Why do we lose signal in some buildings?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by iMas70, Jun 27, 2013.

  1. iMas70 macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    I pretty much know why (in a way) but... why? I'm thinking the steel that some buildings are constructed of block the signal. But that doesn't happen in all buildings. Like my daughter's school, I have no signal at all. And I was in a hospital today. Nothing. But I've been in other hospitals and schools and have had full signal. And that signal wasn't WiFi. Why is that?
     
  2. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #2
    Proximity to your providers tower also plays a lot in the reason why. You may have had full signal in some of those places if the tower was nearby or even on the building itself.

    Additionally, some places use BDA's or bi-directional amplifiers, inside their facilities to boost cellular signals for the people inside where the tower's signal just isn't effective enough.
     
  3. Jimbo47 macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    At the college I go to, most of the buildings except for the 2 newer ones are built out of cement block, and I basically go down to 1 bar and no data when in those buildings. Campus wifi comes from one location, and doesn't reach through the buildings.
     
  4. Mrbobb macrumors 601

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    #5
    Why worry something u have no control over? Unless you are a firefighter and your life depends on the radio no matter how deep you are in a building.
     
  5. Menel macrumors 603

    Menel

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    #6
    Proximity to towers.

    Some places have in building repeaters, common for hospitals for reliable communications.

    Brick is a strong absorber of RF energy. Lot of schools are cinder block.
     
  6. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #7
    I don't think that's what he means. It appears to me he is asking so he can have knowledge and understanding of the reasons why he either has signal in a place or doesn't. There's no harm in asking.
     
  7. FlatlinerG macrumors 6502a

    FlatlinerG

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    #8
    Think about all of the obstacles that the signal has to travel through. The typical office building is god awful for reception because of the design of the building. Cables run through floors, ceilings, etc, fluorescent lights, metal used all throughout, and many other electronics. All of those sorts of things can and will cause interference with your cell reception.
     
  8. iMas70 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    Yup, nothing wrong with learning something new! :)

    I can go 50 feet into the local high school and have absolutely no signal. While I can go into the elementary or middle school a half mile away and have at least 2-3 bars.

    I started to really think about this tonight while in a hospital. No signal. But I've been in other hospitals and had full signal.
     
  9. dictoresno macrumors 601

    dictoresno

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    #10
    alot of it has to do more with the actual frequency of the signal, more than it does with the proximity to the tower. this is an age old question, that gets beaten to death time and time again. the good old CDMA vs GSM, 850 vs 1900 mhz building penetration.

    the lower frequencies, like at&t's 850 mhz, penetrate buildings better than lets say verizon or t-mobiles 1900. in fact, the building im in now has full signal outside on both at&t and verizon phones, however inside verizon's signal drops down to one bar and at&t's stays at full signal. you can scour the web all night for this, as there are plenty of articles discussing the effects of radio signal/frequency/building penetration. pair the above with the different types of building construction and you have alot of variables.
     
  10. Mrbobb macrumors 601

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    #11
    But you are not gonna get an answer, to the point of being able to do anything about it, that's what I mean.

    There are of course many variables. So OK you learn what those are. So now what? When you get into a building, do they post signs on different rooms that says, faraday cage here, expect bad cellular signal! Nope.

    OK you want to be a radio engineer? fine, get a degree, I don't think browsing through Wiki will be enough.
     
  11. Interstella5555 macrumors 603

    Interstella5555

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    #12
    Yeah, heaven forbid you actually try and learn new information.
     
  12. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #13
    Why are you being so negative towards this member? He's merely asking a question so he can understand the reasoning behind the signal. I didn't see anywhere, where he was going on a mission to change things once he found out.
     
  13. Menel macrumors 603

    Menel

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    #14
    Many schools are brick, large cinder block. Brick has high RF absorption. That is not surprising for schools. But different schools are built differently, and are different distances from towers.

    Some hospitals use in building signal boosters fir interior cellular coverage.
     
  14. Applefan4 macrumors 6502

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    #15
    It's your service provider. I don't lose signal even in carpark basement.
     
  15. osofast240sx macrumors 68030

    osofast240sx

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    #16
    I have installed in building cell systems in NYC for buildings with poor cell signal.
     

    Attached Files:

  16. osofast240sx macrumors 68030

    osofast240sx

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    #17
    A pic of the actual antenna
     

    Attached Files:

  17. Interstella5555 macrumors 603

    Interstella5555

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    #18
    Based on post posts [and spelling] he's a 12 or 13 year old who knows everything and has to let everyone else know that he does.
     
  18. hafr macrumors 68030

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    #19
    Since we're talking about schools and hospitals, places where they usually frown upon usage of cell phones, one reason might be that they've installed signal jammers.
     
  19. flashflooder macrumors regular

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    #20
    that would be illegal.
     
  20. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #21
    Can you provide actual examples of this in a school or hospital?

    Which law specifically prohibits this practice?
     
  21. Menel macrumors 603

    Menel

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    #22
    http://www.fcc.gov/encyclopedia/jamming-cell-phones-and-gps-equipment-against-law

    Jamming Cell Phones and GPS Equipment is Against the Law

    In recent years, the number of websites offering “cell jammers” or similar devices designed to block communications and create a “quiet zone” in vehicles, schools, theaters, restaurants, and other places has increased substantially. While these devices are marketed under different names, such as signal blockers, GPS jammers, or text stoppers, they have the same purpose. We remind and warn consumers that it is a violation of federal law to use a cell jammer or similar devices that intentionally block, jam, or interfere with authorized radio communications such as cell phones, police radar, GPS, and Wi-Fi. Despite some marketers’ claims, consumers cannot legally use jammers within the United States, nor can retailers lawfully sell them.
     
  22. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #23
    Thank you for that. :)
     
  23. hafr macrumors 68030

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    #24
    Not in the US.
     
  24. HankHowdy macrumors 68040

    HankHowdy

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    #25
    Hotels do this so you have to buy their wifi.
     

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