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Why is the Huawei P9 Plus only connecting at 72Mbps maximum on a 2.4GHz router?

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by Original_Jamaican, Jun 28, 2020.

  1. Original_Jamaican

    Thread Starter

    I have a P9 Plus and was happy to hear that it would be getting Oreo...main reason being that the Marshmallow which it's still running seems to have some issues with the Wi-Fi. I don't know if it's the Wi-Fi antenna or the OS but I'm not getting the full speed. The Wi-Fi protocols are exactly the same as the Samsung Galaxy S5 yet the S5 connects to my 2.4G router at a max speed of 144Mbps while my P9 Plus connects at a maximum speed of 72Mbps. I purchased the P9 Plus brand new and another relative who purchased the P9 Plus as well from the same store during the same time as I connects to my router at the same 72Mbps. The S5 is two years old than the P9 Plus yet does a better job when it comes to Wi-Fi connectivity.

    I read an article online the other day where some people said they connect at much higher speeds with their P9 Plus or P9 (same difference, same antenna) using a 2.4G router.

    I have done a hard factory reset as well as cleared system cache but nothing seems to work. If anybody have any ideas please share them. It's annoying when I'm in my room and sometimes the connection drops to 1Mbps whereas my S5 drops to 77Mbps in that very same room which is 77 times greater than the speed of the P9 Plus!!!!!!

    I really look forward to anyone who can shed some light on the matter.

    #1 Original_Jamaican, Jun 28, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2020
  2. tommo47

    tommo47 On Yer Bike, In Yer Chair
    VIP Member

    Hi @Original_Jamaican, first of all welcome to Android Forums, I hope you enjoy your time with us :).

    You quote two speeds in particular, 72Mbps and 144Mbps, how are you measuring those speeds.

    As you quote Mbps (Mega bits per second), I assume you are using a carrier provided speed test, which measures the maximum bandwidth of the link, which does not relate directly to the data throughput.

    The true data throughput of any link should be quoted in MBps (Mega bytes per second), which, for instance, reduces a 72Mbps link to a 9MBps meaningful data link. There are further reductions in data transfer due to, amongst other things, network delays and error checking and recovery.

    If you are interested the following links will give a full explanation of this but the main point is that the carrier speed information is misleading with regard to actual download and upload of data.

    Check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethernet_frame. Similar problems exist for other transmission media."
    Source :-

    What I find odd in your case is why one device shows twice the bandwidth of the other device, that doesn't make any sense at all.

    You also mention the 2.4GHz router, but this again has no direct bearing on live data throughput as it is the speed of the link between the device and the router only. The true data transmission is still limited to what the network from server to client can maintain.

    A much more accurate way to measure your download speed is to watch the time taken to download your app updates from the Playstore. With my devices a typical 25 MB update usually takes about 3 seconds to download which makes it about 8 MB per second actual data transfer speed, a reduction of up to approximately ⅛ of my carrier's quoted maximum download speed of 60 Mb per second and I carry out regular checks to verify that because they have a minimum speed guarantee of 50Mb per second with a compensation clause if they don't meet that minimum speed over a set period of time.
    #2 tommo47, Jun 28, 2020
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020
  3. svim

    svim Extreme Android User

    WiFi connectivity is always going to involve a lot of variables -- i.e. noise floor issue, channel interference, distance limitations, etc. -- so consistency isn't going to be its strong suit. WiFi has always been more of about convenience. Also, whatever numbers you rely upon there's also going to be the matter of theoretical vs real-world maximums.
    In your query you're comparing a flagship model (in its time) with a mid-level model, which adds in even more variables as there will be hardware differences that 'might' be compensated somewhat by a version upgrade, but any firmware update can only do so much. Also just more speculation but the differences with your S5 and P9 could be due to one having a better internal antenna and/or the WiFi radio chip (and higher quality firmware).
    Also, the 2.4Ghz frequency itself is most likely a factor. It's very, very crowded with numerous other devices like microwave ovens, radio-controlled toys, etc. all emitting wireless signals of their own. Part of the reason 5Ghz, even with its own drawbacks, gets recommended as an alternative is its just not a crowded with so much other interference.

