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Phonefanman

Suspended
Original poster
Jun 21, 2016
139
64
I'm not sure if any of you remember... But in 2010 AT&T was overloaded on its network (this is back when iPhone was only on AT&T) When I updated my iOS I went from 5 bars to 2 bars and nothing I could do about it. I looked at other iPhones back then with the same latest iOS update and the signal was terrible as well.. So I jailbroke my iphone thinking I could fix and get my signal back to full bars.. Well I couldn't....

I believe back then Apple purposely did something in its software update to dumb down everyone's signal to help out AT&T network... And at the same time back then when all of this was happening I read an article that AT&T needed to upgrade it's network badly, but needed a crap load of billions of dollars and they were holding off for awhile...

AT&T network needed upgraded but they didn't want to spend the money and iPhones signals were worse after the iOS update..hmm...

I'm pretty smart at figuring things out by putting the pieces together...unfortunately the masses are kind of stupid. This was roughly same time period when the iPhone 4 had signal problems when holding the phone a certain way... Remember that lol. Doesthe iPhone 4 still have that problem? I'm guessing no... Weird hmm
 

Phonefanman

Suspended
Original poster
Jun 21, 2016
139
64
Some conspiracies are fact but as for this one...:rolleyes:

Network is over crowded (needs update) shortly after an iOS update takes place now an iPhone that always got 5 bars now always gets 2 bars... This would be a way to buy someone some time to upgrade its network... Just taking facts and putting it all together and the timing was dead on.... What does one do when something has to much of a load on it? Take some of that load off...
 

seggy

macrumors regular
Feb 13, 2016
158
47
There really wasn't a lot of overcrowding. Sure, certain areas were unprepared but imostly it was simply because Apple was (and to an extent, still is) really bad at designing antennas.

I live in a fairly bad reception area, because lack of high locations and NIMBY. I can have my 'good' phones alongside the iPhone on the same network, and ring them all - and the iPhone used to be consistently the only one which goes through to voicemail. I buy every flagship phone that comes out that I find interesting so I'll usually get through 5 or 6 in a year - and now, as manufacturers iterate quickly and there's presumably no time to do stuff properly I sometimes get phones that are as bad as the iPhone - but never worse.

To those who don't know better who think Apple can do no evil, of course they're going to point fingers at anyone else but Apple. Don't confuse lack of capability for conspiracy.
 

eyoungren

macrumors Penryn
Aug 31, 2011
26,068
21,857
I'm not sure if any of you remember... But in 2010 AT&T was overloaded on its network (this is back when iPhone was only on AT&T) When I updated my iOS I went from 5 bars to 2 bars and nothing I could do about it. I looked at other iPhones back then with the same latest iOS update and the signal was terrible as well.. So I jailbroke my iphone thinking I could fix and get my signal back to full bars.. Well I couldn't....

I believe back then Apple purposely did something in its software update to dumb down everyone's signal to help out AT&T network... And at the same time back then when all of this was happening I read an article that AT&T needed to upgrade it's network badly, but needed a crap load of billions of dollars and they were holding off for awhile...

AT&T network needed upgraded but they didn't want to spend the money and iPhones signals were worse after the iOS update..hmm...

I'm pretty smart at figuring things out by putting the pieces together...unfortunately the masses are kind of stupid. This was roughly same time period when the iPhone 4 had signal problems when holding the phone a certain way... Remember that lol. Doesthe iPhone 4 still have that problem? I'm guessing no... Weird hmm
Uhhh…no.

AT&T simply had issues with their network. Three years of steadily adding customers who were using much more data than before. AT&T's CEO at the time even blamed all their problems on the customer, rather than the fact that they had refused to spend any money on modernizing their network. The Bay Area in California, particularly San Francisco was a very bad market at the time.

Things started to snowball when Apple came out with the iPhone 3G because…well, the 3G was named the 3G because it offered 3G!

As to the iPhone 4, that was a bad antenna design and when Jobs got called on it he got mad. Antennagate led to the explosion of bumpers on the market, particularly those fugly neon ones that everyone who owned a 4 seemed attracted to for some god awful reason unknown to me.

No conspiracy here. Just good old American companies dragging their feet on spending any money because it takes away from their profit.
 

cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
11,947
2,127
I can still hold an iPhone 4 "improperly" and watch signal drop. It only a thing if you still have and use an iPhone 4, which not many do.

As far as ATTs network. I find it unlikely Apple crippled the iPhone for a network. Not exactly good business.

Besides other phones not manufactured by Apple weren't doing any better with speedtest.
 

kdarling

macrumors P6
I'm not sure if any of you remember... But in 2010 AT&T was overloaded on its network (this is back when iPhone was only on AT&T) When I updated my iOS I went from 5 bars to 2 bars and nothing I could do about it.

Yes, in 2010 AT&T was overloaded. Especially since they had wasted so much time bolstering their 2G network to help speed up the original 2G iPhone in 2007, instead of investing in their 3G network... the one that every other smartphone used.

And yes, there was a major flaw in the initial cellular code for the 3GS, that caused iPhones to ramp up their power output (for no reason) until the cell tower would drop all other phones outside that power level. This caused lots of dropped calls until AT&T figured it out.

However, neither was a conspiracy.

