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ZTE MC801A Review

groversss

Member
My ZTE MC801A only shows the power signal and it also does not seem to receive any firmware rollback since Tuesday night. I called the hotline twice, and both times the customer support just keeps on telling me that they are aware of the issue and the technical team is working on it. All I can do is wait. I wonder if there is anyone has successfully got a router replacement via the hotline. It is not helpful to just wait without ETA.
The same issue of my mc801a. I called the hotline, as they just asked me to wait for the update...
 

meritez

ULTIMATE Member
The same issue of my mc801a. I called the hotline, as they just asked me to wait for the update...
That's weird, as a completely bricked mc801a has no lights on.

There's a full unbricking method detailed on 4pda, but it requires disassembly and testpoint booting, I'd only recommend it as a last result as there's the potential to lose your IMEI, and have to rewrite it.
 

groversss

Member
That's weird, as a completely bricked mc801a has no lights on.

There's a full unbricking method detailed on 4pda, but it requires disassembly and testpoint booting, I'd only recommend it as a last result as there's the potential to lose your IMEI, and have to rewrite it.
I called them again and they said is the software problem, some devices aren't updating with new software. They cannot send me a replacement as currently stopped all consignments from ZTE. They still don't know when it will be fixed...
 

CarlO1460

ULTIMATE Member
You seem to be caught up on my use of guarantee. Bottom line is TOS, which forms part of the contract states "... significant discrepancy between the advertised speed provided in the broadband speeds table at www.three.co.uk/broadband-speeds and your normally available speed then you may be
entitled to a price reduction based upon the period of the disruption..."

Three agreed to compensation, so I think it was reasonable to inform users here.
Still a cop out for networks and they don’t want to do it, plus, how do you prove the speeds were significantly better pre issues?
 

flyingguy

Casual Member
I spoke to customer service again and said I want to cancel, but they said I would have to pay a £200 early termination fee. Surely there has to be some protection for the customer that if they are not providing the service I am paying for then I'm within my rights to cancel?
 

eccles

ULTIMATE Member
I spoke to customer service again and said I want to cancel, but they said I would have to pay a £200 early termination fee. Surely there has to be some protection for the customer that if they are not providing the service I am paying for then I'm within my rights to cancel?
I think you're certainly within your rights to have an exchange router. The one you have has stopped working through no fault of your own as you were not informed to keep it on for an unscheduled update. I would get onto them again and ask what steps you should take to exchange it. If they won't budge then I presume it's time to refer it to Offcom or the CAB.
Also I'd pop round to your local B&Q or PC World and pick up an ethernet patch cable to see if you can get into the home page.
 

groversss

Member
I spoke to customer service again and said I want to cancel, but they said I would have to pay a £200 early termination fee. Surely there has to be some protection for the customer that if they are not providing the service I am paying for then I'm within my rights to cancel?
My MC801A only have the power light on since Wed, they called me today and said they will send me a replacement of it. And they offered me a compensation of half the monthly fee.
 

flyingguy

Casual Member
My MC801A only have the power light on since Wed, they called me today and said they will send me a replacement of it. And they offered me a compensation of half the monthly fee.
Same for me, got a call late yesterday and they are sending a replacement!
 
I joined Three 5G at the weekend and received my MC801A Tuesday 17th, plugged it in all went or seemed to go well. I changed SSID and both admin and wifi passwords etc etc then within 5 min it updated itself rebooted and never came back on (bar the power light). I wasn't very happy and was even more annoyed once i found this site and saw that a good few others have had the exact same issues, not only that this info was a week+ old.
Just the fact Three sent me a router and still pushed a firmware update knowing it was bricking them is shocking.
Needless to say i got in touch with Three who knew straight away what the problem was but still we went through the whole BS script of turn it off, reset it, leave it on for 40 min to see if it connects etc....In the end they accepted it was Bricked and sent a new one out which arrived today.
After reading other messages where a few people had been sent replacement routers only for them to be bricked within a few min of booting them up i changed tactic and with my replacement router removed the sim while i booted up first time, logged in to panel and disabled auto updates......Put sim in rebooted it and happy days since.

That's weird, as a completely bricked mc801a has no lights on.

