Posts Tagged ‘Cell Phones’

Apple iPhone Wireless Internet

August 2, 2013

I like my iPhone. As I mentioned previously, I’ve had all the major releases: The original iPhone, 3G, 4, and now the 5. In every single one of those phones, there is something that has universally driven me insane: The length of time it takes for the phone to shut the WiFi receiver off when it determines that the signal is no longer usable.

Image

No, really iPhone, it’s a lost cause.

Now, unless you have a dog and spend a lot of time taking it on walks, you may not even notice it. Basically, when you walk outside your home, your signal indicator will usually drop to 2 bars. Depending on where your router is, the wireless will still work if you’re just right around the house. Once you get about 30 yards away, the signal will drop to 1-2 bars and it will no longer work. If you attempt to access anything, it will just endlessly load or say there’s no network connection.

Here is where the problem starts. It won’t switch to cellular for what seems like an eternity (OK, like 1-2 minutes, but it feels like an eternity). It just sits there with 1 signal bar and won’t switch off. You’re probably asking yourself, “Why doesn’t this dumb ass just toggle the WiFi off?” I’ll tell you why: I’m lazy. I need to hit the home button to exit what I’m in. Then I have to scroll to the Settings app. Then select WiFi. Then toggle it off. Then exit back out and go back to what I was doing. It takes 10 seconds, but it’s annoying. Then I have to remember to turn it back on later, or else feel the wrath of AT&T’s data throttling on my ‘unlimited‘ plan.

So, yes. I could toggle it off kind of easily, but why should I have to? Excuse my ignorance of how the cellular and wireless radios work together, but I have an idea for how to make it better. I assume 3 bars of signal is equal to 67-100% signal strength. Two bars equal 34-66%. One bar is <34%. From my experience, 2 bars is hit or miss depending on how close I am to the router – obviously. Why not have the WiFi radio switch off after 5 seconds below 50% and instantly if it’s under 34%? Does that sound outrageous? There’s no reason for me to sit at one bar of signal strength for 60-120 seconds while it tries to stay connected.

Is there a hardware issue that prevents rapid switching of the radios? Power savings, maybe? The battery already blows, so if there was an option to enable such a feature, I’d be fine with that.

That’s all, really. Just an annoying feature that has been pissing me off for years.

Edit to add: I just realized that I have had instances where I had 1 signal bar and the WiFi worked. Mostly in hotels or someone’s house. Therefore, my idea about being able to toggle rapid switching on and off would be the best option as it would make people’s lives miserable if it was always on, in some cases.

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Verizon’s Blackberry Storm vs. AT&T’s iPhone 3G.

November 22, 2008

BB Storm

Earlier this week, I was convinced that I was going to leave AT&T and my first-generation iPhone for Verizon Wireless’ new Blackberry Storm. I was fed up with spotty service in parts of Athens (My apartment, mainly) and I was on my 3rd iPhone due to a series of warranty replacements.

On Friday, I went to Verizon during lunch to check out a Blackberry Storm set up in the store. I was underwhelmed. That’s being positive. There are a few things that completely turned me off from the phone. First was the actual touchscreen. Let me try to describe this. It’s a really nice screen, very bright and crisp. When you touch the screen, the icon or key will light up blue, but that’s not how you actually select it. You actually have to push the screen down and it sort of clicks like a mouse button. Does that make sense? The screen feels like it’s kind of floating.

As far as that goes, someone with a regular flip phone or cell phone will probably find it incredibly impressive. People with iPhones or smartphones with physical QWERTY keyboards will likely hate it. The advantage for the iPhone is that once you get the hang of it, you can type faster on that than on your home computer in some cases. The iPhone’s auto-correct is also scarily good. I get the occasional ‘do’ or ‘so’ mix-up and it always replaces ‘fuck’ and ‘fucking’ with ‘duck’ and ‘ducking’, but 98% of the time, it is great. With the Blackberry, not only was it harder to enter characters since instead of just tapping the screen, you have to depress it, but I was horribly inaccurate with it and the auto-correct was miserable.

Also, when rotating from portrait mode to landscape mode, there was considerable lag. The iPhone also lags a little, too. apple_iphone_3g

The other huge thing that stood out to me was the operating system. If you have an iPhone, you notice that every single application and feature is specifically designed for touching and scrolling, etc. The coverflow for the music player, your contacts list, toggle buttons, etc. With the Storm, it sort of seemed like the OS wasn’t given this specific treatment. It just didn’t feel right to me. I don’t know how else to describe it.

Aside from that, the phone is beautiful. It sold out around the country, so they have a success with it. The only issue is that the people who are using better phones aren’t going to be blown away. I sure wasn’t. I decided to stick with AT&T and purchased the iPhone 3G. Besides, what in the hell would I do without Tap Tap Revenge?