Weak Coverage Signal Performance (ZTE ARE YOU LISTENING?) I'd say N O

shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

ZTE silence on this issue and no real improvement to this in the last 2 updates are not sitting well for me.  Sure B27 improved the throughput speed for me... which IMO was the inclusion of Carrier Aggregation. The big issue for me is the signal strength in weak coverage areas.  I wasn't angry until today.  I received a cheap 99 dollar Alcatel IDOL3 to use at work because it offers easy access to remove the cameras.  The Idol3 and my Moto X Pure both have about -2 to -5 dBm better signal when in this very weak area.  They can hold an LTE signal around -120dBm and be usable.  They can hold a -110dBm to -105 dBm signal and be very usable...... the AXON 7 CANNOT!  My MotoX and Idol3 will show -105dBm while the AXON 7 will show -110 to -113dBm in the same exact spot.  The AXON is unusable in this situation.  In my work space the AXON cannot even grab an LTE signal but the MotoX and Idol3 can and still be very usable!

ZTE are you listening to all the people in this community and XDA about this?  IF this cannot be fixed with Firmware then please PLEASE let us know.  I cannot wait months for this to be fixed either.  Monthly updates for a major problem like this is not OK.  This should be a priority over all other bugs since this is how the phone communicates!

I would like to see some official ZTE communication on this.  I have contacted ZTE support directly and the only thing they could do was email R&D for me and hope I get a reply on that.  They also recommended that I create another thread on this matter.

ZTE there are many on here that are willing to help and are will to be patient, but your silence and the way you just increased how the signal is displayed in the last update puts a bad taste in our mouths on this subject.

~Jason

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Comments

  • xgerryxxgerryx Manchester, NHPosts: 43

    I was standing in a Hannaford Supermarket in Manchester, NH with my gf the other day. That place has TERRIBLE service, and usually no data. So we walked up to the front of the store to get some data to look up a recipe. My Axon 7 had 3g which was returning a "retry" "no connection" message in chrome. Her LG G4 had full 4g LTE and picked up the search. This was the moment I decided to sell my Axon and go back to my Moto x Pure. Since the Moto x broke, I have gone back to the Axon 7. This signal issue is very much at the forefront of my dissatisfaction with the phone. There are many other issues like DND basically not working and smaller problems, but the signal problem is the worst.

    Anyone who is seeing variances in service between other devices, please post here so we can get an answer. Thank you.

  • musicdjmmusicdjm United StatesPosts: 3,126 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    ​ Im sorry to hear your having issues, please visit one of the many other threads on this issue. ZTE as addressed the issue multiple times, they are aware of the issue, that are working on any improvements they can and have already released the first update for improvement. Please be patient they are working as quickly as they can

    https://community.zteusa.com/message/13833#comment-13833

    https://community.zteusa.com/message/54771#comment-54771

  • xgerryxxgerryx Manchester, NHPosts: 43

    You do realize that basically no resolution to those other threads was reached, right? An update that might have had little effect but artificially increased the number of bars is an INSANE thing to do if that's what happened. Until we get some hard and fast detail on what is wrong with it, why it happened, and what, if anything can be done to fix it, more of these threads will pop up. This isn't even a tech site! It's the manufacturers official forums. On XDA, there are 3 threads about cell reception, wifi issues and data reception with thousands of views and around 100 replies. It's not like this is a small issue. Especially for those of us that live in cities with several towers and almost never have issues with service, this phone provides a noticeable difference compared to other devices.

  • kidnovakidnova Posts: 435 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    The end result may be that it's a hardware issue and not software so there may not be a solution for those experiencing signal issues.  Obviously ZTE would not want to state such until they had exhausted all possible software based solutions to the issue.  They have acknowledged the complaints and stated that they are working to improve reception.  I don't know what else you expect them to say until they have finalized the research process.

  • shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

    lol, I've been through all those threads....

    Nothing has been done to correct the issue and nothing has been addressed directly from ZTE on this issue.

  • xgerryxxgerryx Manchester, NHPosts: 43

    Well I don't expect much but that leaves us with a **** phone that doesn't function right, so obviously people aren't happy. ZTE "researching" things isn't making my phone work as its supposed to.  If it's a hardware issue, I would say this is my first and last ZTE product.

  • musicdjmmusicdjm United StatesPosts: 3,126 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    ​ im sorry if you feel that you concern isnt being addressed, however it very much is. The reason we ask users to not create many threads on the same issue is so ZTE can keep track of issues as well as the community. If there is multiple threads on one issue it makes it difficult to not only track for ZTE but users cant see the information if they have to search through 5 threads for an answer.

  • shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I agree, a phone can't do anything unless it has service.

  • shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I expect them to admit its a hardware issue if it can't be fixed so I may try to get a refund from them.  I'm patent to a point, but if it is hardware.... I'm done.

  • shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Some of the threads are old and some are polls etc.  This thread pertains to one specific issue and to discuss one specific issue.....signal strength in a weak coverage area....and I'm not talking about signal bars.  You say "we" like you speak for ZTE.  I want ZTE to reply, someone or represents them as an employee with direct knowledge to this issue.

  • musicdjmmusicdjm United StatesPosts: 3,126 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    ​ ZTE is doing what it can to resolve the issue SOME people are having, not everyone is effected. My service is great and I dont have any issues with signal strength so its not as easy as just flipping a switch and fixing. Trust me they are doing what they can they arent trying to keep you waiting for no reason.

  • shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

    If you are in a good signal area...sure.  Service is fine and speed is fine.  I can guarantee that your phone will not work in an area that has continuous -120dBm or less LTE.  I can also guarantee that if you have continuous -110dBm or less of service in HSPA you will have major connection problems.

  • kidnovakidnova Posts: 435 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    Fully understandable.  I have no doubt that ZTE is doing whatever they can to try and improve reception in weak signal areas and have no desire to lose you or anybody else as a customer.  There is a lot of work that goes into isolating and attempting to address the problem I'm sure, but until they determine definitively what, if anything, can be done to improve reception they are unlikely to make any additional public statements.

  • shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I understand but disagree that they cannot comment.  They should look at what Matt McRae the CTO at Vizio is doing in the AVS forums.  Communication like that will make that company thrive. They work directly with customers and bring them into any beta testing to help resolve the issues.  In this day and age bad news travels at light speed and quickly makes people feel uneasy about buying a product.  But seeing the communication and willingness to fix things, they are top notch.  If it is indeed a hardware thing.... it needs to be remedied ASAP and the bad units replaced before too many phone get out there.

  • flyerandyflyerandy Steamboat SpringsPosts: 134 ✭✭✭✭✭

    My signal has improved, so something has been done to correct the issue. The phone works fine now, though I don't doubt your issues as I was having some problems with it before a new cell was added near my house.

    When comparing two phones for signal, have you ensured the network has both phones on the same band and/or physical cell ID? Sometimes one phone is on a low-band freq. and thus has a stronger signal as opposed to another in the same place on the same network...some people have noticed that the Axon 7 doesn't make the connection/jump to low-band LTE as well as some other devices, especially when competing 3G signals are present. The network is supposed to manage this to a great degree but the device itself I believe has to list cells which it can connect to and communicate that data to the tower...and something does seem to be wrong with how the Axon 7 does this when the low-band LTE signal is a bit low compared to a competing 3G signal...in which case it seems to fail to report "seeing" the low-band LTE and thus drop down to 3G.

    Also, in case you're a T-Mobile subscriber, T-Mobile jumps back and forth from 3G UMTS during data idle and then goes to 3G HSPA+ when transferring data and sometimes when that doesn't happen correctly (some apps seem to cause this problem more than others, I've found...Google search is one that I've had issues with on some devices, if I recall...) data over 3G is sluggish or impossible to get to work. This is a vexing T-Mobile problem - I don't know why they do this switching stuff...it's been a big issue for a number of years on my devices, and I have seemed to have noticed it a few times on the Axon 7 as well...the problem is that this problem isn't obvious unless you're using a phone which actually shows 3G vs. HSPA+ in the signal cluster, which the Axon does not. If you're on AT&T, however, this is a non-issue as AT&T doesn't do this.

    But in any case I can confirm that the Axon 7 I'm using doesn't have a signal issue...in some ways it does quite a bit better than other devices...but there definitely is a potential problem for T-Mobile customers in lower-strength band 12 areas where the phone might opt for 3G vs. LTE even when the LTE signal is usable...but hopefully that can be resolved in the radio firmware.

  • shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Yes you are correct.... when comparing then need to be on the same service and band.  I'm with AT&T and the bands for LTE in my area are 2,4,17 and 30.  We also have Carrier Aggregation. HSPA or UTMS to HSPA+ is a normal occurance when transferring data and then it goes back to HSPA or UTMS when finished.

    I have 4 phones I compared it to.  Even my older SGS4 does a better job in the weak area at my work.  I'm sure that there aren't many of us the really struggle in these weak areas but they exist and I know for a fact if you brought your phone here it would exhibit the same exact condition as I see. 

  • flyerandyflyerandy Steamboat SpringsPosts: 134 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Oh I didn't know AT&T did the 3G switching thing...my mistake. I thought it stuck with HSPA and always considered that a big advantage of AT&T! This switching is horrible on T-Mo, IMO...really annoying! I've heard it's for battery performance but ugh it's really a nuisance.

