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dynamo69

Teacher

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15 Messages

Mon, Sep 16, 2019 9:45 PM

Terrible Connection Inside & Outside of Home

I have a Galaxy S5 phone 🙂 works great except for the terrible connection to ATT where ever I am. When at home in a residential area blocks away from a tower it felt like someone was blocking my 4G LTE usage although my phone showed I was connected with a nice connection. I recently bought another house, in the hills of Southern California and the connection is even worse. Its barely connected and everything is slow when it does work. Many times I lose connection all together. Neighbors have Verizon (or T Mobile) and do not have the problems we have. My wife has an iPhone 9 or 10 and she has the exact problem that I do. I believe its the phones, she thinks its ATT.

Im considering buying a mid range phone such as a Moto G7 Power which seems to cover a large range of 4G networks, at least in comparison to my old trusty S5. Thoughts? Thank you!

 

For reference the Moto G7 Power covers these 4G networks...

 

4G NetworkLTE band 1(2100), 2(1900), 3(1800), 4(1700/2100), 5(850), 7(2600), 8(900), 12(700), 13(700), 14(700), 17(700), 20(800), 25(1900), 26(850), 29(700), 30(2300), 38(2600), 39(1900), 40(2300), 41(2500), 41(2500), 66(1700/2100), 71(600)

Responses

OttoPylot

ACE - Expert

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11.3K Messages

5 months ago


@dynamo69 wrote:


Ive heard about boosters... Is this the ATT MicroCell device? Plugs into wifi so its essentially using wifi... What difference is that in comparison to allowing wifi calling on my phone?


@dynamo69 - the MicroCell is not a cellular booster. It is a femtocell and broadcasts a 3G signal that your phone locks onto. It then transmits that connection, via your internet connection to the AT&T Mobility Servers. It has nothing to do with WiFi. That being said, sales of the MicroCell were discontinued at the end of 2017 because the MicroCell has reached its EOL. The service is still active and will continue to be so until AT&T transitions away from their 3G network. To get a good primer on cellular boosters, read my Cellular Booster Guide (link is in my sig line).

 

WiFi-C uses your WiFi connection to reach the AT&T Mobility Servers, so in a sense it's similar to the MicroCell but has less issues and call quality/reliability is much better. However, it is dependent on the quality of your in-home WiFi. It's also similar to the MicroCell in that you need to have a post paid AT&T cellular account.

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*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.
dynamo69

Teacher

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15 Messages

5 months ago

Looking at some refurbished models right now... some good deals out there. Google Pixel 2 already looks better than the Moto G7. Im a linux user myself so not a big fan of Apple products in general and android works well with the main distros of linux. Thanks much for all the help! WOW!

pgrey

ACE - Master

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3.4K Messages

5 months ago


@dynamo69 wrote:

I'll accept your solution as you have given me plenty of direction to solve our issues, thanks! I was looking into these phones which are competitors to the G7...

  • Xiaomi Mi A2
  • Xiaomi Redmi Note 7
  • Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite

... mainly because of features/value. For example I could get dual camera, better CPU, better resolution, etc. It appears as if all of the typical networks are covered from what I can tell. Are these acceptable or should I steer clear of them? Appreciate all of the help! Looking forward to solving our issues once and for all.


I would 100% steer clear of these.  

They're not going to have the bands/frequencies you want/need, updates are going to be a nightmare (if you EVER get them), particularly given the toxic environment we have right now, in terms of trade with CH.

It may *seem* like a better deal, but one of those other phones is going to be a FAR better "experience", if you actually want to be able to "use" the phone.  

Having a nifty, fully-featured phone is nice (I love my OP7 Pro, despite AT&T not allowing WiFiC), but if you can't actually connect and use your service, well, then it's mostly just a "fully-featured mini-tablet", IMO/IME.

*If this (or another post in this thread) fixes your problem/issue, please mark it as "accept-solution", and I'll tag it, to make it easier for others to find the answer(s). FYI: I'm an AT&T end-user, just like most of us in the forum. Thanks.

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*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.
pgrey

ACE - Master

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3.4K Messages

5 months ago


@dynamo69 wrote:

Looking at some refurbished models right now... some good deals out there. Google Pixel 2 already looks better than the Moto G7. Im a linux user myself so not a big fan of Apple products in general and android works well with the main distros of linux. Thanks much for all the help! WOW!


Yep, the Pixel2 is a great option. We're along the same lines, all Windows/Linux/Unix for me too, or almost all (I started my programming back on the Apple II, cough,cough, I'm not exactly "young" here;-]), and I'm pretty anti-iOS, for me, and for anyone that's going to ask me to help (friends/relatives) with their devices.

I get that their solid phones, but they're so closed-loop, and proprietary, that it drives me absolutely NUTS. 

If they work for you, for whatever reason, that's fine, they just don't work for me, and probably NEVER will, philosophically, if for no other reason.

 

A used Pixel 2 should work great here, and you can get back to using your regular voice line, instead of the one-off VOIP solution, which has it's "perks", IMHO...

