Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Shawn Lin
    Guest
    It's my understanding that Virgin Mobile uses Sprint towers - in fact,
    the coverage maps look identical for my area so I hope my question is
    on-topic for this group.

    Anyway, I bought a Kyocera Slider V5 (SE47) for use on the Virgin
    network. I was warned by many that Sprint coverage in my area is
    terrible. As a result, I HAVE NOT purchased a subscription yet
    because I wanted to test the coverage and signal strength first. At
    home, I have service, but only 0 or 1 bar of signal strength (max 4).
    I can dial 611 and hear the recording, although it is a bit choppy and
    cuts out. At work, where I need the phone the most, I have NO
    SERVICE. The phone says "Searching..." constantly. If I pick it up
    and turn it on, sometimes it will find service, but with 0 bars signal
    strength. If I set it on my desk idle, it goes back to "Searching..."
    and will eventually go into "NO SERVICE, POWER SAVE MODE".

    What I would like to know, is will this situation improve AFTER
    purchasing a subscription? I can't possibly see how it could, but I
    asked a Virgin CSR and she said I should have perfect signal AFTER
    purchasing subscription. Isn't the signal strength going to stay the
    same regardless of whether there is active subscription or not? I
    thought either it can connect to the tower or it can't. That's how it
    works on my Nokia 8260...

    If this phone isn't going to work in my office, I need to return it
    and stay with AT&T. I don't want to bother with the hassle of
    purchasing subscription only to have to argue with a CSR about
    refunding it.

    Thanks,

    Shawn



    See More: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question




  2. #2
    Dave Markson
    Guest

    Re: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question

    >What I would like to know, is will this situation improve AFTER
    >purchasing a subscription? I can't possibly see how it could, but I
    >asked a Virgin CSR and she said I should have perfect signal AFTER
    >purchasing subscription. Isn't the signal strength going to stay the
    >same regardless of whether there is active subscription or not? I
    >thought either it can connect to the tower or it can't. That's how it
    >works on my Nokia 8260...


    No, service will not improve with Sprint over Virgin. Same network, same
    towers.

    I just purchased the SE47 (V5 slider) as well, just to use for coverage checks,
    since that is my hobby The SE47 signal bars are quite conservative and you
    can likely make calls with zero bars. The RF performance on the phone is good,
    so it's unlikely that the best-performing-on-Sprint Sanyo's are going to make
    that much of a difference.

    If you are constantly getting "searching for service/powersave" then I suggest
    returning the phone and avoiding Virgin/Sprint.

    --
    Dave
    Visit my New England Cell Phone Page at
    http://markson.net/cell_phones.htm
    (to reply take out the "remove" in my e-mail)



  3. #3
    scannell
    Guest

    Re: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question

    be careful that you don't spend more in "premium" service and Virgin phones
    to conduct your test before you subscribe. The penalty for breaking your
    sprint contract is $150. You can spend that in equipment and excessive per
    minute rates.

    scannell
    cols. oh

    "Shawn Lin" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > It's my understanding that Virgin Mobile uses Sprint towers - in fact,
    > the coverage maps look identical for my area so I hope my question is
    > on-topic for this group.
    >
    > Anyway, I bought a Kyocera Slider V5 (SE47) for use on the Virgin
    > network. I was warned by many that Sprint coverage in my area is
    > terrible. As a result, I HAVE NOT purchased a subscription yet
    > because I wanted to test the coverage and signal strength first. At
    > home, I have service, but only 0 or 1 bar of signal strength (max 4).
    > I can dial 611 and hear the recording, although it is a bit choppy and
    > cuts out. At work, where I need the phone the most, I have NO
    > SERVICE. The phone says "Searching..." constantly. If I pick it up
    > and turn it on, sometimes it will find service, but with 0 bars signal
    > strength. If I set it on my desk idle, it goes back to "Searching..."
    > and will eventually go into "NO SERVICE, POWER SAVE MODE".
    >
    > What I would like to know, is will this situation improve AFTER
    > purchasing a subscription? I can't possibly see how it could, but I
    > asked a Virgin CSR and she said I should have perfect signal AFTER
    > purchasing subscription. Isn't the signal strength going to stay the
    > same regardless of whether there is active subscription or not? I
    > thought either it can connect to the tower or it can't. That's how it
    > works on my Nokia 8260...
    >
    > If this phone isn't going to work in my office, I need to return it
    > and stay with AT&T. I don't want to bother with the hassle of
    > purchasing subscription only to have to argue with a CSR about
    > refunding it.
    >
    > Thanks,
    >
    > Shawn






  4. #4

    Re: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question

    On Fri, 05 Dec 2003 16:05:24 GMT, Dave Markson
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I just purchased the SE47 (V5 slider) as well, just to use for coverage checks,
    >since that is my hobby The SE47 signal bars are quite conservative and you
    >can likely make calls with zero bars. The RF performance on the phone is good,
    >so it's unlikely that the best-performing-on-Sprint Sanyo's are going to make
    >that much of a difference.


