The Craziest Way To Boost Your Mobile Broadband Signal

by admin on December 30, 2009

in News And Views

This Made Me Laugh…

I just found this video by accident and I had to post it. As a follow up to our popular post on How To Boost Your 3G Mobile Broadband Signal this has got to be the cheapest (probably free for most people!) mobile broadband signal booster you can find. Now you can forget about building a diy 3G antenna or buying a high gain external aerial for your dongle, this is a completely home-grown version that everyone should be able to try out.

I don’t want to say any more but watch the short video. It really seems to work, watch the right hand side of the graph. It made me laugh anyway! Oh, and if anybody tries this and has any success, please let me know in the comments section. Enjoy!

{ 52 comments… read them below or add one }

rhino July 4, 2012 at 2:08 pm

it worked like crazyyyyyyyyyyyyyy thanks

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Mr Bill June 3, 2012 at 8:46 am

OK, OK, you nearly had me there…

Then I got to thinking, this would need to be a very coordinated joke with all these comments. I live in country Australia and get 4 bars with Telstra but it’s reaming me with costs ($150 for 10GB and I use about 20GB a month!) There is no land line where I’m staying (in a shack) so I’m pretty much screwed.

Anyway, DODO (through Optus) has a really good deal on at the moment (15GB peak + 15GB off peak + 5GB to join for just $79! through Dick Smith). If I can get my 30GB to last me 2 months (it’s valid for up to 90 days) I’m down to a “normal” broadband cost of about $40 a month which I can live with but Optus doesn’t have great reception here (Clayton Bay SA).

Anyway, I decided to take the punt and sure enough when I got it back I was only getting 1-3 bars and download speeds of only 80KB/s (Telstra was delivering 600KB/s+ on 4 bars). So I decided to see if I could find a way to boost my signal (I was expecting software boosters or external antenae). That’s when I came across this post.

For about 30 minutes I just watched the video and read the comments and thought it was a big joke you were all having and people like me would get a pot and try it and you would all laugh at how gullible I was. Well, in the end I did try it (not much to lose – right) and guess what?

That’s right 5 FULL BARS!!

Unbelievable. Download speeds are up to 200KB/s!! Not as fast as Telstra but I can live with that and it’s almost a tripling of my speeds!! So, thanks for posting this – you made not only my day but my job (I build mobile websites) much easier!

Thank you! I’m still chuckling and it’s been over an hour now.

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woz September 26, 2011 at 10:57 pm

seems to be working, would be great for Livingstone with mobile broadband

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Rob June 30, 2011 at 3:36 pm

This is freaking great, been using clear 4g and I’m in between 2 towers so I get disconnected continuously. Just added a extension cable to the antenna and put it in a metal mixing bowl and wallllaa!!! I havent been getting disconnected and I doubled my download rate (5m av to a 10 meg av) and doubled my upload rate from 500kbs to 1m upload rate! THANK YOU!! No more latency issues for me on wow!

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Oz April 17, 2011 at 2:29 pm

Lmao, just dropped my Virgin Mobile Mifi into my wifes giant soup pot, No more buffering on you tube, no game lag, no more cussing. How something so simple can make your life happier.

Thanks for sharing,

Oz

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MobileBroadbandTech March 3, 2011 at 11:11 pm

Well I would like to see how this guy pulls out a solution for mobile broadband if this does work that be great :P

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Mark Woods January 8, 2011 at 2:51 pm

No idea on the craziest but the best way is to avoid using 3 :)

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marco October 1, 2010 at 4:53 pm

lol it works thought it was a wind up, put my dongle in frying pan and from getting gprs signal only now get 3g and hsdpa at nearly 1MB on t-mobile, let it fry lol, cheers

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Capt-Hal-Jordan August 28, 2010 at 8:18 pm

[...] A much more portable (and available device is a banana).[...]

ring ring ring ring ring ring ring…banana phone!!!!

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Top Engineering College in Jaipur July 3, 2010 at 8:07 am

Thanks for this great update! Just planning to buy a 3-G phone and hopefully your article will help me huge!

Bookmarked you in my delicious account so that your website don’t slip out of my mind!

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Rob May 14, 2010 at 5:15 pm

A much more portable (and available device is a banana).

See here:
http://lastplaceonthe.net/improve-iphone-signal-banana/

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Pay-as April 5, 2010 at 5:00 pm

What can you do to speed up your mobile broadband if you dont use a dongle?
I’ve got a notebook from Orange with mobile broadband built in, the signal in the area I live in fluctuates all the time.

If the notebook wasnt wifi enabled most of the time it would be useless.