*If this (or another post in this thread) fixes your problem/issue, please mark it as "accept-solution", and I'll tag it, to make it easier for others to find the answer(s). FYI: I'm an AT&T end-user, just like most of us in the forum. Thanks.

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pgrey

ACE - Master

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3.4K Messages

5 months ago


@OttoPylot wrote:

@dynamo69 - glad to hear that WiFi-C is working for you. As to calls outside of your home, that's strange. Our daughter lives in So. Calif. and she has very few reception issues. Same for us when we visit her with our iPhones.


Yeah, @OttoPylot same deal, when I visit S. Cal, typically once or twice a year, mostly.
I will say this though, the "data congestion" has been "hit/miss", when I've flown into John Wayne (Orange County) a couple of times, in 2017/2018.

 

I've always been able to get connected, that's not an issue.  But, when I go to pull up a map, to navigate to our destination in a rental-car, it's a lot of "waiting, waiting, waiting, ..." for the map to load, and for it to actually "find" my destination.  
I've noticed too, if I have to scroll around, or zoom in/out, again it's "waiting, waiting, ...".  Not exactly ideal, if you're trying to navigate somewhere, say on a busy freeway, in S. Cal...

The last time I saw this was 06/18, so maybe things are better now, but boy it sure seemed like the peak-congestion down there was pretty bad.

*If this (or another post in this thread) fixes your problem/issue, please mark it as "accept-solution", and I'll tag it, to make it easier for others to find the answer(s). FYI: I'm an AT&T end-user, just like most of us in the forum. Thanks.

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.
dynamo69

Teacher

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15 Messages

5 months ago

But, when I go to pull up a map, to navigate to our destination in a rental-car, it's a lot of "waiting, waiting, waiting, ..." for the map to load, and for it to actually "find" my destination.  
I've noticed too, if I have to scroll around, or zoom in/out, again it's "waiting, waiting, ...".  Not exactly ideal, if you're trying to navigate somewhere, say on a busy freeway, in S. Cal...

The last time I saw this was 06/18, so maybe things are better now, but boy it sure seemed like the peak-congestion down there was pretty bad.

That exactly what we experience often. On a daily basis. And then going up into the hills we face no signal to 1 bar. Definitely hoping a phone corrects the issue for me. If it does I may get the wife to finally switch to an android device. Apple has somehow automagically deleted all of her photos from our last vacation so she wasnt to thrilled about that.

Looks like Ive narrowed down my picks to the Pixel 2 XL or the OnePlus 5. The OP5 has a button (like my S5) so maybe its time to try something new and go for a Pixel 2.

OttoPylot

ACE - Expert

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11.3K Messages

5 months ago

@pgrey - that is odd. We would usually be around the Hollywood area (where our daughter used to live) all the way down to Riverside, where our other daughter currently lives and only experienced occasionally what you describe. Maybe we just traveled within decent "AT&T corridors" that our iPhones had no issues with. Both our daughters have iPhones as well, and in-home coverage was not that good, but on the road, they have (had) very few issues. Maybe it's just dumb luck on our part.

 

 

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pgrey

ACE - Master

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3.4K Messages

5 months ago

@dynamo69 Myself, I'd go with the Pixel 2 XL, out of those two phones, hands down, in particular for your case.

 

I never had the 5, but I had a 5T, and the 6 (they're in our family still, trickle-down), and now I have the 7Pro.  IME, the 6 and 7Pro have awesome radios, a bit better even, than my old Nexus 6P (which is supposed to be similar to the Pixel series).

The OP5T just didn't have the same radio chipset, it was super-evident anywhere the signal got weak (mostly rural for us).  It did fine in dense/urban areas however.

 

So yeah, that's my spin on the two, obviously YMMV, depending on a bunch of factors... ;-]

*If this (or another post in this thread) fixes your problem/issue, please mark it as "accept-solution", and I'll tag it, to make it easier for others to find the answer(s). FYI: I'm an AT&T end-user, just like most of us in the forum. Thanks.

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.
pgrey

ACE - Master

 • 

3.4K Messages

5 months ago


@OttoPylot wrote:

@pgrey - that is odd. We would usually be around the Hollywood area (where our daughter used to live) all the way down to Riverside, where our other daughter currently lives and only experienced occasionally what you describe. Maybe we just traveled within decent "AT&T corridors" that our iPhones had no issues with. Both our daughters have iPhones as well, and in-home coverage was not that good, but on the road, they have (had) very few issues. Maybe it's just dumb luck on our part.

 

 


Yeah, the coverage further north, and down in the San Diego and Escondido areas was fine, and I think I remember Riverside being fine, too.

It was mostly just in the Orange County area, between there and maybe a few miles east.  It wasn't always that way, either, I do recall on our last trip, that it worked fine, coming back to the airport, found a gas station, the whole bit.

 

I think they might have some overloading, or maybe I just happened to be there when a tower was down (both times, hmm?), I guess  it's hard to say.

If I lived down there, I think I'd poke around on sites like "Sensorly.com", to get a better "feel" for things, I suppose.

*If this (or another post in this thread) fixes your problem/issue, please mark it as "accept-solution", and I'll tag it, to make it easier for others to find the answer(s). FYI: I'm an AT&T end-user, just like most of us in the forum. Thanks.

