Signal strength drops when making voice calls..


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  1. snorkel

    snorkel Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Is anyone else seeing this behavior?

    right before I make a voice call the droid will show 4 bars, when I place a voice call it will drop to 0 bars and the voice quality is pretty bad.

    In the phone settings you can see the DBm signal strengh and before I make a call it will show -96 and when I make a call it will go to -104.

    I have noticed this even when right on top of a cell tower.

    You actually don't notice it when the signal is very strong, but on my droid it does appear that the signal degraded significantly when doing a voice call.

    It also does the same thing when the Wifi is turned on, it's almost like it's switching to another antenna for the voice when wifi is on or you make a call.

    So far I have not been impressed with the phones voice quaility at all.
     

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  2. galt

    galt Well-Known Member

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    That is your head sucking up all the radio waves. Government says don't worry about it.
     
  3. snorkel

    snorkel Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Ha, if it was that simple :) Didn't I mention I have a tinfoil hat I wear to prevent that from happening. Just kidding of course.
     
  4. shotinthenads

    shotinthenads Well-Known Member

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    When you use another Verizon phone does the signal drop off when you use it? Just curious. It sounds like you are on the edge of the nearest tower. I purchased a network extender recently, but before I purchased it I would routinely have one or two bars and it would drop off a little when the phone connected. I am very impressed with the call quality though. The only problem seems to be inside my house, but as I said with the network extender I notice no drop off. I have much better voice quality than I did with my iPhone.
     
  5. snorkel

    snorkel Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    I really don't want to spend 250 for that network extender. The issue is not so much in my house, it happens every where, and most of the time when you have a strong signal you don't' notice it all simply because you are so close to a tower.

    There is something wrong with my Droid at least, it should not be dropping ot 0 bars when you place a voice call.
     
  6. shotinthenads

    shotinthenads Well-Known Member

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    Simple, bum phone. If, you do hear the other person clearly when you have a good signal (and assuming the other person is on a landline or a good signal themselves) you must have a bad phone. Just bring it to the Verizon store to show them how bad it is and they will swap it out. Mine is crystal clear whenever I am I range of a tower.
     
  7. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

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    Given the number of "poor signal" threads, I don't think its just "your phone". I'm on my 2nd Droid for the 3rd day, and now I get no signal whatsoever. Internet not available. Signal strength at -105dBM. Two bars of 1x, 90% of the time at my mom's yesterday, and there are 37 towers/245 antennae in a 4 mi radius from our houses, which include the VZ store.

    I was able to hit a stable -62dBm with my antenna mod, again in the same spot, I definately think its a HW issue.
     
  8. wmgilligan

    wmgilligan Member

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    I have the same identical issue. 5 bars--- press the phone icon to dial, and bam! 1 bar tops... and calls are going in and out all the time.

    I am giving the phone 7 more days (had it 2 weeks). If no upgrade from Verizon/Google/Motorola - its going back. Its a great phone - I had the iphone original and 3g - luv the droid - but call quality sucks, and thats the underlying need.

    FYI - this happens everywhere - I am on the road now, along a major interstate. Happens here, happens in the car, happens at hoime/office, etc.... serious serious issue.
    :(
     
  9. snorkel

    snorkel Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    That's exactly what I see. I just got off the phone with tech support and they are sending me two replacment units.

    My wife was talking to her cousin and she said the voice quality was so bad she could barely understand what she was saying.

    if the new units have the same problem I will have no choice but to switch back to AT&T and will get a 3gs instead. I don't want a Iphone, but it's the best alternative to android on AT&T.

    From what i have been seeing it really seems like when a voice call is initated it is no longer using the same connection as the 3g data, it's as if it's roaming and connecting to a totally different tower.
     
  10. mikejaret

    mikejaret Well-Known Member

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    what you should do to test, is turn on wifi in your house and see if the signal jumps down. this is an issue I think with the droid is the 1X antenna stinks...when you are not on a call it is pulling in 3g...when yo uare on a call or in a wifi area, the 3g antenna shuts off and the 1X takes over....im willing to bet its the 1x antenna.....
     
  11. snorkel

    snorkel Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Yes, that is pretty much what happens, when you enable wifi the 1x takes over because you can't do 3g and wifi at the same time.
    Same thing happens when you place a call and yes signal drops in each case.
    4 bars 3g, then make a call and 0, or turn on wifi. hopefully they all don't have the crap 1x antenna, or droid will be gone and Iphone will replace it.

    I will certainly not be stuck for 2 years with a crap phone :)
     
  12. wmgilligan

    wmgilligan Member

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    I turned off wifi and gps.
    Entered a phone number, and the instant I hit the phone icon to place the call - 3bars became 1.

    This is an issue.
    How did you get those replacements? Did they charge you? Do I need to go to company store, or the one I purchased from?
     
  13. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

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    Well, if you are on WiFi, it doesn't matter if you switch to 1x because your data is going local through a router...not VZ network. The VZ phones can't do voice and data at the same time so while on WiFi, calls can go out through 3G.

    The problem is that you may have a good 3G signal, given the way my (2) Droids have been acting, in one particular spot I can have (4) bars 3G and get 1.8Mb downlad speed, but when the 3G circuit is not in use, status indicator will drop to (1) bar, then possibly to 1x. If I don't move the phone, and initiate a data session, 3G signal rises again, but may only get 600kb...again, phone may not have moved an inch. I think its more of an antenna management issue, aside from its obvious reception issues.

