Apple Says 2.0.2 Addresses 3G Problems + Gmail Still Kludgy?

Ed Baig over at USA Today (via Daring Fireball) is reporting that:

Apple (AAPL) acknowledged Tuesday that a software update for the iPhone partly fixes the connection snags that have caused a global firestorm for the new iPhone 3G. Though mum on details, Apple spokeswoman Jennifer Bowcock said on Tuesday, "The software update improves communication with 3G networks."


As I mentioned previously, yesterday in Downtown Montreal, it looked like I was unable to connect to the 3G network at all. Last night in the suburbs of Montreal, however, I was able to connect (though it took a while). Today, downtown again... nadda. Or so I thought. I switched back to WiFi and still couldn't connect... to Gmail.

Yup. While I'd tested Gmail, MobileMe, ActiveSync, and MobileSafari yesterday, sometime since then I'd made the mistake of just hitting Gmail in to see if a connection would pop up. Turns out that was really shoddy testing on my part. See, Gmail on iPhone says I haven't had any messages since 6pm last night. Gmail on the desktop however, while continuously giving me "Server error: too many simultaneous connections (Failure)", shows 50+ more, right up to this very minute. Now, I've Twittered nearly constantly about problems with Gmail IMAP lately, from invalid certificate errors, to server connection problems, to the mail outage they had a week or so back (not coincidentally the same time MobileMe was out... again).

So what's going on? Are their network connection problems or is Gmail IMAP that really buggy (according to Twitter again, it's buggy enough to make some iPhone developers abandon it entirely)? And has this been adding to, or merely confusing my 3G network connection problems?

My guess is the former. Intermittent 3G network connection errors, and Gmail IMAP still really isn't ready for prime time. (And why that doesn't get the blog-focus MobileMe gets, aside from the admittedly free nature of the beast, is a bit perplexing).

I plan to run more (and better) tests today, and hopefully get something of a less obscure picture.

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

Apple Says 2.0.2 Addresses 3G Problems + Gmail Still Kludgy?


Looks like while they tried fixing some issues they have created newer... bigger issues... My data connection still seems to be working after a reset. Crosses my fingers.

no problems with gmail imap here on an 8 gig iphone 3g. i'm in cincinnati. in fact i haven't had any of the problems i keep reading about.

After 2.0.2, my 3G slowed to a crawl. It would take 5 minutes to load a webpage, if they came up at all. I stopped in the at&t store today and they swapped out my SIM and now everything seems fine. Any ideas on how a sim card could be causing a problem? Maybe something to do with the SIM cards from phones bought at apple stores?

I believe that Apple REALLY screwed up on 2.02 Before the update I was getting pretty consistent 3G connections. Now after the update, I can't connect to any 3G anywhere. And I know it isn't the at&t network because every time I go to the gym, I use 3G to connect to AOL Radio (with no problem), Today (after the upgrade), nothing, nada from the gym. I have 5 bars but nothing. Tried INetwork test and it just sits there. When I switch to Edge, it works fine (slow but fine).
Also have problems from other reliable (and tested) areas in NYC and there was no problem until today.
So the only change for me was to upgrade to 2.02.
THANKS APPLE, 1 step forward, 2 steps back!!

Mike, that's exactly what happened to me. Full bars but no data. Try having your sim card swapped out at an at&t store. Mine's been working great (better than before 2.0.2) since.

That too many connections limit thing might be your gmail problem. According to their FAQ:
You only get 10 connections. Its possible that the iphone imap app isn't telling you why its failing to connect, but thats probably the reason. Also, if you're having flaky connection issues, it might be that Google hasn't detected that your connection is gone, those connections might take 10 minutes to time out.

ya, it does suck lately. This phone is getting annoying. Real 3g would be nice...
even push gmail... :)

3G iPhone, updated 2.0 - 2.0.1, 2.0.2 no problems with 3G. occasional 3rd party app crashes, laggy Contacts app, that's about it. - Great 3G service in Bham, Alabama.

I do not believe it is my SIM card. It was working fine BEFORE the 2.02 upgrade. When I say I have 5 bars but no 3G, when I switch to Edge, I get internet connectivity. I don't believe it is the SIM. I believe it was the upgrade. SIM worked fine before.
I can make calls under 3G with 5 bars. Just can't use internet.
Thanks again.

Yes, that's exactly what happened to me. Mine worked fine before the upgrade, but after I couldn't get safari to work. Took it to the at&t store and they fixed it by switching out the SIM. I have no idea why that would work, but it did.

I can no longer connect to either gmail or yahoo mail. I tried 3G and Wi-Fi. Safari works fine though.

When I was using my ATT Tilt or Motorola Q9 on 3G I had full signal and could easily stream my slingbox.Now with my 3g iphone I can barely get one bar in areas where I used to get excellent reception with my other 3g phones.

Ok, someone help me out!!!! I thought I was one of the lucky ones but today @ 1:50ish PM 3g died on me. Now I get full bars when I turn off 3g. When I turn 3g back on I get "no service". I called ATT and they said there weren't any towers down in my area. I upgraded to 2.02 the day it came out. Everything worked fine afterwards until today. Why would it just stop working?

I have the 3G 8GB version in toronto and have been unable to retrieve mail (gmail) or access the internet since yesterday.
This is getting ridiculous. I'm hoping this gets fixed, the bb bold is looking quite nice right now.

My Gmail account + Exchange account worked fine on my 1st & 2nd 3g iphones, but after trading in with different issues, my 3rd iphone 3g does not connect to Gmail account only Exchange account...this is ridiculous Apple! Why do I keep hoping this thing is going to work properly. I'm losing hope quickly.