PDA

View Full Version : Slow WiFi with iPhone 4



reemixx
2nd August 2010, 07:52 PM
My partner and I got our iPhones on Friday morning launch day, and both of us have noticed excruciatingly slow WiFi speeds on our home wireless network. It's about 1/6th the speed of 3G from Telstra, so clearly something is wrong. I've tried rebooting the phone, clearing WiFi settings and re-adding them, changing to a static IP, restarting the router, etc. Nothing seems to work. What I haven't tried yet is using someone else's WiFi network (will when I can), and restoring the phone (I've used my 3GS backup for my iPhone 4).

I came across this Apple Support thread (http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=2476883&start=45&tstart=0), and it seems a bunch of others are having the same problem. Currently there's no solution, and many have been given replacement handsets from Apple. For most, this seems to have fixed their problem, but not all.

What's interesting here is that Steve had WiFi problems while unveiling the iPhone 4 during the keynote. This problem seems very similar to what he was experiencing on stage. Not only that, but the iPad also initially had WiFi problems that many people experienced, including myself. These problems have since been fixed (as far as I'm aware) with the latest iPad update.

What differs between the iPad and iPhone WiFi problems (at least, from what I have experienced) is that with the iPad issue I was getting unstable WiFi that kept dropping connection constantly, and the signal was always pretty low no matter how close I was to the router, but I experienced no speed issues. With the iPhone 4, the WiFi connection is perfectly stable and I'm always getting full bars, but speeds are extremely slow.

The other bizarre thing is that a speed test shows up nothing. It appears as though I'm getting perfectly normal download and upload speeds over WiFi on the iPhone. It's only in normal use that you can tell how slow it is; loading web pages in Safari and links from within apps, etc, is always much slower than 3G, as well as other iPhones and the iPad over WiFi.

On the one hand, it *could* be my wireless network, but I've had no problems with any other devices (except the iPad pre-update), and the problem is specific to the iPhone 4 only. None of our previous iPhones (3G and 3GS) ever had a problem. For what it's worth, my router is a Netgear DG834GT which is wireless g only.

On the other hand, clearly I'm not the only one experiencing this, which does make me wonder if something is very wrong with Apple's WiFi implementation in either the hardware or software.

Curious to know how many others here are experiencing this problem, or if anyone has any advice on a fix.

bennyling
2nd August 2010, 08:01 PM
Pressed the "Reset Network Settings" button in Settings->General->Reset yet?

If speed tests suggest that your actual throughput is okay, it may have something to do with DNS and caches etc - but this'd mean it'd be the first couple of seconds that would be slow (and then fast as the page flies down), and not just sluggish overall.

I'd try the restore - you can always restore from your 3GS backup later on if you find it doesn't actually fix the issue.

reemixx
2nd August 2010, 08:14 PM
Pressed the "Reset Network Settings" button in Settings->General->Reset yet?

If speed tests suggest that your actual throughput is okay, it may have something to do with DNS and caches etc - but this'd mean it'd be the first couple of seconds that would be slow (and then fast as the page flies down), and not just sluggish overall.

I'd try the restore - you can always restore from your 3GS backup later on if you find it doesn't actually fix the issue.

Just tried the "Reset Network Settings" button and no dice :(

Yeah, I will try a restore, just seeing other suggestions in the mean time, and genuinely curious to know if other Aussies have experienced this problem yet.

iJohn
2nd August 2010, 08:51 PM
Try changing one of the channels on your router.... What router you running??

Huy
2nd August 2010, 08:55 PM
^ Netgear DG834GT as per OP.

I would also second restoring fresh without using the 3GS backup.

Go down to a McDonald's or cafe offering free WiFi and test out your speeds.

reemixx
2nd August 2010, 09:13 PM
Changing router channel is one I didn't think of. Will try that. Thanks.

Planning on restoring without backup, but wanted other input first. Will probably try that this evening, and will report back with results. Will also try WiFi elsewhere when I'm able to.

In the mean time, Telstra 3G is awesome. At least that's some consolation ;)

Foxtrot27
2nd August 2010, 10:27 PM
Hi Reemixx. Perhaps something obvious to try - do you know someone else who has another iPhone 4 with good Wifi experience where they are? Try an A-B side by side comparison with their Wifi network, and then the same using your network at home. As you say, it might help in working out if your network equipment or environment at home is the problem. Fox

camson
2nd August 2010, 11:00 PM
I have the same DG834GT router and have noticed the same thing happening to my new iPhone 4 on occasion too. I'm interested to see what the results are for you.

