Cell Phones

Phone antenna amplifier

  • Last Updated:
  • Jul 28th, 2020 9:47 am
[OP]
Member
Sep 23, 2019
294 posts
348 upvotes
Toronto

Phone antenna amplifier

I am with Fido/Rogers and sometimes I travel to the cottage area where the phone signal is really bad. I usually have to go to hill closeby to get a cell signal. Is there any Phone antenna amplifier, that I could bring with me and maybe put it in a tree or on top of the cottage roof that would let me get better signal. I cannot imagine how would I connect it to the phone, but still I wanted to ask if there is such thing. I am looking for something cheap - in about 50$ range.
13 replies
Deal Addict
Apr 13, 2005
1666 posts
1689 upvotes
Markham, ON
Don't bother with the cheap garbage.
If you're going to invest money, get yourself a decent booster (WILSON or UNIDEN)
It'll be $400ish to start, but well worth the investment.
It'll only work on 700Mhz LTE
Hi!
Deal Expert
User avatar
Oct 28, 2004
23444 posts
5466 upvotes
Toronto
Curious, you know anyone else on a different carrier?

Perhaps on Bell or Telus?

The other carriers may have better coverage in your cottage area and you might want to consider switching if you spend more time at your cottage and the monthly rates are comparable.

Happened with one of our team’s VPs. At the start of the pandemic, he booted up to his cottage (where he has been there since).

Was on Rogers and his cell coverage was terrible and he was always getting dropped from our conference calls. He since switched to Bell and his calls haven’t dropped since.

His wife is on Telus and she has no probs either.

Might be worth looking into.

FS: Nothing at the moment
Heatware: 63-0-0
Sr. Member
Jul 16, 2013
885 posts
361 upvotes
If u have an iPhone, u can go into your network settings, under carrier, turn auto select off, then search for available network
One of the Fido-ext will work. Essentially u just mannualy switch to telus or bell network. It is charge free because big 3 had agreement to share towers. I don't know why it doesn't work on Android. Good luck.
Deal Expert
User avatar
Oct 28, 2004
23444 posts
5466 upvotes
Toronto
ZenaZ927 wrote: One of the Fido-ext will work. Essentially u just mannualy switch to telus or bell network. It is charge free because big 3 had agreement to share towers. I don't know why it doesn't work on Android. Good luck.
is the bolded true? I know Telus and Bell (and their sub-brands) share towers but I don't think there is sharing between Rogers. Bell & Telus?

FS: Nothing at the moment
Heatware: 63-0-0
Sr. Member
Dec 4, 2017
622 posts
316 upvotes
ji2o0k wrote: is the bolded true? I know Telus and Bell (and their sub-brands) share towers but I don't think there is sharing between Rogers. Bell & Telus?
Yes, this mutual roaming agreement has been in place for a couple of years now. But the automatic network selection can be unreliable.
Sr. Member
Dec 4, 2017
622 posts
316 upvotes
ZenaZ927 wrote: If u have an iPhone, u can go into your network settings, under carrier, turn auto select off, then search for available network
One of the Fido-ext will work. Essentially u just mannualy switch to telus or bell network. It is charge free because big 3 had agreement to share towers. I don't know why it doesn't work on Android. Good luck.
You can manually select on Android.

But the entire roaming process between these carriers seems to be glitchy. Here is a recent thread about it no longer working for one user's iOS devices. I have seen it work sometimes and not others for both iOS and Android users (all subscribed to the Rogers network, trying to get onto Bell as the extended network) in cottage country. I'll stick with the Bell network, which has worked reliably in these areas for years.
Sr. Member
Jul 16, 2013
885 posts
361 upvotes
ji2o0k wrote: is the bolded true? I know Telus and Bell (and their sub-brands) share towers but I don't think there is sharing between Rogers. Bell & Telus?
true
I did before.
Deal Addict
Nov 30, 2016
1468 posts
2042 upvotes
Waterloo Region
VoWiFi is supposed to take care of issues like this. Did you get your phone from your carrier? If it is less than 2 years old you likely have access to Wifi calling. Google how to enable it, or call the carrier support line. If your phone is more than 2 years old or doesn't support VoWiFi, take that money you were going to spend on a booster and treat yourself to a new phone ... from your carrier (iphones don't have carrier restrictions)

I was in the US for a week last year and didn't want to pay for roaming. It was interesting playing the game of "find free wifi before your next call"

Edit: Just saw your budget was $50. Disregard the bold-ed statement
Newbie
Nov 30, 2018
32 posts
5 upvotes
Why does the phone have to be from your carrier?
Deal Addict
Jan 13, 2014
2595 posts
1548 upvotes
Calgary
Rstamp wrote: Why does the phone have to be from your carrier?
In genera, carriers don’t activate the services needed for Wi-Fi Calling and VoLTE on devices they don’t sell. There’s a few exceptions, but definitely not the norm.

As for a booster, bear in mind the booster needs to be able to latch on a signal to begin with in order for it to do its job.
Deal Addict
Nov 30, 2016
1468 posts
2042 upvotes
Waterloo Region
Rstamp wrote: Why does the phone have to be from your carrier?
@Devhux is right. Canadian carriers do not allow phones that were not purchased from them to access VoWiFi. Even phones bought directly from Samsung store or Google store will not support VoWiFi in Canada. iPhones are the only exception.

This is not the case in Europe and some other parts of the world.

EDIT: An RFDer just informed me they were able to get a VoWiFi on a Pixel phone from the Google store to work on Telus. So Telus might the the only exception at this time.
Last edited by Gangsta101 on Jul 29th, 2020 5:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Deal Expert
User avatar
Jun 12, 2007
18617 posts
6030 upvotes
London
ZenaZ927 wrote: If u have an iPhone, u can go into your network settings, under carrier, turn auto select off, then search for available network
One of the Fido-ext will work. Essentially u just mannualy switch to telus or bell network. It is charge free because big 3 had agreement to share towers. I don't know why it doesn't work on Android. Good luck.
I think it's on a location by location basis:

https://communityforums.rogers.com/t5/N ... d-p/371662

Re: Rogers-EXT network does not work
EXT access is provisioned on a location area code basis, so whether you can connect or not can be somewhat arbitrary. In the case of Darlington, it is in the Durham region LAC, which isn't designated for connections on Rogers-EXT. However, in the case of somewhere like Belleville for example, you can connect to EXT because it is a big LAC with rural areas where Rogers may not have adaquate coverage.

It would be nice if Rogers removed this restriction, or even had an add on for using EXT in all LAC's because then we would have coverage anywhere both Rogers and Bell/Telus do, which would be great because coverage is most important to me. AFAIK, there is no way or workaround to get your device to register on EXT when not in a compatible LAC. I would just try to put some pressure on Rogers to let devices use EXT everywhere.

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