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11 Best Cell Phone Signal Boosters of 2021

Based on real world tests
Last update:

Sina Khanifar - Waveform CEO
Written by Sina Khanifar

As CEO and cofounder of Waveform, Sina has been helping people boost their signal since 2006. He has personally tested and installed hundreds of signal boosters.

Sina is a rural broadband advocate and regularly speaks about the value of signal boosters for rural connectivity at wireless events.

He welcomes feedback via Twitter, LinkedIn, or by email to [email protected].

There are hundreds of different cell phone signal boosters on the market.

It's hard to tell them apart.

But not all signal boosters are the same.

I've been testing and installing boosters for the last 15 years.

This is my list of the best cell phone signal boosters on the market in 2021. it's now been read by over 400,000 people – a truly humbling number.

I hope it's helpful to you on your journey to better signal!

How a Signal Booster Works

Boosters work by conditioning and amplifying the signal that's coming to and from the nearest cell tower.

I made a short video explaining how they work.

Hit the play button to give it a watch:

3 Key Things You Should Know About Boosters Before You Buy

These three things will help make sure you focus on the right design and specifications when you choose a booster.

1. Boosters and Gain

Gain is a measure of how much a booster can amplify a signal. It's measured in decibels (dB).

Why gain matters

For most people, gain is the single most important signal booster spec to look at.

How much gain your booster has will often determine the coverage area of your booster.

Gain matters most if you are:

  • Boosting signal in a home, office, or stationary RV

    and

  • The signal outside that you'll be amplifying is quite weak.

The FCC's signal booster gain rules

The FCC sets limits for how much gain boosters can have:

  • "Single carrier" boosters like the Cel-Fi GO X can have up to 100 dB gain
  • "Broadband" or "multi-carrier" boosters made by companies like weBoost, Wilson Pro, and SureCall can have up to between 63 dB to 72 dB gain

There are lower gain limits (65 dB and 50 dB for single and multi-carrier) for "mobile" boosters that are intended for us in cars, trucks, and RVs in motion.

2. Boosters and Power

Cell phone signal boosters have maximum "downlink power" and "uplink power" ratings.

A booster's power ratings only matters in two situations:

If you're installing a booster in a home or office and the outdoor signal is very strong, the maximum downlink power might be important.

However: strong outdoor signal is unusual unless you're in a very large building or in a building with a metal roof.

If you plan to use your booster in a mobile application like a car, truck, or moving RV, then maximum uplink power becomes very important.

When you're at the edges of cell coverage, it's most often the uplink connection that goes first. Your phone simply isn't able to broadcast as much power as the cell tower.

A booster with a high uplink power helps you get coverage at even greater distances from the tower.

3. Frequency Bands

Cell towers communicate with your phone on a number of different frequency ranges, called "bands."

The frequency bands your phone will use depend on:

  • Your cell carrier
  • Where you're located
  • Which towers you're nearest to

The FCC, which regulates wireless spectrum in the US, allows boosters to amplify 5 frequency bands.

These 5 bands cover 4G and 5G for AT&T and Verizon, but only 4G for T-Mobile.

Is T-Mobile Your Carrier?

If your phone receives a 5G T-Mobile signal where you're located, you won't be able to use a booster to amplify that signal.

FCC rules prevent boosters from amplifying T-Mobile's 5G bands at this time. Consider using a hotspot with MIMO antennas instead.

The 11 Best Cell Signal Boosters of 2021

There's no one perfect booster.

In fact, we think there are 11.

Finding the right booster depends on your budget, and how and where you need better signal.

Choose your application to see our favorites:

Key things to know before buying

1,800+ Reviews, 4.93 Average Rating
Waveform Team

It’s hard to compete with Amazon, but we still think we’re the best place to buy a booster online.

Here are a few reasons to consider buying from us:

  • 90-day return policy. Boosters take time to setup, and we want to make sure you’re 100% satisfied with your system.
  • Unlimited technical support from a team of product experts with decades of experience between us.
  • Over 1,800 customer reviews, with a 4.93 average rating.
  • Support a small business that pays fair wages and provides benefits to its employees, including warehouse staff.

