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Is the problem my old or t-mobile network?

  • 22 November 2022
  • 9 replies
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Hello! I currently have an iPhone SE 2020 and use T-Mobile connect with 6 GB of data. I normally don’t use all 6.

Occasionally while driving or trying to use the internet, my internet stops completely. I may have full bars and LTE showing it is on, but I can’t use my phone for anything including sending texts. I live in Iowa City, Iowa, which is a pretty populated area and should have 99.9% coverage at least according to the map.

The biggest issue is when I am driving and need to use GPS. I have gotten lost in new areas at night because of this. Meanwhile my work phone (iPhone 12 with Verizon) is able to connect just fine as long as I have it on me. If I don’t have it on me, I am unable to find directions, contact family or friends to tell them where I am, or use the internet to search for help. 

Is the problem my old phone or lack of coverage? If it’s coverage, I am switching to Verizon despite T-Mobile claiming I have coverage everywhere including these dead spot areas.

Please let me know what I can do. I am upgrading my phone to an iPhone 11 Pro soon and need to know if I need to switch to another Network. I have been very happy with T-Mobile otherwise, especially the low price for prepaid data.
 

Thank you!!!

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Best answer by syaoran 22 November 2022, 15:01

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Userlevel 7
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Are you sure you are not over your 6GB of data?  Although most plans just reduce the speeds after going over the data usage limit for the plan.  The overage reduced speeds are so slow, it would make things like GPS completely useless.  iPhone’s require constant connectivity of data for iMessage to work.  

Just in case you might be roaming on to a domestic roaming partner’s network.  Do you have roaming for data enabled to see if that solves your data connectivity issues?  Domestic data roaming might be extremely limited on the partner network depending on your plan.  

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Thank you for your answer!!

I get alerts when I have 50% and 80% of my data left and I usually don’t get either of those texts, meaning I am under that usage. With T-Mobile connect, all data turns off when you hit the limit, so I wouldn’t be able to use it right now but I can.

It says roaming is off. I have low power mode on a lot due to the low battery power of my older phone, could that be it?

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I did not mean to hit solve oops

Userlevel 5
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Iowa city ‘appears’ to have “OK” service, but most appears to be ‘midband’ (i.e. shorter range / weaker signal strength).

cellmapper.net will show where service is weak/where towers are - but isn’t 100% accurate (geotagged/crowdsource) in many areas.

Check your service at Kirkwood Community College / Iowa City Highschool.

I suspect that all carriers are colocated in the city (sharing towers in many places), and being primarily midband vs lowband, Verizon/AT&T will end up with stronger service.

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Iowa city ‘appears’ to have “OK” service, but most appears to be ‘midband’ (i.e. shorter range / weaker signal strength).

cellmapper.net will show where service is weak/where towers are - but isn’t 100% accurate (geotagged/crowdsource) in many areas.

Check your service at Kirkwood Community College / Iowa City Highschool.

I suspect that all carriers are colocated in the city (sharing towers in many places), and being primarily midband vs lowband, Verizon/AT&T will end up with stronger service.

Thank you!! I am on cell mapper. What should I be looking for? How can I tell how good the service is?

Userlevel 7
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Low power and power saving options can impact network and radio performance.  Perhaps try tuning that off to see if it helps.

Userlevel 5
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In cellmapper.net (web page, not app), select Menu → Provider, 310260

Network → 4G LTE, Band →  All

 

The ‘dots’ are samples ‘.  Green being ‘best’, Red being worst.  Black being basically ‘No Service’.

 

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In cellmapper.net (web page, not app), select Menu → Provider, 310260

Network → 4G LTE, Band →  All

 

The ‘dots’ are samples ‘.  Green being ‘best’, Red being worst.  Black being basically ‘No Service’.

 

Thank you!!!!!!! Looks like t mobile has the best coverage… I guess it may also be my older phone and the low power mode thing

Userlevel 5
Badge +8

Not sure .. Verizon shows good coverage near the river, AT&T is kinda ‘meh’… but this is ‘crowd sourced’ maps.  Don’t forget, most of the east side is midband B2/B4, while AT&T has a ton of spectrum low/mid and Verizon has a handful of sites.  Also, the sites that show up as ‘red’ vs. green may be old sites rebuilt, or new sites not yet validated.   Try around one of the ‘green’ (verified) sites.

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