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dBm: What Is It and How Does It Relate To Cellular Signal?

Updated: Jan 3, 2023

dBm: What Is It and How Does It Relate To Cellular Signal?

When we’re in the middle of a phone call, and it suddenly drops, one of the first things we go to check is how many bars we have. But the problem is that this isn’t the only thing indicating cellular signal quality. Bars are more of a simplified version of this. Learn about dBm, what it is, and how it relates to cellular signal.

What Is It?

The decibel milliwatts—also known as dBm—reflect the quality of your cellular signal. While bars also do this, their measurements aren’t as accurate. This is why you could have three bars but poor call quality. And because bars don’t properly reflect signal power levels, you don’t get a precise reading when relying on them to determine strength.

What’s dB?

dB stands for decibel, which we also use when measuring cellular signals. While dBm measures the power level, dB also measures power level, but we only use it when discussing how two values relate. However, we’ll use dBm as we discuss that power level.

Checking Your dBm

The pathway to finding your signal differs from phone to phone. On an Android phone, follow these steps:

  1. Open your settings

  2. Tap “About Phone”

  3. Select “Status or Network”

  4. Tapping “SIM Status”

People who own iPhones can check their signal quality by:

  1. Calling *3001#12345#

  2. Finding and tapping on “LTW or Menu”

  3. Finding and tapping on “Serving Call Meas”

  4. Pulling up rsrp0

Regardless of phone type, once you’ve done this, you’ll find a reading of your phone strength ranging anywhere from about -50 to -110 dBm.

How To Improve Your Signal

So, now that you know what dBm is and how it relates to cellular signal, it’s time to talk about solutions. It may be time to invest in a cellular signal booster since they improve signal strength. How do cell phone signal boosters work? They have three main parts: an outside antenna, an inside antenna, and an amplifier. The booster strengthens your signal by amplifying and rebroadcasting the weak signal using these parts.

How do you find the best signal? Begin by walking around the outside of your property with the dBm reading open. Doing this helps you find out what area has the best signal, so search for the number closest to -50. Once you’ve found that area and purchased the best cellular booster for your needs, you’ll know where to install your outside antenna. Be sure to read all our tips for installing a cell signal booster.

Shop for the best cellular booster at SureCall Canada! As mobile signal booster suppliers, we sell various cellular signal boosters for home, commercial, and vehicle use so all users can improve their call quality. Improve your dBm reading today!


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