Tuesday 22 December 2009

Orange iPhone No Service on Orange Network : iPhone Searching and 2G/3G Mobile network switching problems [O2 iPhone comparison with Orange]

[Latest update - this seems to be quite a common problem as Orange customer services are receiving many calls about it and this blog is receiving lots of hits about "orange iphone no service". Further testing I have done shows that for any network the iPhone does seem to have lower network coverage at a specific location than a standard Nokia 3G handset, perhaps one of the compromises of cramming so much into a compact device.]

I have purchased an iPhone on the Orange network and have been finding some signal/network coverage problems with the phone that appear to be quite common.

Sometimes the phone seems to lose all signal and show either "No Service" or "Searching" errors. This appears to be related to the phone not being able to switch between 2G and 3G networks fast enough.

There are also several articles that mention that this problem with the Orange iPhone may be related to OS (firmware) 3.1.2 although it has been happening for some time before this as well.

The phone itself is fantastic and an incredibly useful device - just a little frustrating when the phone shows no service when you know there is coverage in the area.

UPDATE - As you may see from later posts I have now cancelled my Orange iPhone contract and now moved to O2. The difference in service between the networks in the area is marked. Orange certainly have much higher 3G network coverage where signal exists but the way the iPhone operates between the Orange and O2 networks is also quite different.
The Orange iPhone appears to attempt to hold on to a 3G signal for as long as possible even if the service has dropped to one bar or even getting to the No Service message. The O2 iPhone seems to be much more aggressive with its switching between 2G and 3G networks to presumably avod the dreaded No Service message. The downside is that on O2 the phone is more frequently on the 2G (GPRS/EDGE) network but does have full signal. Another finding is that the iPhone does seem to have lower coverage at a specific location than a standard Nokia 3G handset.

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