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Samsung Galaxy S4T L720T [Trimode] User Discussion Thread

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Now that you have positively identified components to work with, what are the ramifications? What is good or bad about these? Compared to sensorly, I'm not seeing LTE connects until I get to places with least level 2 signal levels reported and generally that is 50%-66% success.

 

Is that a limitation of the device or can I do anything to improve upon that?

Signal levels?   :confused:

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Compared to sensorly, I'm not seeing LTE connects until I get to places with least level 2 signal levels reported and generally that is 50%-66% success.

 

Is that a limitation of the device or can I do anything to improve upon that?

As Nickel notes, signal levels would be more hopeful. It would also be helpful to know where you aren't connecting at that you think you should be. Omaha is one of the markets we have a pretty detailed handle on and we can talk specific locations and sites in this thread here.

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I assume you already know that on their coverage maps, Sensorly reports relative signal strengths in shades, or more specifically in darkness of colors that may roughly correspond to "bars". In places others report the lowest signal strengths, I often appear to get no signal, or alternatively I get LTE disconnects when I do have a connection entering from an area of stronger signal. Just looking for ideas to help improve that reception if it is at all possible. Is physical orientation of the phone important or useful at all?

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I assume you already know that on their coverage maps, Sensorly reports relative signal strengths in shades, or more specifically in darkness of colors that may roughly correspond to "bars". In places others report the lowest signal strengths, I often appear to get no signal, or alternatively I get LTE disconnects when I do have a connection entering from an area of stronger signal. Just looking for ideas to help improve that reception if it is at all possible. Is physical orientation of the phone important or useful at all?

 

Some who mapped signal levels might have used devices with software defects that report the signal levels as stronger than they actually are to Sensorly. I believe the Galaxy Nexus is one device that reports all LTE to sensorly as max-strength, but I could be mistaken. Extensive mapping in an area with a device like that could throw all of the mapping out of whack, showing stronger signals where they really don't exist.

 

In reality, there is not much of anything you can do with your individual device. Unless you find yourself using one device that seems to work great and another in the same location fails to connect or shows significantly lower signal levels, it's just the current state of the network. The LTE airlink is also not as robust as 1X, so it cannot hold onto weaker signals as well.

 

-Mike

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Also, being in a Samsung market, I wouldn't rule out CSFB. If you are farther away from the LTE site in a place with a lighter shade area, you are more likely to be connected to a different 1x site than the LTE site. And that 1x site may not be running CSFB. If that were to happen, you would not connect to LTE until you got closer to the LTE site and connected to the same 1x site.

 

However, a single band LTE device would not have this problem, allowing it to map on Sensorly out to the end of the LTE signal regardless of whatever 1x site it was connected.

 

You can test this by putting your S4GT in LTE only mode and driving around back over the Sensorly coverage area.

 

Robert via Samsung Note 8.0 using Tapatalk Pro

 

 

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I assume you already know that on their coverage maps, Sensorly reports relative signal strengths in shades, or more specifically in darkness of colors that may roughly correspond to "bars". In places others report the lowest signal strengths, I often appear to get no signal, or alternatively I get LTE disconnects when I do have a connection entering from an area of stronger signal.

Yes but that is also why I suggested what I did. Sensorly is a great resource, but it isn't infallible for many of the reasons mikejeep mentioned. There is significant gnex pollution in Omaha. There are fellow members of this site that know enough about the Omaha market to be able to tell you where you should reasonably expect an LTE connection with as good of or in many cases better than Sensorly.

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Some who mapped signal levels might have used devices with software defects that report the signal levels as stronger than they actually are to Sensorly. I believe the Galaxy Nexus is one device that reports all LTE to sensorly as max-strength, but I could be mistaken. Extensive mapping in an area with a device like that could throw all of the mapping out of whack, showing stronger signals where they really don't exist.

 

In reality, there is not much of anything you can do with your individual device. Unless you find yourself using one device that seems to work great and another in the same location fails to connect or shows significantly lower signal levels, it's just the current state of the network. The LTE airlink is also not as robust as 1X, so it cannot hold onto weaker signals as well.

 

-Mike

 

I may have stumbled across part of my own answer this morning.  I normally run Google maps/directions (overview mode) to watch and dodge traffic.  I blew that off at first this morning and ran Sensorly only.  Practically coming out of the driveway I picked up LTE where I hadn't before -for just a few seconds over about 50 yards distance.

 

Is it my imagination or did I read someplace about LTE not acquiring a connection when a 3G data connection was actively transferring data?  Is it possible that the traffic feed was/is delaying searches for LTE because of the data transfer?

 

It was also just before sunrise.  How much is the LTE signal affected by solar radiation interference?

 

Sorry for the questions if they're flat out dumb, but I don't know enough to ask intelligent ones yet.

 

-Thanks!

