I have full bars on my phone and yet, the internet is still so slow. Why is that? This is just so frustrating!
Turns out that the bars on bars on your phone are actually NOT a real indicator of the actual signal your phone is getting! In fact, you can have two phones next to each other, both connecting to the same cell provider, showing two completely different signal strength.
What’s going on and how can you get faster phone internet?
As we know, a cell phone connects to the cell tower which in turn provides you with your connectivity to make calls and use your data. The stronger the signal is, the better your connection is.
Cell phone signal strength is measured in decibel milliwatts or dBm. The dBm is expressed as a negative number and the closer it is to zero the stronger the cell phone signal is.
The typical range for cell signal strength is usually between -110 dBm and -30 dBm. Good connectivity is around -50 dBm, no connectivity is anything over -110 dBm. ideally, you would like to be between -64 dBm to -30 dBm for an excellent connection.
In other words, you want to see low numbers on your phone!
How can you see the real signal strength on your Android and iOS phone?
Without downloading any external application, both Android and Apple phones have the ability to show you the exact signal strength.
On an Android phone, you simply go to Setting, Phone settings, About Phone and look for SIM Status. Some versions of Android might be located under System.
On Apple, it is slightly more complicated. Open the phone’s dialer and type *3001#12345#* and hit the green dial button. You will see a Field Test Menu and you want to select the option that says “measurement”.
Now we know the real signal strength, now what?
If you use your phone as a hot spot, find the best spot in your house where the signal is the strongest and this is where you park your phone for the best data connection!
You can also download an app called Open Signal and this will show you the strongest cell tower you are connected to. You can also use the compass to align your phone towards the tower to get the best signal.
Bonus Tip: if you see that there is a cell tower closer to you than the one your phone is connecting to, put your phone onto airplane mode for a couple of minutes and then reconnect. Hopefully, that tower will pick you up so you can get a better connection.
I hope these steps help you get a better connection from your cell phone!