21-03-2013 20:22 - edited 21-03-2013 20:30
Hi. I have recently moved from an HTC Wildfire (Android) to a Lumia 820. A significant upgrade in many ways, but there are a few things that stump me. Mostly these are Windows issues, and I am working through them one at a time. This one, however, seems to be a Nokia issue so I'm looking for a little help here. I am on Orange (EE) in the UK but not on a 4G tariff.
Firstly, it puzzles me that 3G takes SO much power, even when in standby. My older and far less powerful Wildfire can stay connected to 3G all day long, and the next day, and the next, and even the next if I've not been using it much. The 820 absolutely cannot as it will eat a tonne of battery if left on 3G on standby. If actually used on 3G, just for basic web browsing or somesuch, I have to keep battery in mind all the time as it'll munch away 10% of remaining battery in no time if 3G is used frivolously. I would love to know why the Lumia is so amazingly inefficient at 3G communication. I am hoping Nokia are working on doing something about that ASAP.
This means I have to make sure I have 3G turned off most of the time. Not a problem really, whilst Nokia are working out the bugs, as I have wifi available most of the time (at home, on the bus, at work, down the pub, at my mates' houses, free wifi is everywhere these days). So, I run in 2G mode (to pick up email notifications whilst the phone is in standby) with wifi on.
The big issue comes along when I want to switch back to 3G, say when I get off the bus and want to listen to Deezer or to browse the web at the bus stop etc. I want 3G so I turn off wifi, then I switch from 2G to 3G in the phone settings. Now, when I switch from 3G to 2G it works well, disconnecting from the mobile network for a brief moment before reconnecting at GPRS speeds (and power consumption). Great. When I switch from 2G mode to 3G mode however, it stays on 2G. This is with both a fantastic full 2G signal and a similarly full and marvellous 3G signal. It just will not move off 2G. OK, it will move to 3G but it can take a LONG time to do it. Perhaps it'll manage it in 15mins, perhaps half an hour.
How can a phone with a dual core 1.5GHz CPU be so much slower at signing in to 3G? And, pathetic as the time it takes to connect is, why does it need to use the power of the Large Hadron Collider to achieve such? Is it really so hard? If so, why can my Wildfire do this at a fraction of the speed (ie. instantly, beating the 820 by a good 15mins to half an hour) and with insignificant power drain?
Thank goodness I didn't opt for a 4G tariff. At this rate it'd take the whole day to connect to 4G I imagine! If the connection delay and power drain is proportionate to the speed upon connection, and assuming 4G sucks away even more power, by the time it had connected there may well not be enough power in the phone left to use it.
I have discovered that if I power cycle the phone it will boot up to 3G straight away with no delay, but power cycling the phone every time I need to use 3G and forcing it through a full boot up procedure is hardly going to be power efficient. I may as well just leave it in 3G mode and carry a charger everywhere with me.
Does anyone know a simple way to pursuade the 820 to use 3G mode in preference to 2G mode when the signal is perfect for both? I get the feeling I'm missing something here and it is simpler than it appears. Can you help?
Maybe search for and read up on the many, many posts here explaining the way you should look at the battery saver screen and how basic conditioning of the battery works.
The short version; Just keep using the phone and you'll see that over time the battery calibration will make the readout more accurate.
I understand how batteries work and how they ate checked for power levels. Thanks, for that advice, but how does it help me switch to 3G mode properly? I'm none the wiser. Anyone got any ideas that are likely to address the problem as detailed in my original post?
The quickest way is after you turn on 3G in the phone settings, turn Flight mode on and after a couple of seconds off.
If you are using a legacy SIM from your old phone I would also suggest getting a new one.
22-03-2013 18:13 - edited 22-03-2013 18:16
I tried flight mode, but it doesn't help. When I switch back out of flight mode, surprise surprise it's back in 2G mode again. Thanks for the attempt. I've noticed that if I scan for networks, the one I'm connected to only shows 2G available if I'm in 2G mode. The others all list 3 or 3 & 4G available. If I switch to 3G mode the network I'm on still shows only 2G on the network scan screen. If I manually switch to another network (there's usually a couple of EE networks in each area) it goes to 3G and, upon scanning the network I was previously on shows up as having 3G available as well and I can select it and get 3G. Looks like part of the problem.
Any new ideas as to how to switch to 3G mode properly? Scanning all the networks several times is another big battery drain (and not the swiftest operation either) so that's no solution. I just don't believe Nokia have released a phone that can't connect to 3G reliably, so I MUST be doing something wrong. Please help!