Getting reliable cellular service in far-off areas is usually a challenge for many reasons. Logistically, mobile carriers have limits and their service coverage may be inadequate due to the lack of cell towers in a region. Another major factor is signal interference. Almost all foliage can absorb cell phone signals. Geographical features like mountains and hills can completely block mobile signals. Even atmospheric conditions can hinder mobile reception.
Here are some ways to troubleshoot your mobile reception problem. Some of them can get pretty expensive, but if you’re really desperate to equip your remote vacation getaway with good cellular reception, these options can definitely get the job done.
Check the available mobile carriers in the locale.
First off, check which service providers are operating in your area – if there’s any at all. The next step is to inspect their coverage maps and see if your far-off cabin getaway is within range.
Third-party websites like OpenSignal and CellReception can also be helpful in this regard and can even display cell tower locations for certain countries. CellReception, in particular, is made for users in the United States and has a feedback section for each carrier’s performance in the listed cities.
If you find yourself with unreliable mobile reception in your area, you’re probably at the edge of your carrier’s coverage. Consider investing in a signal booster kit to improve your place’s signal strength. A popular on-the-go option is the weBoost Drive 4G-X Signal Booster Kit, which supports all major carriers and multiple users. There are countless other alternatives here, so do some research first before purchasing a unit.
Go the Internet route for mobile services.
It’s highly unlikely that you will have Internet services in an area that lacks mobile coverage. Setting up satellite-based Internet can be an option, but it’s expensive to setup and the data costs are very high. Only consider this if you’re really desperate to provide Internet connectivity to your remote vacation home.
Online services and apps like Viber and Line can facilitate mobile services such as texting and calls.
Buy a satellite phone.
A satellite phone can be used practically anywhere in the world. Aside from providing cellular coverage, it can also be used for Internet connectivity. Unfortunately, like satellite Internet, satellite phones and the associated services can be pretty pricey.
Nowadays, it’s not that hard to purchase a satellite phone. Amazon has plenty of them in stock, and there are a lot of other online stores out that that deal with the gadget.
Build your own mobile cell tower.
This is probably the least feasible method of the bunch, but it will get the job done – so long as you know what you’re doing.
Al Lounsbury, an engineer of networking tech company Ciena, wrote a blog post detailing how he built a personal mobile cell tower to improve the mobile signal in his remote cabin home.
Getting mobile service in far-off places can be a challenge, but it’s not an insurmountable problem. Be prepared to invest time and money in order to successfully troubleshoot your cell phone reception woes away.