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General Signal...

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by joeyray15, Sep 29, 2010.

  1. joeyray15

    joeyray15 Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    Nov 9, 2009
    Is there anything I can do to get a better signal? I have one 3G bar all the time no matter where I am. I tried a *228 option 2 and it didnt help. Any other codes or suggestions. It is my 2nd Eris and I know Verizon wont take back a "low signal" phone.


  2. OfTheDamned

    OfTheDamned The Friendly Undead

    Oct 29, 2009
    Right Behind You
    Go to Settings > About Phone > Status and look at your signal strength. This will give you an accurate reading of what kind of signal you are receiving. If your signal is -80 dBm or "higher" you may not be getting the best signal. To further test you can find Speedtest.net or Speedtest in the market.
  3. erisuser1

    erisuser1 Well-Known Member

    Nov 11, 2009
    There is absolutely nothing you can do from a software perspective that will improve your signal strength (when communicating with a given tower).

    There is a small chance that updating your PRL by dialing *228 and choosing option 2 will allow you to communicate with other towers in your area (for instance if you were in an area that formerly was served by Alltel).

    In general, the only things you can do to improve signal are:

    1) Move to an area with a better signal
    2) Change the orientation of the phone, or the way you hold it in your hand.

    "Bars" don't really mean anything. You should look at signal strength in dBm (see Settings -> About phone -> Status, or use a signal monitoring app that reports strength in "dBm" units)

    For instance, my phone will show 4 bars at -65 dBm, and only two bars at -72 dBm; but I can make calls and get data down to about -105 dBm.

    To give you an idea about why "Bars" are absurd, let's look at the example above: -72 dBm is 7 dBm weaker than -65 dBm; 7 dBm difference is a factor of 5. So, "-72 dBm" is five times weaker than "-65 dBm". That seems like a lot, right?

    But now compare -105 dBm to -65 dBm; a difference of 40 dBm. That "-105 dBm" signal is 10,000 times weaker (!!) than the "-65 dBm" signal ... and you can still make calls!

    In general, a "good" signal will be something greater (more positive) than -90 dBm. There are benefits to having a strong signal, which are:

    1) Your battery will discharge less rapidly because the radio needs to use less power communicating with the tower, and
    2) The S/N (Signal to Noise Ratio) will be higher, and you will get somewhat better throughput on the mobile network.

    Unfortunately, the only thing you can do to improve the signal is to move the phone, or change it's orientation. One thing that you might find surprising is that - because cellular wavelengths are quite short (about 1 foot), you can get fairly large differences in signal strength over rather short distances. (This happens most frequently when there is multipath reception taking place - typically indoors or in dense urban environments. )

    What I would do would be to have a look at the signal strength on your phone (in dBm units) at a lot of widely separated locations. If you are always seeing signal strengths below (more negative than) -100 dBm, then something is probably wrong with your phone; OTOH, if you see everything between -70 dBm and -115 dBm, there is nothing wrong with your phone.

  4. prj

    prj Well-Known Member

    May 26, 2010
    If you were a former Alltel customer in an area taken over by Verizon you might try this...

    Flashing the VZW/Alltel Hybrid PRL( Helps a lot for some !) - xda-developers

    Worked for me especially when it came to battery life. I just flashed this earlier this week.

    You can also change your SID numbers which may help also. Refer to this site.


    All of these can be changed by accessing the programming menu - ##778 then hit the call button.

    You can also dial *611 for Verizon customer service and they will give you the SID number for your area.
  5. Peter123

    Peter123 Well-Known Member

    Nov 20, 2009
    I have the signal strength at settings/about phone/Network (XtrSense)...

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