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Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

Journeyman

Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

For nearly a month now my data connection randomly goes out and says Searching for Service with no data bars. I've contacted numerous chat specialists about this, some who basically just gave me the run around asking obvious questions like did I restart my phone and try removing and reinserting the sim card. Usually I'm transferred to a tech specialist and have to wait forever for one to become available to even try to assist me. Two reps "guaranteed" they had resolved my issue and claimed I would not have to contact you again regarding this matter which unfortunately turned out to be false. No rep can find any issue with my phone (Samsung Galaxy S7). A network ticket was opened regarding this issue, ticket #214066-180613. Ticket support was no help at all. I was told it was sent up for further review but am still experiencing the same issue. Another chat specialist informed me that he sent the issue to the CTMS ticket team for further review. He believed the issue to be that somehow my phone was updating by itself and disconnecting from the LTE network. Through his troubleshooting, he assured me that he had resolved the problem but 3 days later it occurred again. The Sprint reps I've spoken to have told me that the data is good in my area and have checked my cross streets and zip codes. The issue is not location specific. It happens when I'm at home as well as when I'm out. I live in Chicago so you'd think the service would be great in such a major city. Nearly each rep has had me reset the profile, prl, and dial ##72786# to reset network settings. They've refreshed and updated my phone from their end, all to no avail. This will work for a few days then randomly my data will go out again. One rep even told me to just reset it whenever the data goes out. That has proven to be a temporary fix, not a permanent solution and is completely unacceptable. I shouldn't have to constantly reset my network settings and still worry that my data will randomly go out at any given time. I pay for unlimited data, not intermittent. Not once did a rep offer any type of credit to my account for the frequent data outages. I expect to receive the service that I pay for. The fact that this issue is recurring with no clear resolution is making me seriously consider switching providers. I've been a loyal customer for years and until this problem began last month I was satisfied with my service. After the last rep failed to help me last night, she actually tried to sell me on a phone upgrade since this one is paid for. Why would I want to upgrade my phone when I'm not being provided with the service that I'm paying to receive? I feel like I have been very patient considering I've been dealing with this for nearly a month now. With every rep and specialist telling me there is nothing wrong with my phone, this has to be some type of error in your network. This is very frustrating and I'm hoping a solution can be found asap. Your help in finding a resolution would be appreciated.

 

 

81 REPLIES 81
GrandMaster

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

things the agent will need to look into this

 

-where are you? zip code and closest cross streets.

-what all troubleshooting have you attempted so far so they dont run you through the same gauntlet.

-are there any other Sprint phones around you? and are they seeing the same thing or no?

-is data the only issue or are you running into this with voice as well?

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I like many others come onto this site for assistance and to help others. Marking a reply as helpful or correct helps others with like issues when they try to search the site for assistance. I do not work for Sprint and my suggestions and or opinions are my own. *************************************************************************************************************
Journeyman

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

 

Additional info:

I'm in Chicago, zip 60626. However it happens all over, not just in my home zip. Nearest cross streets are Ashland and Albion. Work cross streets are Clinton and Van Buren, zip 60607. But again, this hasn't been location specific to one or two zip codes.

 

Troubleshooting attempted so far:

Turned phone off for a few minutes then turned it back on

Restarted phone

Took out sim card and put it back in

Reset network settings by dialing ##72786#

Updated PRL

Updated Profile

Techs have done refresh from their end

Another tech claimed she did some type of update from their end and had me restart my phone after 30 minutes

Network ticket was opened (ticket # in original post)

Chat specialist said he sent the issue to CTMS team

 

There aren't any other Sprint phones around me. 

The issue has been with my data. It will say searching for service and have no bars. The searching for service also sometimes switches and says extended network with an x in the data box. Again, I've been told the area I'm in has full Sprint coverage with no apparent outages. 

 

Thank you for your response. I hope a Sprint rep will acknowledge this post and get back to me soon.

 

 

 

GrandMaster

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

one of the agents in here can work with all the info you just posted.

 

 

 

out of curiosity though..does it improve anywhere? or does the signal stay junk pretty much everywhere? are calls fine? if calls are fine but its fully a issue with getting data you might also jump down to a Sprint store (preferably a repair store) and see if they have a sim card you can try. might end up being the issue.

