1. mnemennth's Avatar
    Hi all!

    521 owner since August; got mine when HSN had them at $99.95 + $20 new user discount. At the time I was desperate for a new smartphone after Samsung screwed me on my Exhibit *. At less than $80 delivered, it was a deal I couldn't afford to pass up. My experience with it so far is... it's not an exciting phone; it doesn't have every app or feature in the world, but unlike every Android device I've ever owned... what it does do, it just plain WORKS. That has been a REALLY refreshing change. :D

    Until NOW.

    Sometime in the last couple weeks, my phone was pushed some radio protocol/driver update without my knowledge. I used to be able to go into Settings, Cellular, Network Selection, Search: and select Automatic or T-Mobile 2G independently from T-Mobile 4G, which would lock the service into 4G mode unless 4G was absolutely unavailable. I could also make the same choice with ATT as the carrier. (I don't know if this means my phone is unlocked, though I doubt it; probably a roam setting). Locking in 4G was necessary, as I do onsite tech service for a living and am pretty data dependent both on my phone and as a Hotspot for my Android tablet. I live in a small city (Victoria, TX) where T-Mo 4G is spotty at best, especially in a 1/4 mile square area centered RIGHT ON MY HOUSE. Seriously; the "dead area" is right there on the coverage map, and it is like RIGHT ON my house. :rolleyes: Of course.

    Now, when I go to that setting, I can ONLY select Automatic or T-Mobile 4G, 2G or ATT 4G, 2G. I CANNOT specify which service I want, and the phone automatically switches from 4G to 2G if 4G is 2 bars or less, which is pretty much ANY TIME I'm not IN the middle of town. If I select Automatic, the damned thing defaults to "WiFi Calling" about 50% of the time whenever I'm at home and I miss text messages and incoming calls. As a result, aside from phone calls, the damned thing is now pretty much useless about 90% of the time. If I can't make it go back to Locked-into-4G mode, I'm going to eBay-chunk it and probably T-Mo along with, as I'm sick and tired of their utter uselessness on ANY technical matters.

    As a comparison, my wife still has her Exhibit working, and while her reception at home is also poor, I CAN still lock it into 4G mode and get 1-2 bars coverage in my home just like when I first moved here, so I'm pretty sure it's not a weather or local tower related issue.

    So... can I "roll back" this update? Is there another way to manually select 4G and still have it roll over to 2G if there is no 4G at all?

    * BE WARNED.

    I don't care how shiny the SamSung WHATEVER you are looking at is; EVENTUALLY, it will attempt to "Update" itself and brick itself. When this happens, the device will invariably be about 3-6 months past warranty, and they will take NO RESPONSIBILITY for their device/firmware which ruined the device. I have had this happen with a Galaxy tablet, an Exhibit smarthphone, and a BD-5500 Blu-Ray player, and all within the same year. BLEEEP! SamSuck and the horse they rode in on; I will NEVER buy one of their products again.
    12-07-2013 12:40 PM
  2. Jazmac's Avatar
    Go with 2G for the 521.
    12-07-2013 12:56 PM
  3. mnemennth's Avatar
    2G coverage here is worse than dialup; seriously, it's USELESS, ESPECIALLY for sharing via HotSpot. I NEED the 4G or I'm going to beat this phone to death with a post maul; 2G is NOT an option. ;)

    No mas!
    12-07-2013 03:27 PM

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