Boosting signal strength



My first post and pleasure to be here.

I have just purchased 4 HTC Hero phones for my family on the 3 Mobile network. I chose 3 Mobile mosrly for Skype.

I was not happy to find that the coverage here - East Yorkshire - is 1 bar about 5% of the time - no Internet, phone and text virtually non-existent. The service is not useable.

Are there any solutions out there for boosting the 3 Mobile signal to at least useable levels?


andy d

Android Enthusiast
Have you had 3 mobile before ?.
My son has 3 and in London he says it is brilliant.
But when he comes to visit us in cheshire it is totally useless.
Have a look at an updating your radio thread. It's a bit of a faff, you would need to root your phone and the outcome is marginal at best. Worth a go I suppose though. Nothing to lose (unless you brick your phone in the process :D)
It might be the Hero's,
I had problems with signal strength (had to send it back eventually :() in my area .
All other phones on all networks worked great except for the Hero.
For the record 3 has always been far superior in my area



turn the 3g signal off and it should get a better signal if it is currently connected to 3g and not the standard network


Well-Known Member
Wouldn't it have been more prudent to have bought 1 to try out and then the. Other 3 once you were happy that the phone/network combo was what you needed?


Are there any solutions out there for boosting the 3 Mobile signal to at least useable levels?

Take them back & complain to 3 about poor reception due to their network.....if you are lucky, they may let you off from the contracts!

Moral of the story, buyer beware - always check network reception or at least ask. Then at least if they say "yeah, should be fine" & the signal quality is poor, you have some comeback with them......


Network reception can be very patchy.

I ordered a hero through t-mobile on-line and when it arrived I had one bar / zero signal in my house (despite their on-line checker saying I should have 50% minimum). The sim displayed the same poor signal in other phones so it was definitely a network issue rather than the hero. I returned it for a full refund (a useful side effect of an on-line phone / contract purchase is that you have a cooling off period) and bought a sim free version which I'm using on O2 (excellent signal at home).
I am in East Yorkshire too and the reception was so bad with a previous 3 phone that I vowed never again! Got mine on Orange and there are only a few places in the county where reception drops.
If you can get it changed, do so.


Android Expert
The other thing is the online signal strength will be an indication of outdoor signal. I fell for this once as it said 2 bars minimum but signal in the house was terrible.


I had a 3 phone in 2005 and swore I would never get another one after problems with network reception. Then because they said the network was better and new phones were making a difference and they were offering such good deals I got an LG Viewty about 18 months ago. Same problem! They say they change to another 2G network (Orange I think) when you can't get reception on 3 so you should always have a good signal. I don't think so.

I live just outside Glasgow and really struggled to get reception in some areas. It doesn't seem to switch over to Orange properly... Sometimes I would be getting a load of 2G bars but not able to make or receive a call. Very annoying. They gave me all this chat when I told them I was leaving and that it was because of reception. They said new handsets were better, network was better, I should be getting good coverage where I am. Now on vodafone and quite happy!

Good luck.



Android Enthusiast
Apart from the other suggestions in this thread, have you considered a GSM/GPRS repeater?

Not cheap, but worth it to get a better reception at home at least, I have been considering getting one as my signal on Orange is marvellous most places but very patchy at home - typical! Just make sure you get one that is compatible with the bands that 3 uses.



Before choosing 3 u should use the coverage checker from 3 website first:).
3 is not the best for signal actually. It worth a try to install the latest radio roms
I'm also using 3 and the signal is often bad indoor though outdoor is great. Maybe I will change to orange or Vodafone next month:rolleyes:
One more thing which is really annoying from 3 is when u use the option "2g only", mobile internet is useless. I cant stand that, 2g saves battery significantly


Well-Known Member
This is potentially a massive concern for me. I've noticed that I'm getting only one or two bars on my phone - when I live only a couple of hundred metres away from the mast.

Previously, my N95 8Gb would display the 3.5G symbol, but I'm mostly only seeing the '3G' symbol on my Hero. The 'H' symbol very occasionally appears, but mostly with no bars.

What I found with 3 on my N95 was that, instead of the network automatically transferring to the Orange network in an area without a 3 signal, you had to choose to do this manually. In the phone's manual network selection, there would be two '3' networks - one was the primary 3 network and the second was the fallback option on Orange's network. Manually selecting this would then give me a signal in remote areas - sometimes even an EDGE signal, which was fantastic! Prior to doing this, I had always made the assumption that alternating between networks was automatic, which was why I'd presumed 3 was pretty crap in rural and less developed areas, seeing as I didn't get a signal.

Unfortunately, I'm unable to select a second network from my Hero whilst I'm in my home area - I don't know if this is because the Hero is somehow not allowed to jump on to the fallback network or if it's because it's unavailable to me.

My Hero does not enable me to switch between 2G and 3G, either.

As I'm housebound at the moment, I'm unable to try out the phone in other areas, which makes me wonder what happens if I find out later that the phone is truly useless in different parts of the country that I might travel to? I don't want to be stuck with an expensive multimedia brick.