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Updating Phone


matt7701
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How often do you guys check for updates(data profile, prl, firmware)?  It seems I have the urge to do so every day but I am not sure if it is necessary.  Anyone else have updating compulsions? :D

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The updates don't do much so I don't bother. Now driving with the LTE engineering screen open with the phone on the dash is another story. Looking for those unknown serving cells is the addiction I have.

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You would be wise to seek treatment for your compulsion. A PRL update, for example, likely does nothing to benefit you. It rarely giveth, but it can taketh away.

 

AJ

 

Last Thursday my phone stopped receiving texts and phone calls for some reason. I finaly called Sprint and the VERY nice and helpful person on the phone helped me through resetting it. The first thing she checked was what PRL I had. Interesting.

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I wouldn't call that interesting, it's more like poor training. I can load a PRL from 6 years ago before EVDO launched and part of the license was sold to AT&T in my area. Text, voice, and data would work fine.

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I wouldn't call that interesting, it's more like poor training. I can load a PRL from 6 years ago before EVDO launched and part of the license was sold to AT&T in my area. Text, voice, and data would work fine.

 

Hmmmm. Well I really don't know a whole lot about the wireless world, but it is very interesting to read the stuff I see on here.

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Last Thursday my phone stopped receiving texts and phone calls for some reason. I finaly called Sprint and the VERY nice and helpful person on the phone helped me through resetting it. The first thing she checked was what PRL I had. Interesting.

The prl doesn't have anything to do with that, but maybe updating the data profile would help that?

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The prl doesn't have anything to do with that, but maybe updating the data profile would help that?

 

Yea, I tried that too before I call them. It just needed some reset and reactivating I guess.

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You would be wise to seek treatment for your compulsion. A PRL update, for example, likely does nothing to benefit you. It rarely giveth, but it can taketh away.

AJ

The PRL update process seems to force a 1x reset, even when no new PRL ia available, at least on my GS3, which apparently causes the phone to re-read the PRL list for my current geography, and will therefore find 1x800, where available. Or is my cold medication causing hallucinations? Expert, non-drugged, opinions would be welcomed.
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The PRL update process seems to force a 1x reset, even when no new PRL ia available, at least on my GS3, which apparently causes the phone to re-read the PRL list for my current geography, and will therefore find 1x800, where available. Or is my cold medication causing hallucinations? Expert, non-drugged, opinions would be welcomed.

 

Yes, but you should be able to accomplish the same via a restart or even airplane mode cycle.

 

AJ

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The PRL update process seems to force a 1x reset, even when no new PRL ia available, at least on my GS3, which apparently causes the phone to re-read the PRL list for my current geography, and will therefore find 1x800, where available. Or is my cold medication causing hallucinations? Expert, non-drugged, opinions would be welcomed.

Yes, but you should be able to accomplish the same via a restart or even airplane mode cycle.

 

AJ

 

I'm sure a restart would do it, but they take forever -- OK, you'll call me on that ;) : They take up to a couple of minutes.  I've tried toggling airplane mode and have also tried Signal Check Pro resets (they are supposed to do the same thing), and neither one works, at least on 2 of my GS3's, though they are very good at finding LTE. However, PRL Update checks seem to work every time, and I am curious if my explanation makes any sense to the informed and enlightened (in other words, mainly, you and Digiblur).

 

EDIT: OK, now I've pissed off the other experts.  Please give me a break: I'm trying to flatter AJ, and you know how hard THAT can be!! Note that I even capitalized his initials, which is difficult for an old geezer like me with feeble "Shift" fingers!

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I check for firmware updates when I hear about a new one being released.  I check for PRL after a new one is released and digiblur has had time to analyze it.  I'm pretty sure I have never checked for a Profile update.  I'm not even sure what the Profile is.

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I wouldn't call that interesting, it's more like poor training. I can load a PRL from 6 years ago before EVDO launched and part of the license was sold to AT&T in my area. Text, voice, and data would work fine.

 

Not poor training. Standard training. The only officially supported configuration for your phone is current official software and current official PRL. If you are not on those, your phone is technically unsupported by Sprint for technical support. Just because you may not like a change in the new version doesn't mean Sprint has to support you.

 

There have been several updates in the last few years that have changed roaming partners (especially roaming partners that were visible as native coverage) and resulted in customers unable to access any service when their phone locks onto that signal after the roaming agreement expires. An updated PRL would remove that entry or update with a different roaming partner. I've seen this happen at least twice since I started working for Sprint (once in my area).

 

Some areas that may still work, in some it won't; it depends entirely on what's actually changed over the years in regards to roaming agreements..

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Not poor training. Standard training. The only officially supported configuration for your phone is current official software and current official PRL. If you are not on those, your phone is technically unsupported by Sprint for technical support. Just because you may not like a change in the new version doesn't mean Sprint has to support you.

 

There have been several updates in the last few years that have changed roaming partners (especially roaming partners that were visible as native coverage) and resulted in customers unable to access any service when their phone locks onto that signal after the roaming agreement expires. An updated PRL would remove that entry or update with a different roaming partner. I've seen this happen at least twice since I started working for Sprint (once in my area).

 

Some areas that may still work, in some it won't; it depends entirely on what's actually changed over the years in regards to roaming agreements..

 

I'm not sure you understood my comment.  Poor training as poor material developed by Sprint.  Too many times do we hear you need a PRL update to get the "new towers" in your area.  Yes, the PRL update is necessary for when the customer is roaming.  Besides the 800SMR additions recently, for native service the PRL updates really are not going to make a difference.  These CSR's get all hung up on doing PRL updates when nothing is updated at all for the customer. 