*********************************************************
I like many others come onto this site for assistance and to help others. Marking a reply as helpful or correct helps others with like issues when they try to search the site for assistance. I do not work for Sprint and my suggestions and or opinions are my own. *************************************************************************************************************
Community Manager

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

Several things here, the problem would have to be your device or a setting on your device.  I say that because you say the problem is not location specific, it happens everywhere.  The service cannot be down everywhere, especially in Chicago.  Chicago is one our largest markets and if it were down, the phones to care would be blowing up which is not the case today.  I've worked the phones during the Network Vision days in Chicago.

 

Another reason I do not think it's network because your phone goes to searching for service.  The device would check down, meaning if you lost LTE, it would go to 3G.  3G works on the same channel as Voice, so Voice would be an issue as well.  Look at your Quality of Service for voice, it looks fairly high.  

 

It was also mentioned it sometimes says Enhanced/1X.  That's just a fancy way of saying Roaming.  By default phones are set to Automatic, meaning they will automatically search and latch to the strongest signal.  So if a competitor's signal (roaming) is the strongest, the device will jump to it and if it goes away, it would attempt to look for Sprint.  During that transition, you would get Searching for Service. You can prevent that be going into settings and set the device to look for Sprint only.

 

Finally, the agent did not offer you an upgrade because your phone was paid off.  It was merely a suggestion to your issue.  The beauty of Chicago being a large market, it usually gets network deployments first.  HPUE, Carrier Aggregation, MIMO, Massive MIMO, 5G, etc.  Given the age of the device, there are data network enhancements it is unable to take advantage of.

 

To sum up, I believe the issue resides with the device rather than the network. Could be that setting I mentioned or a problem with the device.

Journeyman

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

After waiting two days for someone from Sprint to acknowledge my post, your response seems more condescending than helpful. Perhaps that wasn't your intention but I say that because although you stated several things, you didn't give instructions on how to do any of them. The previous responder seemed to be more understanding and willing to help and that person doesn't even work for Sprint.

 

You mentioned it could be a setting on my device but offered no instruction on how to go about checking those settings or which specific ones I should check. If the problem is with the device, I could accept that. I just wonder why all of the tech specialists I've interacted with previously have all told me there was nothing wrong with my device. Two of them specifically said the issue was something else other than a faulty device. When researching this issue I found several others who posted on social media regarding the same or very similar issues in Chicago as well as other major cities. The most recent posts were from today and these people are in Chicago. While I can't speak for them, it's clear that it's not just me experiencing this. So yes, while Chicago generally has good network and data reception, it doesn't mean that there isn't some other type of issue. But as I'm no expert on that, I'll digress but it was worth mentioning. 

 

The times when my phone says searching for service it does not check down to 3G as you stated. During that time there is no connection whatsoever. I also never specified that voice wasn't an issue. I didn't attempt to make any voice calls during those times so I can't attest to whether or not there were issues with voice service. I'm not sure what you're referring to when you said Enhanced 1X. I never stated it said that. I said it sometimes says Extended Network and there will be an x inside where the data bars should be. I'm aware that that meant roaming. My phone has done searching for service even when I had roaming turned off so if roaming wasn't on to begin with, I don't understand how the phone could search for another network. You stated I could set the device to search for Sprint only. How exactly do I do that? Under Mobile Networks in Settings, my Network mode is set to Preferred network mode: Automatic. That's how it's always been. The only roaming settings are to turn it on or off. 

 

And you are incorrect about the agent not trying to sale me another phone since my device was paid off. I have the chat transcript. She completely switched gears from discussing the issue I contacted her for and stated "By the way, you are now eligible to upgrade your phone since you have finished paying for the phone. Would you like to check your best deal about upgrading?" She was not offering it because my phone was having an issue. In fact, she was one of the ones who told me it would be resolved. In my opinion it is poor taste to try to sell someone something and not fully trying to rectify the issue at hand. Had I been interested in purchasing another device, I would've contacted a sales specialist but I contacted a support specialist. Perhaps if she had've said that my current device was faulty then maybe it would've been appropriate to ask if I was interested in upgrading. But she didn't, she switched gears to ask if I wanted to buy a new phone. 

