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Downright AWFUL reception/signal on Sprint, esp for data yet friend's S5 gets OK signal same spot

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by BT5150, Dec 2, 2014.

  1. BT5150

    BT5150 Lurker
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    I'm on mygot an S5 second S5, first one was stolen after I'd accidentally somehow left it in plain view on passenger seat on a pretty busy busy street in a very safe area of my city. They smashed my pass window, grabbed S5 and ran, I was only inside for 5 min MAX anmd S% long gone, along with window glass. Even worse, my $500 auto insurance comp deductible of course wouldn't come close to paying a cent on the $240 bill to replace the window (even if it had, that small of a claim is never worth it anyway, you'll pay it right back plus more via higher rates!) Then they sent me the "refurbished" crappy phone insurance replacement phone (along with another $200 deductible!) Yet, to some extent with the first phone and very much on my 2nd one, even though I live and move around my city and metro area (1.5 mil people and supposedly rock solid coverage nearly anywhere in the entire area-and I generally never even make it to the fringes where signal my understandably be weak here n there and yet I have HORRIBLE signal strength, usually just the ONE tiny bar is ALL I get, occasionally it will jump to 3 or 4 bars, but almost always not for long and its back to one bar!

    Big problem is I need to use it for a mobile hotspot many times daily and at best its slower than any DSL I've even seen AND sometimes or often its barely above dial up speed, honest to God.

    Now, a friend got his S5 maybe 4 to 6 weeks ago and doesn't get all that great of a signal either, usually its between 3 and 4 bars, but that blows me away and definitely blows away my data speed by miles!

    I've searched high and low for ANY issue that could cause this (was looking for software or hardware issues) and found NOTHING!

    Sprint's only answer is the usual "bring it in so one of our techs can check it out, but I seriously am busier than heck for last few months and into the foreseeable future.

    Can ANYONE think of ANY issue that could cause this??????? Thanks!!!!
     

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  2. AZgl1500

    AZgl1500 Android Expert
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    1st, a minor admonishment.
    Never, ever, let your phone get out of your sight.
    I purposely only wear shirts with pockets, and that include TeeShirts.... if the shirt don't have a pocket, I will not own it period.

    2nd, get a thin sticky/rubbery case for it and always put that phone in your pocket.... this case has rubbery ridges that prevent thieves from stealing it ( if in your pocket )
    * Speck CandyShell Grip- Black/Slate:


    Now, to the phone....
    Is the battery, most of the time, at least 15 percent or better? My phone starts getting really pissy about Bluetooth connections when the battery gets down in the 25% or lower levels.... The BT headset itself also gets cranky when the battery is low.

    3rd, despite your lack of time, you need to stop in at a Sprint Retail store and have a tech check the APN codes and make sure that phone is configured correctly. It makes one heck of a lot of differencs. This from Experience talking here although I am on Verizon....

    I have discovered the hard way too many times, that Auto Configuration from the carriers websites and SIM cards, just does not always work correctly. Something gets left out..... I have called up Verizon Tech Support and they have walked me thru the Hidden Menus and had me Manually Configure each and every line item.

    when that was done, the phones have always worked like a champ!!!

    I just did this to use a 4 year old Galaxy 'S' phone as a stand in while my wife gets a new S5 delivered to her in the mail "Real Soon Now" which is 3 weeks going today.... Anyway, tried to get that phone working last week automatically from the VZW website and no go. Likewise, same phone 2 years ago when I changed my phone number, no go.... always ended up with Tech Support, and always got it fixed correctly.

    With Sprint, I hope you can get the same quality tech support.
     
    #2 AZgl1500, Dec 2, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2014
  3. BT5150

    BT5150 Lurker
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    Thanks for your help, it wouldn't be the battery issue. I have both home and car chargers as well as a backup battery and since I often need to use the phone as a mobile hotspot, which uses even more power, I always try to keep my battery at least half charged and usually higher.

    These APN codes though, that sounds like something I've got to look into. I'm pretty tech savvy with nearly everything other than smartphones, but I'd still rate myself as fairly good with them but I'd never heard of APN codes before. In fact, right after I post this response, I will be searching and reading up on APN codes and then I'll be contacting Sprint support. So, we'll see if they are as good with me as Verizon was for you. Thanks a lot for the input!
     
  4. jejb

    jejb Well-Known Member
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    Is your friend also on Sprint? If not, that can be a huge difference, of course.

    But the refurb phones you often get on these replacements are of spotty quality, from what I read, so it could just be a clunker phone. But you'd have to take it and let them try to fix it before they'd likely entertain the notion of replacing it with another one.
     
  5. AZgl1500

    AZgl1500 Android Expert
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    Since your first post, I ran across an app that just might be of use to you.

    Try this one out, it will give you the exact dBm signal strength reading that the phone is seeing from the carrier.
    The display is very good also.

    Have your friend install it on his phone and then you can do direct comparisons and do away with subjective notions. Those signal bars on our phones are just about meaningless.

    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.cls.networkwidget


    Signal Strength.png
     

Samsung Galaxy S5

The Samsung Galaxy S5 was announced in 2014 and was the company's first flagship of the year. The device featured a 5.1-inch display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, and a 16MP primary rear camera.

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