4G connection issue


Sep 17, 2010
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My drive from work to home is 6.8 mile. At home there is no 4G signals at work there is 4G signals.

I find that when i drive from work to home the 4G signal drops out about 2 mile before I get home. but when I drive to work the phone will not switch to 4G until I get very close (1/4 mile) from work. If I stop along the way on my trip to work and go to airplane mode and then out of airplane mode it will pick up the 4G right away even at the 2 miles from home point.

Why does it not auto switch when it starts seeing the 4G signal approximately 2 miles from my house why does it wait about 5 minute or 4 miles into the 4G area to switch?

Thanks in advance for any possible answers.
Most phones have a "search timer" of sorts. At least for wifi I have found. It is possible to have it for 4g connection as well. This would be something like every 20 minutes your phone checks for a 4g signal. If none is found it looks for 3g and connects to which ever one it can find in order 4g > 3g > 2g, etc...

Another idea I've had with similar experiences is that when your phone is connected it is tethered to that connection. Think about it as a thin string with a loop at one end. When you are at work you can easily put the loop on the 4g pole. When driving away you are connected and the string will not break until it gets to its very end of length. Now, when you come from home and you get to an area that is that breaking point of the string, it's full length. It will be much harder to get that loop onto the 4g pole because it is not connected and your view of the pole (the signal) is much weaker.

This is just speculation on my end and may be completely wrong, but just a thought.
I did some thinking on the same subject not long ago. It might have something to do with the signal strength of the towers compared to where you are, and some sort of communication between the two towers and your phone as to how it hands off the connection to the next tower.
I am thinking the search timer is plausible.

As for the signal strength the signal is actually stronger in the area where it should pickup the signal on my way to work as at work it is on the low side.

I have not had time to do any other testing on it but when i get some time to do so i will report back.