 

You stated "given the age of the device, there are data network enhancements it is unable to take advantage of." I purchased this phone brand new in July 2017 so I've had it less than a year. I would hope it would last longer than that and still be able to take full advantage of network enhancements. This issue started occurring within 10-11 months of use. S7s came out in 2016 so it's not like it was manufactured ages ago. My previous device was an S5 which I used for 3 years before upgrading and I never had any type of network or data issues with that phone. If you'd remarked on the age of an older device such as the S5 I could understand, but not an S7.

 

So to sum up, if this issue occurs again, which I sincerely hope it doesn't, I will have my device checked at a Sprint repair store. For future reference, it would be nice if tech specialists didn't ensure me that my phone was fine if it's possible that there was something wrong with it. Since one of them submitted a network ticket and another sent it up for further review, they surely made it seem like it was possible that it could be some type of network issue. 

 

 

 

 

Community Manager

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service


 

The times when my phone says searching for service it does not check down to 3G as you stated. During that time there is no connection whatsoever. I also never specified that voice wasn't an issue. I didn't attempt to make any voice calls during those times so I can't attest to whether or not there were issues with voice service. I'm not sure what you're referring to when you said Enhanced 1X. I never stated it said that. I said it sometimes says Extended Network and there will be an x inside where the data bars should be. I'm aware that that meant roaming. My phone has done searching for service even when I had roaming turned off so if roaming wasn't on to begin with, I don't understand how the phone could search for another network. You stated I could set the device to search for Sprint only. How exactly do I do that? Under Mobile Networks in Settings, my Network mode is set to Preferred network mode: Automatic. That's how it's always been. The only roaming settings are to turn it on or off. 

 

And you are incorrect about the agent not trying to sale me another phone since my device was paid off. I have the chat transcript. She completely switched gears from discussing the issue I contacted her for and stated "By the way, you are now eligible to upgrade your phone since you have finished paying for the phone. Would you like to check your best deal about upgrading?" She was not offering it because my phone was having an issue. In fact, she was one of the ones who told me it would be resolved. In my opinion it is poor taste to try to sell someone something and not fully trying to rectify the issue at hand. Had I been interested in purchasing another device, I would've contacted a sales specialist but I contacted a support specialist. Perhaps if she had've said that my current device was faulty then maybe it would've been appropriate to ask if I was interested in upgrading. But she didn't, she switched gears to ask if I wanted to buy a new phone. 

 

You stated "given the age of the device, there are data network enhancements it is unable to take advantage of." I purchased this phone brand new in July 2017 so I've had it less than a year. I would hope it would last longer than that and still be able to take full advantage of network enhancements. This issue started occurring within 10-11 months of use. S7s came out in 2016 so it's not like it was manufactured ages ago. My previous device was an S5 which I used for 3 years before upgrading and I never had any type of network or data issues with that phone. If you'd remarked on the age of an older device such as the S5 I could understand, but not an S7.

 

So to sum up, if this issue occurs again, which I sincerely hope it doesn't, I will have my device checked at a Sprint repair store. For future reference, it would be nice if tech specialists didn't ensure me that my phone was fine if it's possible that there was something wrong with it. Since one of them submitted a network ticket and another sent it up for further review, they surely made it seem like it was possible that it could be some type of network issue. 

 

 

 

 


...your response seems more condescending than helpful.

That was not my intention at all.  I was merely explaining what I thought maybe the issue.  To say the service is not working "everywhere", that is not a network issue for the network cannot be down everywhere, unless there is an outage.  It was not meant to be condescending at all, I will chalk it up to my tech brain.  It's very binary.  Although it's a first for myself to be called condescending and instead of @fireguy_6364. LOL!

 

although you stated several things, you didn't give instructions on how to do any of them.

I suggested setting the device to Sprint Only.  My apologies for thinking one is familiar with that settings. Settings - Mobile Networks - Network Mode - LTE/CDMA or Sprint Only - OK.  The device should reboot.

 

I just wonder why all of the tech specialists I've interacted with previously have all told me there was nothing wrong with my device.

I based my answer on the ticket number you mentioned in the OP.  I read it and the last note stated to have the device checked at a Service and Repair center.

 

When researching this issue I found several others who posted on social media regarding the same or very similar issues in Chicago as well as other major cities. 

