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mcs2015
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52 Messages

Mon, Jun 28, 2021 11:22 PM

UNABLE TO CONNECT, CALL DROPS, POOR CONNECTION - WHILE ON WIFI

This (Edited per community guidelines) service has only gotten worse. Seems to occur in the late afternoons. Suspect when traffic increases (less bandwidth). Not my ISP. Reset Network Settings does NOTHING. Can't even make or receive calls, it just hangs and then drops ("Call Failed"). Made many complaints to AT&T AND ZERO IMPROVEMENT. Even when the call connects, the call won't last without dropping. Problem is not the phone. It's the service. I have a 5G phone, but there's no 5G service in my area.

OttoPylot

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 I don't know why you were instructed to not enable WiFi-C with the cellular booster. In theory, the cellular booster just does that, boosts your cellular signal, which should have nothing to do with WiFi-C. I have a weak/variable cellular signal coming into our home so WiFi-C, and cellular, is enabled all of the time. I only use Airplane Mode when I'm on a plane. It could be that there is a carrier frequency with cellular boosters that may interfere with WiFi-C but I can't imagine what that would be.

You are in a shadow/fringe area for cellular, at least AT&T's, so that's why your signal bounces around. And if it bounces around from no bars to 2 bars, the booster just can't get an adequate lock for reliable reception. As far as WiFi-C goes, I'm not familiar with Cox supplied gateways (modem/router combo) but my guess is that it has krappy WiFi. Most ISP-supplied equipment does. We have Comcast, and Comcast allows subscribers to use their own equipment, bypassing the monthly "rental" fee and providing better reliability. Your internet can be stable but your WiFi could (Edited per community guidelines). I have a mesh WiFi system so we have zero issues throughout our house and property. That being said, our home theater systems are all hardwired which reduces a lot of usage on WiFi so all of our WiFi devices (about 15 at any one time) are free to do their thing.

(edited)

mcs2015

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I was able to mount the antenna on a 30' telescoping pole anchored in the ground and leaning in a corner of the house, pointing in the direction of the nearest tower. At least it's positioned better to pick up a signal. So far, no change in the bars.

How does a call know whether to use the WiFi-C signal (assuming it's enabled) or the cellular signal? Is is selective, depending on the signal strength?

OttoPylot

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@mcs2015 How does a call know whether to use the WiFi-C signal (assuming it's enabled) or the cellular signal? Is is selective, depending on the signal strength?

Not sure what you mean by this. WiFi-C just uses your WiFi to reach the AT&T Mobility Servers, incoming or outgoing. The phone just connects to the strogest signal it can lock onto, be it cellular (the local tower) or your WiFi. 

Without a professional installation to determine the actual signal strength, bandwidth, and directionality, you're just guessing using the cellular booster. It could be that your location is behind the signal direction. Not all towers broadcast cellular signals equally in all directions or their antennas are not the highest ones up the tower. This is especially true on shared towers. All of that is determined by the FCC and carrier agreements.

mcs2015

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But if a pro installation determines my signal is weak and that no matter what, we can't get it any better, then I just wasted my $$$?

OttoPylot

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You can call WeBoost or whomever, don't tell them that you have one of their products, and ask that very question. Just tell them your issue but are concerned about purchasing one and finding out from the installer that reception won't be any better.

mcs2015

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Service Update:

Over the last few days, the net effect from the weboost signal booster has been improved service, however, am still getting call fails on dialing out and during calls, but, they are transient and isolated to that one call, whereas before, the failure to connect could last up to 20-30 secs before there was any ability to get a call through. The signal bars range from 1-2, sometimes getting momentary full bars but don't notice any difference in service.

I was fortunate enough to find a service tech that will install an external device to boost the WiFi signal. If it fails to work, I am out no cost and we explore other options. If it does work, he'd apply the fee to the installation.

I am dead center in the worst shadow pocket in my area, and with the likely increase in traffic from more users (probably due to the pandemic), a stable and open signal is getting harder to get.

(edited)

mcs2015

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Service Update:

2 weeks on the booster and the service is just as spotty if not worse than it was before (am starting to lose incoming calls, not even going to voice mail). How bad can this get? Last resort am still waiting for the outside tech to trial the external WiFi booster device. Worst come to worst, may need to switch carriers.  Such ashame AT&T which all its billions cannot fix their coverage issues like this.

