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Will Three address mast contention? Lets find out!

GavinAshford

ULTIMATE Member
Can phones be enabled for bands retroactively? Like b28 via updates.
It's fairly unlikely to happen even for flagship devices (almost certainly not for low/mid end ones). Even if a modem that has been used in a device might be capable of more bands than the manufacturer of the device has decided to build and develop for (antennas, firmware, etc), the numerous global certifications for RF emissions will have been based on the original specifications/frequencies, enabling more bands may require the device to go through certification again.

Saying that, it sometimes does happen:


And sometimes is planned, but backtracked on:

And finally if you have an Android device and band restrictions are applied via a carrier policy rather than are a limitation of the modem you may even be able to root it and alter the enabled bands yourself
 

IgNG

Pro Member
My Mi 10T Pro has in its specs Band 28 (4G) and often there's a carrier services update, so I was hoping... :)
 

GavinAshford

ULTIMATE Member
Well if the device supports it (and there is no carrier policy specifically disabling it) then it should just work - there'll be no need to hope - carrier services doesn't have any impact on it.
 

IgNG

Pro Member
I had a text the other day from 3 saying they were working in my area, so I was hoping that 3 would eventually improve their network. Wonder what exactly decides which bands your phone uses?
 

GavinAshford

ULTIMATE Member
The network.
From the signal conditions as measured by your phone the network does set priorities of what frequency/technology it wishes you are connected to for those given conditions.

In a simple example, for a phone that cannot aggregate - if you're in an area covered by B3 with lots of bandwidth -15mhz - and B20 with relatively small amount of bandwidth - 5mhz- your phone will likely report in the metrics that B20 is stronger in terms of outright RSRP/SINR due to it being a lower frequency and better at propagating/penetrating.
However the network 'knows' that B3 has more capacity and set priorities accordingly, so when the B3 metrics are within certain bounds then your phone will connect to that.
As you move away from the site, the B3 metrics will drop lower to a point where they are out of the defined bounds and cell re-selection will occur, either to another band on the same mast (B20 in our example) or perhaps to another mast entirely (where the B3 metrics from that site is within the defined bounds).

Edit: this is why band locking can prove effective, to avoid low capacity bands the network is putting you on, to connect to higher capacity ones, even though the metrics from the higher capacity bands may not be as high.
 

Buggerlugz

ULTIMATE Member
1622981245586180155-mini.png


Wow.
 

vcommsmind

Pro Member
Well apparently (more thanks to OFCOM) if you get less than 10Mbps down and 1Mbps up you can request a free FTTP upgrade!

But only as long as you can't get 4G and it don't cost more than £3400 to install! So even then you're screwed.

So whilst 30Mbps is "superfast", 10Mbps is unacceptable.

Shoot me now.
I'm not sure who told you that you can get a free FTTP upgrade. That isn't true. There is a limited USO for places that get under 10mbps internet, but in no way is that a "free FTTP upgrade" I'm afraid.
 

vcommsmind

Pro Member

So you're in the 20/2 range - which is more than people on ADSL2+ can get typically, so you're not as hard done by as you make out.

I've got customers with 0.5mbps ADSL - and no 3G or 4G coverage. Those people are the ones with totally unusable internet. Sure you might not be able to do some of the more "nice" things like 4K streaming but those speeds are good enough to get general usage.
 

Buggerlugz

ULTIMATE Member
So you're in the 20/2 range - which is more than people on ADSL2+ can get typically, so you're not as hard done by as you make out.
Maybe three could use that as their marketing tag-line for they're home broadband "You're not as hard done by as you make out!"

Would fit the product perfectly.
 

vcommsmind

Pro Member
Maybe three could use that as their marketing tag-line for they're home broadband "You're not as hard done by as you make out!"

Would fit the product perfectly.

Did 3 promise you'd get gigabit speeds? Or that the home broadband would be some magical speed? Nope.

Those speeds are perfectly usable, and around or better than what many people got for "home broadband"... I mean three say "Our 4G Broadband with Unlimited data is great for everyday home broadband. It's quick and easy to set up – just plug and play."