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Daniel Kuhlman March 31, 2010 at 7:12 am

Wow, a little late i see. but, i have a rooted droid and use the wireless tether app. threw my droid in a pan and to my surprise my signal jumped to four bars from one. i cant get high speed internet at my house because i live in the middle of nowhere. finally, highish speed internet connection in the middle of freaking nowhere

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Elyon March 9, 2011 at 5:38 pm

man im in the exact same boat your in but high speed internet in my area is only 3 miles away from my house and the company refuses to run a line and i have a big hill blocking my house form the cell tower :(

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Koushik March 20, 2010 at 12:12 pm

It is an excellent improvisation for a reflector. Awesome!

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Stefano March 4, 2010 at 10:16 pm

Could you tell me what is the name of the signal measurement application the guy used in the test? I tried a simple app (Mobile Data Monitoring Application), but after I started the monitor I can not connect to the net (H3G Tre Mobile Italy) with my mobile (Nokia 6120classic connected to PC with USB). Or also I am interested in an app I can run on my mobile (Symbian S60 3rd based) if anyone has an idea…

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E Mobile Broadband February 22, 2010 at 5:38 pm

Oh that’s hilarious! I think mobile broadband’s brilliant because it’s just so easy and convenient, but I can’t imagine the developers thinking “I wonder what would happen if…” and reaching the conclusion SAUCEPAN.

Sarah

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stony g January 26, 2010 at 6:43 pm

I wonder if sticking my dongle onto an LNB on a satellite dish will work..?..!

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Rob May 5, 2010 at 7:59 pm

I did and it took my signal strength from 6% to 13%. Dish is flipped upside down and on a camera tripod pointing out a window on the second floor…3G stick is in a plastic box at the old feed-horn location.

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Chris Marling January 21, 2010 at 12:39 pm
David January 4, 2010 at 8:38 pm

Last time we went camping we kept loosing connection in the field when trying to collect our emails. Now I know what to do. You may have saved my family life in conjunction with my photography business!

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andy January 4, 2010 at 1:21 am

lol, so now besides my 17″ vaio i have to carry a 9″ pot to have good reception ? ^^

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springphul January 1, 2010 at 2:13 pm

Hi,

I used aluminium paper to do the same ;-) .. Im interested in that particular SW.. what r U using and is it a free software?

springphul

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Dave January 1, 2010 at 12:22 am

This is your dongle…

This is your dongle on broadband…

Any questions?

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Brocktoon December 31, 2009 at 8:18 pm

I remember seeing an article like this many years ago where a guy mounted a usb dongle horizontally in a colander and pointed it around his neighborhood to get a wifi signal.

Also, the second page of this article has a focal point calculator that you can use to maximize your wok-fu.
http://urbanwireless.info/index.php/antennas/dish-with-usb-feed

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brooke fadem December 31, 2009 at 7:36 pm

Well I’m not sure how I feel about carrying a sauce pan around with me. I do have horrible service though in my house and I’ve been looking at a product called zBoost from Wi-Ex. Does anyone have this product or have any input because from reviews I’ve read it seems to improve signal a lot.

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Peter Zalinski December 31, 2009 at 7:09 pm

LOL — I love it! He’s turning the omni antenna into a boosted directional antenna — we should be able to get the same kind of boost by putting it on a metal platter or a steel desk.

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Pat Vandamme December 31, 2009 at 5:37 pm

I have to try this! You all are so funny…! Thanks for making me laugh out loud!!

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Podginater December 31, 2009 at 3:44 pm

Yes this is pretty cool, any parabolic shape will boost radiowave reception is also works if you put it behind a router to reflect the signal in the direction you want it.

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Freddy Fluchel December 31, 2009 at 3:18 pm

I am in the US and have a Sierra Wireless USB Connect 881U on the dreaded AT&T network. I tried this here and my signal went down from -86dBm to -100dBm. I wonder if the type of metal affects it. I tried different configurations, with the pot on the side, the modem laying down or standing up and I was not able to create a significant increase in reception. I’m going to try with different pots and see if that makes a difference. I also have an old DirecTV dish (somewhere!), in which I’ll try positioning the modem at the end of the LNB and aim the dish towards the tower. Can’t hurt!!

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ciqoff December 31, 2009 at 3:15 pm

Neat! Add some garlic and onions while your at it.

By the way, you could also try wrapping your fingers(at least two) around the modem and then wait for a couple of seconds. Your body will serve as a big hunk of fleshy antenna, thus (hopefully) improving the signal. It ain’t guaranteed to work, but in desperate moments what do we have to lose, eh?