OttoPylot

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It's not uncommon for any carrier to have shadow areas where the signal is just not consistent. There really isn't a whole lot the carrier can do without FCC approval (increasing signal strength, direction, etc). A cellular booster depends on the signal strength as outlined in my Cellular Booster Guide. It (Edited per community guidelines) but apparently you are just in an area where AT&T just can't get reliable service to. Coverage maps are misleading in that they show the area that signal can reach to but they do not indicate the reliability or strength. All carrier coverage maps do this.

(edited)

mcs2015

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Update: I am still getting daily intermittent call and audio drops during calls. I initially had some improvement for a couple of months using a Ruckus wireless access point extender. Is anyone familiar with this accessory?

OttoPylot

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Ok. This thread is a bit over a year old since the first post so let's try again.

1. What kind of phone do you have that is 5G capable, and can you just use LTE instead? That's what I do because I have a 5G plan and phone but 5G is unreliable where I live so I just use LTE all of the time.

2. Have you tried WiFi-C (WiFi Calling) and is your phone capable of WiFi-C?

3. A cellular booster is really only effective if you have at least one and preferably two bars of consistent cellular signal strength to your home. You also need to make sure that whatever cellular booster you get, it works with the cellular signal that is being broadcast to your area. That's where a professional installer come into play. They should be able to determine the cellular bands and propagation that you are receiving at your home and recommend a booster that will meet those requirements.  See my Cellular Booster Tech Guide, the link is in my sig line.

Boosting your WiFi signal in-home (like with an extender) should help you to connect better if you are attempting to use WiFi Calling instead of cellular.

What kind of internet service do you have?

(edited)

mcs2015

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1. What kind of phone do you have that is 5G capable, and can you just use LTE instead? That's what I do because I have a 5G plan and phone but 5G is unreliable where I live so I just use LTE all of the time. iPhone 12 Pro, 5G capable but no 5G service in my area still.

2. Have you tried WiFi-C (WiFi Calling) and is your phone capable of WiFi-C? Enabled and zero difference.

3. A cellular booster is really only effective if you have at least one and preferably two bars of consistent cellular signal strength to your home. You also need to make sure that whatever cellular booster you get, it works with the cellular signal that is being broadcast to your area. That's where a professional installer come into play. They should be able to determine the cellular bands and propagation that you are receiving at your home and recommend a booster that will meet those requirements.  See my Cellular Booster Tech Guide, the link is in my sig line.

Boosting your WiFi signal in-home (like with an extender) should help you to connect better if you are attempting to use WiFi Calling instead of cellular.

What kind of internet service do you have?

Cox Communications

OttoPylot

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I have an iPhone 12 with 5G service. Have you set your phone to LTE only?

WiFi-C should work if your phone is WiFi-C capable (which it is) and your line is provisioned for HD Voice (AT&T's version of VoLTE), which it probably is but it couldn't hurt to check with AT&T. Were you able to successfully activate WiFi-C using your address (which is an FCC E911 requirement).  WiFi, which is different from WiFi-C, should also be enabled at all times, regardless of whether you are using WiFi-C or a cellular signal.

Have you completely powered off your phone or Reset Network Settings? Do you have a new SIM card?

If everything for WiFi-C is correct and you've done all of those things then I would suspect your router's WiFi signal.

mcs2015

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Yes it is provisioned and I have done all that. The problem is if you read back in the past part of the thread is I'm in a real shadow area that has never been improved by AT&T since i've lived here (12 years). The Ruckus extender was the last resort before trying another cellular carrier.

OttoPylot

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What kind of speeds do you get, your type of service,  and have you considered a mesh WiFi system? Are you using Cox-supplied equipment and does it have VoIP capability built in?

WiFi-C is dependent, for the most part, on how robust your WiFi connection is.

It sounds like your only options are to use WiFi-C (if you can figure out why it is not reliable), contact one of the cellular booster companies that are listed in my guide and have an installer or company rep come out and assess your situation, or switch to a carrier who offers better cellular coverage.

mcs2015

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Already tried that if you look back upthread. Did not work and I had to return the equipment. I need someone who is familiar with the Ruckus device.

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