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Also, being in a Samsung market, I wouldn't rule out CSFB. If you are farther away from the LTE site in a place with a lighter shade area, you are more likely to be connected to a different 1x site than the LTE site. And that 1x site may not be running CSFB. If that were to happen, you would not connect to LTE until you got closer to the LTE site and connected to the same 1x site.

 

However, a single band LTE device would not have this problem, allowing it to map on Sensorly out to the end of the LTE signal regardless of whatever 1x site it was connected.

 

You can test this by putting your S4GT in LTE only mode and driving around back over the Sensorly coverage area.

 

Robert via Samsung Note 8.0 using Tapatalk Pro

 

 

I'll research how to put it into "LTE only" mode tonight after work.  If you have a quick how to, I'd be able to run it on the way home.

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I'll research how to put it into "LTE only" mode tonight after work.  If you have a quick how to, I'd be able to run it on the way home.

 

Dial ##4636#.  It may ask you for your MSL code or lock code.  If it asks for a lock code, dial SPRINT.  If it asks for your MSL, then you will need to get that for your device.

 

Once you get past the code screen, select Phone Information.  Scroll down to where there is a drop down menu right above the Turn off radio button.  Take note of what is selected default, because you will need to return to that.  I don't know what is default on the GS4T.  Select, LTE Only in the drop down menu.  Wait about 10 seconds for it to change to LTE only mode.  It will not need to reboot.  You should now be in LTE only mode.

 

If you are in LTE coverage when you do this, you will likely see the LTE icon go away, and your bars, but then the bars will come back in about 5-10 seconds and then the LTE icon.  If you are in 3G coverage when you do this, then your 3G icon will go away and your bars will disappear.  Nothing will reappear until you travel back into coverage.

 

When you are done using LTE only mode and want to be able to make/receive calls again, go back in the same way you did before and change the Preferred Network Type back to what is was in the default.

 

Robert

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I may have stumbled across part of my own answer this morning.  I normally run Google maps/directions (overview mode) to watch and dodge traffic.  I blew that off at first this morning and ran Sensorly only.  Practically coming out of the driveway I picked up LTE where I hadn't before -for just a few seconds over about 50 yards distance.

 

Is it my imagination or did I read someplace about LTE not acquiring a connection when a 3G data connection was actively transferring data?  Is it possible that the traffic feed was/is delaying searches for LTE because of the data transfer?

 

It was also just before sunrise.  How much is the LTE signal affected by solar radiation interference?

 

Sorry for the questions if they're flat out dumb, but I don't know enough to ask intelligent ones yet.

 

-Thanks!

Yes, you have figured out something.  If you are running data over the 3G connection and it is running fine, you will not easily switch to 4G LTE.  I have had LTE for a year, and I ran into this many times.  Especially if you are in a weak 4G area, there is good reason to keep you on 3G because it can be actually better.  It a weak signal area, if you were switched to 4G, your performance may suffer.  It is not good to have a system that continuously would be switching you back and forth between 3G & 4G in a weak area.

 

If a site has been upgraded to 4g, you will normally have good 3G too. When signal conditions are somewhat poor, the 3G connection can be the better connection sometimes. 4G can be much much faster with a good connection, but not with a poor signal.

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Some who mapped signal levels might have used devices with software defects that report the signal levels as stronger than they actually are to Sensorly. I believe the Galaxy Nexus is one device that reports all LTE to sensorly as max-strength, but I could be mistaken. Extensive mapping in an area with a device like that could throw all of the mapping out of whack, showing stronger signals where they really don't exist.

 

In reality, there is not much of anything you can do with your individual device. Unless you find yourself using one device that seems to work great and another in the same location fails to connect or shows significantly lower signal levels, it's just the current state of the network. The LTE airlink is also not as robust as 1X, so it cannot hold onto weaker signals as well.

 

-Mike

 

 

What I am seeing isn't indications of a blind "max-strength" issue, it's definitely reporting signal levels.  It's just roughly a "one-bar better" sort of sensitivity.

 

It's possibly a better hardware/software/config combination, or being recorded from a large semi-tractor that sits far higher off the ground than I do and can see a tower just a bit farther away than I can.  I was just looking for any advantage I could get to close in the gaps that much sooner.

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What I am seeing isn't indications of a blind "max-strength" issue, it's definitely reporting signal levels. It's just roughly a "one-bar better" sort of sensitivity.

Signal bars are not universal and are a poor choice to use as a measure of comparison unless you're comparing identical devices and looking at identical software. Don't compare Sensorly color shades with signal bars.

 

Several users on here have developed useful signal monitoring apps.. LTE Discovery (SpenceSouth), Signal Strength Detector (lordsutch), and SignalCheck (me). Each one is slightly different so try them all and see what you like. LTE Discovery might be best for you if you're trying to connect to LTE more often. You can configure it to reset your connection periodically, minimizing how often you get "stuck" on eHRPD when LTE is available.

