We live in an era where everyone is well-connected. An era where, at the drop of a hat, we can browse directions on Google Maps or call someone living in a different continent. But what do you do when your cell phone’s signal is weak? There’s nothing as frustrating as waiting for a text message to load or when your call gets dropped. And considering the scores of people who rely on data coverage for day-to-day operations, it’s vital that one has a stable signal. Is your cell phone signal in your home or at your workplace always weak? If so, you should consider investing in one of the best cell phone signals.
What are the Best Cell Phone Signal Boosters?
When looking for a cell phone signal booster, there are a few things that you should prioritize. For starters, the booster should be capable of working seamlessly with your mobile carrier or network provider. The signal booster should also provide a considerable coverage area and have antenna features.
Below find the best Cell Phone Signal Boosters:
1. Phonelex Cell Phone Signal Booster
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If you’re looking to purchase a cellphone signal booster that’s compatible with Verizon Wireless network, Phonelex is a decent option. This booster results in faster uploads and downloads for streaming apps like Google Chrome, YouTube and Netflix.
Plus, it supports voice and 4G data for the 4G/LTE phones. This includes all mobile phones that run on IOS, Android and Windows phone systems.
Phonelex works by receiving a signal from the signal tower. It then amplifies your mobile signal, enabling you to download pages faster. This cellphone signal booster covers up to 2000 square feet in open space.
2. Cell Phone Signal Booster by A ANNTLENT
A Anntlent Signal Booster is pricier than Phonelex. But for the higher price tag, you get loads of features that you wouldn’t find in cheaper models. For instance, it’s compatible with Verizon, T-Mobile and AT&T. These are the three main carriers in the United States.
What’s more, this cellphone signal booster offers the biggest coverage. Its indoor panel and outdoor LPDA antennas boast a coverage of up to 4,000 square feet.
You will also love the ease of installing A Anntlent booster. The manufacturer has provided an all-inclusive mounting screw kit and a user manual to guide you. Other features worth noting include the 3-month free replacement and 5-year warranty.
3. WeBoost Drive 4G-X RV Cell Phone Signal Booster
Have you been looking for a portable cell phone signal booster? If you have, theweBoost 4G-X is an excellent option as it’s designed to be used from a stationary location or on the go. And this is not the only thing that this cellphone signal booster has going for itself. The weBoost boasts an amplifier with a 50 dB maximum gain. This is actually the optimal gain that the Federal Communications Commission allows for cellphone boosters.
What’s more, it’s compatible with all U.S. mobile carriers; from T-Mobile to Straight Talk, Sprint and more. We also like that the manufacturer incorporated a long-lasting battery. You can enjoy up to two hours of extra talk time with this cell phone signal booster.
4. HiBoost Home 10K
HiBoost Home 10K has the best signal-boosting performance. This device is fitted with the 10k advanced amplification technology, which strengthens the signal for up to 150 cell phone users. In fact, it offers one of the largest coverage area of 10,000 square feet. This makes it a good choice for large spaces. You can use it for truck when you’re exploring the outdoors.
Another plus of the HiBoost cell phone signal booster is that it’s easy to set up. Plus, it’s fitted with an LCD screen to provide a user-friendly interface.
5. SureCall Fusion4Home
This is another top-of-the-line signal booster worth considering. It does not offer a generous coverage, providing a coverage of just 2,000 square feet; but it has an incredible ability of boosting cell phone signals. And, it does not come with the high price tag attached to our top picks.
Furthermore, SureCall signal booster amplifies the signal of both 4G and 3G compatible gadgets. This makes it an excellent choice for individuals who have devices that run on different networks. It’s also one of the easiest cell phone signal boosters to install. The manufacturer has provided all the components you’ll need for a simple DIY install.
6. Phonetone Cell Phone Signal Booster
If you prefer a cell signal booster that has a panel antenna as opposed to the dome one, then there’s no better option than this model by Phonetone. With this booster, you will experience fewer dropped and missed calls. Also, you will benefit from faster data performance.
Phonetone cell phone signal booster is well-suited for use with all US networks; be it AT&T, Verizon or US Cellular. Another key highlight of this booster is its automatic gain control. It can sense the exact level of an incoming signal; thus, make adjustments accordingly. Few cell signal boosters come with such status indicators.
7. At&T T-Mobile
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If you are not ready to spend a ton of money on a cell signal booster, then the Cell Phone Signal Booster is a budget-friendly option. It covers about 2000 square feet, making it suitable to use in your home, villa, garage or basement.
This cell signal booster is meant to work with specific carrier, that is, T-Mobile. This booster helps in improving the voice quality as well as providing faster 4G LTE throughout your home or office.
Cell Phone Signal Boosters Buying Guide
Can You Hear Me Now?
