Vancouver phones struggling to stay connected to 4G networks: report

Vancouver has a “3G sticky” issue according to research firm RootMetrics

Cell service in Vancouver, along with Toronto and Montreal, is faster and steadier than it is stateside, says a new report from RootMetrics, a U.S.-based research firm. But Vancouver in particular has a, get this, “3G sticky” problem.

In short, phones in the Vancouver area frequently connect to 3G networks rather than the much faster 4G, or LTE, ones. Bell and Telus were the two primary culprits, as Rogers customers tended to have steadier 4G connectivity, resulting in Rogers being crowned by RootMetrics as Vancouver’s best carrier.

Perhaps that’s not surprising considering 4G coverage for Bell and Telus customers was actually worse in 2014 than it was last year, as the chart above shows. The culprit may be increased demand.

“We encountered a ‘3G sticky’ issue in Vancouver with Bell and Telus. Though both operators have LTE available, we stayed on 3G more than expected,” the report, available here, said. “In fact, we connected to their LTE networks less often during this visit than in our 2013 testing of Vancouver. Important takeaway: Those LTE speeds don’t do much good if you can’t access the network.”