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Posts Tagged ‘cellular’

Myth of Wi-Fi access for your iPhone

July 18, 2012 1 comment

Since I downloaded speedtest.net app for my iPhone, I turned into a “speed test” junky! This afternoon, while I was in a Starbucks, I did two measurements; one through my Wi-Fi connection (which was already switched to thanks to ATT) and one through my cellular connection. While with my cellular connection I got constantly +4 Mbps in downlink and +2.5 Mbps in uplink direction, my Wi-Fi measurements constantly show 1.3 Mbps in both directions. I guess they use a T1 to connect their store to the Internet. While for customers with limited data plans switching to Wi-Fi will reduce their bill, the myth that “switching to Wi-Fi will provide higher bitrates” is not valid anymore. Years ago, with GPRS/EDGE and bad data coverage areas, this argument was right, but not anymore. The idea that let the iPhone decides to switch between Wi-Fi and cellular just because it can save some money or release the valuable cellular resources for operator is true, but it does not mean the subscribers will have a better experience. Switching to public Wi-Fi hot spots will limit your performance; there should be an end-to-end QoS measurement mechanism to make this decision. Either it is a part of SON or Release 12 of 3GPP, I don’t know. But it is a must and should be out soon.

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