I don't doubt folks are having problems in Chicago and other cities.  There are outages in certain areas.  It is more granular than everywhere.  Now "everywhere" is subjective.  I've spoken to customers who live, work, go to Walmart within a 3-mile radius which is served by one tower and to them, this is everywhere.  While others say "everywhere" and it is literally everywhere.  My mistake for not asking you, I was going by the notes on the ticket.

 

You stated "given the age of the device, there are data network enhancements it is unable to take advantage of."

This is a true statement and I still stand by it.  It's not a call to arms to purchase a new device, just simply saying there are network enhancements the device is unable to take advantage of.  

 

I purchased this phone brand new in July 2017 so I've had it less than a year. I would hope it would last longer than that and still be able to take full advantage of network enhancements.

Yes, the S7 was released in 2016 which in calendar years is nothing, but in tech years, more so phone years, 18 months is old.  I am not saying the device will not work, only there are network enhancements it cannot use.  HPUE and Massive MIMO to name a few.

 

it would be nice if tech specialists didn't ensure me that my phone was fine if it's possible that there was something wrong with it. Since one of them submitted a network ticket and another sent it up for further review, they surely made it seem like it was possible that it could be some type of network issue. 

Yes, that ticket was sent up and returned with no issue found.  Keep in mind network went with the address that was on the ticket and not "everywhere".  As a result, it was recommended to have the device checked.

 

Finally, I'm here to help. Respond here, PM me.  We can figure it out.  This is just my 2 cents.

GrandMaster

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

pretty sure i should run out and buy a lotto ticket pronto lol

 


@Em_Will_I_Am wrote:

 


...your response seems more condescending than helpful.

That was not my intention at all.  I was merely explaining what I thought maybe the issue.  To say the service is not working "everywhere", that is not a network issue for the network cannot be down everywhere, unless there is an outage.  It was not meant to be condescending at all, I will chalk it up to my tech brain.  It's very binary.  Although it's a first for myself to be called condescending and instead of @fireguy_6364. LOL!

 

*********************************************************
I like many others come onto this site for assistance and to help others. Marking a reply as helpful or correct helps others with like issues when they try to search the site for assistance. I do not work for Sprint and my suggestions and or opinions are my own. *************************************************************************************************************
Highlighted
Journeyman

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

You are not alone.  I am having the same issues.  I constantly have to "provision" my phone because there is not data connection.  This is bull crap, and needs to be fixed.  So apparently it's a Sprint issue, and not a phone issue.  I have the Note 9, and this continues to happen to me.  I am a tech person so I know it has to be a network issue.

Journeyman

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

It's definitely a Sprint issue. I've been in contact with reps off and on for months. Had my phone checked and the phone itself is fine. Now they've admitted that a cell site in my area has been experiencing an outage since way back when I first began having issues in May 2018. However, I've been told there is no estimate on when it will be fixed and that there is nothing they will do as far as bill credits until the cell site is fixed, despite the continual service interruptions I keep experiencing. So basically I'm forced to pay as if my service isn't interrupted on a regular basis. The messed up tower is the one near my office and my cell phone is needed at work. Yet myself and other coworkers who have Sprint have gone without data connectivity for the entire work day due to their tower issues. It's complete bullcrap and I will definitely be switching carriers this year. Sprint customer service sucks and their cell service sucks.

GrandMaster

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

so for the last two posters..you might opt to give a bit more info so an agent can look into it or check statuses. starting with where are you? zip code and closest cross streets to the main problem area..they can move out from there but they need a starting point..

 

which devices do you both have?

are there any other devices running into this as well or just yours?

does it improve once you leave the area?

*********************************************************
I like many others come onto this site for assistance and to help others. Marking a reply as helpful or correct helps others with like issues when they try to search the site for assistance. I do not work for Sprint and my suggestions and or opinions are my own. *************************************************************************************************************
Journeyman

Re: Data Connection Issue: Searching For Service

Hi fireguy,

I actually started this thread several months ago & the previous poster revived it. I've provided all of that info on many different occasions to numerous reps. I've had my device checked and it's fine. Sprint reps finally verified the cell site near my office has been experiencing an outage that effects service but they do not have an estimate to when it will be fixed. This outage has been going on for over 8 months now so I think I've been patient enough. I can't rely on their service and I've had enough of their reps basically telling me sorry but there's nothing they can do. 

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