"everyday home broadband" - I'd say the speeds you're getting demonstrate "everyday home broadband" - they're not stonkingly fast, but they're not unusably slow for everyday purposes. Perhaps you need to consider that your expectations are too high for what is realistically achievable where you are. I'm sure you would like greater speeds - you're hardly alone there, but you're making out that the service you do get is far worse than it is from the speeds you posted.

I suspect the reason you're not getting anywhere getting three to "fix" your service is that your service isn't "faulty" to begin with. What do you think they'll do? Come out and install transmission equipment next door to you just for you? I'm not sure what it is you want 3 to do for you.
 

Buggerlugz

ULTIMATE Member
I'm not making out the service I get is far worse than the speeds I posted.

Firstly at 2am I can get nearly 200Mbps, by 6am its down to 100Mbps, by lunchtime its down to 40Mbps, by 3pm its 20-25Mbps and at tea time its normally sub 10Mbps. Sunday night, I can forget bothering with the internet at all.

I'm aware from the speeds I get when my mast isn't contended, exactly what speed I am capable of getting at my location are. I as a customer am not the problem, the problem is Three is incapable of providing my contended mast with more bandwidth.
 
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vcommsmind

Pro Member
I'm not making out the service I get is far worse than the speeds I posted.

Firstly at 2am I can get nearly 200Mbps, by 6am its down to 100Mbps, by lunchtime its down to 40Mbps, by 3pm its 20-25Mbps and at tea time its normally sub 10Mbps. Sunday night, I can forget bothering with the internet at all.

I'm aware from the speeds I get when my mast isn't contended, exactly what speed I am capable of getting at my location are. I as a customer am not the problem, the problem is Three is incapable of providing my contended mast with more bandwidth.

If you're getting 200mbps+ at certain times then the capacity is there, but it is being used, there is a finite amount of bandwidth you can deliver for a given amount of radio spectrum, and they may simply have no more spectrum available to use there. Radio spectrum is finite.
 

CarlO1460

Pro Member
I'm not making out the service I get is far worse than the speeds I posted.

Firstly at 2am I can get nearly 200Mbps, by 6am its down to 100Mbps, by lunchtime its down to 40Mbps, by 3pm its 20-25Mbps and at tea time its normally sub 10Mbps. Sunday night, I can forget bothering with the internet at all.

I'm aware from the speeds I get when my mast isn't contended, exactly what speed I am capable of getting at my location are. I as a customer am not the problem, the problem is Three is incapable of providing my contended mast with more bandwidth.
You say you can forget bothering with the internet at all.

What is it you actually want to do with more than 10mbps speeds? Forums, web browsing, Facebook, Netflix, YouTube, everything should work with that speed, though not 4K but you may get away with HD quality on most services.

try dropping to 3G. My three sim loves to be on 3G at the moment and most of the time it’s 20mbps or slightly higher.
 

JitteryPinger

ULTIMATE Member
I'm not making out the service I get is far worse than the speeds I posted.

Firstly at 2am I can get nearly 200Mbps, by 6am its down to 100Mbps, by lunchtime its down to 40Mbps, by 3pm its 20-25Mbps and at tea time its normally sub 10Mbps. Sunday night, I can forget bothering with the internet at all.

I'm aware from the speeds I get when my mast isn't contended, exactly what speed I am capable of getting at my location are. I as a customer am not the problem, the problem is Three is incapable of providing my contended mast with more bandwidth.
Spectrum or radio config is likely the issue and depending on the kit your using you may not be able to make use of better radio configs.
 

Buggerlugz

ULTIMATE Member
I'm using the B535-232, which I got over 200Mbps all day when i first joined Three (with no rabbit ears, just the internal antenna), which lasted 4 months before the downward spiral which its never recovered from.

I've messed around with the bands and 1 and 3 together seems the best overall. Its slightly faster with just band 3, but when contention strikes bands 1 and 3 together perform better.