Just for reference, I'm using channel 11, "WPA-PSK+WPA2-PSK" authentication and both g & b enabled.

Huy
2nd August 2010, 11:03 PM
Try changing authentication methods and see what happens.

e.g. No security (just to test!), WPA, WEP, WPA2, etc.

reemixx
2nd August 2010, 11:15 PM
do you know someone else who has another iPhone 4 with good Wifi experience where they are?

Nope, that'd be far too easy. Hence this thread.


I have the same DG834GT router and have noticed the same thing happening to my new iPhone 4 on occasion too. I'm interested to see what the results are for you.

Just for reference, I'm using channel 11, "WPA-PSK+WPA2-PSK" authentication and both g & b enabled.

Interesting. You notice this only on occasion, or all the time?

Tried changing the channel. Didn't help. I'm now on channel 1 (previously 6), using WPA-PSK, g & b enabled. Tried changing the security and g-only/g & b/auto - No difference.


Try changing authentication methods and see what happens.

e.g. No security (just to test!), WPA, WEP, WPA2, etc.

No difference.

torana355
2nd August 2010, 11:15 PM
Mine seems fine, i can watch HD videos on u tube though wifi and it buffers very quick!!
Speedtest shows 10mb down and 1mb up.

reemixx
2nd August 2010, 11:19 PM
Mine seems fine, i can watch HD videos on u tube though wifi and it buffers very quick!!
Speedtest shows 10mb down and 1mb up.

Yes, this obviously isn't a widespread issue or there'd be far more complaints. I have a sneaky suspicion it's mostly those who use Netgear and Linksys routers. Some sort of incompatibility with Apple's WiFi drivers perhaps.

Doing a restore now, just to see if it makes any difference. Reason I didn't do it initially is 'cause I encode all my music on-the-fly and it takes a while. But I suppose it must be done.

torana355
2nd August 2010, 11:26 PM
Yes, this obviously isn't a widespread issue or there'd be far more complaints. I have a sneaky suspicion it's mostly those who use Netgear and Linksys routers. Some sort of incompatibility with Apple's WiFi drivers perhaps.

Doing a restore now, just to see if it makes any difference. Reason I didn't do it initially is 'cause I encode all my music on-the-fly and it takes a while. But I suppose it must be done.

Yeah im using my imac as the "wireless router"

reemixx
2nd August 2010, 11:35 PM
Restore didn't work. Just as slow after restoring and setting up as a new phone.

Bah.

torana355
2nd August 2010, 11:40 PM
Restore didn't work. Just as slow after restoring and setting up as a new phone.

Bah.

From reading that apple discussion board link your best bet may be to get a replacement. It sucks to have to take it back but at least then you will have a phone you are happy with. It is weird that speedtest is showing the right speed though?????

reemixx
2nd August 2010, 11:48 PM
From reading that apple discussion board link your best bet may be to get a replacement. It sucks to have to take it back but at least then you will have a phone you are happy with.

As a last resort I will (after I've tried another wifi network). But I'm not convinced it's a hardware issue just yet. Some people have been given replacements and still have exactly the same problem. Plus, there are WAY too many people with netgear and linksys routers that seem to be having this exact problem (google turns up a bunch of results). My guess is that the router and the wifi chip inside the iPhone 4 simply aren't playing nice together.

torana355
2nd August 2010, 11:49 PM
As a last resort I will (after I've tried another wifi network). But I'm not convinced it's a hardware issue just yet. Some people have been given replacements and still have exactly the same problem. Plus, there are WAY too many people with netgear and linksys routers that seem to be having this exact problem (google turns up a bunch of results). My guess is that the router and the wifi chip inside the iPhone 4 simply aren't playing nice together.


After some more reading it seems putting your ISP's DNS into the settings instead of the routers DNS fixes it!!!

yinyang
2nd August 2010, 11:56 PM
get a refurb AEBS that has the dual N network capacity - having the iPhone 4 on 'N' is so so so much better!!

Refurbished AirPort Extreme Base Station (current generation) - Apple Store (Australia) (http://store.apple.com/au/product/FC340X/A?mco=MTc1MTEzMzI)

may not be the best option in the short term, but if you were ever thinking about replacing the Netgear......

reemixx
2nd August 2010, 11:57 PM
After some more reading it seems putting your ISP's DNS into the settings instead of the routers DNS fixes it!!!

