Switching between LTE & 3G while on wireless

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by daudi81, Jan 26, 2014.

  1. daudi81 macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2013
    While at home, My 5s has recently been having a weak LTE signal (verizon) over the past month. So low that it's constantly switching between LTE and 3G. However, I'm on wireless when I'm at home, so I wouldn't think that my phone would care about cellular strength while on a wireless home network.

    My question is: should I be worried about this eating up my battery? I've heard that switching can kill battery life, so can switch off cellular while I'm at home but it is kind of annoying to constantly be switching it on and off when I leave the house or come home.

    And why does my phone care about cellular strength while on wireless, or is it just visual?
  2. phositadc macrumors 6502

    Dec 9, 2012
    Switching back and forth can definitely increase battery drain. Let it do it for a few days and see how bad it is. If it's bad, turn off lte or cellular while you are at home, or plug your phone in.
  3. daudi81 thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2013
    I'll try that,

    Why does it even waste power looking for a cellular signal if wifi is on and connected? Seems pretty boneheaded to me.
  4. cynics macrumors G4

    Jan 8, 2012
    Switching between LTE & 3G while on wireless

    Generally the phone is on cellular when locked regardless of wifi. There are exceptions like during a back up or while airplaying something.

    But unless the phone is doing something, when it's locked it's ON (not necessarily USING) cellular data. This is (from what I've read) to conserve battery.

    You can catch it some of the time when you unlock the phone and see it quickly switch from LTE/3G to wifi.
  5. SanjeevRana macrumors 6502a


    Aug 2, 2011
    So how are you supposed to be receiving calls with "No Service" status ?? The phone does this (and from the first inception of a mobile phone) to keep a healthy signal alive to your provider.

    And yes it will eat your phone's battery ... my house has this issue ...
    Bedrooms jump between No Service & LTE
    Living Room jumps between 3G & LTE

    And all only reach max 2 bars ... finally got my provider to give me a homecell but its reach is not that powerful and i dont like the solution at all
  6. daudi81 thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2013
    Oh I thought data was separate from voice, but that shows how much I know about this stuff.

    Anyway, I switched LTE off so my phone sticks with 3G. Battery is a lot better now, and it lasted 7-8 hours before turning LTE off. I'm guessing I'll get 9-10 hours of usage now.
  7. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    Well, it is.
    I guess the other poster thought you meant disable cellular signal completely opposed to just cellular data.

    Anyway, keeping cellular data (even on WiFi) is good because it allows you to receive picture messages, group messages, and access visual voicemail. Would be pretty annoying if walking into your house didn't allow you to do those things. :)

    The thing is, Verizon's 3G and LTE networks are data only. if you keep cellular data on with LTE enabled, it will waste a lot of battery trying to connect to a poor LTE connection. Better to just disable LTE (you probably have a much stronger 3G connection at home). There's still the hassle of having to switch the LTE toggle back on, unless you are fine with 3G speeds. Although slower than LTE, at least you won't reduce features on your phone and you can do MMS/group SMS and VVM without a problem.
  8. daudi81 thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2013
    Ah so if I disable cellular data I won't receive picture messages, etc? Didn't know that either. I better re enable it now.
  9. wordoflife macrumors 604


    Jul 6, 2009
    Yeah, exactly. Just disable LTE so it will connect to the (stronger) 3G network that can do data.
  10. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere


    Apr 16, 2008
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    Yes, poor signal and if it keeps switching between LTE and 3G and searching will kill your battery fast.
    Don't you have an LTE toggle in your settings?
    I'd turn off LTE off when you're at that location to save battery and just use wifi. You don't need to turn off cellular data completely.
  11. daudi81 thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 26, 2013
    Awesome. I'm getting 11 - 12 hour battery usage now. Quite a bit better than the 7-ish I was getting prior to changing my settings. Thanks!

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