when is WiFi in use vs 3G

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by fredf, Jul 24, 2009.

  1. fredf macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2008
    #1
    I need some help.

    I want to use WiFi whenever possible rather than 3G (save battery and air time). How do I know when the iPhone 3G is using which?

    Can I set it to preferentially login to WiFi? I have it set for WiFi 'on' is settings. Do I need to do anything else?

    Thanks
     
  2. -aggie- macrumors P6

    -aggie-

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    #2
    Just turn off 3G in settings. Then you'll get wi-fi or EDGE.

    However, 3G is supposed to be better on the battery life than EDGE, FYI. See this for more info.
     
  3. anjinha macrumors 604

    anjinha

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    #3
    If you are connected to a wi-fi network the iPhone will always use wi-fi over 3G.
     
  4. Radioman macrumors regular

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    UK
    #4
    Simple: if it says '3G' (or 'E' or that funny little dot) next to the sig strength bars in the top left of your screen you are on 3G (or Edge or GPRS) for data, if it is the familiar wifi 'waves' symbol then you are on wifi.
     
  5. allymac macrumors member

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    Jun 9, 2008
    #5
    Yep that's what I'm finding. If wifi is switched on and you're connected, it will take priority over the 3G.
     
  6. Cescfabregas4 macrumors member

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    Jul 14, 2009
    #6
    Not true. Its even stated in the iphone's network settings that 3g consumes more battery life.
     
  7. fredf thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Oct 31, 2008
    #7
    That is certainly my understanding.
    I find that often the 3G network signal strength is showing as well as the wifi 'wave' so I don't know which is in use.

    Then, last night I was using iFile to transfer some files and each time I did, I had to re-enter 'share' to get the WiFi connected which implied to me that even though I thought I was on wifi I apparently wasn't.
    I had wifi 'on', by the way in settings.

    I really don't want to have to go into settings and turn off 3G every time I want to use wifi and edge isn't what I want either. I just want to ensure that when it is available that the phone preferentially will go to wifi.
     
  8. paulsalter macrumors 68000

    paulsalter

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    #8
    The signal strength for 3g will still show, but you should be able to see from the 3G, E, o, or WiFi indicator which is in use, only one of these symbols shows at a time

    If the phone is in standby (screen off) if will use the mobile/cell network regardless, if its on it will use wifi if available
     
  9. nightfly macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    #9
    its not the signal strength its the "3G" writing next to the signal strength, if there is "3G" then u r using 3G if its the wavvy icon then u r on wifi.

    Also there is no way you can get both the "3G" and WIFI icon at the same time up there :)
     
  10. fredf thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Oct 31, 2008
    #10
    ok, thanks. got it now.
    sorry to be so obtuse.
     
  11. Vandam500 macrumors 68000

    Vandam500

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    Sep 29, 2008
    #11
    If you have 3G and Wifi on then it will use the Wifi for data. I am pretty sure it uses 3G for Voice while on Wifi because as soon as I turn of the Wifi 3G pops up and not Edge.
     
  12. -aggie- macrumors P6

    -aggie-

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    #12
    Yes, if you leave 3G on all day. But while surfing, 3G is supposed to be better than EDGE. Did you even look at the link?
     
  13. MBHockey macrumors 68040

    MBHockey

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    Oct 4, 2003
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    New York
    #13
    3G consumes more battery than Edge. I'm not sure how you could interpret the link you posted as anything other than that.

    The only argument one could make for Edge being better than 3G is that since Edge takes so much longer to load your usage time will increase to load the same amount of sites as 3G. Your screen is on longer, etc.

    But really, 3G takes much more juice than Edge.
     
  14. bigmouth macrumors 6502

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    Jul 24, 2008
    #14
    I did. It says exactly the opposite of what you're insisting. Maybe it would help if you quoted exactly the part you think supports your claim.
     
  15. matttye macrumors 601

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    Mar 25, 2009
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    Lincoln, England
    #15
    10 seconds of 3G would clearly use more than bettery power than 10 seconds of EDGE, however.. it is faster to access websites using 3G. Much faster. You can load sites in less than half the time. All in all I believe you would get more usage out of 3G than Edge in one battery cycle.
     
  16. -aggie- macrumors P6

    -aggie-

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    #16
    "This graph demonstrates why it doesn't make sense to use EDGE for web browsing vs. 3G or WiFi. Realize that 3G is usually at least 2X as fast as EDGE.

    17201uv1.png

    Here's a numerical explanation. (Web Pages Accessed #'s are theoretical, but based on 3G's 2X speed)
    3G Web = 197 Minutes Browsing Time | 400 Web Pages Accessed
    EDGE Web = 243 Minutes Browsing Time | 246 Web Pages Accessed"

    IDK, that's what got me wondering about it. It seemed to make SOME sense. I guess it would help to know how much battery is used per minute for EDGE and 3G to make a better determination of what the author of that link stated.
     

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