Cell Phones

Android 5.1 Cellphone WiFi Issues - ZTE ZMax 2

  • Last Updated:
  • Aug 24th, 2017 8:58 am
[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 29, 2005
3842 posts
346 upvotes
Montreal

Android 5.1 Cellphone WiFi Issues - ZTE ZMax 2

Can anyone recommend a way to fix WiFi issues with my cell phone? Through Google and Youtube, I learned that a static IP address will help a lot. I set one and my cellphone went from being WiFi unusable to just finicky. Anyone know of any other tricks that might help?
Last edited by Phils on Aug 21st, 2017 1:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Phils
9 replies
Deal Guru
User avatar
Feb 24, 2003
12060 posts
960 upvotes
Toronto
Does this problem occur with all wi-fi networks? With and without WPA/wpa2 encryption? With hidden and visible SSIDs?
[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 29, 2005
3842 posts
346 upvotes
Montreal
Sorry for the delay in answering but when I had a chance earlier today, I couldn't get in.

My first post could have been more descriptive.

Since I run CSIP Simple on the phone, I have it set to always be on in case someone were to call. Although I have never really been completely satisfied with the strength of the WiFi signal on this phone, at least until last week my phone would connect easily to any WiFi network. The SSIDs are all visible. I don't have a data plan. My network uses auto wpa/wpa2 encryption.

About 4 or 5 days ago, it wouldn't connect at all to any WiFi network unless I rebooted my phone. Then it would connect but then disconnect after a few minutes if there wasn't any activity. A few days before, I had uninstalled a few unused apps to gain space on the phone's memory. It's possible that the uninstalls took something with it but the apps that I removed (like Wahoo Fitness, GPS Speedometer, and a few others) didn't really use WiFi. Who knows? Maybe Google pushed an update to its services in that time. This went on for a few days.

So I started to look at what was happening while it was trying to connect. Basically, what I saw was that it would fail to complete assigning an IP address. It would try multiple times and maybe connect or not. Most of the time, it would fail. So I rebooted my router but that didn't help. Also, my wife's iPad connects with no problem. What I also saw was that at times the signal strength which has always been weak was even weaker. Since I live in a building with 100 condos, there are dozens of wireless networks available. Sometimes my phone would list only 1 or 2 networks. Other times, it would show a long list.

So since my phone was having problems obtaining an IP address and one of the solutions I found online was to set a static IP, I set one up for my home wifi network. With the static IP, my phone tends to connect almost as quickly now as it did before the issues began but only for that access point. I have found that if my display goes dark for a few minutes, when I wake it, the WiFi icon isn't in the notification bar meaning that it disconnected. However, it does reconnect rather quickly now. That is a problem for my VOIP line though. I haven't really tried to connect to other networks except once in passing in a shopping mall but it didn't connect when I tried. However, it really wasn't a good test as I was in a rush at the time.

Incidentally, in order to set a static IP on the phone, I had to install an app called IP Static to do it.
Phils
Deal Guru
User avatar
Feb 24, 2003
12060 posts
960 upvotes
Toronto
The only thing I can suggest is to check fort ROM updates or a complete reset of the phone and setup nothing but the voip app to see what happens.

It's also possible that the wi-fi chip is failing.

Was the phone ever dropped?
Deal Addict
Feb 16, 2006
3045 posts
475 upvotes
Vancouver
Touchpal on the phone?

I've been reading reports of all kinds of strange issues with phones (mostly HTC & ad's) after the recent Touchpal update. My wife's ZTE Axon started boot looping about 10-14 days ago and after disabling everything Touchpal the bootloops stopped.

.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 29, 2005
3842 posts
346 upvotes
Montreal
As for a ROM update, there is an update to Android 6.0 but it requires 2 GB to install and I have about 1 GB. Back in the day when I had 2 GB available, I could not get the update to install as it was from AT&T and it seemed to work best if you were on their network. I'm on Telus.

As for the phone ever being dropped - yes but not recently. It also occurred to me that the chip could be failing but I'm not there yet.

As for the keyboard, I'm not using Touchpal - just the regular GBoard.
Phils
Deal Addict
Aug 31, 2005
1102 posts
695 upvotes
Phils wrote:
Aug 21st, 2017 6:43 pm
As for a ROM update, there is an update to Android 6.0 but it requires 2 GB to install and I have about 1 GB. Back in the day when I had 2 GB available, I could not get the update to install as it was from AT&T and it seemed to work best if you were on their network. I'm on Telus.

As for the phone ever being dropped - yes but not recently. It also occurred to me that the chip could be failing but I'm not there yet.

As for the keyboard, I'm not using Touchpal - just the regular GBoard.
Not able to connect to Wifi really should not be a DHCP issue. If you have DHCP issue, you would still connect to wifi, just having a note saying something like "having problem getting IP address" something like that. So static IP logically doesn't fix anything.

If you have other devices not having problem getting Wifi on the same router, then the problem probably isn't your router. I would just try use your phone in a public hotspot, if it get connect without issue. It might jsut be problem with your phone and your router being incompatible.

Still, based on what you said so far. Problem is your phone. Doing a factory reset , or doing a clear cache might be your best shot on fixing this.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 29, 2005
3842 posts
346 upvotes
Montreal
I pretty much clear my cache almost every day and that hasn't solved my problem. As for the static IP, it's by access point and it has really made a difference. There was Play Store update today to Android System Webview and I know that it has caused issues in the past. I wonder if another webview update a week ago might have caused the problem.

As for the static IP, I set the IP on the phone and also reserved that address on my router to facilitate the handshake. To be honest, I think my problems at home are pretty much resolved by doing that. It made a huge difference unless it was just a coincidence.

I'm going to try another WiFi network today to see what happens.
Phils
[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 29, 2005
3842 posts
346 upvotes
Montreal
So I tried connecting to another network this afternoon and it connected without a problem.
I did notice that the connection dropped for a few seconds but came back relatively quickly.
It shouldn't have done that. So I was pretty satisfied with the experience - however . . .

Then I returned home and it was like pulling teeth again to connect to my home WiFi. Eventually it connected but not without multiple tries.
So it's somewhat better but still a bit of a pita.
Phils
[OP]
Deal Addict
Sep 29, 2005
3842 posts
346 upvotes
Montreal
I finally solved my problem. My access point was at fault.

I'm not sure if there was a compatibility issue or if the access point was failing. I removed it from my network and replaced it with a Meraki and it's been solid since then as far as I can tell.

My wife said she never had problems with wifi with her iPad but she uses it mostly for email so she really only looks at it when she gets a sound notification. By then the email had already been received so she wouldn't really notice if it had been delayed. Also, she rarely moves it away from our home network whereas my phone was being asked to connect all over.

What led me to believe that the access point was the issue was that I noticed that the light on my network-connected TP-Link plug was orange instead of green. This meant it had also disconnected. After I unplugged it and plugged it back in, the light turned green again but it was unusual.
Phils

Top