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Sprint Paying Close Attention to iPhone 4S Speed Issues



The iPhone 4S has been out for just over a week, but it is already selling like hotcakes on all three carriers. Sprint achieved a one day sales record when the iPhone 4S launched, but shortly after the iPhone 4S made it into the hands of customers, there was some complaining about data speeds.

Sprint customers took to the Sprint forums to complain about slow Sprint iPhone 4S speeds. Some users were looking to switch providers, and others report that their Android phones were seeing better speeds. When we tested the iPhone 4S speeds across Sprint, Verizon and AT&T, Sprint offered up better speeds than most users were reporting, but still slower than AT&T. While our test was in one location, the reports are coming in from across the U.S.

Late yesterday, The Next Web reported that Sprint was circulating an email internally, and was aware of slow iPhone 4S data speeds. The email reportedly stated that, “Apple and Sprint are working together on a “confirmed nationwide issue”.”

This morning, Sprint responded, offering up a real official statement on the iPhone 4S speed issues.

Overall, iPhone performance on the Sprint network is consistent with our expectations and the rest of our high-end portfolio. Sprint also did bench-marking of Sprint’s iPhone against competitor’s iPhones and the testing showed little to no performance difference. We are seeing a very low return rate for this device but we are watching the reports of speed issues very closely. We do see opportunities to optimize performance, specifically in high network capacity areas. We see this as typical optimization work and do not have any specific area of concern. Sprint is committed to providing the best possible experience for our customers. We are listening to our customers and working closely with our partners at Apple to ensure optimal performance of iPhone devices on our network.

While this statement essentially says that Sprint’s iPhone is just as good as the iPhone 4Ss on other networks, it does give us hope that the company is working on a way to speed up the connections in areas with a lot of traffic.

Hopefully these optimizations will help users with slow iPhone 4S 3G download speeds on Sprint. If you have a Sprint iPhone 4S, are you experiencing slow download speeds? Share good and bad speed results in the comments below.

The most common testing app is If you view your result, you can click the email icon and get the link to an image of your results, or you can upload a screencap of your test results to an online photo sharing site.




  1. Nope

    10/25/2011 at 1:53 pm

    I have had a Sprint iphone 4s since launch date and have experienced slow speeds.  I have run the speedtest app nearly 60 times the past week and have received download speeds below 1 Mbps 50 times.  My download speed has averaged about .50 Mbps.  My upload speed has yet to be faster than .64 Mbps and has averaged at about .10 Mbps. Sprint has until Friday when my 14-day return window is up to fix the issue or I will be returning the phone.

    • Craigs65

      11/01/2011 at 10:27 pm

      I tried returning mine today but sprint wouldn’t take it back because the the 14 day return policy starts the day you get it not the the next business day so be careful and day wait to the last day. I Also have slow speeds

  2. Unloack iPhone free

    10/25/2011 at 2:34 pm


  3. Anonymous

    10/25/2011 at 3:06 pm

    i am returning mine tomorrow, going back to my android.

  4. DrDan

    10/25/2011 at 3:46 pm

    NYC, Sprint, iPhone 4s, 1.01 Mbps down, 0.84 Mbps up

  5. Dave

    10/26/2011 at 12:12 pm

    Sprint/iPhone 4s….Download 0.22MBps, Upload 0.05MBps  in Dallas,Tx

  6. Stepstools

    10/28/2011 at 7:52 pm

    Sprint iPhone 4S in San Antonio.
    Four test:
    10/19 – down 0.1 MBS , up 0.05 MBS
    10/19 – down 1.38 MBS , up 0.24 MBS
    10/27 – down 0.05 MBS , up 0.04 MBS
    10/28 – down 0.17 MBS , up 0.03 MBS

    Only excellent 25% of the time. Otherwise, dial-up modem speed.

    • JS

      12/29/2011 at 12:48 pm

      Do you regret getting an iPhone?  Is it unusable?  Did you have Sprint before?

  7. JS

    12/29/2011 at 12:48 pm

    I was seriously considering getting an iPhone in Atlanta to take advantage (and hopefully lock in) Sprints unlimited data, and have a provider that didn’t charge me per text.  But every review of Sprint is terrible. Ive contacted Sprint and even months later, they are still providing the same statement via email and denying any issues.  I went to Sprint store and employee claimed ignorance when asked about data speed issues…and even told me Gizmodo rated Sprint the best iPhone…(I went home and checked and that was not the case).  The sample iPhone in the store was hooked into wifi.  So I don’t know what to do…or what happens if you port your number over and then decide to return it in 14 days – what happens to that number if you’ve already obviously cancelled your last carrier?  It seems Android has 4G speeds, free navigation but yet everyone I know has an iPhone and loves it.  So I don’t know what to do. Ive been using a mid=level Android phone for 2 months, the Samsung Exhibit 2 on Tmobile.  Id love it IF IT WORKED.  It freezes multiple times a day, the battery drains so fast – even without any data or widgets or gps or wifi – and the worst part is when I have to take the battery out to reset it – or just turn it off – it then turns on and off repeatedly for hours – sometimes four or five hours of constant off.on without loading – I don’t know why and unlike Apple, I have no support or anyone to take it to.  Google blames Samsung and says its a  hardware issue…Samsung blames Google and says you shouldn’t be downloading apps on your phone (whats the point of Android then?) and TMobile says go find another carrier if you’re not happy.  Android also seems to have a lot more free apps.   So on paper, Android seems better but if the phone won’t work – whats the point?

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