Friday, May 31, 2013

So it is really the fault of SoftBank'a crappy 3G speeds!!!

Today I went to the SoftBank shop in the ground floor of my office building to see if the extremely slow network speeds that I've been experiencing on my iPhone 4S are caused by a problem with then handset or a problem with the 3G connection. What I did was simple. 

1. Compare the performance between 3G on my handset and LTE on the iPhone 5. 
2. Next compare the performance between 3G on my handset and 3G on the iPhone 5. 

I browsed a few websites and tried to stream YouTube videos as the actual tests. I didn't try to measure the performance quantitatively. I cannot do that there. I just got a feeling to how much of a performance difference there was. 

As expected, the iPhone 5 flew with LTE. It was an awesome experience. But with 3G, it was barely faster my iPhone 4S. The difference would account  to the overall improved processing power of the iPhone 5. The 3G performance was still as crappy as on my iPhone 4S. YouTube videos still waited to be buffered all the time. That hardly happened with LTE. But it wasn't completely without any waits. Still it was a 100 times better experience.

So I concluded that the problem is not with my handset (hardware or software), but is with SoftBank's crappy 3G network. I cannot wait for the iPhone 5S or whatever that is coming out next. That is my chance to get LTE. I won't upgrade to the iPhone 5, not when the new version is right around the corner. That would be completely insane. 

But I have one worry. What if the quality of LTE drops with increase in user base? Because we all know that 3G is very fast, it's probably the congestion that is making it no better than dial-up. Let's hope not. I've not looked into the technicalities of LTE so I don't know if that can happen or of it can, how soon. I just hope that won't happen anytime soon, at least not before I leave Japan for good.

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