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Indianapolis, IN

Solution for poor Sprint Mobile Broadband performance?

This is typical Sprint Mobile Broadband 3G performance around here. Sprint SmartView shows a very strong signal, and the test was run at 2 a.m. During the day it's typical to get the "DNS server not responding" error that prevents mobile broadband from working at all. A Sierra 250 was used. A Franklin was no better.

Under some conditions I'd ask if there was a solution but having checked the messages in this forum, it looks as if this is an unsolvable situation. So, if there's no way to get better performance, is there a way to use poor results to get out of the two year contract?


Kansas City, MO
First narrow down if it is your local tower or your account/device.

Does it ever go faster?


Take your laptop and device at least 10 miles away from where you are having the problem (drive towards a populated area or take it with you on weekend to work etc)... if you find your speeds improve then you have eliminated your account/device being the problem. If you find it is always the same no matter what tower you are connected to there could be a problem with the way they have your account provisioned on their network... call them ask for 2nd level or data card support and report the issue... let them know you are getting the same results no matter your location.


If it does get faster then you know your account/device is good, and it is most likely the tower or your proximity to the tower. Try different positions/location at the location where it is slow.

Sometimes just placing it near a window facing the tower can fix issues. I understand your signal is good, however, over the years I have learned that the signal level isn't always the whole picture. Sometimes your signal is reflecting off a geological feature that causes high signal but makes data re-transmit so much that it never gets up to full speed. If you find a different location inside the house/office/whatever fixes the issue you might look into adding an antenna of some sort, or getting a router that supports your data card, and then connecting to the router while it remains in the "good" spot for optimal performance.


It could also just be an overloaded tower. If this is the case since you are getting less than 300kbps you can call and ask for 2nd level or data card tech support and have them check the tower speeds (they have the ability to see rates on the towers) and have them file a report that the tower is slow. If it is overloaded it can take a while for them to fix... they need to add more capacity and they are slow to do this unless they are getting a lot of reports about it... have any friends and family with sprint accounts report it as well to speed the process.


I am not sure you could get out of contract, you might have a good chance IF the tower is overloaded since they advertise a minimum speed (used to be 400k now is 300k I think) and you are not getting the minimum speed. I have not ever dealt with breaking out of a contract with sprint, but have not heard of many getting out without paying the ETF.

You can sometimes see what is going on by popping your location into this website: »network.sprint.com it will show you recent fixes or upcoming fixes.

Good Luck!


Blairstown, NJ
reply to pennpike
If you are using the mobile for your main home internet connection, then you might want to invest in some additional hardware.

I am about 7 miles from a cell tower, and not quite line of sight. With the equipment listed in my signature (pannel antenna, amp and routers) I am able to down load consistantly between 180 - 290 MBps through torrents depending on weather condition and cell tower traffic.

The pannel antenna is in my attic and is blasting right through the shingles to hit the cell tower. It does work well. The Cyfer amp is the best, and much better than the Wilson (at least it was a few years ago when I put this setup together)

Speed tests show download speeds up to 2.3 Mbps and uploads at 600Mbps.

The hardware will set you back a few bucks, but I felt it was worth it.
Internet: Sprint Wireless, CellAntenna CAY1912 Panel antenna, Cyfre CA-819 amp, Linksys WRT54G3G-ST/ EA2700 routers, Pantech PX-500 data card. Storage: Windows Home Server 2011