Constantly have to switch airplane mode/mobile data on/off to get a data connection (Samsung A53 5G)

sr4555

Member
Nov 5, 2022
8
0
0
Visit site
I recently purchased a TracFone locked Samsung A53 5G. Quite frequently, I will see full bars or close to full bars, and the 5G or LTE+ icon will disappear. When this happens, I can make calls but cannot get an internet connection. I will have to switch airplane mode or mobile data on and off. Then the 5G or LTE+ icon will reappear and my internet connection will be restored. However, it will disappear in a few minutes and I will have to repeat the process. I tried resetting the APN settings, powering off the phone, removing and reinserting the SIM card, restarting the phone, turning off Wi-Fi calling, and trying different network operators, but I still had this problem. What could be happening here? Is this a problem with the phone or with the network?

I contacted TracFone and they told me to get the new Verizon SIM. I don’t want to get this because I’ll probably lose coverage using only Verizon’s towers instead of all the carriers’ towers that TracFone uses.

Thanks!
T.S.
 

sr4555

Member
Nov 5, 2022
8
0
0
Visit site
Hi there, OP here. Yes, I did voice my concern about the coverage issue to TracFone – I have heard horror stories about people not being able to get signals in their home towns after switching from the old TracFone SIM to the new Verizon SIM. TracFone didn’t answer me and just said that my phone wouldn’t work if I didn’t get the Verizon SIM.
 

B. Diddy

Senior Ambassador
Moderator
Mar 9, 2012
165,756
4,946
113
Visit site
I made you the owner of the original guest post to make it easier for you to find.

Do you know which towers the phone is currently connecting to? It sounds like what might be happening is that the phone is dropping down to 2G or 3G. 2G and 3G either have already sunset or will sunset soon for all major US carriers. (2G is somehow still active on T-Mobile, set to shut down in Jan 2023, so maybe your current SIM is using T-Mobile towers.) Read more here: https://www.phonearena.com/news/t-m...-2g-3g-4g-lte-network-shut-down-date_id134159

The question of why your phone is dropping down to 2G/3G may be due to poor 4G/5G reception. 5G can be notoriously fickle, depending on the wavelength, with poorer range and ability to penetrate walls than 4G, so if you can, try changing your Preferred Network Type to 4G (i.e., turning off 5G).
 

sr4555

Member
Nov 5, 2022
8
0
0
Visit site
Hi there,

Thanks for your help. How do I find out which towers I’m using? Do you mean which network operator I am using? I have my phone set to choose a network operator automatically. It’s interesting that’s I am unable to connect to the Verizon network in the network operators menu, yet TracFone wants me to switch to the Verizon network.

If the problem is due to poor reception, then why would I get an excellent signal for a few minutes after switching airplane mode/mobile data on/off?

Thanks!
T.S.
 

B. Diddy

Senior Ambassador
Moderator
Mar 9, 2012
165,756
4,946
113
Visit site
I'm not entirely familiar with MVNOs, but I recall that providers like TracFone would offer two different SIM cards -- one that would utilize the T-Mobile/AT&T network, and one that would utilize Verizon. Maybe that's no longer done, but I just wonder if your current SIM is the one that utilizes T-Mobile and/or AT&T.

As to why you get the intermittent reception that restores briefly after toggling the cell radio off and on, I'm not sure about that either. It's possible the signal strength actually isn't as good as you think it is -- the signal bars don't always tell the whole story.

I wish I could give you a more definitive answer, sorry!
 

sr4555

Member
Nov 5, 2022
8
0
0
Visit site
This is a real weird problem. I never had this problem using my old Moto G (2020) Power in the same area. I have to wonder if my Samsung phone could be defective (I got it used on eBay).
 

B. Diddy

Senior Ambassador
Moderator
Mar 9, 2012
165,756
4,946
113
Visit site
What's the exact model number of the phone? I wonder if it might be some kind of variant that doesn't have as good band support as the variant sold through TracFone, or unlocked through Samsung.
 

B. Diddy

Senior Ambassador
Moderator
Mar 9, 2012
165,756
4,946
113
Visit site
Sorry, but I'm not sure what else to do here. It may be best to contact the seller and see if they accept returns. Just explain to them your issue.
 

Laura Knotek

Moderator Captain
Moderator
Jan 8, 2011
11,910
4,348
113
Visit site
Another issue is that when there is network congestion, carriers will prioritize their own customers rather than customers using MVNOs. So the customers who have AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon will get network connectivity before Tracfone customers.
 

sr4555

Member
Nov 5, 2022
8
0
0
Visit site
Update! I upgraded to the Verizon SIM and this fixed the problem. However, there were some technical issues involved, and in the process the agent gave me a new phone number.

Thanks to all for your help.

T.S.
 

Trending Posts

Forum statistics

Threads
943,886
Messages
6,920,483
Members
3,159,273
Latest member
MusicChris63