The Best Cell Phone Signal Boosters
For Homes & Small Offices

Best Overall: Cel-Fi GO X
1. Best Overall: Cel-Fi GO X
Installation Included: weBoost Installed Home Complete
2. Installation Included: weBoost Installed Home Complete
Blazing Speeds with Minimal Spend: MIMO Antenna Kits
4. Blazing Speeds with Minimal Spend: MIMO Antenna Kits
Best Overall

Cel-Fi GO X

With 100 dB of single-carrier gain, the GO X performs better than boosters that costs thousands of dollars more

Pros

Up to 100 dB gain

Unmatched data speeds and coverage, even if signal outside is weak

Excellent companion iOS/Android app

Cons

Even though 100 dB gain at this price point is excellent value, it's still a pricey system

No support for T-Mobile 5G.

Summary

  • Better performance than boosters that cost thousands more

    The Cel-Fi GO X isn't cheap. But it's still excellent value. Thanks to its 100 dB gain, the GO performs better than boosters that cost thousands of dollars more.

  • Whole-home coverage

    Because of its high gain, the GO X will coverthousands of square feet even if your outdoor signal is quite weak.

  • Excellent app and diagnostic information

    The Cel-Fi GO X comes with excellent iOS and Android app shows advanced diagnostics, which help with aiming the outdoor antenna

  • Single carrier, but software-switchable

    The GO X will only boost signal for a single carrier at a time, but you can switch carriers between AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and US Cellular via the iOS/Android apps.

Before you buy:

  • Verify that you have "usable" signal outdoors.

    Even with all it's gain, you need to have at least 1 bar of reliable 4G LTE or 5G signal outside in order for the GO X to latch onto.

  • Note: the GO X has limited support for T-Mobile 5G.

    We don't recommend buying the GO X (or, in fact, any booster) if your T-Mobile phone is in range of their 5G network. Instead, look at using a hotspot or 5G router with MIMO external antennas to get the fastest possible data rates.

The Details

We think the Cel-Fi GO X is the best cell phone signal booster for homes and offices on the market today.

While it's not exactly cheap, it's still a great value. The GO X performs better than signal boosters that cost thousands of dollars more.

Here's why: if you're in an area with weak 4G or 5G outdoors, a booster's "gain" is critical. Gain is a measure of amplification, and determines what kind of coverage area your booster will provide.

The FCC allows two classes of signal boosters to be sold in the US:

  • Broadband boosters amplify the signal of every carrier equally, and are limited to 65 to 72 dB gain.
  • Carrier-specific boosters amplify the signal of just one carrier at a time but can have up to 100 dB gain.

An extra 30 dB gain might not seem like much, but it actually makes a huge difference. Decibels are a "logarithmic scale" - so 35 dB is actually 3000x more amplification.

Unfortunately, carrier-specific boosters are meaningfully more challenging to build and incorporate a great deal more technology than broadband boosters. That means that they usually cost thousands or tens of thousands of dollars.

That's where the Cel-Fi's GO X comes in: the GO X is a carrier-specific, 100 dB booster sold at consumer-level prices.

You're going to see a much bigger coverage area and much faster data rates with the GO X than with almost any booster out there, particularly if your outdoor signal is weak. This also makes the best cell phone booster for rural areas.

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Installation Included

weBoost Installed Home Complete

The only home booster kit that includes nationwide installation

Pros

Nationwide installation included

Great aesthetics

Broadband booster - works with all carriers

Cons

Small coverage area if outdoor signal is weak

Install quality depends on local tech

Single indoor antenna only

No support for T-Mobile 5G

Summary

  • Need install help?

    If so, the weBoost Installed Home Complete might be the right choice. Your Home Complete will include a installation card that allows you to schedule installation, often as soon as the next day.

  • The Home Complete is a broadband booster

    That means its gain is limited to between 63 and 72 dB. it'll work best if you have relatively strong signal outdoors - at least 2 or 3 bars.

  • Not suitable for commercial spaces

    If you're looking for a booster for a commercial space, look at the weBoost Installed Office 200 instead.

Before you buy:

  • Consider taking signal measurements

    If you have an Android phone handy, take signal measurements outside first. This booster will work best if your signal strength (RSRP) outdoors is at least -80 dBm if you're hoping to cover more than a few hundred square feet.

The Details

In partnership with OnTech Smart Services, weBoost is the first booster manufacturer to offer something unique: nationwide installs in any home.

Every weBoost Installed Home Complete package contains a unique code that allows you to reserve an install slot, often on the very next day.

When OnTech's technician arrives they'll be carrying an excellent signal meter: the Wilson Pro Cellular Network Scanner. They'll use the Network Scanner to find the best location and direction for the outdoor antenna.

The kit that's shipped to you won't include any coax cable. Instead, the technician will cut and crimp RG6 coax that they keep on their trucks. Your cable will be cut to exactly the right size, but RG6 attenuates signal more than other cables.