A cell phone signal booster is also called a cellular repeater. This is a fairly new addition to cell phone technology. Before you buy a cell phone signal booster, you should account for a couple of things such as the mobile carrier supported by the booster, the area that requires coverage and the hardware that comes with this booster.
Cellular repeaters are an incredible invention. However, you should have a clear understanding of how these boosters work to avoid getting frustrated. For instance, you shouldn’t go to the Amazon forest, and expect to get your emails handled just because you’ve invested in a state-of-the-art cell phone signal booster. If there weren’t any cell phone signals in that area before you got there, the booster isn’t going to create one. In a nutshell, a cell phone signal booster can only amplify an existing, weak signal, not create one!
This cell phone signal booster constitutes three main components: an external antenna, an internal antenna and an amplifier. There is also a cable, which connects all these parts. The external antenna is one of the most crucial components as it helps to draw a signal from the closest cell phone tower that supports your mobile network.
The repeater amplifier then takes this signal and makes it stronger. Amplification is usually measured in decibels (dB). A 3 dB amplification doubles the strength of the signal, which means that 6 dB provides twice the signal strength of the 3 dB one.
An internal antenna, which is the last element, also plays a role in this process. It helps in re-broadcasting the newly amplified signal. By this time, your mobile phone will be able to identify this stronger signal, meaning that you’ll be able to load pages faster and experience fewer dropped calls. As for the cable, it’s advisable to choose a short, high-quality cable.
Good! Why Do I Need a Cell Phone Signal Booster?
If you don’t have strong enough signal, your calls will drop occasionally. But why does this happen? The most likely reason is that you’re making your calls when you are too far away from a cell phone tower. Another reason could be that there are too many obstacles in the path of the signal. Common barriers that impede signal strength include trees, hills, mountains and buildings.
Is there an alternative to using cell phone signal boosters? I’m afraid not. The best chance you have of improving your cell phone reception is to invest in a signal booster if you don’t want to relocate. The only exception is if you’re in transit, that is, if you’re driving a car or sailing a boat. When you’re on the move, the external antenna won’t be accurate because of the fast locomotion of these transportation means.
Before rushing to buy a cell phone signal booster, first establish the size of coverage. Some boosters can only cover a small space while others cover larger areas. The trick here is to go for a booster that covers at least 10% more than the estimated coverage. This way, you have guarantee that the booster will work perfectly for your space.
Some manufacturers design boosters specifically for home use. Such boosters have the capacity to cover big properties. Some can even cover commercial properties like work buildings, forested areas and more.
When it comes to the external antenna, there are two main variations- the omni and yagi. The omni is a good example of a multi-directional antenna, meaning that it can pick up strength in all directions. Conversely, the yagi points in one direction. So if your cell phone tower is located north, you should ensure the yagi antenna is pointing north to receive a more powerful signal.
We also have two main types of internal antenna- dome and panel. A panel antenna is one designed to amplify signal across numerous floors. This antenna points in one direction. In contrast, a dome antenna is often perched on a ceiling and it gives equal strength to all the floors below. Dome antennas are not the best option for operating on multiple floors.
The benefits of a cell phone signal booster
- You will experience fewer dropped calls and a better reception. With a signal booster, you will be able to hear the person on the other end of your call clearly, and vice versa.
- A reduction in the frequency or size of dead zones. This will come in handy if you drive frequently on such areas.
- Reliability in data uploads and downloads- with this device, users are able to download and upload media content much faster. You can also stream music and videos seamlessly.
- Faster texting- you won’t encounter any more lags when sending and posting messages.
- Long battery life- when you invest in a cell phone signal booster, it means that your phone won’t be forced to work as hard as it won’t be reconnecting to weak signals anymore.
A simple system for home or car
When choosing a cell phone signal booster, you will have to choose from two main types. We have a signal booster designed for car, and another for home or office use.
The first type is usually attached to the car or truck magnetically. The internal antenna of this booster improves reception throughout your automobile’s cabin.
A booster designed for home or office use, will be mounted outdoors. The antenna, in this case, boosts coverage throughout one or more rooms.
Understanding Bars: They Aren’t Just Signal Strength
If you ask anyone what the bars in their cell phone represent, they’re likely to say signal strength. However, this is not the only thing that these bars indicate. Essentially, the signal bars show two features:
- Signal strength- this shows just how strong the cellular signal is when it reaches your cell phone. It’s usually measured in dBm.
- Signal quality- measured in dB, this is a ratio of the real source of the signal to the sounds and interferences that are also reaching your phone.
Signal quality will cause the number of bars on your cell phone to decrease in the same way that signal strength would. Familiarizing yourself with this concept is crucial before you can embark on installing a signal booster.