Nah, I do this by default. Doesn't work.


get a refurb AEBS that has the dual N network capacity - having the iPhone 4 on 'N' is so so so much better!!

I believe you. But really, that's not a fix, is it... Need to pinpoint the problem before I go on an unnecessary spending spree.

bennyling
3rd August 2010, 12:11 AM
After some more reading it seems putting your ISP's DNS into the settings instead of the routers DNS fixes it!!!

Which backs up my original hypothesis of it having to do with DNS requests - still, such a measure shouldn't be necessary and is likely able to be fixed via software.

EDIT: Disregard. Back to square one.

reemixx
3rd August 2010, 12:12 AM
Righto, new development...

Just set up internet sharing on my iMac, so that my iPhone 4 uses it to access the net, and wifi on the iPhone absolutely flies. Seriously, I've never seen wifi on the iPhone go so fast.

So there we go. It's not a hardware problem. The iPhone 4 just REALLY doesn't like my Netgear router.

Here's someone else with the same problem with the same router (http://www.skyuser.co.uk/forum/wireless-adapters/38209-iphone-4-very-slow-wifi-sky-router-netgear-dg834gt.html).

torana355
3rd August 2010, 12:30 AM
Righto, new development...

Just set up internet sharing on my iMac, so that my iPhone 4 uses it to access the net, and wifi on the iPhone absolutely flies. Seriously, I've never seen wifi on the iPhone go so fast.

So there we go. It's not a hardware problem. The iPhone 4 just REALLY doesn't like my Netgear router.

Here's someone else with the same problem with the same router (http://www.skyuser.co.uk/forum/wireless-adapters/38209-iphone-4-very-slow-wifi-sky-router-netgear-dg834gt.html).


Ahh so you set it up like ive got mine setup, the wifi in the imac rocks hey :)
Did you get that idea from my post before about using my imac as a "wireless router" ?

reemixx
3rd August 2010, 12:43 AM
Ahh so you set it up like ive got mine setup, the wifi in the imac rocks hey :)
Did you get that idea from my post before about using my imac as a "wireless router" ?

Rocks? No, it's a bit of an inconvenience, really. My brand new iPhone 4 should work perfectly with my existing Netgear router with which I have absolutely no other problems. Don't know why it doesn't work. Don't know if buying a different router will fix it. I also now have to keep my iMac on all the time.

Temporary solution at best.

Yes, your post gave me the idea to try it before I bothered going to test it on someone else's wifi. So thank you for that.

torana355
3rd August 2010, 12:58 AM
Well that's technology for you, there are always products that are incompatible with each other. How old is your router?

iJohn
3rd August 2010, 09:20 AM
Remix looks like you need a new router

Phunky
3rd August 2010, 09:54 AM
Don't blame the brand of router, I have an airport extreme and wifi with iPad and iPhone sucks, especially trying to stream YouTube videos

lbeaumont
3rd August 2010, 10:30 AM
I have a similar problem. I share my internet connection to my iPhone over an ad-hoc WiFi network from my laptop (Windows 7, bah) through a program called Connectify (wouldn't work naturally through Windows). The data speeds over WiFi are average at best even when the iPhone sits on the laptop, so you'd assume it'd be a software problem with the iPhone?

iJohn
3rd August 2010, 10:30 AM
Wifi youtube is slow on all routers... I was told by a apple genius that its a different quality on wifi and 3g. Thats why 3g streams quicker.. So i don't think the airport extreme is the problem

reemixx
3rd August 2010, 11:45 AM
YouTube is a different "problem" entirely, yes. Tests should be done with normal browsing only for this particular issue. ie: web page loading. Not even a speed test picked up anything for me, so there you go.

@torana355 and @iJohn: I don't accept the fact that I need to buy a new router to "fix" this problem, though. My Netgear DG834GT is about 4 years old, I'd guess. No device but the iPad and iPhone 4 have had a problem with wifi on my wireless network with this router.

That, plus the fact that Steve Jobs was experiencing the same wifi problem on stage during the keynote for iPhone 4, and that the latest software update for iPad has fixed its wifi problem, leads me to believe something fishy is going on with Apple's wifi implementation, probably in the iOS drivers. Too many coincidences to ignore.

Yes, I'll probably end up getting a new router, as I was planning to sometime this year anyway (wireless N FTW). But that doesn't really help all the people with the same router as me who are also experiencing this problem (and actually some with a different router, which isn't the most comforting thought when shopping for a new one).