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.
OttoPylot

ACE - Expert

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11.3K Messages

5 months ago

@pgrey - you're probably right in that it's just overloading down there, and some phones/carriers just seem to handle it better. Fortunately for us, the daughter down there is moving up to where we are now, where reception, at least outside of the home, is fine so there's no real reason to ever go back down Smiley Wink

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pgrey

ACE - Master

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3.4K Messages

5 months ago

@OttoPylot Yeah, but that's where DIsney and Knott's are, I suspect our daughter will never outgrow those, I sure haven't, from going with my grandparents (they lived in Vista, just east of Oceanside, so I'm pretty familiar with the whole area down that way) as a kid ;-]

 

I've read accounts of horrible TMo problems ALL over the area there, when it's busy (on a site like Signaly or such, which is mostly impartial), I think the density-dance is just tough, at certain times of the day, my guess anyway.  I don't recall ever having a problem returning to the airport, we always take the last possible flight home from OC or LB airport, if we're there for touristing, so we can do almost a full-day somewhere (LaBrea tar pits, Wild Animal Park, the carrier in San Diego harbor, Universal Studios, there's just so much cool stuff, and lots and lots of people!).

 

@dynamo69 Sorry for slightly hijacking your thread, hopefully we helped you decide on a phone/WiFi/booster solutions here...  A booster can really be a good investment, IMO, but you HAVE to have SOME signal, so I'm always a bit wary, before going there, to make sure people have seen say "1 bar" with a single phone, in those area(s).

Either way though, I think you're going to want both phones to be able to do WiFi calling, that's where the Pixel really shines, for your particular situation, over the OP5.

The booster can be really handy when "mobile" too, say in a car, it can sort of "bridge" those weak areas, which are most often just that, in places where it's "tower dense", like where you are.  I use one for travel in the PNW, in some areas, and the difference is pretty phenomenal, even if it's a slight pain to set it up in the car (I haven't installed it permanently, because if varies, if we take mine or my wife's car, and some day I'm sure I'll want our daughter to be able to borrow it too).

*If this (or another post in this thread) fixes your problem/issue, please mark it as "accept-solution", and I'll tag it, to make it easier for others to find the answer(s). FYI: I'm an AT&T end-user, just like most of us in the forum. Thanks.

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.
dynamo69

Teacher

 • 

15 Messages

5 months ago

Adding to this... does SIM card matter at all? I was planning on just cutting my sim card down to fit the new phone. Or are there some sort of technological advancements where I would want to upgrade the sim card.

OttoPylot

ACE - Expert

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11.3K Messages

5 months ago

@dynamo69 - hmmm, that used to work in some cases but I don't know about now.  I'm sure someone who knows for sure will respond. I know back when I upgraded from an iPhone 5 to the SE I had to get a new SIM card, but that may have been for different reasons. When I got my 8 Plus, I just installed the same SIM and all was good.

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.
pgrey

ACE - Master

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3.4K Messages

5 months ago


@dynamo69 wrote:

Adding to this... does SIM card matter at all? I was planning on just cutting my sim card down to fit the new phone. Or are there some sort of technological advancements where I would want to upgrade the sim card.


Yes, it matters.  New SIMs have new h/w and s/w implementations.  I try to not let my SIMs get older than 2-3 years, all sorts of "weird stuff" starts to happen, in terms of connectivity, when they get old.

They can also degrade, micro-connections break down within the SIM itself, static beats them up, etc.

 

IF your phone is a known-good quantity, I'd strongly suggest stopping by an ACTUAL RETAIL AT&T (again, NOT a re-seller store) store, and getting a new SIM, this is what I'd do, regardless of the phone you end up with.

*If this (or another post in this thread) fixes your problem/issue, please mark it as "accept-solution", and I'll tag it, to make it easier for others to find the answer(s). FYI: I'm an AT&T end-user, just like most of us in the forum. Thanks.

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.
dynamo69

Teacher

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15 Messages

5 months ago

So I ordered from Amazon a Google Pixel 2XL. It was through Amazons "Renewed" service so the phone looks brand new but refurbished. Anyways, cut my SIM card down from my old phone plugged it in to the new phone and it works great at least at work I can definitely tell I have better reception. Havent made it home yet. One major problem I didnt read about anywhere was Pixel 2 and 3 phones have serious camera issues.

https://support.google.com/pixelphone/thread/3317373?hl=en

 

In googles camera app its getting downvoted heavily. This issue seems to have started over a year ago with no known fix. I have tried literally everything. Updated all apps, force stop camera app, clear cache, etc. Updated to android 10 which didnt do anything. From what Im reading there is zero fix. Tried different camera apps. Some people said to put the phone in airplane mode, others said to turn off dirty lens feature... Ive tried it all.

The only solution right now (unless someone here on the forums knows a fix) is to contact Google and they will replace the phone. I have no problem doing that however it looks like many people have done exactly that and a month or two after using the replacement phone the problem pops up again. I'll post again when I get home to see if the reception issue is any better.