 

I guess I'm just bitter with the CSR's and even network support, I've had a site (legacy still) that has been having data issues on channel 100 EVDO for 8 or 9 months, maybe more, all I get is the run around about testing my phone, updating this, even when I've proven to them it happens in multiple locations near the site with multiple devices.  They can't figure out the fundamentals of generic troubleshooting where you apply process of elimination.  The insist on wanting the devices tested, which I have done by the way.  I talk with them weekly but instead of fixing it the fingers are pointed at other things and they just want to credit my account instead.  I just want it fixed.  And now I have to deal with another site where the network vision upgrade crew mixed up the RRUs two different times in a row, voice and data is messed up bad on this site since the upgrade to NV 3G/4G.  I hear about it daily from my wife since she works in this area and coverage has gotten much worse since legacy was shut off.  I get to go through the process of the blame once again. 

 

It's difficult to get them to really fix anything even when I can point them in the exact direction and do 99% of the field troubleshooting for them.  I'm really fed up with their network support folks and have been looking for other methods to get my list of issues to the correct people at Sprint and/or Ericsson that will actually listen.

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I'm not sure you understood my comment.  Poor training as poor material developed by Sprint.  Too many times do we hear you need a PRL update to get the "new towers" in your area.  Yes, the PRL update is necessary for when the customer is roaming.  Besides the 800SMR additions recently, for native service the PRL updates really are not going to make a difference.  These CSR's get all hung up on doing PRL updates when nothing is updated at all for the customer. 

 

I guess I'm just bitter with the CSR's and even network support, I've had a site (legacy still) that has been having data issues on channel 100 EVDO for 8 or 9 months, maybe more, all I get is the run around about testing my phone, updating this, even when I've proven to them it happens in multiple locations near the site with multiple devices.  They can't figure out the fundamentals of generic troubleshooting where you apply process of elimination.  The insist on wanting the devices tested, which I have done by the way.  I talk with them weekly but instead of fixing it the fingers are pointed at other things and they just want to credit my account instead.  I just want it fixed.  And now I have to deal with another site where the network vision upgrade crew mixed up the RRUs two different times in a row, voice and data is messed up bad on this site since the upgrade to NV 3G/4G.  I hear about it daily from my wife since she works in this area and coverage has gotten much worse since legacy was shut off.  I get to go through the process of the blame once again. 

 

It's difficult to get them to really fix anything even when I can point them in the exact direction and do 99% of the field troubleshooting for them.  I'm really fed up with their network support folks and have been looking for other methods to get my list of issues to the correct people at Sprint and/or Ericsson that will actually listen.

 

I did misunderstand.

 

That being said, I think a lot of it also has to do with customer perception and the average person's total ignorance with technology.

 

For example, say your cable box is having an issue and you call Comcast tech support. They go through their first tier stuff about plugging it in, etc. and then they say they're sending a "signal" to your box and you need to turn it off. All they are doing is forcing you to do a power cycle of the box, no signal is sent. Most of the time, a simple power cycle fixes the issue, but if they were to actually tell the customer that, the customer would just say they already did it to try and get past the stuff they believe is not related.

 

The same thing happens here. It isn't about the PRL update itself so much, it's about the radio reset that comes with it. Working in retail tech, I can tell you the average smartphone customer in this country now knows very little about how any of the technology works. Most still treat their phone like a simple phone that has touch and a good web browser.

 

Unfortunately to those of us that truly do know what we're talking about, it ends up making it all look pointless and a waste of time. But "tricking" the average customer into doing what we really need done by some other explanation gets things done faster. Multiple that time difference between truly explaining to an already irate customer that all they needed to do was restart their phone (something the average person never does unless it runs out of battery), and just tricking them into doing it, saves millions of dollars each quarter. The CSRs on the phone are rated on a series of metrics, one of them used to be AHT (average handle time), how long they are on the phone with a single customer. With the changes to Customer Service that is no longer true for Sprint's call center vendors, however that's how almost the entire rest of the industry works and thus it's the mentality.It's not about fixing the issue, it's about getting people off the phone. Sprint's Customer Service changes however removed AHT from metrics and instead replaced it with First Call Resolution, did the issue get fixed with the first call. A much more useful metric.

 

Unfortunately I can tell you the average call call enter worker gets paid near minimum wage, to answer a phone all day long, getting yelled at by customers for issues they have no direct control over. On top of that, usually the call center training is insufficient because the turnover rate in call centers is so high that spending the money on adequate training would be a waste because 50-75% of the workers being trained won't be there in a year. The new network tools available to the reps definitely have the power to get things done, but the average Care rep probably doesn't have adequate training to be able to properly utilize them. Add to all this the possibility of the rep simply being entirely apathetic to the entire situation or their job in general (getting yelled at constantly by faceless entitled-feeling people all day will do that to you) and you end up with poor results.

 

I don't know exactly how Sprint's vendors operate since I am in retail, but I do have friends that work in call centers for American Express, Comcast and GEICO. All of them have similar stories and experiences. It may also have something to do with the average American believing all call centers are in other countries now and no one they talk to is actually in the U.S.

 

I'm not defending anything, there is obviously room for improvement. In the real world though, the average person doesn't care how their phone works or how it gets fixed. They just want it to work. If the PRL update does fix it simply because of the radio reset that comes with it and it gets fixed in 2 minutes, the customer will be happier. It works more often than not. I have a sneaking suspicion this is why the ##SCRTN# menu to reset all phone programming and have it reprovision, update PRL and check for firmware updates again no longer requires the phone's MSL. It does often work as a catch-all that fixes a variety of different issues, it's easy to tell someone how to do, and it's relatively easy for a person t o remember for later.

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