iPhone 7 plus experiencing awful speeds and hotspot issues

  • 23 December 2017
  • 30 replies

so I got the iPhone 7 plus earlier this year and have never ever had a complaint about the device or connection when not on a wifi network.

However, in the last two weeks I've noticed my phone barely being able to load a YouTube video when the quality is set at 480p. Also, updating or downloading an app takes me about a good 15-20 minutes.

I have updated my phone to the most recent software, factory reset, tried resetting network settings, turning phone off and back on, toggling location settings.

I downloaded a well known speed test app, and the speeds I'm getting are NOT LTE speeds. I'm getting on average .75-1mbps down and 1-1.5mbps up.

I have also called tmobiles tech support line and I have talked to 3 people this week so far who have told me i have unlimited data and that I have not yet reached the 20GB of high speed data or whatever.

One of the tech support people had told me that one of the towers near me needed some work done, but that it would be finished by 5pm that day. I have seen no improvement whatsoever.

Also, when I connect my firestick to my phones hotspot, I am met with constant buffering and connection issues when I'm less than 3-5 feet away from the firestick with my phone.

The indicator in the top left hand corner shows that I'm getting 2 bars of LTE

This happens no matter where I am or what time of day it is.

I would greatly appreciate some help on this because I rely on my 4G LTE very much.

I really hope to resolve this issue ASAP because I am going crazy without being able to use my phone in the way that I need.


Best answer by tmo_chris 2 January 2018, 17:34

Sorry for the confusion. In your original post, you mentioned that you have 2 bars of LTE which should be netting you faster speeds than 0.75 down. If signal fluctuation is happening and you are frequently dropping to 1 bar, then a signal booster (2 part unit) could help you a lot. If there is an area of your home where you are able to get consistent strong signal like near a window, this is where you are going to want to place the window unit of the signal booster.

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30 replies

Where are you located? What happens when you go to another location (some miles away)? Does this also happen late at night or early in the morning?

I'm in Bakersfield, CA. It occurs regardless of the time or location. It's a teeny tiny bit faster when I'm at work, but not by much. It extremely slow at my house. Whether I am inside or outside.

If you are actually in Bakersfield, rather than on the outskirts somewhere, it's hard to explain. That area has wideband LTE on bands 2 & 4, plus band-12. The iPhone 7+ has 3-way carrier aggregation. Bakersfield's population is not so great as to cause a great deal of congestion. If the problem still occurs when you move a couple of miles away to a new cell, it can't be something wrong with the cell. There must be something going on with the phone. IMHO?

I called in to tmobile customer support today, they told me that since I've already gone to the store, and gotten a replacement SIM, with no improvement, that they will send me a signal booster. I also factory reset my phone twice today, and took my phone to the Apple store, and they told me the device was in great condition/nothing wrong with it.

Really frustrating that I'm having these issues when the service costs me over 75 dollars a month per phone. That's not much to some people, but it's alot of money to me. Especially to pay for something that doesn't work like it used to.

Also, Bakersfield is pretty large, so I'm not sure if you're referring to the whole of Bakersfield, or a specific tower or neighborhood. Either's happening to me no matter where I am located. Happens whether I am inside or outside.

I didn't have these issues until I updated to iOS 11.

Wonder if Apple is optimizing their updates for their newest and most expensive phones, and not focusing on their customers who have older iPhones?

Not the best way to run a business imo. If you want to maintain a loyal and happy customer base, you have to cater to even your most senior consumer. They are your bread and butter because they will often times speak highly of a company that has treated them well, and not taken advantage of them.

That being next phone will be an android for sure...this is my first and last iPhone.

I'm really happy that I'm being sent a signal booster. I hear they really help. Not having internet service where I live makes my phone a much needed item...especially a working phone. Lol. I couldn't even watch 2-1/2 minutes of parks and recreation on my firestick the other night because the LTE connection was so bad.

Anywho, merry Christmas eve eve.

I'm more of an Android user than iPhone, so this isn't really an area where I can claim any sort of expertise. I heard on the radio that Apple was being sued for slowing down some of their older phones but they were talking about the iPhone 6, not 7. Maybe someone with more experience with iPhones will check in here and provide some better insight.

