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Visible Blade X1 5G

CAZboy
Novice II

I bought this phone when I ported in to Visible a couple of weeks ago.  I like the phone so far but 5G data speeds I see truly suck.  The highest 5G download speed I've seen on my phone so far is 3Mbps.  sometimes the Verizon speed test website just gives up and says Test Failed.  The 5G speeds are so bad that I set my phone's preferred network to LTE and don't bother with 5G.

 

I opened a ticket with Visible but their network folks tell me that 5G coverage isn't all that good in central Arizona.  This info conflicts with the Visible 5G coverage map but we'll leave that discussion for another day.

 

I'm trying to figure out if the slow 5G speed is the Visible service or the phone.  I ran a side by side 5G test using a Samsung Galaxy S21 subscribed directly to Verizon against my Blade X1 5G.  The Samsung had a download speed of 121Mbps.  My Blade X1 was 2Mbps (no, that's not a typo).

 

I'd like to hear from anyone else who has purchased this phone.

7 REPLIES 7

smgrinus
Novice III

Could the difference be that Samsung S21 supports mmWave and the Blade X1 does not? 

This is likely one of the causes yes. I'm also curious if th OP is on the fringe of 5G coverage

CAZboy
Novice II

AFAIK, Verizon ultra wideband is deployed to relatively few urban locations so wouldn't be a factor.  5G dynamic spectrum sharing (DDS) is much more common.  DDS should provide at least the same data speeds as 4G LTE but my experience is that 5G (at least on the Blade X1) is much slower.

 

About a week ago I was in zip code 86314 and saw 1Mbps 5G downloads.   I switched the phone to 4G LTE and got better than 20Mbps.  The coverage map indicates this area is within the 5G area.

 

I'm content with 20Mbps 4GLTE downloads (my previous prepaid provider capped download speeds at 5Mbps).  5G is an interesting technology and I'm exploring its limits (I'm an engineer, I can't help it).

This is interesting data. Is sub 6GHZ 5g a part of the 5g spectrum sharing you are talking about or is that exclusive to T-mobile? If the Ultra-wideband isn't a factor here, is it a case of the phone having inferior hardware vs the Samsung and/or an issue that still needs to be resolved with this cloud-based architecture Visible is utilizing? 

CAZboy
Novice II

Yes, DSS shares the existing 4G LTE spectrum and infrastructure to allow the two technologies to run side-by side.  This allows Verizon to advertise expanded 5G coverage but one needs to read the fine print to realize that this doesn't automatically translate into faster data speeds.

 

I'm not too concerned about the lack ultra-wideband 5G support on the Blade X1 5G.  I live in rural Arizona and I can't see ultra-wideband ever coming here.  for now, I think, the only places one will see ultra-wideband are densely populated cities, airports & train stations, and sports stadiums.  Range is the reason.  The phone needs to be no more than 150 feet from a node to connect using ultra-wideband.  And the phone needs to have line of site to the node.  mm wave does not penetrate solid objects very well.  A wall, a closed window, even tree leaves can block the RF signal to/from the node.

 

You may be correct that the Blade X1 5G's inferior hardware is the root cause.  I'd like to figure that out.  I can say had I done more research beforehand I probably wouldn't have spent the extra cash to get a 5G phone.

CAZboy
Novice II

Good find! I guess it is just a matter of waiting until the tech matures to the point where 4g LTE is now.