We love weBoost Installed's nationwide installation as an option for customers. If you can't install your own booster, the Home Complete is a great choice.

The Home Complete is a broadband amplifier that's limited by FCC rules to between 63 and 72 dB gain. Unless you have strong signal outdoors, this weBoost system won't cover your whole home or office.

If you're unhappy with the results you're seeing, you can still return the kit and get a full refund. The only caveat to be aware of is that weBoost and OnTech won't patch the holes that they've made in your walls or the exterior of your home.

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Budget Choice

SureCall Fusion4Home with Panel/Yagi Antennas

A basic cell phone signal booster for those with a limited budget

Pros

Simple, well-designed booster

Directional outdoor antenna

Cons

Small coverage area if outdoor signal is weak

Uses different cables and connectors on the indoor and outdoor antennas

No support for T-Mobile 5G

Summary

  • Solid device for those on a budget

    We've heard from hundreds of customers who've tried this booster and had solid results.

  • Temper your expectations

    The Fusion4Home is a budget booster. It'll cover a few rooms or a small area with better signal, but it's not going to blast through a two-story, 4,000 sq ft home.

Before you buy:

  • Check for usable signal outdoors

    Make sure your signal is "usable" for data and calls outdoors before you buy. While cell phone signal boosters will spread that signal indoors, they won't necessarily make the signal faster or better.

  • Is 500 sq ft coverage enough?

    the Fusion4Home will cover up to 1,000 sq ft, but only if you have quite strong signal outdoors (at least 2-3 bars, or -80 dBm RSRP if you're on Android and can measure your signal strength). If your signal is weaker than that, prepare for the coverage area to be limited to 1-2 rooms.

The Details

The Fusion4Home is a solid budget cell phone signal booster. We specifically recommend using the version with a directional outdoor and panel indoor antenna for best results.

The Surecall amplifier boosts all 5 bands authorized by the FCC, and offers solid gain and downlink output power numbers for a broadband, multi-carrier booster in its price range.

While you'll see a meaningful increase in signal strength from your Fusion4Home while you're near the indoor antenna, the coverage area likely won't extend very far. You can only expect a larger coverage area if your signal outdoors is quite strong.

Something a little strange about the Fusion4Home is that it uses F-connectors and RG11 on the outdoor antenna end, but N-connectors on the indoor end. If you want to extend a cable or add extra antennas, make sure you get the right cables!

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Blazing Speeds with Minimal Spend

MIMO Antenna Kits

These antenna kits will get you the very best data rates, but you'll need a hotspot to use them with

Pros

Cheaper than a booster

Will get you the very fastest download speeds

Cons

Require an additional line of service which often means a monthly fee

Does not help with upload speeds as much as a booster

Summary

  • Excellent download speeds on a budget

    A lot of people looking for boosters are actually looking to use their cellular signal for home broadband. And often they care about getting the fastest speeds possible.

The Details

Test

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The Best Cell Phone Signal Boosters
For Larger Homes and Offices

Boosting signal in a home or office that's over 5,000 square feet?

If so, you might want to consider a booster designed to provide service in larger buildings.

Boosting signal in larger buildings is complicated. Let us help.

We offer custom system designs for buildings over 10,000 sq ft. Reach out to our commercial team and chat through your project. We'll us the building' floorplans to create a full signal propagation model and design a custom solution to ensure strong coverage throughout the building.

Best Overall

Cel-Fi QUATRA 4000

100 dB gain, ethernet distribution, and multi-carrier support make for a winner

Pros

Uses ethernet cable to distribute signal

100 dB gain, yet multi-carrier

Excellent performance even when signal outdoors is weak

Cloud monitoring and alarming

Cons

Relatively expensive

Requires 2 ethernet cables between each network unit and coverage unit

Summary

  • The best enterprise-grade booster available today

    If you're deploying in a home or office that's larger than 10,000 square feet, this is the booster to beat. While it's relatively expensive, it's hard to beat the performance of the QUATRA 4000.

  • Product family includes the single-carrier QUATRA 1000 and dual-carrier QUATRA 2000

    If you don't need support for all three carriers, but still want the other benefits of QUATRA product line, consider these two more affordable sibling products.

Before you buy:

  • Talk to one of our Signal Specialists

    You can't buy the QUATRA 4000 without working with one of our Signal Specialists. The QUATRA 4000 needs to be sold as part of a custom design.