Userlevel 6
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Hi there hopefully I can help out a little to explain why you are having coverage issues. However there is one small test that I would like you to do before I say for certain what I believe the issue is. So if possible I would like you to use your old device if you still have it or find someone that you know that has another device that isn't the iPhone to test the LTE connection. If they get better results then you when you two are side by side then there is something wrong with the device. Its probably not properly connecting to the best LTE connection or something along those lines. Please let me know if you able to test the connection with other devices then the effected phone.

Do you mean I should swap my SIM card out to another phone and test the connection?

Because that's what I've already done. It still didn't fix my connection issue. So I went to tmobile store and they gave me a new SIM, but I'm still having the same connection issues.

Userlevel 6
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Yep that is what I wanted you to test. Honestly, I'm a bit puzzled by this based off the information you have provided. If both your new iPhone and your old device are getting similar results regardless of time or location then their might be something wrong in regards to the provisioning on the account. Do you know if anyone else is having issues maybe a coworker as a example.

I do want to ask what plan do you have with T-mobile?

I have the unlimited everything plan that is also on the jump program. I also have 14GB of LTE hotspot data.

I don't know what provisioning on the account would entail exactly. Can you please explain that?

I don't know anyone that has tmobile and an iPhone unfortunately...but as I said before the other person that's on my account has a galaxy s8 and he has no I'd dues whatsoever.

I have viewed quite a few peoples posts on reddit regarding their tmobile service on their iPhones that are older than the iPhone 8/x. All of them say that ever since the update a few weeks ago, and since the release of the new iPhone, they've been slowed/throttled alot and have connection issues. So I know I'm not the only one experiencing issues with the speed and connectivity.

Not trying to sound paranoid, but I have a sneaking suspicion that this is apple and tmobiles way of forcing their consumers to upgrade their phones for newer and more expensive ones.

Userlevel 6
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In regards to provisioning I was asking if you had for example the base T-mobile One plan which caps data speeds to 1-1.5mb when attempting to stream things like video content. It sounds like this is not the case in which case I would ask for you to make sure features like binge on are not active on the account. I doubt that this is the issues but its worth checking.

Also I can assure you that T-mobile wouldn't Throttle specific device like that on the network. Especially since the Iphone 7 is still very new and it would be more of a headache then you would think to deal with.

You had mentioned before that you saw no improvement when testing the previous device if I understand correctly which leads me to believe that it has nothing to do with the phone unless I misunderstood ( please clarify). As for the person using the S8 do they notice any poor speeds as far as data? Can you run a speed test and compare results? If speeds are dramatically better on the S8 can you enter this into the dial pad without the quotes "*#0011#"? Screen cap what it says and put it hear as it will give a detailed over view of the connecting being established on the S8 in the location  in question.

I've turned binge on off. I have also put my SIM into the s8 and tested the speed and it was almost identical to the speed when it had been in the iPhone.

The other person using the s8 on my account us had no issues while using his Sim in the s8.

Userlevel 6
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Call T-mobile and explain everything you tried on this forum. Ask them if they can reset your connection to the network on their end. Also ask them to make sure that everything is setup correctly including the APN settings for the iPhone. This honestly shouldn't be happening. All there its worth mentioning that Binge On can sometimes take some time to turn off so if after everything above is tried and their is no resolution by tomorrow I will have been completely stumped.

I called this morning and they reset my connection and made sure the apn is correct. Everything is as it should be in those departments...however, nothing has changed. If anything its even slower now.

Userlevel 5

My goodness! you have gone through quite a bit here! Since you tested your SIM in another phone that had no issues when the owners SIM was in it, the issue is definitely not with your phone. This does seem to be account related and we will need to open a support ticket for this. I know you have spoken with our tech teams multiple times already but do you recall if a support ticket was ever created for you?

I've had two tickets made supposedly. The first one the tech support agent claimed they were going to send someone out to the tower closest to me because it was having a latency problem. I asked him to follow up with me once it was fixed. He called me a few days later and said that it had been fixed. However I was and am still having issues with connection speed.

