Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

Professor

Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

After updating my iPhone 4 to 4.0.1, I noticed that by bars are constantly jumping around between 3 and 5 bars while sitting in one place.  This is with a case on the phone, and is the same as what I was seeing with iOS 4.0 before putting the case on.  Putting the case on stabilized the signal display at 5 bars, but now with 4.0.1, it's back to jumping around.

 

I understand that the bars weren't real on 4.0, so after the 4.0.1 fix, I wouldn't be surprised if it changed to a solid 4 or even 3 bars in the same location.  I also wouldn't be surprised if it swapped between 5-4 bars of 4-3 bars if my signal happened to be right at the cut off between two bars.  But swinging two bars while sitting in a fixed location is unexpected.  Does the signal strength from the towers really vary that much that often?

 

BTW, I tried with the case on and off, and it doesn't seem to make any difference.  Still swings over a three bar range.

 

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Message 1 of 26
Teacher

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

I experienced just the opposite!! Weird!! Specially at my friends house my bars were all over then I updated (at his house) and the bars were consistent. From what I have read they also widened the spectrum so bars shouldn't jump around as often unless there is a greater fluctuation in Db's in that area.

Message 2 of 26
Highlighted
ACE - Professor

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

The bars *are* real in both cases, it's just that the SNR mapped to a different bar in 4.0 vs 4.01

 

Nothing changed other then the mapping. So before, your signal varied while sitting in one place (which happens since stuff moves all around you, which absorbs and/or reflects radio waves, even if you don't move)

 

As the signal changes, the OS maps the new signal to a bar display. If the fluxuation is all within the same bar range, you don't see it.

 

Now that the ranges at the high end are smaller, and bars 4 & 5 actually mean "pretty darn excellent" and "most excellent" signal, a couple db variation in the SNR is going to be visible to you.

 

Don't spend your day staring at the bars - you'll be a lot more happy.

*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.
Message 3 of 26
Professor

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

Looking at the Anandtech signal bar mappings, that seems possible. 

 

http://www.anandtech.com/show/3821/iphone-4-redux-analyzing-apples-ios-41-signal-fix

 

Under 4.0, 5 bars was -91 to -51 dBm.  Under 4.0.1, the cutoff for 5 bars is raised to -76 and 4 bars is -87, so in theory a strength swing that was within the 5 bar range under 4.0, could span bars 3-5 under 4.0.1.  I'm just surprised that there is that much swing in a fixed location.  A swing through bars 3-5 would have to go from at least -87 to -76 dBm, which seems a lot to me.  What is moving in the world between me and the tower enough to cause that much fluctuation in signal strength?

 

Not really complaining, it's just that I didn't expect that the signal could vary that much that fast without moving around.

Message 4 of 26
Guru

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

 


dwill05 wrote:

Looking at the Anandtech signal bar mappings, that seems possible. 

 

http://www.anandtech.com/show/3821/iphone-4-redux-analyzing-apples-ios-41-signal-fix

 

Under 4.0, 5 bars was -91 to -51 dBm.  Under 4.0.1, the cutoff for 5 bars is raised to -76 and 4 bars is -87, so in theory a strength swing that was within the 5 bar range under 4.0, could span bars 3-5 under 4.0.1.  I'm just surprised that there is that much swing in a fixed location.  A swing through bars 3-5 would have to go from at least -87 to -76 dBm, which seems a lot to me.  What is moving in the world between me and the tower enough to cause that much fluctuation in signal strength?

 

Not really complaining, it's just that I didn't expect that the signal could vary that much that fast without moving around.


I started a thread yesterday which mentions that Anandtech article; guess not many folks noticed it (my thread), especially given that no one else in this forum even bothered to comment on it... Smiley Sad

 

 

I thought it to be an interesting read, in light of the recent iOS update that corrected the signal bar display readings...

Message 5 of 26
ACE - Professor

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

 


dwill05 wrote:

Not really complaining, it's just that I didn't expect that the signal could vary that much that fast without moving around.


 

For me in the bay area, its often low flying C-130s barn burning 100' off the ground (so it seems) on their way to moffit, police helecopters, the marine layer rolling in, and heaven knows what else causing multipath interference.