The Details

When it comes to boosting signal in larger buildings, it's tough to beat the Cel-Fi QUATRA 4000. Between our enterprise DAS install (buildings 50k+ sq ft) and commercial design teams (buildings 10k to 50k sq ft), we've designed and installed over a hundred QUATRA systems.

Just a few of the things we've come to love about the platform:

  • Allows use of ethernet cables to distribute signal instead of coax.
  • Offers 100 dB gain for AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile
  • Unmatched scalability - up to 6 coverage units can be connected to one network unit
  • Robust cloud-based monitoring and alarming allows for enterprise-grade SLAs

The QUATRA product lineup has a unique design consisting of Network Units and Coverage Units:

  • A "Network Unit" transmits and receives signal from the nearest cell towers. It is connected to outdoor donor antennas via coax, and provides cloud monitoring and alarming functionality.
  • Up to 6 "Coverage Units" are connected via ethernet to the Network Units, and distribute signal within the building.

This design allows for coverage to be easily expanded with additional Coverage Units, to serve buildings up to and even over 100,000 square feet in size.

If you're interested in the QUATRA 4000, reach out to us! We can provide a complete system design for your building.

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Install Included

weBoost Installed | Office 200

Nationwide installation comes included with this broadband booster

Pros

Includes nationwide installation in commercial spaces up to 35,000 sq ft

2 indoors antennas

Cons

Will only cover a large area if outdoor signal is strong

Omni outdoor antenna limits performance

Weak indoor antenna performance

Summary

  • The only commercial booster system that includes installation

    weBoost's partnership with OnTech installation services has resulted in the only installation program available in commercial spaces.

  • Generous return policy

    With a generous return policy, there's no good reason not to try the weBoost Installed system and see if it solves your signal problems.

  • Will work best if outdoor signal is strong

    Broadband booster technology, outdoor omni antenna, indoor ultra-flat antennas, and RG6 cable all work to limit coverage. So best results should only be expected if your outdoor signal is strong.

Before you buy:

  • Take signal measurements outside

    Take a walk around your building or get up on the roof. The Office 200 will work best if you at least 3 bars of signal (ideally -80 dBm RSRP signal strength) on the carriers you want to boost.

  • Talk to us

    Unsure whether the Office 200 is a fit? Talk to our Signal Specialists. We can help you take signal measurements and make sure that you're making the right choice.

The Details

There's one big reason why the weBoost Installed Office 200 makes it to our list of best signal boosters: it comes with turn-key installation in commercial spaces included.

The weBoost team has partnered with OnTech for signal booster installation. The Office 200 package includes a special code that you can use to book your install appointment online. Installation slots can often be booked as soon as the next business day. OnTech's technicians will come armed with the excellent Cell Linq Pro Signal Meter to help them get installation right.

But the Office 200 has a few limitations that hold the unit back:

  • The unit only comes with an omnidirectional outdoor antenna. This means that the outdoor antenna can't be aimed at the nearest towers to optimize signal quality.
  • The indoor antennas included with the Office 200 are "ultraflat" antennas. While these look aesthetically pleasing, they don't perform very well at higher frequency bands.
  • The Office 200 uses the same broadband, passive boosting technology as the rest of the weBoost product line. This means that the unit's gain is limited to 70 dB, and best results will only be seen when outdoor signal is strong.
  • OnTech's technicians run RG6 coax cable, which is a relatively lossy cable. Depending on the strength of the outdoor signal, you're limited in terms of the length of cable that you can run.

We recommend chatting with us prior to purchasing to help make sure that the Office 200 is the right fit for your application.

Please note: the Office 200 can only be installed in commercial buildings. If you're looking for home installation, look at the weBoost Installed | Home Complete instead.

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Budget Option

Wilson Pro 70 Plus Cell Signal Booster Kit

A booster for commercial spaces for those on a limited budget

Pros

Uses high-quality LMR400 coax cabling

Tried and tested solution that is relatively simple to install

Cons

Limited to between 62 and 70 dB gain - limited coverage when outdoor signal is weak

No cloud monitoring or alarming features

Summary

  • Commercial boosting on a budget

    If you're looking to boost coverage in an office space, retail store, or other small commercial space, the Wilson Pro 70 Plus is a

  • Tried and tested workhorse

    The Wilson Pro 70 Plus has been around since 2015 and tens of thousands of units have been deployed.

  • Up to 20,00 sq ft coverage (but only with strong outdoor signal)

    The Pro 70 Plus is a broadband cell signal booster. While its relatively strong downlink power can support a coverage area of up to 20,000 sq ft, you'll only cover that large of an area if outdoor signal is quite strong.