So I called back a few days ago and the representative told me that once I pay my past due amount that they'll send me a signal booster. So I hope that will solve the problem. In typically a little past due on my bill every month because I get paid randomly throughout the month.

Userlevel 5

Thanks for clarifying, I am not sure a signal booster is going to help in this situation. A signal booster (the 2 part unit) simple takes the signal from one area of your home where it is strong and repeats it in another area of your home where the signal might be weaker. If you are getting a LTE cell spot, the internet speeds are going to be dependent on your home ISP as well as the data used will count towards your home ISP. In your situation, since you are getting decent signal and the speeds are slow everywhere and your friends with T-Mobile do not have the issue, points to an account level issue. We cannot access customer accounts here on the community forum so I would recommend that you contact us again and have them re-open the first ticket where they had the field tech investigate the issue.

As for the late payments, if you have not already, you can set up payment arrangements at any time using the T-Mobile app on your phone. If you find that you are having to set up a payment arrangement often and there is a better day that you would like to be able to pay your bill on, or care teams may be able to assist you with a billing cycle change giving you a new due date.

I don't have a home isp. I've had them look into my account and they haven't been able to locate any issues. As far as my bill goes I'm fine with paying late because as I said I get paid randomly throughout the month so there isn't a set date that I can choose that would work from month to month.

And I'm not getting a decent signal. Not sure what gave you that idea. But my phone shows at most 1 bar of LTE in all areas.

Userlevel 6
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Awe if the signal is that week then those speeds actually make a bit of sense. I wanted to ask what the signal strength was like for other users in the area? Where you ever able to run a speed test from their devices with their own sims inside to compare results?

Userlevel 5

Sorry for the confusion. In your original post, you mentioned that you have 2 bars of LTE which should be netting you faster speeds than 0.75 down. If signal fluctuation is happening and you are frequently dropping to 1 bar, then a signal booster (2 part unit) could help you a lot. If there is an area of your home where you are able to get consistent strong signal like near a window, this is where you are going to want to place the window unit of the signal booster.

I know this thread is older but I have same issue, my wife and I iPhone 7 Plus tether is worthless, however my son cheap blu phone has great tether, no matter what ive tried, I swapped out SIM cards and mine works great in his. I put my SIM card back into my old note 3 and it’s tether works great. Back into my iPhone and I can’t get over 1 mbps.

I have great service in the heart of Gilbert (Phoenix) full bars. Speedtest on phone itself gets great number, but anything tether get terrible.

I never saw but was there a fix for this?

Userlevel 5

Hey @spudzooka

Definitely odd that it is specific to one device. If you have not already, can you please try resetting your network settings on the iPhone?

Tap Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings. 

I am experiencing same issues with my IPhone 7 Plus 256gb.

T-Mobile support has been great in assisting but ultimately it’s gotten worst. Download:0.75 and upload: .20. it’s been since the beginning. I have gotten 3 phones total and 4 SIM cards with no luck. Same issue. Disheartening and I believe it’s the iPhone 7 GSM version with the Non Qualcomm modem. Kids are better speeds on their iPhone SE arising 20 DL and 5 or 6 upload. However, will be researching another carrier, probably Verizon. I live i live In SIMI Valley and work in Hollywood, CA. Speeds should be great since I am close Los Angeles.

oh and I have done multiple Resets of network, phone and have a booster too. Booster speeds are sound 3-5 DL. Once I got a 40dl.

But it for a phone that should be getting close triple digits this is abismal.

Userlevel 5

Those are very slow speeds! What kind of speeds do you get on the phone itself? Also, what plan are you on and how much hotspot data have you used this month? You can see your hotspot usage in the T-Mobile app.

Hi Tmo_Chris,

Plan: simple choice American plan 10gb

I used 1.01gb out of 10gb.

See attachments for actual download speeds.

I have Apple Music and normally have to download my music on WiFi in order to listen to it. Could never use YouTube on LTE because it’s so slow. I blame Apple for Intel Modem.

Verizon version of the iPhone 7 has Intel and Qualcomm modem.

Also, do you know if my iPhone 7 Plus would be ready for 5g speeds, 600/71 band?

Thanks for reading my post!


James A.