5G Speeds on iPhone 12

  • 18 November 2020
  • 5 replies


Now I know 5G is still an emerging technology and its going to have bugs but I am having lackluster 5G speeds in my area (60442).  I’ve done several speed tests and regular LTE is about 20mbps faster than 5G.  Even though I have 1-2 bars of service at home LTE should be slower shouldn’t it.  Even in an area where I have a full 4 bars of service I can’t get over 50mbps on 5G, on LTE I’ll hit 40-42mbps no problem.  I don’t know but T-Mobile really needs to get this figured out because I am really regretting upgrading from my XR.  Only reason why I did is because the phone was 3 years old and my battery life was quite poor.  Is having 5G being slower than LTE common right now? 

5 replies

Interesting question… I traded my iPhoneX for a new 12Pro for much the same reasoning. Changed from Verizon to T-Mobile for lower price (about half for the same plan!) and their greater 5G coverage even though it’s not quite reached my home location just yet.

Recently, when I was up in their 5G coverage range, the 5G connection was faster than what I could get if I was using my US Cellular HotSpot on USCC’s 4G-LTE network so I was very pleased.

At home T-Mobile’s ‘partnering’ with third-party provider; I’m lucky if I get two bars! My ZIP’s 54665 btw. You’re not that far outside metro Chicago so I’d expect your 5G service to be better than 4G. It certainly seems to be for me when I can get up into T-M’s 5G range but that’s not often.

Userlevel 3
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also keep in mind that once the merger happened a TON of Sprint phones are now able to roam onto TMO in many areas it could be a major influx of additional phones on those towers..TMO is still deploying it as well as trying to beef up those already done towers..

Userlevel 2
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Until T-Mobile has a lot of 5G sites built… 5G is more of just a capacity gain, and marketing tool.  5G on 600MHz just allows them to build a handful of sites and ‘overlay’ a large LTE area with a 5G label.  Its mostly beneficial in areas where there is a high population density, and T-Mobile builds on n41 (Sprint’s 2500MHz) with a 1:1 on their existing sites… vs. n71 on ~1/8 of suburban/urban sites.

Userlevel 4
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In theory, a 5G phone should have all the benefits of 5G plus LTE. It’s supposed to be able to aggregate 5G and compatible LTE signals. However, it doesn’t seem to work that way in practice. I think it’s due to the fact that all 5G equipment is first-generation and things aren’t optimized yet. 

Userlevel 2
Badge +4

I do tend to agree.  This is ‘first gen’, kind of similar to how LTE was deployed in some areas - having faster speeds, better service on what was 3G.  This also reminds me of the ‘handoff’ issues that occurred during initial B12 / 700MHz deployment, where I had my older LG G7 hanging on to B12 700MHz down to 1 bar when I was ~200’ from a B2/B4/B12 site.  Some tuning will be needed, I’m sure.

Hopefully, n41 buildout will occur rather quickly in the coming year, and much of this will be a non-issue.

AT&T had what I think was an easier deployment, as the majority of cell infra was already built on 850MHz cellular band.  Verizon using a different technique as well with DSS.  Physical deployments take a lot of time/resources.