Archive for December, 2008

Connecting External Cell Phone Antennas

Monday, December 29th, 2008

One of the biggest bangs for the buck in improving your cell signal is to attach an external antenna to your mobile device.

Antenna Adapter

Antenna Adapter

This is a typical RF port on a cell phone:

Many cell phone do not have RF ports that are easy to get to as the one pictured. Also, your phone may have a port but no external antenna adapter has been developed for it. With some providers, these types of phones are getting harder and harder to find. If there is no adapter for your phone, you might consider changing phones or using a universal powered amplifier (see more info below).

This is an external antenna adapter required to connect an external antenna to your cell phone or cellular broadband card:

Adapter to Phone

Adapter to Phone

One end connects to your cell phone and the other end screws onto an external antenna.

This is an external antenna:

Connect the three (cell phone, adapter, antenna) together to improve your signal quality.

Unfortunately not all phones or broadband cards have RF ports that enable you to connect an antenna to it.

Another option for these phones is the universal powered amplifier such as the Wilson SignalBoost or Wireless Amplifier.

Welcome To Improving Cellular Reception

Thursday, December 18th, 2008

We created this blog to cover topics and products on improving cellular service. We’ll start off with the some basics on what is currently available and will add updates as we get and test new products.

It really wasn’t that long ago when having a wireless phone was rare. Cellular phones came in briefcases and were very expensive to purchase and use. Today, the ability to carry your phone in your pocket, purse or belt and be able to communicate most any where is taken for granted. The miracle of wireless communications is lost on over promising from cellular service providers and complaints about lost signals and dropped calls. We still want to believe “nationwide service” means we should be able to use our cell phones anywhere in the nation. Unfortunately, that’s just not the case.

The best and usually least expensive way to improve your cellular service is to ask others in your area about the quality of their cellular service. AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, T-Mobile, etc. may be great in one part of the world and horrible in another. Forget about asking others on the Internet who don’t live in your area. Stick to local surveys. Evaluate service first than phone. There is not a lot of difference in phone performance but there may be some.

Your next option is to get a cell phone with an RF port that you can attach an external antenna too. Check the web site External Antenna Adapters for external antenna adapter availability for any cell phone you might be considering. Cell phones with RF ports are sometimes not easy to find.

Attaching an external antenna to your phone can be your biggest bang for the buck in improving your wireless signal. An external antenna can help in several ways. First, it moves the signal away from your head (which, by the way, can block a considerable amount of signal). It also allows you to place the antenna outside or near an outside wall or window where the signal is better. It also gives you a better radiation pattern. Where a phone’s built in antenna usually radiates generally in a straight up and down pattern, a higher gain external antenna can give a more rounded radiation pattern, picking up what signal is available better.

In areas where the signal if very weak or non existent, you might consider a cellular power booster / amplifier. A powered amp actually takes the signal, amplifies it then re broadcasts it to your phone. There are many different cellular amplifiers including ones you connect to your phone, ones you don’t connect to your phone that cover a small area like within a vehicle and others that can improve the signal inside a building for multiple users.

We will go into further detail on each option in later entries.

Find more helpful info at Alternative Wireless web site.

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