    And not to be dismissive but what are you doing with your P9 that requires more than 72Mbps? That's a healthy amount of bandwidth itself and if maximum connectivity speeds are a requirement you shouldn't be expecting a mid-level phone to be up to the task. Even if you're attempting to watch only 4K streaming video content that's going to require 20-25 Mbps on a continuous basis.
    Dannydet likes this.
  4. Hadron

    Hadron Smoke me a kipper...
    VIP Member

    As others have said, the speed of connection between router and phone and the speed of connection between router and wide-area network are entirely separate things. My phone is currently telling me that I have a 526 Mb/s connection to my router, but I know that the maximum throughput I'll get is around 76 Mb/s from the outside world.

    However, one thing that did catch my eye was this:
    Now wireless reception is a black art, and 2 identical phones next to each other can show noticably different signals. But if the Huawei is consistently showing a weaker signal than the Samsung there are two obvious possibilities:

    1) the Huawei has genuinely weaker WiFi reception. That could be due to firmware, antenna design or a fault.

    2) the two phones are using different algorithms or parameters to report their reception strength, with either one being optimistic or the other pessimistic.

    In neither case will there be anything you can do yourself to change this. What you could however do is load a speed check app on both phones and compare their throughput in different locations (not at the same time or they'll be competing for the same bandwidth). If both produce broadly the same results then you can probably not worry about what it says for the connection speed (either the difference is just in how the phones estimate this or the real performance of both phones exceeds what your internet connection delivers). If they consistently produce significantly different results in the same location this would suggest that there is a genuine difference.
    Dannydet and tommo47 like this.
  5. Original_Jamaican

    Thread Starter

    To TOMMO47:

    Thank you so much for your response. I truly appreciate it.

    The speeds I mention are the link speed which is found in the Wi-Fi settings for the phones. My S5's link speed is 144Mbps at full strength while my the P9 Plus is 72Mbps at full strength. The Wi-Fi router is downstairs so usually when I'm in my room upstairs the linkspeed drops. However, if no other device in the household (desktop computer, laptop, smart TV, Playstation 4 or any other smartphones) is using the internet it tends to give me full speed or near full speed...especially if I leave my room door open.

    I have a 50Mbps connection from my provider. It's fast and reliable for the most part. The desktop computer is connected to the router through an Ethernet cable and when I do a speed test on the desktop using speedtest.net I get this result:

    Result ID
    PING ms


    UPLOAD Mbps

    Downloading files via the desktop computer on average yields a download speed of 5MBps which is not the 6.25MBps that I should be getting but very good nevertheless. We all know that it's hard to achieve the full amount of Megabytes when downloading due to factors like network traffic etc. but if it's close to what you should be getting it can be considered excellent.

    When my P9 Plus starts crawling on the internet and I go to the Wi-Fi menu on the phone the link speed is usually at 5Mbps and sometimes (although rare) at 1Mbps.

    The way I look at it if my provider is giving me a 50Mbps internet connection and my Huawei P9 Plus phone's Wi-Fi link speed is showing 5Mbps or 1Mbps there's no way I'm achieving anything close to the bandwidth that my provider gives me. However, with the S5, if the link speed drops to 77Mbps when I'm in my room then I'm still achieving the 50Mbps that my provider is giving me. Am I looking at it wrong?

    It's just a strange phenomena. I remember seeing an old entry level - mid-range Huawei phone (Huawei Y625) that had a link speed of 150Mbps when connected to a 2.4G router. That's an even higher link speed than the S5. I just want a higher link speed to show up on my P9 Plus. Anybody have any ideas because I'm out of ideas.

    Attached Files:

    #5 Original_Jamaican, Jul 19, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2020
    tommo47 likes this.
  6. Original_Jamaican

    Thread Starter

    To HADRON:

    Thanks for your reply. It's appreciated.

    My reply to you would basically be the same.

    The only thing I can say differently is that being downstairs is never an issue with my P9 Plus connectivity to router, whether I am in the same room as the router or not. Once I'm downstairs I'm getting a high link speed and lightening speed browsing/downloading. However, sometimes when I'm upstairs in my room the connectivity is high, a few times it's connects at 72Mbps in my room which is the overall speed I have seen it maxed out at when connected to 2.4G. Quite a few times it's at 65Mbps, 57Mbps, 43Mbps, 39Mbps, 26Mbps and so forth. Most times it's at 5Mbps though and sometimes it's decent at the speed (eg. a WhatsApp, Messenger or any VOIP call) and other times the call breaks up at that same 5Mbps. All I want is a higher link speed because that generally gets me the high throughput I need when using a smartphone. The desktop computer is lightening fast with it's wired connection so I know it's not the service.
  7. Original_Jamaican

    Thread Starter

    To SVIM:

    The Huawei P9 Plus is in no way a mid-tier smartphone. The P9 is the flagship and the P9 Plus is a more enhanced version of it. The Huawei P series is in the same class as the Galaxy S series.. For the record the P means Platinum.