    I wonder if the Moto engineers designed it to save battery, but reducing power to the radios in idle state, and reducing "keep-alive" communication. The issues were seeing "could" be due to the Droid's inablility to handle channel switching properly.

    Just curious, how do you guys have your Mobile network settings configured? Allow Data roaming? Home Only or Automatic system select? I've seen some stability by using Home only and no Data Roaming.
     
  14. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

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    I feel your pain, but unless you can get your hands on the update before the rest of the world, you'll have to wait until Dec. 11th. As far as call quality, do you have Voice Privacy disabled (under >Settings > Call Settings)?
     
  15. galt

    galt Well-Known Member

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    I just do not understand all the fuss. You have all seen the TV ads.

    Can You Hear Me Now ?

    One of the great truth in advertsing events of the decade. :rolleyes:
    FWIW, I have been on Verizon for about 7 years.
     
  16. snorkel

    snorkel Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    I say that alot when talking to someone on the Droid, oh and I also say "What did you say?"

    I hope it's just the two droids my wife and I have. They are sending two replacements, but I am not confident they will be better. I think Motorola just made a crappy voice phone.

    I really regret leaving AT&T, my voice calls where excellent, not complete crap like Verizon and the Droid. The droid as a device is very cool, but on the wrong network. Would be a much better phone on a GSM based system.
     
  17. snorkel

    snorkel Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Calls NEVER go over 3g on verizon, they go over 1x. 3g is data only.

    What happens when you make a call or turn on wifi the droid switches to 1x mode and your bars/signal indicater then display that signal strength, NOT 3G.

    I don't know why, but the droid I have cannot get or hold a good 1x signal unless I am within 1/8 to 1/4 of a mile from the tower.

    I will have 4 full bars of 3g, make a call or turn on wifi and it goes to 0 and the call quality is really bad.

    I do use the phone functionality more than the data so if the new devices I am getting have the same behavior it will be good bye Verizon. I will have to pay for a months service, but that's it.
     
  18. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

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    I know...working from home and taking calls while posting on forums don't always make for cohesive posts. That and there are so many redundand threads dealing with the same issues gets me confused.

    "I think" point I was trying to make, "on this thread", was that if the antennae are amplified, it seems like there is an issue with allocating power and/or managing channel switching (i.e. 3G > 1x switch "while initializing or streaming data), especially if the phone is in a spot and angle, where its capable of 1Mb+ speeds.

    Also, have you tried the *228 Option 2, to update your roaming?

    If possible, I say wait for the update and then test, but with signal strength of -105, phone is struggling as it is...all kinds of QoS issues with that kind of connection. As a VoIP engineer, and self proclaimed audiophile, sound quality isn't that bad, but I've noticed varying quality based on signal strength and circuit I'm calling.

    FWIW - with my home antenna mod, which increased signal strength some 15+ dBm, and Download speed 600kb+, I thought I went too far with a new configuration, and shorted the antenna Sunday...signal was stuck below -104dBm and I could not get internet. I tried flashing the phone, and couldn't even get stable connection to "Activate phone". I was gonna return it just because of other reasons, but decided to give one more shot at reviving it. I 're-implemented' my mod, in its original config, and lo and behold, I was back up to -62dBm and was able to maintain "bars" again.


    ...but yeah, antennae are inherently weak. Have you tried changing the vocode? It should give you more bandwidth for voice calls but if you're running around with a -105dBm signal, you may be more susceptible to packet loss.
     
  19. Barbara

    Barbara Well-Known Member

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  20. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

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  21. snorkel

    snorkel Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    Yes, did the *228 thing and no diff.

    I don't trust Motorola to fix this particular issue, so if my replacment units have the same behavior with the low 1x signal it going to be hello iphone.
    AT&T is really good in my area, much better than Verizon is.
    I fell for their darn marketing about best coverage etc. From my experience with the droid, Verizon blows. I had sprint about 4 years ago and they sucked also, should have known better than to go with another CDMA network.
     
  22. colnago

    colnago Well-Known Member

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    Fair enough. I don't think a replacement phone will make any difference. Mine did not. You may want to check out th speedtest thread in here however...iPhone/AT&T catching some heat.

    :)
     
  23. cdd543

    cdd543 Well-Known Member

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    My signal jumps a lot as well and my call quality is quite poor. It's really the last thing I expected to worry about as I have had verizon in the past. This happens in strong signal areas... I often have a hard time understanding people and it's the same on their end. My 3gs call quality was excellent and I really haven't been very tempted to pick it up so hopefully this will be remedied soon.
     
  24. snorkel

    snorkel Active Member This Topic's Starter

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    I am thinking the poor call quality is purely related to the droid being a Motorola product. The guy that sits next to me at work said he had a Moto Razr and it did the exact same thing when making calls.

    So you had a 3gs and got a droid, are you regretting that with the poor droid voice quality?
     
  25. cdd543

    cdd543 Well-Known Member

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    No not yet, but if they don't straighten it out with a software update then yes I would. I may take mine in for an exchange...it crashes at least once a day where the screen goes black and won't come back on while the buttons are illuminated. Early adoption has its drawbacks.
     

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