Apple’s iPhone signal strength is fake?
Firmware version 2.1. It is supposed to display “more accurate” signal strength. Well... it appears that “more accurate” may mean “unreasonably generous.”
Users can actually see the results of iPhones dB meter. Dial *3001#12345#* then press “Call”. A dB reading below 50 generally indicates good strength.
Here's what I've got:
iPhone Atlas reader Michael did some testing, and found that widely varying dB readings resulted in the same five-bar signal indicator on his iPhone. He writes:
“After I upgraded to 2.1, I did indeed notice a consistent indication of ‘5 bars’ of signal strength. Then I learned how to put my iPhone in field test mode so the phone displays an absolute signal strength indication of dBm rather than a relative signal strength indication of ‘bars.’ You can then tap the signal strength to switch between the two. I have done an informal survey and observed the following:
- -50 dBm = 5 signal bars
- -75 dBm = 5 signal bars
- -80 dBm = 5 signal bars
- -95 dBm = 5 signal bars
- -113 dBm = 5 signal bars
Michael’s results beg the question — does iPhone OS 2.1 really provide more accurate signal strength indication? Or does it simply inflate the signal strength reading?
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