 

-Mike

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Signal bars are not universal and are a poor choice to use as a measure of comparison unless you're comparing identical devices and looking at identical software. Don't compare Sensorly color shades with signal bars.

 

Several users on here have developed useful signal monitoring apps.. LTE Discovery (SpenceSouth), Signal Strength Detector (lordsutch), and SignalCheck (me). Each one is slightly different so try them all and see what you like. LTE Discovery might be best for you if you're trying to connect to LTE more often. You can configure it to reset your connection periodically, minimizing how often you get "stuck" on eHRPD when LTE is available.

 

-Mike

 

I think you misunderstand both my intentions and context.  (I already own your app and keep the 1x1 widget on my main screen)

 

My intentions are to:

 

1.  Use the Sensorly map as a guide to know where I can hope to find a signal.

2.  Use Sensorly to tell others where I found a signal so they benefit from my experiences.

3.  To get the best signal that my phone is capable of.

4.  To learn what I have to do in order to get that best signal.

On 4, I'm talking silly things like don't cover the LTE antenna with your hand.

If necessary or useful, maybe have the antenna edge of the phone facing the expected direction of the tower(s) in use, lay the phone flat, or hold it vertically, whatever it takes to match anything like an orientation or polarization, or whatever other silly obscure thing it would take to pull a slightly better signal.

 

My concerns are not for "measuring" exact numbers that I would need lab calibrated equipment to officially determine.  I'm not looking to establish or set anecdotal records, I'm looking for rule-of-thumb / middle-of nowhere "what can you do to help improve matters?" common sense sort of functionality.

 

More appropriately, maybe I should replace "signal" with "data rate" as that is the actual prize anyone should seek.  If that means using 3G, in some cases, then so be it.  But if a better data rate is available wherever I find myself standing, then I want to take advantage of it.

 

Think in terms of consistent means or getting the best performance I am capable of in any given situation.

 

Signal check doesn't explicitly tell me "move 500 yards due east and you're likely to get a better signal" but the map on Sensorly can do that.  If the data is ideally collected, the color shading helps a user figure out what can be done to improve their situation.

 

Signal Check may help evaluate if holding the phone a specific way in my hand, or pointing the antenna a specific way in relation to the antenna, or even standing on my head or wearing a tin foil hat will all improve my signal (data rate).

 

 

As for resetting connections, keep in mind that the "T" comes with 4.3 - so I'm getting

"Reset failed: Root permissions required on Andriod 4.2+"

 

##4636#  doesn't work

(##debug# does)  [sPRINT]

 

No phone information option there

So I haven't gotten any where following that thread so far.

 

 

I'm also seeing something else slightly disturbing:

Periodically my wifi loses it's connection and dumps the connection.  If I tell it to reconnect, it asks for the password.

If I power cycle the phone, it restores and works normally and shows that it still knows my wifi password.

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I think you misunderstand both my intentions and context. (I already own your app and keep the 1x1 widget on my main screen)

 

My concerns are not for "measuring" exact numbers that I would need lab calibrated equipment to officially determine. I'm not looking to establish or set anecdotal records, I'm looking for rule-of-thumb / middle-of nowhere "what can you do to help improve matters?" common sense sort of functionality.

 

As for resetting connections, keep in mind that the "T" comes with 4.3 - so I'm getting

"Reset failed: Root permissions required on Andriod 4.2+"

 

I'm also seeing something else slightly disturbing:

Periodically my wifi loses it's connection and dumps the connection. If I tell it to reconnect, it asks for the password.

If I power cycle the phone, it restores and works normally and shows that it still knows my wifi password.

Gotcha. I interpreted your earlier comments as "my phone seems to be showing one less signal level than Sensorly shows." In any case, most of the factors that are going to affect reception on a modern phone are out of your control. Even if you found the "sweet spot" to hold it just right for optimal signal, the marginal benefit would probably be outweighed by the time wasted and nuisance of having to hold it just right. The only thing you can control is where you are standing.. move towards a window or closer to the site :P

 

Root that phone, then you can enjoy the easy resets! I believe that SpenceSouth's team had mentioned they were testing a method to get airplane toggle working without root on 4.2+, but I haven't heard much about it.

 

That Wi-Fi issue certainly seems like a bug. Do you have a dual radio (2.4GHz/5GHz) router with matching SSIDs that is possibly confusing your phone?

 

-Mike

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Gotcha. I interpreted your earlier comments as "my phone seems to be showing one less signal level than Sensorly shows." In any case, most of the factors that are going to affect reception on a modern phone are out of your control. Even if you found the "sweet spot" to hold it just right for optimal signal, the marginal benefit would probably be outweighed by the time wasted and nuisance of having to hold it just right. The only thing you can control is where you are standing.. move towards a window or closer to the site :P

 

Root that phone, then you can enjoy the easy resets! I believe that SpenceSouth's team had mentioned they were testing a method to get airplane toggle working without root on 4.2+, but I haven't heard much about it.

