Is FX100 stable enough for SMS?

Has anyone managed to use FX100 for SMS in a production environment?

I tried it last year July, discovered the following 2 issues and decided not to continue testing -

1). +CSQ signal was much lower as compared to a GL6110 when using the same 3G SIM card and at the same location.
2). Modem has the tendency to hang after continuous query - I couldn’t pinpoint the conditions that could have caused this to happen. Only a hard reset is able to make the modem work again.

modem hangs on continuous query??

what kind of query??

With Open-AT, yes!


Actually, the +CSQ indication can vary a lot even on the same modem with just small movements, and due to other stuff in the vicitiy, and/or in the line-of-sight to the mast.

As Rex_alex said, what do you mean by “continuous query” :question:

If you’re hammering it with AT commands and not (always) waiting for the full response - then you are asking for trouble…

Apologies for the slow reply as I started testing again.

Here’s my test environment.

  1. I’ve fitted 2 antennas for the FX100. I’m not sure why there’s 2 antennas but I fitted both of them.
  2. I’m using Hyperterminal and a custom program to interface with the modem via COM 46 (out of COM 42 to COM 46).
  3. AT+CGMR returns:
    R7.50.0.A2.201302191346.FX100 1658520 021913 13:46

The AT+CSQ signal I’m getting for a FX100 is much lower than a GL6110. For example, for the same SIM card, I’m getting a good signal of 25,0 on a GL6110 but on the FX100, I’m only getting 0 to 8. 0-8 is very low and I’m quite sure that I’ve got good reception in my room.

As for the range, there appear to be 3 or 2 distinct levels of signals (I’ll call this “signal level” for convenience) for the same SIM card on the FX100. Sometimes, AT+CSQ returns a 0,0 or 1,0. Yes, 0,0, I’m not joking, but I sometimes, I’m able to send SMS even with that signal.

At other times, I may get a signal of 4-5 or 8-10. I’m not sure why the signal on the FX100 has different “levels” but I suspect it might have sometime to do with GSM and 3G as the “signal level” changes (Note, but not always) when I issue the command AT+WWSM, which configures the terminal to use GSM digital cellular system or Universal Terrestrial Radio Access Network. Also, there appears to be no way of checking whether the signal returned is GSM or 3G. AT+WUBS? returns “B3”,0 all the time.

Please ignore this as I last tested a long time ago using an earlier firmware.

What I’ve observed from my current test is that the device is not always able to send SMS at all times even when left in the same location undisturbed and turned on constantly. When I’m unable to send SMS I usually get a CMS Error: 512. For example:

> 0015000881092631500000AA8DF4F29C4EA7D3E9743A9D4EA7D3E9743A9D4EA7D3E9743A9D4EA7

Or just Error:

> 0015000881092631500000AA8DF4F29C4EA7D3E9743A9D4EA7D3E9743A9D4EA7D3E9743A9D4EA7

Issuing AT+CFUN=1 or even turning off and on the power doesn’t help. Sometimes, changing the cellular network can help solve the problem - do note that I’ve mentioned earlier on that changing the cellular network may also cause the “signal level” to change.

For example, in my last test I was able to send SMS using AT+WWSM=0 earlier in the day, but now I’m not able. Resetting the modem doesn’t help. But I was able to send SMS again after issuing AT+WWSM=2,0.

Sometimes, I’m able to send shorter length SMS but not longer ones.

I’m not able to identify a pattern but it appears to be pretty unstable at this point, or perhaps I’m not initializing the modem correctly? :frowning:

Another thing which I forgot to mention is that I installed the “Sierra Wireless Aircard Watcher” driver (Watcher_generic_B3507.msi) as the usual USB driver that worked for GL and previous modems didn’t worked.

Under device manager, modems, the FX100 modem appeared as “Sierra Wireless HPSA Modem”.

That would be for diversity. Which would mean you must have a 3G model?

Again, so many factors can affect signal strength that this is unlikely to be meaningful unless you are unplugging the cable from the GL6110 and plugging it into the FX100

Now that is a big difference!

However, I think the GL6110 is GPRS only - so it might be reporting GPRS signal, while the FX100 reports 3G? It is quite possible that 3G signal level could differ significantly from 2.5G (GPRS).

Yes, it is!

Have you looked-up the meaning of that?

Yes, that would be expected

Strange indeed!

I believe that the FX100 is a 3G modem.

The difference is too large, moreover, I’m conducting the test at the same location and using the same SIM card.

Yes, I believe it’s a large enough difference to warrant a concern. Or am I using it wrongly?

This is possible, even though I can’t understand how I can send SMS on a 0,0 signal. How could I set the FX100 to use GPRS or GSM instead? That way, I can make a comparison and be sure it’s not a hardware or configuration problem in the first place.

The AT command interface guide says “MM establishment failure (for SMS).” :smiley:

Does the location have poor 3G, but good GPRS :question:

I downloaded an android signal app to check signal and it returns 10ASU for HSPA and 23ASU for EDGE. It appears that HSPA has a lower signal strength.

The other thing which I find puzzling is the indicator light. Unlike previous “Wavecom” series of modems in which the indicator light blinks if the terminal is registered to network, the indicator light on the FX100 does not appear to behave the same.

Using one sim card, the indicator lights up for a few seconds after powering up, and then switches off completely. Using another sim card, the light doesn’t even turn on. Note that I’m able to send SMS for both SIM cards.

Again, be very wary about drawing conclusions from the signal readings given by other equipment :exclamation:

Yes; the EDGE looks much stronger that the 3G - so that makes it a lot less surprising that your EDGE modem shows a higher reading than your 3G modem!

This is probably due to the Sierra Wireless (Qualcomm-based?) influence - I don’t think Wavecom ever had any 3G products?

RTFM, I’m afraid.

The app’s running on a a Samsung galaxy smartphone. :smiley: I don’t know how to test 3g vs gprs signal on an FX100.

I’ve been using “Wavecom”-based for a long time, and other than the Open AT IP functions, the SMS functionality had been very stable and reliable.

As I said, I don’t think Wavecom ever made any 3G products - so this is essentially a new design

Has anyone tried FX100 and encountered issues which I mentioned? :smiley:


The thread is quite long, but for your initial message…

To my understanding, comparing the +CSQ value for different mode (2G vs 3G) is not fair… Also, if you test using live network, it really depends on the network deployment that 2G base station and 3G base station location may differ…

For the hang issue, do you have chance to report the issue to your distributor or FAE?
Also, you tested last July, maybe you can test again using latest FW and see any improvement?


Yes, I did the test again. I tested using live network and along with GL6110 in the same location. I tried to position the antennas for both modems at the same spot.

I would be interested to know if anyone else has the FX100 on hand has the same test results.

I’ve worked with GPRS modems all this while and 3G is really a new thing to me.