Guest post from our retail partner Powerful Signal
Wilson Electronics has been manufacturing vehicle cell phone signal boosters for many years, but recent developments have made their vehicle cellular amplifiers even more practical, as well as improved the booster’s end performance for increasing cell signal.
In addition to the new technologies in the weBoost Drive line of boosters, there are three critical factors at play here:
1. Widespread implementation of Bluetooth vehicle technology.
2. Cell phone mounting options in vehicles.
3. Interior cell signal booster antenna placement in vehicles.
These each have a significant role in the effective use of your in-vehicle cell signal booster. Here’s how:
What is Bluetooth, and how does work in my car?
Bluetooth is a short-range wireless technology that connects electronic devices together quickly, easily, and often automatically. With Bluetooth in your car, you can make and answer phone calls and listen to music through your connected smartphone, all with the push of a button or even hands-free by voice dictation.
Over the last few years, Bluetooth technology in cars has gone from being a luxury add-on to standard equipment. Almost all new cars sold today include built-in Bluetooth, and you can easily add Bluetooth to an older car with several different aftermarket solutions, from custom-installed systems, to inexpensive plug-in devices, to headsets that require no installation at all.
With Bluetooth, you can place your cell phone almost anywhere in your vehicle and still use it, safely and effortlessly, while you’re driving.
Where should I mount my phone while I’m driving?
Like many of you, I’ve experimented with leaving my phone in my pocket, putting on dashboard, tossing it on the passenger seat, or dropping it in a cup holder. (I’ve also tried leaving it on the floor of my car after making a hard stop.) I’ve used several different types of suction-cup mounts that attach to the car’s windshield; I have a drawer full of these, but I never could find one that didn’t lose suction and drop off frequently, especially when the windshield is hot.
Then I discovered a company called ProClip. ProClip manufactures cell phone mounts that snap into the dashboard or console of your car, without any drilling, adhesive, or suction.
On their website, you can select the brand, model, and year of your car, and it will show you a variety of mounting options for your vehicle. (They make three mounts for my 2014 Ford Fusion: Next to the driver’s left-side vent, next to the driver’s right-side vent, and on the console next to the climate controls.) Then you select a cradle option for your phone’s make, model, and protective case. With their cradle, you just slide your phone in from the top when you get into your car.
Where is the best place to mount my cell phone booster’s antenna?
Before we get into the best place to mount your vehicle cell signal booster’s inside antenna, let me emphasize something important: The broadcast distance for any cell signal amplifier antenna is in direct relation to the strength of the outside cell signal.
In other words, the stronger the cell signal coming from the tower, the farther your inside antenna can broadcast the signal it receives from your booster. The weaker the cell signal coming from the tower, the less distance your inside antenna can broadcast. This means that, while you are driving a vehicle with a cell signal booster, the interior antenna’s broadcast distance is going to fluctuate.
So, the answer of where to mount your inside cell signal booster antenna is near your cell phone. That way, as you drive farther away from a cell tower and the broadcast distance of your cell signal booster decreases, your phone will stay connected to your amplifier as long as possible.
So how do Bluetooth, your cell phone mount, and where you place your booster’s inside antenna all work together?
The best setup in your vehicle
With Bluetooth in your car or a Bluetooth headset, and a vehicle mount like ones made by ProClip, you should mount your phone as close as possible to your cell signal booster’s inside antenna—within a few inches, if you want maximum performance in low-signal areas.
For example, if you attach your booster’s inside antenna to the console panel next to the passenger’s left knee, you should mount your phone cradle near that location: down at the bottom right of the console controls, near the center-mounted shift lever.
In my own car, I’ve mounted my ProClip cradle just to the right of the steering wheel, so I can see caller information and navigation information on my cell phone. I’ve placed the antenna right alongside the cradle, between the vent and the gauges. My phone cradle is only about two inches from my cell signal booster antenna; this allows me to remain connected as long as possible when I’m in weak or shadowed cell signal areas. My car has built-in Bluetooth, allowing me to make and receive calls without touching the cell phone. (A Bluetooth headset would give me the same functionality if my car did not have Bluetooth installed.)
Now I have a place for my cell phone in my vehicle; I am hands-free and legal, no matter where I drive; and, best of all, I have the strongest, most-usable cell signal possible for my phone, allowing me to stay connected in the weakest cell signal areas.