 

That Wi-Fi issue certainly seems like a bug. Do you have a dual radio (2.4GHz/5GHz) router with matching SSIDs that is possibly confusing your phone?

 

-Mike

 

Dual radio  - but segregated SSIDs for the different bands.  I also ignore 2.4 with the phone.

 

I have an extender on just the 5mhz band so that is probably the issue.

 

I'd like to root but I'm not near educated or brave enough yet.

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Another thing I am seeing about this phone is that I find myself missing direct access to the card.  The photon acted as a sd card reader and you could treat it as a hard drive.

 

The 720T acts like a phone/camera and you can't do all of the same file manipulations that you can with a hard drive.

 

I haven't installed all of the Samsung software / drivers yet, do any of those solve that or are they just more of the same bloatware that gives more control of my device to everyone BUT me?

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So with the GS4T, what is the LTE Band Priority?  Is it 25>41>26 or is it 41>25>26?  With the Spark update has anyone had trouble with the GS4T connecting to B41 LTE if they are only in a B41 LTE area?

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So with the GS4T, what is the LTE Band Priority? Is it 25>41>26 or is it 41>25>26? With the Spark update has anyone had trouble with the GS4T connecting to B41 LTE if they are only in a B41 LTE area?

41-25-26

 

Sent from my Nexus 5

 

 

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41-25-26

 

Sent from my Nexus 5

 

Oh really??  Wow I hope the LG G2 Spark update enables 41-25-26 by default.

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Does anybody know if Sprint and/or Samsung have released the Spark GS4 to retailers like Best Buy and Amazon to replace the old GS4?  I'm finally upgrade eligible and both of these places have the GS4 on sale.

 

Also, between the Nexus 5 and GS4T, which one has a better LTE signal on average?

 

J.

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Does anybody know if Sprint and/or Samsung have released the Spark GS4 to retailers like Best Buy and Amazon to replace the old GS4?  I'm finally upgrade eligible and both of these places have the GS4 on sale.

 

Also, between the Nexus 5 and GS4T, which one has a better LTE signal on average?

 

J.

 

Nexus 5 edges GS4T out slightly but both are exceptional performers. GS4T is also already spark capable so it'll connect to B41 / B25 / B26 without much ado whereas the Nexus 5 requires a Spark update from LG / Google which is slated to come out sometime this Quarter. 

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Does anybody know if Sprint and/or Samsung have released the Spark GS4 to retailers like Best Buy and Amazon to replace the old GS4?  I'm finally upgrade eligible and both of these places have the GS4 on sale.

 

Also, between the Nexus 5 and GS4T, which one has a better LTE signal on average?

 

J.

 

i am due for an upgrade as well and would like to know if best buy is carrying it, as it is on sale. The part number does not show that it is the 720t. That doesnt mean that it is not there, but the part number says that it isnt.

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Does anybody know if Sprint and/or Samsung have released the Spark GS4 to retailers like Best Buy and Amazon to replace the old GS4?  I'm finally upgrade eligible and both of these places have the GS4 on sale.

 

Also, between the Nexus 5 and GS4T, which one has a better LTE signal on average?

 

J.

 

As it is right now their respective websites don't indicate it, but the Spark compatible model is supposed to be getting into the retail channels so at this point it will probably start showing up as old inventory clears out, but when the websites might reflect this is another issue. I can say I did order one from Amazon a few days ago to see if it was the new model and it turned out to still be the old 720 model so I sent it back. Also Samsung's website now calls the Sprint GS4 Tri-Band even if the model number listed is the old one and lists Best Buy as a location to get it (even their exclusive blue model has the Tri-Band label on Samsung's site) so it should be available there at some point, but getting one at any particular Best Buy would still probably require some luck with them having cleared out the old model stock. 

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I was eligible and completely fed up with my Photon Wimax so the moment I was told 720T showed up on the Sprint site, I had mine ordered.

 

I paid the full upgrade price, but that means it has been in my hands almost two weeks now.  The "T" isn't likely to be sold on any sort of sale-price kind of deal anytime soon as the updated tech within it still commands list price.

 

Even right up to the release, Sprint wouldn't put the 720 on sale to help reduce stock levels.  If they wanted to keep profits up on the old phone, you can bet they won't give away the new 720T either unless they start to spontaneously combust.

 

I'd expect that Sprint is trying to get rid of the legacy unit via the other channels.  Those consumers are more often into instant gratification / impulse buying, and are generally less informed and connected than the people that monitor places like here and know where to go in order to find the newest thing.

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If you guys remember Ascertion said it's in the Best Buy database but who knows when it'll be available for sale.

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