--> Now, here's what almost certainly happened to you:

In 2010, while investigating the "you're holding it wrong" iPhone 4 antenna problem, Apple noticed that their signal level calculating code was incorrect. Not just by a little bit, but by a lot. As Apple themselves put it:

"Upon investigation, we were stunned to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong. Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength. " - Apple

So in mid-2010, Apple put out an OS update that displayed bars more like how other phones did. And that's why your bar count suddenly dropped. You're right, it was the result of an update. However, it did not cause signal problems. Instead it finally showed a more realistic signal level.

bad_signal_bars.png


Considering how warped the original values were, I wonder if they came from wanting to look good at a demo, and accidentally got left in. Like the way that Jobs had his engineers hardcode five bars for the original 2007 iPhone public demo.
 
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Jimmy James

macrumors 603
Oct 26, 2008
5,488
4,065
Magicland
Signal strength bars aren't shown at standardized intervals.

My cars temp gauge doesn't provide a reading until it reaches a predefined temperature. If it's still sitting on the peg after a few minutes of driving should I assume my engine is still at ambient temperature?
 

skinned66

macrumors 65816
Feb 11, 2011
1,372
1,225
Ottawa, Canada
View attachment 640262

Considering how bad the original calculations were, I wonder if they came from wanting to look good at a demo, and somehow got left in. Like the way that Jobs had his engineers hardcode five bars for the original 2007 iPhone public demo.

Wow, good graphic. That was way off. Another one in the plus column for numeric readout I guess. I just prefer them anyway. I know a -112 is at least marginally usable where -120 and below I'd think twice about even trying.
 
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kdarling

macrumors P6
Signal strength bars aren't shown at standardized intervals.

Often true, but most phones (unless they're cheap ones trying to fool the user) do implement similar ranges. Especially if by the same maker, or if tested and sold within the same carrier network.

In fact, Apple chose to follow AT&T's standard:

"To fix this, we are adopting AT&T’s recently recommended formula for calculating how many bars to display for a given signal strength. The real signal strength remains the same, but the iPhone’s bars will report it far more accurately, providing users a much better indication of the reception they will get in a given area." - Apple, July 2010

My cars temp gauge doesn't provide a reading until it reaches a predefined temperature. If it's still sitting on the peg after a few minutes of driving should I assume my engine is still at ambient temperature?

While there is a deliberate lag to prevent signal bars from fluctuating too quickly, that seems more like a dampened fuel gauge not showing sloshing gas.
 
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Phonefanman

Suspended
Original poster
Jun 21, 2016
139
64
Yes, in 2010 AT&T was overloaded. Especially since they had wasted so much time bolstering their 2G network to help speed up the original 2G iPhone in 2007, instead of investing in their 3G network... the one that every other smartphone used.

And yes, there was a major flaw in the initial cellular code for the 3GS, that caused iPhones to ramp up their power output (for no reason) until the cell tower would drop all other phones outside that power level. This caused lots of dropped calls until AT&T figured it out.

However, neither was a conspiracy.

--> Now, here's what almost certainly happened to you:

In 2010, while investigating the "you're holding it wrong" iPhone 4 antenna problem, Apple noticed that their signal level calculating code was incorrect. Not just by a little bit, but by a lot. As Apple themselves put it:

"Upon investigation, we were stunned to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong. Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength. " - Apple

So in mid-2010, Apple put out an OS update that displayed bars more like how other phones did. And that's why your bar count suddenly dropped. You're right, it was the result of an update. However, it did not cause signal problems. Instead it finally showed a more realistic signal level.

View attachment 640262

Considering how bad the original calculations were, I wonder if they came from wanting to look good at a demo, and somehow got left in. Like the way that Jobs had his engineers hardcode five bars for the original 2007 iPhone public demo.

Very in depth and you've done your homework! Thanks for the information!
 

ucfgrad93

macrumors Core
Aug 17, 2007
19,034
10,267
Colorado
Yes, in 2010 AT&T was overloaded. Especially since they had wasted so much time bolstering their 2G network to help speed up the original 2G iPhone in 2007, instead of investing in their 3G network... the one that every other smartphone used.

And yes, there was a major flaw in the initial cellular code for the 3GS, that caused iPhones to ramp up their power output (for no reason) until the cell tower would drop all other phones outside that power level. This caused lots of dropped calls until AT&T figured it out.

However, neither was a conspiracy.

--> Now, here's what almost certainly happened to you:

In 2010, while investigating the "you're holding it wrong" iPhone 4 antenna problem, Apple noticed that their signal level calculating code was incorrect. Not just by a little bit, but by a lot. As Apple themselves put it:

"Upon investigation, we were stunned to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong. Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength. " - Apple

So in mid-2010, Apple put out an OS update that displayed bars more like how other phones did. And that's why your bar count suddenly dropped. You're right, it was the result of an update. However, it did not cause signal problems. Instead it finally showed a more realistic signal level.

View attachment 640262

Considering how bad the original calculations were, I wonder if they came from wanting to look good at a demo, and somehow got left in. Like the way that Jobs had his engineers hardcode five bars for the original 2007 iPhone public demo.

Thanks for sharing this. Very informative.
 

maflynn

Moderator emeritus
May 3, 2009
70,074
38,523
I believe back then Apple purposely did something in its software update to dumb down everyone's signal to help out AT&T network.
And what exactly did they "dumb down"? Do you understand the intricacies and detailed technical details of cellular communication that allows for such conjecture (I certainly don't)?
 
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