Poor cell phone coverage in Transcona Winnipeg

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  • Updated 1 month ago
Since switching from flip phones to smart phones in 2015, we have had very poor cell service in and around our home close to the Bio-reserve in Transcona. We miss and drop calls regularly, and when we can connect to calls, the call quality is very poor for people on both sides of the conversation. My wife and I both work from home fairly regularly, and our cell phones are a critical part of doing our jobs. I have tried a variety of methods to rectify the problem with Customer Service and on my own. I have tried turning off the Wifi on my phone, along with turning off the LTE connection. No combination of those settings made a difference in the signal strength, we average 2 bars. I have also tried out a couple of cell phone boosters, but they don't improve the signal strength, since there is not much signal available to amplify.
I am out of options, and Customer Service suggested that I post something on this forum. Can you provide any assistance on improving the signal strength in and around my house?
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STEPHEN MOORE

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Posted 2 months ago

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CoryB, Champion

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Wifi calling (currently not available) would be a good solution.

That said I assume BellMTS has already sent out the wireless signals team to your site and checked out the issue.

The other is hopefully Graham can stop by and comment here. He works at BellMTS on the wireless network side and knows the network well.
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Leo Wong

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On a similar topic, whenever I am inside a downtown Winnpeg building that consists of stone masonry or brick, Bell MTS LTE mobility is not possible and I have to consciously switch the setting to 2G (not even 3G), otherwise I won't get any phone calls at all.
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CoryB, Champion

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Stone walls, including elevator shafts, and metal roofs (common in arenas) are excellent at blocking wireless signals and beyond the control of BellMTS or any wireless company.
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Clifford Lewis, Champion

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Just looking at a paper copy of a theoretical BellMTS signal strength map I have access to, I see that the North Transcona  area (including the Bio Reserve) ranges from good to intermittent HPSA coverage.   (note I am not sure how current the map is as its not dated)

Green         =great
Blue            =good
Light Blue = intermittent




A different map shows theoretical LTE coverage shows better up to the MPI Compound  / North Meadows area where it starts to go to intermittent coverage and continues that way south down Plessis Rd.

Closest BellMTS tower appear to be to the east in the area of the MB Hydro terminal station on Day St @ Wabasha which I find weird as that is the edge of the good coverage.  I thought being near a tower would show more great coverage around it.
 
Also besides the construction of your house, the brand/model of phone can have an impact on reception.
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Graham, RF Engineering

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Unfortunately that is an LTE-only tower, the serving tower for that area is at Yale and Day which is a fair ways away. I have dispatched a drive test to that area and will know more after it completes the drive. A short term fix would be a directional booster point in that direction. Transitioning to a VoLTE in the near future would also be beneficial. 
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mcmanone, Champion

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One question though Graham lol why would Bell MTS put in a lte only site? I could see if volte was available but as of now I would have thought it would be HSPA compatible as well for telephone calls.
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Dustin, Champion

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I think the idea is that since data usage makes up most of the traffic, putting in an LTE only sites helps offload traffic from the HSPA site, giving it some room to breathe, giving the existing sites better coverage. I know i have seen a slight improvement in HSPA coverage in some of the areas in the southeast where they have done just this.
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mcmanone, Champion

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Yes maybe that's part of it, as well as the future roll over to volte.
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Graham, RF Engineering

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You are both correct. It's also allocation of scarce resources, you have a choice of adding hspa to a site where the benefit will be slight or adding lte to an hspa community where the benefit is huge.