There's a full unbricking method detailed on 4pda, but it requires disassembly and testpoint booting, I'd only recommend it as a last result as there's the potential to lose your IMEI, and have to rewrite it.
A bricked device IMHO is one that can't be fixed without the need to wipe and restore firmware etc, and even then it is certainly not a job for an average joe. I went the whole flash route but there is no guarantee you could even recover or correctly flash the firmware with the correct Three UK profile....i could indeed find firmware for most countries and providers but couldn't find one for Three UK. Flashing would also requires the USB-c port be active and working, in my case that wasn't possible, it did nothing via the USB..... i tried lots of things before eventually i thought "WTF am i doing?", "i can get another one sent out as i'm only day 1 of my contract".

Luckily i had no issue getting a replacement which arrived today and it does work a treat, so i think if anyone does have a Three 5G MC801A that is stuck on a power light only....well might as well stop wasting your time and demand a replacement as its highly doubtful it will magically fix itself.

This cannot be cheap for Three, i'm on the £10 for 6 months then £20 for remaining 18 months deal which works out to £420 for the entire 2 year contract. Given they sent me new router, bricked it, had to send me another and pay for the postage and return postage, plus the paying the staff i had to ring etc etc.......someone needs sacking.
 

pollax

Regular Member
Disabling auto updates didn't make any difference in my case as three still forced the B07 firmware update through. Fortunately, they subsequently reverted to B04 so no harm done. I ran that Italian guy's script(miononno) and it weirdly affected my wifi speeds by a factor of 10(700mbps to 70) but the wired speed was unchanged, I had to reset the router to fix it. Needless to say, I won't be running that script again!
 
Last edited:

Jony

Member
I have one of these routers which I bought privately, so is not under contract. The router was bricked by this update. I haven't bothered asking Three to replace it because I doubt they'd help (although as a product which is under 2 years old, perhaps they would have to legally, any thoughts on this?

I'm a technically minded person and have flashed several different firmwares from the Russian forum - they all boot properly, but I have 'No Service' despite trying all the suggested fixes. I'm now thinking that the only way to get it working again is to flash the proper 'Three' firmware, but this doesn't exist anywhere online that I can see. Does anyone have a copy backed up which they could upload? Alternatively, would anyone be willing to back up the firmware from their working Three router and upload a copy for the sake of poor souls like me?
 

TheGreatDivide

Casual Member
I bought a Bluespot 4G/5G antenna for my MC801A, but looks like the TS9 ports will only improve the 5G signal. Is there a way to change this?
 

Lucian

ULTIMATE Member
I bought a Bluespot 4G/5G antenna for my MC801A, but looks like the TS9 ports will only improve the 5G signal. Is there a way to change this?
You could always open up the router and mod it, see how people did it for the vn007+ or the cpe pro.
 

meritez

ULTIMATE Member
I have one of these routers which I bought privately, so is not under contract. The router was bricked by this update. I haven't bothered asking Three to replace it because I doubt they'd help (although as a product which is under 2 years old, perhaps they would have to legally, any thoughts on this?

I'm a technically minded person and have flashed several different firmwares from the Russian forum - they all boot properly, but I have 'No Service' despite trying all the suggested fixes. I'm now thinking that the only way to get it working again is to flash the proper 'Three' firmware, but this doesn't exist anywhere online that I can see. Does anyone have a copy backed up which they could upload? Alternatively, would anyone be willing to back up the firmware from their working Three router and upload a copy for the sake of poor souls like me?

Does your IMEI still exist, or does it need to be repaired?
 

Jony

Member
Does your IMEI still exist, or does it need to be repaired?
It's doesn't exist but I have the software and understand how to rewrite it into firmware, so I'm not too concerned about that. Whatever firmware I flash end up with blank IMEI, and I can insert my original again. The problem (I think) is that the Three supplied router won't work without the appropriate firmware build.
 

AlecTR

Member
Hey guys just got my Three ZTE 5G hub today, I'm in Loughborough UK. Plugged and play, changed WiFi said and pw, and did some initial speed checks around 12pm.

First impression, pretty good download speeds at 2pm, I benched 520mbps down and 60up. I moved the router around my flat, the best signal I could reach was about -76dbm, most part is about -85dbm.

Did more speed tests later today, at 4pm, speed dropped to 100mbps down and 60 up, occasionally lowering down to 70mbps. Jitter average between 6-10ms on pingtest. I tried to play games, rainbow 6, apex competitively, I didn't realize any packet loss during gameplay, much better than Three 3G and 4G here, jitter was about 30ms which was basically unplayable for games.

Software is B04, checked update but it says this is already the latest version. Thinking to buy external antennas for it but looking back at this thread, there's posts about how weak the solders are on the PCB, so might not go down that path.

Would you guys say -76dbm is pretty good?
 

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