    How does one coerce that phone into "debug" mode, to get more
    information about what PNs it's seeing, neighbors, etc?

    That would be one great way to really see what's going on.

    Thanks!




  5. #5
    Dave Markson
    Guest

    Re: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question

    >How does one coerce that phone into "debug" mode, to get more
    >information about what PNs it's seeing, neighbors, etc?
    >
    >That would be one great way to really see what's going on.


    It's not the greatest info, but the basics are there on three screens.

    At the main menu enter "111111"
    Select "Options"
    Scroll down and select "Debug"
    Enter "040793"
    Scroll down and select "Debug Screen"
    Select "On"

    The easiest way to get out of debug is a power cycle.
    Alternately you can go through the above process and select "Off"

    --
    Dave
    Visit my New England Cell Phone Page at
    http://markson.net/cell_phones.htm
    (to reply take out the "remove" in my e-mail)



  6. #6
    Shawn Lin
    Guest

    Re: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question

    Dave Markson <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > >What I would like to know, is will this situation improve AFTER
    > >purchasing a subscription? I can't possibly see how it could, but I
    > >asked a Virgin CSR and she said I should have perfect signal AFTER
    > >purchasing subscription. Isn't the signal strength going to stay the
    > >same regardless of whether there is active subscription or not? I
    > >thought either it can connect to the tower or it can't. That's how it
    > >works on my Nokia 8260...

    >
    > No, service will not improve with Sprint over Virgin. Same network, same
    > towers.
    >
    > I just purchased the SE47 (V5 slider) as well, just to use for coverage checks,
    > since that is my hobby The SE47 signal bars are quite conservative and you
    > can likely make calls with zero bars. The RF performance on the phone is good,
    > so it's unlikely that the best-performing-on-Sprint Sanyo's are going to make
    > that much of a difference.
    >
    > If you are constantly getting "searching for service/powersave" then I suggest
    > returning the phone and avoiding Virgin/Sprint.


    Unfortunately, that's all I get. I tried that Debug Screen you
    mentioned. Rx stays at -108 and Ec/Lo remains at 31. I don't know
    what the minimum Ec/Lo needs to be to have signal... 20 or so? It
    also spends most of its time changing channels. If I go outside, I
    can get 4-bars of signal strength at work! I guess the CDMA signal
    isn't as good at passing through walls as the TDMA signal is? Anyway,
    I guess that means I need to stay with AT&T, although I sure love the
    Slider V5.

    Shawn



  7. #7

    Re: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question

    On 8 Dec 2003 05:57:13 -0800, [email protected] (Shawn Lin)
    wrote:

    If I go outside, I
    >can get 4-bars of signal strength at work! I guess the CDMA signal
    >isn't as good at passing through walls as the TDMA signal is?


    No. It means that the two services don't have the antennae that serve
    you on the same tower. Either the AT&T tower is closer or isn't
    shadowed by some intervening obstructions.




  8. #8
    Shawn Lin
    Guest

    Re: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question

    [email protected] wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > On 8 Dec 2003 05:57:13 -0800, [email protected] (Shawn Lin)
    > wrote:
    >
    > If I go outside, I
    > >can get 4-bars of signal strength at work! I guess the CDMA signal
    > >isn't as good at passing through walls as the TDMA signal is?

    >
    > No. It means that the two services don't have the antennae that serve
    > you on the same tower. Either the AT&T tower is closer or isn't
    > shadowed by some intervening obstructions.


    That could be. For some reason both phones indicate 100% signal
    strength outside. When I get into my concrete cave of an office, the
    CDMA phone has no service at all while the TDMA phone still indicates
    50-60% signal strength.
    I sure wish it worked, I like the price of Virgin better than AT&T,
    and I like the Slider V5 a ton more than my Nokia 8260.