 

Ah, urban life.

*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.
Message 6 of 26
Scholar

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

Tonester, I commented in your thread. I meant to comment in this thread. Sorry.
Message 7 of 26
Tutor

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

YES, I even have a microcell and I can't even get 5 bars inches from my microcell now. My phone can be sitting in the cradle and totally still and not being touched and bars will fluctuate from 1 to 5 bars. I used to have 5 bars anywhere in the house. And now I am lucky to get 3 and it wildly fluctuates. Even within just a few feet of the microcell. IT SUCKS. And there is no way it is accurate. Even if it is different mapping. There is no way your signal can fluctuate from 1 to 4 and 5 bars within inches of your signal source. Apple needs to get an ear full about this. They did this to so call fix the iPhone 4 problem and just created problems for the rest of us. There is no reason they couldn't have made this update solely for the iPhone 4. The OS is different for the 3G than 3GS. And it is different for the iPod touch as well. The file sizes are different for each phone. There is no reason this particular aspect of this OS has to affect the 3G and 3GS phones.

Message 8 of 26
Professor

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

Format or reset network settings. May improve your issue. But it could be the normal.
Message 9 of 26
Professor

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

( in some cases the patches mess up with your settings and other things. Resets or restores are sometimes recommended. )
Message 10 of 26
Scholar

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

This bar issue is so blown out if proportion. I could careless how many bars I have personally. As long as I have service is all that matters. How mean how many people especially in LA look at thier bars?

It's just something the phone companies have left on their phone designs from the past as well as ATT used it as a marketing campaign.

The device should say service or no service to be honest.

Just my $0.02.
Message 11 of 26

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?


ghzcss wrote:

 They did this to so call fix the iPhone 4 problem and just created problems for the rest of us. There is no reason they couldn't have made this update solely for the iPhone 4. The OS is different for the 3G than 3GS. And it is different for the iPod touch as well. The file sizes are different for each phone. There is no reason this particular aspect of this OS has to affect the 3G and 3GS phones.


I do believe that the false signal strength spans all apple phones.  Their calculation has always been wrong so it does effect all phones, not just the 4.  My signal strength on my 3G now measures the strength I got in the same location with my RAZR I had before the 3G, which is more realistic....IMHO

 


I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinion.
Message 12 of 26
Tutor

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

I do believe that the false signal strength spans all apple phones.  Their calculation has always been wrong so it does effect all phones, not just the 4.  My signal strength on my 3G now measures the strength I got in the same location with my RAZR I had before the 3G, which is more realistic....IMHO

 

But, if that is the case. Why do all the other phones in my house have 5 bars with the exception of the iPhones that have the OS 4.0.1 update? And why would my signal and all other updated iPhones fluctuate so wildly within less than 6 feet of the microcell?

Message 13 of 26
Professor

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

Again, the issue I'm describing is not wheter the phone reads 3 or 5 bars, or which is accurate. It's the fact that the strength is fluctuating wildly over a period of a few minutes while sitting in a fixed place. I don't live near an airport where low flying aircraft constantly fly between me and the tower. This hs either a real effect indicating either a transmission or reception issue, or the phone is even more messed up than before the "fix".
Message 14 of 26
Tutor

Re: Anyone else having jumpy bars after 4.0.1 update?

 


dwill05 wrote:
Again, the issue I'm describing is not wheter the phone reads 3 or 5 bars, or which is accurate. It's the fact that the strength is fluctuating wildly over a period of a few minutes while sitting in a fixed place. I don't live near an airport where low flying aircraft constantly fly between me and the tower. This hs either a real effect indicating either a transmission or reception issue, or the phone is even more messed up than before the "fix".

I agree and it is causing issues for me now with the 2 iPhones I have in my house daily. An iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS. It is actually causing signal issues. Not just bar issues. I have never dropped a call in my house since I got the microcell. Unless the internet went down. Now I am dropping calls. Texts won't send at times. This is a REAL signal issue with this update I am experiencing on 2 separate phones. That never gave a minutes trouble before the OS 4.0.1 update.

 

Message 15 of 26
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