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Tony December 31, 2009 at 2:52 pm

I’m not sure this proves anything to do with 3g connection improvement at all. I have the same modem as in the video and the connection speed you’re showing is only at about 50-70 kbps. This says to me that the modem is only connected at GPRS (2g) speeds and is at a different frequency to 3g connections. I have trouble with my modem connecting but only at 3g speeds (2g and hsdpa are fine) and I would like to see a video demonstrating a connection improvement at 3g frequency. I know that the sotware in the video has the cabability to totally turn off 2g and 3g connections independently so this should not be hard to demonstrate. The software in the video also shows you what connection type is presently being used but the video conveniently doesn’t show that side of the screen.

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David Jackmanson January 1, 2010 at 3:56 pm

Tony, my modem was constantly connected to either UMTS or HSDPA (3G) and not GPRS (2G) when I tried this. I have the same model of modem and the software is much the same (except it has Virgin Australia branding and not the branding of whatever this guy’s network is).

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menor January 30, 2010 at 6:06 pm

Tony, it’s not kb/s but KB/s with a big B, mean byte. So, if it’s 60KB/s = 60X8 = 480kb/s. Almost 0.5 Mb/s. And I believe no GPRS connection can do such thing.

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Jay B April 12, 2011 at 12:55 am

I’m delighted I found this. 3G signal was weak and intermittent. Shoved the modem into a wok, aimed it at the base station – - speed increased 5 fold and is 100% stable.

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Duane December 31, 2009 at 2:44 pm

Awesome – I see a new Rap Singer fad coming. Hanging a double-boiler pot on your neck so that your ATT/iPhone gets decent speed !

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John Berns December 31, 2009 at 2:08 pm

How timely!

I live in Thailand and was visiting my girlfriend’s house outside of Bangkok for New Year’s Eve. She has broadband scheduled to be installed next week–but for now, the only internet available is EDGE.

I tried connecting my laptop to the internet by EDGE and it was CRAWLING. I had seen you post earlier in the day, asked her to bring a pan from the kitchen and put my mobile phone into it (much to the amusement of her entire family) and damned if it didn’t immediately speed up the connection.

Who woulda thunk it!

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owluca December 31, 2009 at 10:01 am

Hey folks,

believe an Italian engineer : that is not the right way to cook a USB dongle ;-)

anyway my papa, who is in a chalet on the Alps with poor signal, will try this trick today ….

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willbill December 31, 2009 at 7:45 am

this is awesome cool. I thought this is a joke. I hope this is worth a try.

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Cemre Güngör December 31, 2009 at 6:55 am

I loved the guy’s Finnish accent and the euroshopper tuna fish can on the table :))

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Jerramy December 31, 2009 at 6:46 am

Worked for me great,with my cellphone. went from 1 to 4 bars in my kitchen, which is an awful place to try to place a call. Sweeet!

As already said, good to know for when you’re camping. Usually have a pan, never can get a signal…

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admin December 31, 2009 at 12:45 pm

Thanks Jerramy, how are you making it work with a phone?

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Podginater December 31, 2009 at 4:00 pm

Put your phone in the saucepan

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Bay December 31, 2009 at 3:45 am

What happens if you turn on the heat?

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David Jackmanson December 31, 2009 at 3:40 am

I just tried this and it seemed to work very well.

I have the exact same model of broadband dongle as the guy in the video (a Huawei E220) and usually get very poor download speeds in my room (I have lousy line-of-sight to the nearby mobile towers).

I put the dongle in a steel mixing bowl near my computer and watched a couple of YouTube vids. Normally I have to put the vid on pause and wait for it to download before I can watch it – this time it just played as if I had a real broadband connection.

Seems to be very good so far. I will buy a mixing bowl just for this and see if the speed improvement keeps up.

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admin December 31, 2009 at 12:44 pm

That’s awesome David, thanks for the field report, maybe I should get into the mixing bowl business before this blows up!

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Arnham December 31, 2009 at 3:17 am

But you need the tinfoil protection the most when you go on the internet! Clearly you would need 2 pots/pans

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Registry Cleaners December 31, 2009 at 2:39 am

Well you can always wear the pan on your head as a form of tin foil protection when you’re on the go. Very portable.

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Byron December 31, 2009 at 2:29 am

This would be ideal for camping, always have some pots or pans when I go camping…

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AimlessSage December 31, 2009 at 2:09 am

I have done something related with a cellphone and the metal frame of a school bus. You can Add 2-3 bars easily by increasing the size of the antenna.

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funkyrider December 31, 2009 at 12:10 am

Well the problem is, you have to carry around the friggin’ sauce pan with you on the go. Not quite ‘mobile’ is it?

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admin December 31, 2009 at 1:36 am

maybe this could start a new fashion trend :D

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