Apple had issued a brief statement couple of days back to confirm that iPhone firmware 2.0.2 update included changes to fix some issues related to 3G reception.
According to a new report we have some more details about the fix. It appears that iPhone firmware 2.0.2 addressed a problem with the iPhone’s power control which was resulting in dropped calls.
Apple’s spokesperson Jennifer Bowcock had issued a brief statement to confirm that iPhone firmware 2.0.2 update included changes to fix some issues related to 3G reception without providing any details. She had said:
"The software update improves communication with 3G networks."
Roughly Drafted seems to have got some more interesting details about the fix and also the reason why some users didn’t notice any immediate impact after updating their iPhone 3G with firmware 2.0.2 from a source close to AT&T.
As per their source:
“In [AT&T 3G] UMTS, power control is key to the mobile and network
success. If the UE [phone set] requires too much downlink power then
the base station or Node B can run out of transmitter power and this is
what was happening. As you get more UEs on the cell, the noise floor
rises and the cell has to compensate by ramping up its power to the
The power control issue will also have an effect on the data
throughput," the source said, "because the higher the data rate the
more power the Node B transmitter requires to transmit. If the UEs have
poor power control and are taking more power than is necessary then it
will sap the network’s ability to deliver high speed data.”
It also appears that:
"In a mixed environment where users are running 2.0, 2.0.1, and 2.0.2,
the power control problems of 2.0 and 2.0.1 will affect the 2.0.2
This probably was also the reason for AT&T to send out an SMS message to iPhone 3G users about the availability of iPhone firmware 2.0.2.
The report suggests that iPhone 3G users should see reduced dropped calls now as it has been 10 days since iPhone firmware was released which means there should be a more number of iPhone 3G users who have updated to the latest firmware.
Earlier, we had some analysts speculating that the problem is with the Infineon chip
that Apple has used in iPhone 3G, while there were others who believed
that the issue is with the carriers such as AT&T who has a
relatively young 3G network. Thanks to the blogosphere, we finally have some clarity
regarding the problems that iPhone 3G users have been facing since its launch.
Let us know if you have observed reduced dropped calls after updating your iPhone 3G with firmware 2.0.2.[via Roughly Drafted]
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