Might contact Apple about this if I can't find any other solution. Genuinely curious to hear what their response will be.

iJohn
3rd August 2010, 12:12 PM
Yeah let me know how you go

Huy
3rd August 2010, 12:14 PM
Steve Job's problem was another story. It was to do with MiFis and too many wireless networks in the same area.

After he told them to turn it off, it was fast again.

reemixx
3rd August 2010, 12:21 PM
Steve Job's problem was another story. It was to do with MiFis and too many wireless networks in the same area.

Not necessarily. That's just what he said the problem was, and the reason he asked everyone to turn them off. There have been a bunch of articles saying otherwise (specifically wifi driver issues with the pre-release iPhone 4), and frankly I'm inclined to believe them after experiencing wifi issues first hand with both the iPad and iPhone 4.

reemixx
3rd August 2010, 12:33 PM
After he told them to turn it off, it was fast again.

From this we can surmise that the MiFis contributed to the problem, but there's no way of telling they were the only problem.

Exactly the same as what I was experiencing, and suggests the problem is with iOS 4 (second page has info on iPhone 4's potential driver flaw: WWDC Keynote WiFi woes may have been due to iPhone 4 drivers (http://arstechnica.com/apple/news/2010/06/wwdc-keynote-wifi-woes-may-have-been-due-to-iphone-4g-drivers.ars)

Even if this problem is different to what I'm experiencing (seems like it was a driver flaw that presented itself ONLY during network congestion), it makes it much, much more likely that it's the iOS drivers that are having the problem when trying to connect to MY home wireless network, which ends up having exactly the same effect: slow wifi.

reemixx
3rd August 2010, 01:51 PM
Fixed it.

Updated router drivers *facepalm*. Yeah, as simple as that (hope I'm not speaking too soon and suddenly get slow speeds again...) Could have sworn they were up to date, but guess not. My own fault.

Very curious to know if others with same router just didn't have the latest drivers like me, and also whether everyone with a different router to mine has the latest drivers (lots of Linksys routers have the same problem). Will ask on that apple support thread later, just to satisfy my own curiosity.

At the very least, this thread might help someone else...

So I guess the iPhone 4 is just very fussy with how it wants to connect? I suppose I was half right about the iOS4 drivers (no other problems with any other device), but then again, you could argue that it's Apple OPTIMISING the iPhone 4 for the best wifi possible. Hrm.

camson
3rd August 2010, 05:50 PM
@remixxx Having the same router as you, which router firmware version are you running now you've updated it?

Which version had the trouble?

reemixx
3rd August 2010, 06:09 PM
@camson It's now v1.03.23 from v1.02.04. Are you having this problem also?

tiffmc
7th August 2010, 09:26 PM
I am having the exact same problem and I can't seem to find a solution. I have tried everything that has been suggested and I am using the latest firmware but nothing works.

I am using a Netgear DG834PN router.

These are the results I get using testmyiphone.com:

WiFi:
0.02 Mbps (20 Kbps / 2 kB/s)
Transferred 256 KB in 103.6 seconds.

3G:
0.87 Mbps (866 Kbps / 106 kB/s)
Transferred 1024 KB in 9.7 seconds.

I really hope there is a fix for this soon because it's driving me insane.

reemixx
8th August 2010, 02:12 PM
It's crazy how many more people have spoken up about it on the Apple support forum since I resurrected that thread recently. Obviously this problem is still around for a LOT of people. It's also really strange how the issues and results (from different "fixes") are different for different people, including those with the same router.

@tiffmc You've got the latest firmware? Tried setting your router's wifi to b or g only? I know, the obvious stuff, but it's all I can suggest unfortunately. I'm now convinced more than ever that it's screwy iOS4 drivers for the iPhone 4.

tiffmc
8th August 2010, 09:03 PM
@tiffmc You've got the latest firmware? Tried setting your router's wifi to b or g only? I know, the obvious stuff, but it's all I can suggest unfortunately. I'm now convinced more than ever that it's screwy iOS4 drivers for the iPhone 4.

Yep, I have the latest firmware as far as I know. I can't find any newer firmware than 1.03.39 for my Netgear DG834PN router.

My router has 3 modes to choose from: b and g, g only or auto 108Mbps. I've tried all of them and nothing helps :(

reemixx
4th September 2010, 01:48 PM
How's this for a twist of events...