    Shawn



  9. #9
    Lawrence Glasser
    Guest

    Re: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question

    Shawn Lin wrote:
    >
    > [email protected] wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > > On 8 Dec 2003 05:57:13 -0800, [email protected] (Shawn Lin)
    > > wrote:
    > >
    > > If I go outside, I
    > > >can get 4-bars of signal strength at work! I guess the CDMA signal
    > > >isn't as good at passing through walls as the TDMA signal is?

    > >
    > > No. It means that the two services don't have the antennae that serve
    > > you on the same tower. Either the AT&T tower is closer or isn't
    > > shadowed by some intervening obstructions.

    >
    > That could be. For some reason both phones indicate 100% signal
    > strength outside. When I get into my concrete cave of an office, the
    > CDMA phone has no service at all while the TDMA phone still indicates
    > 50-60% signal strength.
    > I sure wish it worked, I like the price of Virgin better than AT&T,
    > and I like the Slider V5 a ton more than my Nokia 8260.


    One should never look at the number of "bars" as any indication of
    signal strength. They're put there by the manufacturer of the phone.
    One manufacturer might decide that a weak signal deserves one bar,
    while the next thinks two would be more appropriate. Etc., etc. Not
    only is there no standard between manufacturers, there's not even a
    standard between phones from the *same* manufacturer.

    Larry



  10. #10
    Dave Markson
    Guest

    Re: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question

    >> If you are constantly getting "searching for service/powersave" then I suggest
    >> returning the phone and avoiding Virgin/Sprint.

    >
    >Unfortunately, that's all I get. I tried that Debug Screen you
    >mentioned. Rx stays at -108 and Ec/Lo remains at 31. I don't know
    >what the minimum Ec/Lo needs to be to have signal... 20 or so? It
    >also spends most of its time changing channels. If I go outside, I
    >can get 4-bars of signal strength at work! I guess the CDMA signal
    >isn't as good at passing through walls as the TDMA signal is? Anyway,
    >I guess that means I need to stay with AT&T, although I sure love the
    >Slider V5.
    >
    >Shawn


    -108 is the lowest the phone will register. It means there is basically no
    signal available.

    Most phones will show a full signal with a -80 dBm signal.

    If your AT&T phone has a signal of -55 dBm and the Virgin phone has a signal at
    -80 dBm they will both show full bars. However, if the signal inside drops by
    25 dBm, then the AT&T will still be at -80 dBm (still full signal) while the
    Virgin would be around -105 dBm (basically no signal). I worked the numbers to
    show an extreme case, but hopefully you get the picture.

    --
    Dave
    Visit my New England Cell Phone Page at
    http://markson.net/cell_phones.htm
    (to reply take out the "remove" in my e-mail)



  11. #11
    Shawn Lin
    Guest

    Re: Virgin/Sprint Signal Strength question

    Dave Markson <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > >> If you are constantly getting "searching for service/powersave" then I suggest
    > >> returning the phone and avoiding Virgin/Sprint.

    > >
    > >Unfortunately, that's all I get. I tried that Debug Screen you
    > >mentioned. Rx stays at -108 and Ec/Lo remains at 31. I don't know
    > >what the minimum Ec/Lo needs to be to have signal... 20 or so? It
    > >also spends most of its time changing channels. If I go outside, I
    > >can get 4-bars of signal strength at work! I guess the CDMA signal
    > >isn't as good at passing through walls as the TDMA signal is? Anyway,
    > >I guess that means I need to stay with AT&T, although I sure love the
    > >Slider V5.
    > >
    > >Shawn

    >
    > -108 is the lowest the phone will register. It means there is basically no
    > signal available.
    >
    > Most phones will show a full signal with a -80 dBm signal.
    >
    > If your AT&T phone has a signal of -55 dBm and the Virgin phone has a signal at
    > -80 dBm they will both show full bars. However, if the signal inside drops by
    > 25 dBm, then the AT&T will still be at -80 dBm (still full signal) while the
    > Virgin would be around -105 dBm (basically no signal). I worked the numbers to
    > show an extreme case, but hopefully you get the picture.



    Do you suppose a passive repeater would be of any benefit?
    Occasionally, if I raise the phone up about a foot or two above my
    desk, I might get service for a few seconds to minutes. I couldn't
    mount the passive repeater antenna outdoors... the best I could do is
    mount it up high somewhere in my office, and mount the other end on my
    desk near the phone. I don't even know how effective a passive
    repeater would be, but I know lots of places sell them.

    Shawn



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