    Somebody said they went to a phone store and saw both a regular Huawei P9 and Samsung Galaxy S8 side by side and when they checked the link speed for both the P9's link speed was much higher, I think the person said 480Mbps. They said it's good to know Huawei's bragging about their superior antennas panned out. I wish I could see that side of things. All I want is a higher link speed so I can at least get the amount of speed my provider is giving me, 50Mbps. If my phone's link speed is at 5Mbps or 1Mbps I don't see how I can be getting the full 50Mbps that my ISP is sending to me.
    #7 Original_Jamaican, Jul 19, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2020
  8. tommo47

    tommo47 On Yer Bike, In Yer Chair
    VIP Member


    Hi, first of all, I assume where you say 'sometimes (although rate) at 1Mbps' you meant 'rare'.

    If so let's look at the 5Mbps you quoted. If you are talking about actual file downloads you should be using MBps as you did when referring to downloading files on your computer - (Downloading files via the desktop computer on average yields a download speed of 5MBps which is not the 6.25MBps that I should be getting but very good nevertheless.)

    Because you are now working with MBps you have to multiply by eight (8 bits = 1 Byte) so 5.0 to 6.25 MBps equates to 40 to 50 Mbps which is what your service provider is giving you. Don't forget that there are other overheads eg. error checking/correction to be considered which can further reduce the data throughput.

    So I reckon everything is as it should be.

    #8 tommo47, Jul 19, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2020
    Dannydet likes this.
  9. Original_Jamaican

    Thread Starter

    To TOMMO47:

    Once again thanks for replying. Yes, when I said (although rate) I meant 'rare'. I edited it after proof reading it. I guess you replied before I edited it. I didn't see your reply after I made the change and refreshed the page. Strange. Nevertheless you got the drift/

    You still aren't getting it my friend. I know the difference between MB (Megabyte) and Mb (Megabit). My ONLY issue is the link speed of my phone which is measured as Mbps (Megabit per second). For major downloads I use the PC. Where the phone is concerned that's mainly used for instant messaging, social media and other stuff which doesn't require large files to be downloaded. Hence, when I'm referring to my phone I will always say Mbps instead of MBps. I just want the link speed increased so I won't end up getting less than the 50Mbps that my ISP gives me. As I said, when my phone drops to 5Mbps I figure I'm getting 10 times less than what should be coming into phone based on the 50Mbps package I get from my ISP. Understand now my friend?

    Looking forward to your reply.
  10. tommo47

    tommo47 On Yer Bike, In Yer Chair
    VIP Member

    No, you are missing the point that the service provider is offering you a broadband link of 50 Mbps which indicates the maximum working bandwidth of your internet connection. It does not relate directly to any download of useable data whether it be via your computer or your phone. 50 Mbps broadband speed/bandwidth will never provide more than approximately 5MBps of useable, properly formatted data transferred from server to client over the broadband network. This will vary depending on, for example, exactly what transmission protocol is being used for the data. There are many variables involved when it comes to the transmission of data over the internet.

    If you look at the download info next time you update your apps you will note that it uses MBps when referring to each app and you can get a good idea of the time it takes for each update.

    If you have a few minutes to spare the following link may help you to understand the difference between the bandwidth of an internet link expressed in Mbps as used by broadband providers and the actual throughput of live data expressed in MBps for all data transmission between server and client.

    #10 tommo47, Jul 20, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2020
    mikedt likes this.
  11. Hadron

    Hadron Smoke me a kipper...
    VIP Member

    The trouble with an anecdote is that it's not a controlled test: for all you know the S8 and P9 there were connected to different bands, in which case it tells you nothing about their antennae. To be honest I take all claims of performance from any manufacturer with a large dose of sodium chloride - remember that it's the marketing department that writes that stuff.