    Well, I really hope these issues can be ironed out as I'm not in any way doubting that there are problems (in the fringe areas especially)...I have tended to notice that my Nexus 6 does a better job with connectivity in lower signal areas in some cases...but the actual signal strength itself seems to be ok (depending on antenna orientation) when comparing them side by side on the same PCI. It seems firmware-related to me...Also, I've found the Axon actually does *better* than some of my other [Verizon approved] devices on Verizon's LTE bands, which is very strange indeed...it held the band 13 LTE connection perfectly in an area where my Nexus and Moto X XT1060 both struggled a bit. 1X does seem a bit weaker though I can't be totally sure as the decibel measurements are kind of odd on CDMA.

  • shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

    On AT&T it does the HSPA to HSPA+ and back.  All AT&T branded phones wont show this because they hide that in the signal bars.  You can see it in apps like LTE discovery and SignalCheck Pro.

  • hollaphollap United StatesPosts: 8,377 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    Not official by any means, but this poll states that 31 out of 59 people have improved LTE signal:

    So while it's not fair to state nothing was done or there was no improvement. Just wanted to point that out.  I am also one who voted No improvement for the record, because I didn't see any gain from the update and do experience lower signal (albeit very slightly) than other devices under the same circumstances.

  • shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I think that most of those votes are based on signal bars to be honest.  We ALL know that has improved.  It will show 1 to 2 bars more than my other devices but still be reading a lower dBm.  So IMO all they did was try to cover up an issue with that. The dB's haven't changed.   Nothing was done to improve the real signal.  They did improve throughput because they enabled CA.

  • ram1220ram1220 Allen TexasPosts: 481 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    ZTE did not address those other threads. At least not with a decent answer. And the latest update that you speak of only was a band aid to show higher number of signal bars. It did absolutely nothing for the issue that counts. The actual reception issues that plague this phone.

  • ram1220ram1220 Allen TexasPosts: 481 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    Most of those people are talking about higher bars and not actual reception.

  • I agree with this. I'm also having issues with weak signal and this phone seems to have an issue with switching to a stronger signal.

    ZTE should come here and give updates and let us know they are working on it and what they think the problem is. If it is a hardware issue they should bite the bullet and own up to it. If it means having to do accept back some phones and give new phones with new hardware that works, that's what they need to do. Doing nothing is a sure fire way to make certain you will lose people and they will not give you a second chance.

    Asus with the zenfone has nice software but their customer support in hardware issues, updates and communication is absolutely horrible. I will never buy another phone from them and have interacted with dozens of others who will not either. This is the path ZTE is coming dangerously close to walking.

  • This is the same way I feel I'm sure this issue effects every single phone just some people don't notice, some only look at bars and some are just in denial fanboyism. I have also sent this phone back as my note 3 massively out performs it in cellular connections. Shame really as the build quality was nice and the speakers were amazing. But a phone is a phone and as someone else said this phone is more like a mini tablet with phone signal occasionally. ZTEs silence pretty much apart from  the make out its better patch which isn't in the eu anyway makes me firmly belive it is not fixable via software.

  • I have an eu model with the same reception problems. The fact we're on different roms but using the same hardware makes me think you're right, this may not be fixable via software. Plenty of reviews on Amazon Germany are making the same point.

    And this is a company that actually makes network infrastructure!

  • maverickmaverick NJPosts: 538 ✭✭✭✭✭✭

    I'm very curious what brand or strength of antenna are in the device. Would that have more of an effect than the service used on it? I recall when i had the Galaxy s3 i was told that samsung had horribly weak antenna in their devices. Well I'm sure they improved but is it more software based over being a hardware issue?

  • shoman94shoman94 MainePosts: 605 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I think I read somewhere that its a CAT6 LTE radio.  Not sure.  I wish I had known this before purchasing.  I assumed it had the X12 radio used with the 820 chipset.

  • Yes it could still be a software issue,with all the changes I see in their overall OS which is horrid it very well may still be a software issue. But it could be a hardware issue if they bought cheap weak antenna's in an attempt to save pennies. It could also be a combination of both, but since ZTE says nothing other than "R&D as been notified", nobody knows.

  • musicdjmmusicdjm United StatesPosts: 3,126 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    You are correct, I was the one who posted that It uses a Cat 6 radio the other day when comparing to the LG V20 which uses a Cat 12 . All Snapdragon 820's use the X12 chip as its built into the SOC however each OEM chooses which feature sets are implemented in the modem and chip. ZTE went with a Cat 6 modem

  • hollaphollap United StatesPosts: 8,377 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    So ​, are you saying that ZTE could switch to cat12 in software, or is that a hardware decision?

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