(Just for a bit of context: After I updated the firmware on my Netgear router, everything has been absolutely fine. Normal wifi speeds on iPhone 4 had returned, everything back to normal, no problems.)

Yesterday, we finally decided to buy an Airport Extreme to get a fast N network up and running - something we'd wanted to do for a while. I set it up using dual band 2.4GHz/5GHz. Everything was working perfectly. We could connect just fine over WiFi from every computer and device in the house, except......

You guessed it. The iPhone 4.

The problem is back, exactly the same as last time; WiFi speeds are excruciatingly slow, yet a speed test says I'm getting normal download and upload speeds. WiFi speeds during regular browsing are pathetic in comparison to 3G speeds on the iPhone 4 as well as the older iPhone 3G and 3GS.

This time it can't be my Netgear router as I've put it into modem-only mode. The router part of it is completely shut off, and the AEBS now handles DHCP, NAT and the wireless network.

Every other computer and device in the house is working perfectly. All our Macs are fine, the PCs are fine, the iPads are fine.

I haven't tried messing about with it yet; frankly I'm pretty sick of having to do so. Might try shutting off the N network, just to see what happens, though it'd defeat the whole purpose of buying the AEBS in the first place. When my partner gets home from work, I'll see if it's also affecting her iPhone 4 (as it did the last time). I'm hoping I won't have to continue to use the Netgear router alongside the Airport Extreme JUST to get the damn phone to work. The AEBS does such a nice job of handling everything.

I just kind of assumed an Apple branded router would play nicely with an Apple branded phone, y'know? I'm now more convinced than ever that the iPhone 4's wifi drivers have some serious flaws.

I'll update this when (if) I figure out a fix.

reemixx
11th September 2010, 04:16 PM
Yet another interesting/bizarre discovery:

Both mine and my partner's iPhone 4s get full wifi speeds on the Guest Network, but not on the normal 2.4GHz network. Both wireless networks controlled by AEBS.

.....

yash
6th October 2010, 02:22 AM
Very informative thread!

I had noticed the same annoying problem with the WiFi on my new iPhone 4 and just wanted to let you guys know updating the router firmware seems to have done the trick here as well.
I came across this thread after an extensive googling and after I almost tried anything from iPhone restore to playing with router settings.

Since my router is Belkin G+ Mimo this could not be an isolated problem with Linksys or Netgear routers or particular models.

My guess is anyone with rather an old (2-3 yr) router might be having the same issue whether they happen to notice it or not.

Now the question remains, is it just a matter of incompatibility with older systems or should it get updated/fixed with the new iOS version (possibly 4.2)? Or what if this is simply a hardware glitch?

In any case I guess I am spared the annoying trip to Apple store and possibly a waiting time for a new handset; for now!

reemixx
14th October 2010, 07:55 PM
"Fixed" it.

Turned off the 5GHz network on the AEBS, and no more slow iPhone 4. Running on wireless N over 2.4GHz only for now.

I can replicate the problem by turning 5GHz back on again.

Not the best solution, but slightly better than having to use the guest network.

But what a giant pain in the arse.

nyimtse
21st October 2010, 05:04 AM
how do you turn off the 5GHz on AEBS? I see an option to select automatic or manual channel selection but not a way to turn that off.

I can get 3Mbps up and down on my 3G network (Rogers - Canada) but on my home network where I have 18Mbps download on my laptop, I can get only a max of 800Kbps. And that too by choosing Guest Network option otherwise around 300Kbps. yikes!

I have the same slow wifi problem on both iPhone 4G and on iPod Touch 2G (8GB).

This sound like a real problem for quite a while, why has Apple not provided any fix or suggestions?

reemixx
21st October 2010, 01:27 PM
how do you turn off the 5GHz on AEBS? I see an option to select automatic or manual channel selection but not a way to turn that off.

I can get 3Mbps up and down on my 3G network (Rogers - Canada) but on my home network where I have 18Mbps download on my laptop, I can get only a max of 800Kbps. And that too by choosing Guest Network option otherwise around 300Kbps. yikes!

I have the same slow wifi problem on both iPhone 4G and on iPod Touch 2G (8GB).

This sound like a real problem for quite a while, why has Apple not provided any fix or suggestions?

If you haven't gone into Wireless > Wireless Network Options > and selected the 5GHz network, it will be off by default.

I wasn't aware there was an issue with anything other than the iPhone 4. I'm not sure Apple even knows about it, or cares. Go speak up on the Apple Support forums. Everyone having this issue should do so.