    I'm also less trusting of claimed "link speed" stuff than received signal strength, because the signal strength is a measurement while the link speed is a calculation (e.g. I've seen my phone give an estimated link speed of 112 Mbps when on 2.4GHz, which I don't believe is possible and indeed the max throughput I could get there was lower than I'd get on 5GHz even though 112Gbps exceeds my broadband's speed so if this were genuine I'd have got the same). So I'd try comparing the received signal strength of the two devices - if that is very different then it probably is that the antenna or firmware of one is genuinely less efficient than the other. If your phones' menus don't show this there are many apps that can. So for example I just opened the devcheck app and looked at the "network" tab,which shows me not just the "link speed" but the signal strength, as well as frequency band and channel width. So try running something like that on both phones, in the same location (not even side-by-side) and when laid down rather than being held (the proximity of a bag of salty water can change reception, especially if the antennae are in different places within the phones), and see whether there is a significant difference in signal strength.
    #11 Hadron, Jul 20, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2020
    mikedt likes this.
  12. Original_Jamaican

    Thread Starter

    To TOMMO47 and HADRON:

    I really admire the effort to assist me but I still don't think you are both getting it.

    First of all I can't test the S5 as I sold it earlier this year. However, I have used it enough with the current router to know what I know.

    Secondly, Hadron, the P9 and S8 from the store were connected to the same 2.4G router based on what the person said.

    I base my theory on what I have see from my own phones. Listen, when the P9 Plus Wi-Fi link speed shows 72Mbps in the Wi-Fi status menu the browsing speed is ultra fast, same goes for when it's connected at 65Mbps, 57Mbps, 43Mbps and 39Mbps. When it's connected at 28Mbps and 14Mbps the speed is fair and acceptable. Once it's below 14Mbps the next figure is 7Mbps, 5Mbps and 1Mbps being the lowest. 7Mbps - 5Mbps is sometimes workable but most times it's really sluggish. When it's connected at 1Mbps I may as well disconnect from the internet because that's going nowhere.

    So once again when the P9 Plus' link speed shows 57Mbps upwards the speed is ultra fast and I mean really fast. If I can get the link speed above 72Mbps so that when I'm in my room and the link speed drops like it usually do, I will be getting a respectable link speed at all times to get good browsing speed.

    As I said with the S5, the max link speed on the 2.4G router is 144Mbps (speed shown on the phone's Wi-Fi status menu). When I go upstairs to my room he S5 would usually drop to 77Mbps as it's lowest reduction link speed, which is still good considering that my ISP package is 50Mbps. If the S5 connected at less than 144Mbps at full speed then more than likely I would get less than 77Mbps when it drops in my room.

    My thing is that if I can somehow find a way to increase the P9 Plus link speed then when it drops it probably wouldn't go to 5Mbps which is when the crawling starts. I just want a higher link speed displayed on my smartphone's screen. If you both were in my shoes and experienced what I have in my particular situation, you would easily understand my plight.
  13. Hadron

    Hadron Smoke me a kipper...
    VIP Member

    I think I do understand your problem, except that I didn't realise that you didn't have the S5 any more. The P9 seems to be suffering from weak WiFi reception. I merely suggested comparing received signal strength rather than the estimated link speed as a more direct measure - a lower received signal than another handset in the same location would confirm that that was the issue, whereas if (less likely) they showed similar signal strength but lower estimated speed it would imply an issue with the Huawei's firmware.

    As to what can be done, it depends on the cause. Weak reception could be due to a design problem, a fault in the individual unit (e.g. a bad antenna connection), a problem with the baseband firmware or even with the RIL (radio interface layer, which is normally distributed as part of the ROM). The last 2 might be fixed by a software update (if Huawei release a better version), the second by physical repair, the first you'd be stuck with.

    Try the signal strength measurement anyway. Radio reception is very finicky so it would be clearer if you had another device to compare against, but if you look at the dBm figures when it's showing a reasonable speed and a poor one in the same location and see a big difference then we'll know it's reception one way or another (of coursea fault in the router could also reduce the reception - this is why a second device to compare would be better, you can eliminate external variables like that).

    The one other thing to consider is interference: are you sure there isn't another network on the other side of the wall set to the same band, for example? I pick that as a source of interference that could start at some point in time and then persist. An insufficiently shielded microwave can very much interfere, but that would be more occasional. It may be worth trying a different band on the router anyway, or there are several WiFi analyser apps you can use to see whether there are other networks showing strong signals in the same band.

Huawei P9 Plus Forum

The Huawei P9 Plus release date was May 2016. Features and Specs include a 5.5" inch screen, 12MP camera, 4GB RAM, HiSilicon Kirin 955 processor, and 3400mAh battery.

May 2016
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