The vast majority of cell networks use LTE networks both for calls and data transmissions. In any LTE network, the signal strength and quality are known as “RSRP” and “SINR”.
Reference Signal Received Power (RSRP) -the strength of the LTE’s signal is measured using RSRP. A strong signal ranges at about 70 dBm RSRP while for a weak one, the signal strength is about 100 dBm RSRP.
Signal to Interference plus Noise Ratio (SINR) -The quality of the LTE’s signal is determined using SINR. A good signal will have SINR of more than 10 dB while that of a poor-quality signal will be less than 5 dB.
Understanding Bars: Causes of Weak and Noisy Signal
One thing you’ll notice about recent cellular technologies is that they all utilize identical frequency bands when transmitting signal from their towers. As a result, if your cell phone is in close proximity to two or more towers that have almost the same signal strength, one will end up acting as a barrier or interferer to the tower you’re trying to link to. This will in turn cause low signal quality. Inter-tower interferences are one of the main culprits for weak signals, particularly in metropolitan areas.
Distance from the nearest cell phone tower
Another factor that weakens cell signals is when they travel through space. Anytime that you’re not close to a cell phone tower, your cell phone signal weakens. The further away you get from the cell tower, the harder it is for your phone’s internal radio to “hear” the tower’s signal.
Building materials/vehicle construction
Some kinds of materials, especially those used for construction, can weaken your cell phone’s signal. These include items like concrete, metal, drywall and low-e glass. This explains why some boosters are recommended for basement and others for using within an office.
Geography and nearby buildings
As mentioned earlier, your location has a significant impact on the strength of your cell phone’s signal. So that if you are near a tower, the signal will be strong. But if you’re exploring the nearby mountains and valleys, the signal is going to be weak.
How a Cell Phone Signal Booster Works
The way a signal booster works is by amplifying the signal reaching your cell phone from the closest tower. This cell signal booster consists of three main parts:
The purpose of this component is to transmit signals between your mobile phone and the tower. It’s usually installed on the roof. However, you may come across some buildings that have directional antenna, which is even more efficient. With this antenna, you can aim at a specific tower; this strengthening the signal by minimizing interferences.
This is sometimes referred to as a “bi-directional amplifier” or BDA. As its name suggests, this component helps in amplifying the signal reaching your cell phone and the one going back to the tower. A coaxial cable is used to connect this amplifier to the indoor antenna and donor antenna.
This component serves to distribute signal to as well as receive a signal from your mobile phone. There are two common types of indoor antennas namely: dome antennas and panel antennas.
Why You Have Bad Cell Signal
If you’re experiencing bad cell phone signals, they could be caused by one of these factors:
Distance from the Cell Tower
The signal in your cell phone is usually broadcasted from a tower set up by your carrier. If you’re close to the tower, your cell signal will be strong but if you’re very far away, the signal weakens. If the strength of the signal is too low, you won’t be able to make any calls ot even transfer data.
Obstacles in the Way
Another factor that weakens cell signal is the presence of obstacles. Cell phone signal cannot penetrate through massive bodies such as mountains or buildings. So the only way the tower’s signal will reach you is if it bounces off on the obstacles and reaches you via reflection. By the time it reaches your cell, it will be too weak, and is likely to fluctuate up and down.
Combinations of Causes
Your poor cell signal could be caused by multiple factors and not just one. It’s likely that your cell signal is weak not only because your rural home is situated miles away from a cell tower but also because your house consists of sheet metal walls that are preventing any signal from penetrating into the building. So when looking for a feasible solution, find out whether your weak cell signal is being caused by one or more factors.
How to choose
Even though most cell phone signal boosters look identical, there are a few things you should keep in mind.
What type of wireless connection do you need?
Some signal boosters are designed to transmit 3G broadband internet only, others 4G and a few can transmit both. The main difference between the two is the speed of transferring data. So if you’re depending on your cell phone exclusively for internet access and own a 4G-compartible phone, then you should go for a 4G booster.
For a home/office system, how many rooms do you need coverage for?
Cell phone signal boosters have varying strengths. Some provide coverage for just one room while others are powerful enough to provide coverage for a whole floor. Remember to check the estimated coverage of the booster before purchasing.
How many users are there?
If you have multiple devices, which you intend to use with the system simultaneously, then you need to ensure that the booster can handle such traffic.
Consider a multi-bandwidth device
Whether you’re buying a booster for your home or office, chances are that you already have gadgets that operate through wifi or wirelessly.By investing in a multi-bandwidth boost, you can switch between frequencies so as to minimize the disruption from the other devices.
It is no secret that your cellular device signal depends on your proximity to the cell tower. If you go too far away, this signal weakens. To improve your reception, you should invest in a cell phone signal booster. This handy device helps in reducing the number of dropped calls and increasing the data transmission speed.