The problems arise when using it for 4K streaming and the console which is totally unusable without 50Mbps+ speeds (ie:put disc in, 80gb update required etc). HD isn't even possible some evenings (and always Saturday and Sunday), when this happens it drops to 480p on you tube or hangs 30seconds plus every time an advert comes on.
 

CarlO1460

Pro Member
I'm using the B535-232, which I got over 200Mbps all day when i first joined Three (with no rabbit ears, just the internal antenna), which lasted 4 months before the downward spiral which its never recovered from.

I've messed around with the bands and 1 and 3 together seems the best overall. Its slightly faster with just band 3, but when contention strikes bands 1 and 3 together perform better.

The problems arise when using it for 4K streaming and the console which is totally unusable without 50Mbps+ speeds (ie:put disc in, 80gb update required etc). HD isn't even possible some evenings (and always Saturday and Sunday), when this happens it drops to 480p on you tube or hangs 30seconds plus every time an advert comes on.
You must long for band 32 your way then 😅
 

JitteryPinger

ULTIMATE Member
I'm using the B535-232,
I'm suprised you got 200mbps from the B535 but its possible obviously, the think is that the B535 is only capable of utilising 64QAM modulation on radio bands and now the networks are using 256QAM and 4x4.

The problems arise when using it for 4K streaming and the console which is totally unusable without 50Mbps+ speeds (ie:put disc in, 80gb update required etc). HD isn't even possible some evenings (and always Saturday and Sunday), when this happens it drops to 480p on you tube or hangs 30seconds plus every time an advert comes on.
To be honest that sort of usage isn't classed as 'everyday' and the issue with Youtube dropping to 480p is actually fairly usual even on stable superfast fixed line broadband, I beleive due to a configuration thats still in place on Europe servers to reduce broadband infrstructure impact during lockdowns.

Getting B32 will make a difference but not so much for using the B535 as its going to limit the use of upgrades if I'm honest, so looking at othert options is going to be key.

I was using a CAT4 Huawei modem recently for a test with Vodafone in my area, using the CAT4 barely produced above 20mbps and that was on Band's 1, 7 and 20 (7 being the best), when testing back in my phones the speeds increase to 150-400mbps on 4G (3CA)
 

Buggerlugz

ULTIMATE Member
I'm suprised you got 200mbps from the B535 but its possible obviously, the think is that the B535 is only capable of utilising 64QAM modulation on radio bands and now the networks are using 256QAM and 4x4.


To be honest that sort of usage isn't classed as 'everyday' and the issue with Youtube dropping to 480p is actually fairly usual even on stable superfast fixed line broadband, I beleive due to a configuration thats still in place on Europe servers to reduce broadband infrstructure impact during lockdowns.

Getting B32 will make a difference but not so much for using the B535 as its going to limit the use of upgrades if I'm honest, so looking at othert options is going to be key.

I was using a CAT4 Huawei modem recently for a test with Vodafone in my area, using the CAT4 barely produced above 20mbps and that was on Band's 1, 7 and 20 (7 being the best), when testing back in my phones the speeds increase to 150-400mbps on 4G (3CA)

Not as surprised as I was initially! But I still see it often in the early hours if the xbox does an update. Can they configure radio gear on mast sites remotely to enable Band 32? It can aggregate with bands 1 and 3, so its possible it may help I suppose (especially if no one else is using that band, I guess!)

I've considered getting a newer higher CAT router, but I've pretty much accepted that I'll be begrudgingly going back to Virgin in the next few months. Ideally anyone with a console or anyone treading into 4K streaming needs a stable 100Mbps connection, so it'll be a breath of fresh air hopefully. I just hope they bill me correctly this time!
 

JitteryPinger

ULTIMATE Member
Can they configure radio gear on mast sites remotely to enable Band 32? It can aggregate with bands 1 and 3, so its possible it may help I suppose (especially if no one else is using that band, I guess!)
Nope, it will require a new radio and link to the antennas to be connected up.

Also Band 32 only aggregates with B20 on B535-232 so wouldn't be of use unless B20 was enabled in the area also.

Also B32 is supported fairly highly with modern devices and its long range properties will lead it to be in use just as much as other bands.
 
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