A lot of smartphone users believe that checking for signal means looking at those bars at the top left hand corner of their screen. That’s not very correct. In this article, we’re going to learn how to check signal strength on Android/MIUI.
So anyway let’s get on quickly.
First thing you must note is that those signal bars at the top of your phone don’t mean shit.
Some phones use 3 bars, others use 4, mine uses 5 whilst others can go as high as 7 bars. These bars are just a rough guestimate of how strong your connection is supposed to be and that’s where it ends.
The real tool for checking your phone is hidden deep within the settings and thankfully, Android allows you to check them.
Read: How to look up signal strength on your smartphone
On the iPhone however…that information is not available to you. I have checked on the iPhone X, iPhone 12 Pro and the iPhone 13 Pro Max. These settings are not available to the average user. They used to be available on older iPhones but now, I just can’t find them any more.
Understanding signal strength
Now before we go in to check, we must understand how network is being calculated. This is to help us understand what we’re reading.
Signal strength is measured in dBm and dBm stands for decibel milliwatts.
Standard rule of thumb is that, the closer that number is to zero, the better your network will perform.
For 3G networks
- -40 to -50 dBm (Excellent, you are close to a network tower)
- -50 to -60 dBm (Very good connection strength)
- -60 to -70 dBm (Good)
- -70 to -80 dBm (ok)
- -80 to -90 dBm (poor)
- -90 to -110 dBm (weak)
- More than -110 dBm (unusable or no signal)
For 4G networks
- -50 to -90 dBm (Excellent)
- -91 to -105 dBm (Good)
- -106 to -110 dBm (Fair)
- -111 to -119 dBm (Poor)
- -120 dBm and above (Dead zone)
It’s these dBm ranges that will let you know how well your network is. No guess work.
How to check signal strength on Android/MIUI
- Enter settings
- Scroll to about phone and click on it
- Enter status
- Check for signal strength.
- Enter settings
- Enter about phone
- Go to All specs
- Scroll down to status
- Enter SIM status
Read: What is a Network Frequency band?
So this is my network connection and it reads -95 dBm. This falls in between -91 to -105 dBm which is good.
Lemme switch to 3G
It reads -99 dBm for 3G, which is actually weak.
The only time I have ever gotten -59dBm on both 3G and 4G was when I walked very close to a cell tower. The speed there was mad.
Note that these readings tend to fluctuate but would usually stay within a given range.
With that we’ve come to the end of this post on how to check signal strength on Android/MIUI.
To join our communities and keep the conversation going, check out the following:
- Subscribe to our YouTube channel
- Follow on Facebook
- Join our Telegram community
- Participate on Reddit
- Find us on Quora
- Follow us on Instagram
- Check out the Clubhouse as well