sho

ACE - Professor

 • 

2.6K Messages

2 y ago

Annotation 2019-02-25 074557.jpg

As can be seen from picture, I've forgone the internal router of the BGW210 with the one exception of supporting my Uverse DVR and wireless settop box.  For the rest of the home network I'm presently testing a WiFi system that has two specific features that caught my attention, specifically  MU-MIMO and a 3rd band dedicated to backhaul Ethernet traffic between the router and the satellite node.  In a few days of testing so far, everything is working fine.  Devices appear to be snappier, no stuttering or buffering during streaming, and most importantly, no issues with WiFi calling. 

I'll be wrapping this up in the next 10 days, but things look promising so far.

Award for Community Excellence 2020 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.
GLIMMERMAN76

ACE - Expert

 • 

21.7K Messages

2 y ago


@gr8sho wrote:

Annotation 2019-02-25 074557.jpg

As can be seen from picture, I've forgone the internal router of the BGW210 with the one exception of supporting my Uverse DVR and wireless settop box.  For the rest of the home network I'm presently testing a WiFi system that has two specific features that caught my attention, specifically  MU-MIMO and a 3rd band dedicated to backhaul Ethernet traffic between the router and the satellite node.  In a few days of testing so far, everything is working fine.  Devices appear to be snappier, no stuttering or buffering during streaming, and most importantly, no issues with WiFi calling. 

I'll be wrapping this up in the next 10 days, but things look promising so far.


helps to name the router for folks but since you said dedicated backhaul I am assuming netgear orbi.

Award for Community Excellence 2020 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.
gr8sho

ACE - Professor

 • 

2.6K Messages

2 y ago

Yes, the RBK50 to be precise. 

Others have used google WiFi as well with success. I suspect any of the better reviewed offerings will do well for WiFi calling.  

Award for Community Excellence 2020 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.
gr8sho

ACE - Professor

 • 

2.6K Messages

2 y ago

Couple of tips in case anyone is considering going down this path.

 

One of the early criticisms of the Orbi was lack of an iOS app to use as a way to setup the new router.  One is available now and I used it successfully.

The default subnet used by the Orbi unfortunately overlaps with the Arris.  This initially caused my wired Ethernet devices access problems.  Logging into the management console of the Orbi via web browser immediately detected the conflict and reconfigured the router's DHCP server to use 10.0.0.x subnet, which immediately cleared up the access issues.

To make the transition less impactful initially, I altered the Orbi's SSID and password to match the one from the BGW210.  I'll probably change it in the future to create isolation. 

 

PS.  Day 4 and WiFi Calling continues to work properly.

Award for Community Excellence 2020 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.
gr8sho

ACE - Professor

 • 

2.6K Messages

2 y ago

A couple of minor addenda.

I found it was easier to allow the hardware to configure itself using it's own boot up and pairing routines with the LED rings as a means of verifying completion.  This will give the router and satellites adjacent and consecutive IP address.  The smartphone app or the management console can be used to complete the final verification steps. There are some excellent youtube videos that show how this is done.  I ran through this sequence after a recent firmware update.  Apparently it has been said, but I have yet to verify, that if installing firmware manually, the auto update of the firmware is disabled.  I much prefer manual control myself, so this is a good thing.

For some reason activating netgear's armor package only works via the smartphone app, but I end up disabling it anyway. 

 

Use of this home WiFi system for a larger footprint home is providing stability of WiFi when 20 or more devices are active on the network, and in particular for WiFi Calling which I wouls say is somewhat of an acid test to prove it.  There are other ways but this one is fairly straightforward.

 

The following seems to be a bonus and unsure if coincidence, but since this latest configuration I'm seeing excellent status on the broadband connection.  There are a total of roughly 1500 FEC errors over the span of 9 days which is the best I've ever seen.  This is a bonded pair VDSL2 connection with a 75/20 profile.

 

Annotation 2019-03-08 111650.jpg

Award for Community Excellence 2020 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.

Get started...

Ask a new question