Before you buy:

  • Take signal measurements

    We recommend taking signal measurements outside the building before purchasing a broadband signal booster. You'll want at least 3 bars of signal outdoors to get a solid coverage area out of the Wilson Pro 70 Plus.

The Details

If you're on a budget, the Wilson Pro 70 Plus is a solid choice for boosting cell signal in buildings of up to 20,000 square feet. However, you'll only achieve that coverage area in ideal conditions, with quite strong and clear outdoor cell signal.

The Pro 70 Plus is available in kits that include either dome or panel antennas. Up to four indoor antennas can be added to the system using our add-on antenna kits or by reaching out to our signal specialist via phone or live chat.

Our enterprise installation team has installed hundreds of Pro 70 Pluses in buildings across the country, and they are highly reliable devices that can work for years without any issues. While the unit hasn't been meaningful upgraded since the launch, and doesn't offer remote monitoring or alarming, the Pro 70 Plus is a reliable workhorse booster that's widely deployed.

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We've only put a few options in this category, but the world of enterprise boosters goes a whole lot deeper.

Honorable mentions go to the SureCall Force5 2.0, Wilson Pro 1300, and Wilson Pro 4300, all of which are excellent broadband devices.

Reach out to our commercial team for specific recommendations based on your building's needs.

The Best Cell Phone Boosters
For Cars and Pickup Trucks

Best Overall: weBoost Drive Reach
1. Best Overall: weBoost Drive Reach
Budget Option: weBoost Drive Sleek
2. Budget Option: weBoost Drive Sleek
Best Overall

weBoost Drive Reach

High uplink power make the Drive Reach our top cell phone booster for cars

Pros

Unmatched 26 dBm uplink power

Excellent hardware design

Cons

Relatively expensive

Summary

  • Uplink power is the spec to check for in vehicle boosters.

    More uplink power allows you to connect further from the tower. That's specifically where the Drive Reach shines.

  • If you have the budget, there's no better cell phone booster for cars and trucks available on the market today.

Before you buy:

  • Heads up: don't buy the Drive Reach expecting "wireless" coverage.

    For best results, you'll want to keep your phone within a couple of feet of the Reach's in-vehicle antenna.

The Details

Vehicle boosters are very different to building boosters.

When you're driving around, you move from areas with very strong signal to areas with very weak signal. It's when you're at the very edge of cell coverage and signal is the weakest that a booster makes a difference.

The reason your phone stops working at the edges of cell coverage in rural areas is that the signal from your phone can no longer reach the tower. The limiting factor is the transmit (or "uplink") power.

The cell tower's signal can easily reach your phone since towers transmit at very high power levels. But your phone is battery-operated and limited in terms of its transmit power, and the signal doesn't make it back to the tower.

That's where a booster can help. And, specifically, it's where the weBoost Drive Reach shines. It has the highest uplink power of any booster on the market at 26 dBm.

The gain of broadband vehicle boosters is limited by the FCC to 50 dB. Unfortunately, that means that in-vehicle boosters are never truly "wireless" - you'll get the best results if you keep your phone within a foot of the indoor antenna. We recommend using hands-free calling for best results.

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Budget Option

weBoost Drive Sleek

If you're budget-conscious, take a look at the Drive Sleek

Pros

Nicely designed cradle fits almost any phone

Great value

Cons

Lower performance than our top pick

Only works with one phone at a time.

Summary

  • Can't afford to spend $500 on our top pick? The weBoost Drive Sleek will boost signal for a single phone, but don't expect a similar improvement to the Drive Reach.

  • The Sleek is a "cradle" booster that requires you to place your phone in a holster.

Before you buy:

  • Make sure you understand the compromises you're making (single-device, lower uplink power/performance) compared to the more expensive Drive Reach.

The Details

At $200, the weBoost Drive Sleek is an excellent value. We're particularly big fans of the cradle format, which keeps your phone near the booster's antenna, even though it limits you to boosting signal for just one phone.

As we explained in our Drive Reach review above, uplink power is the critical spec when it comes to vehicle boosters. The weBoost Drive Sleek is limited to a maximum 22 dBm uplink transmit power, compared to 26 dBm for the Drive Reach. 4 dBm might not seem like a whole lot, but it actually has a big impact on real-world performance.

That being said, the Drive Sleek is less than half the price of the Reach. If you're on a budget, the Sleek is a solid performer that's worth consideration.

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The Best Cell Phone Boosters
For RVs

For Stationary Use Only: weBoost Destination RV (470159)
2. For Stationary Use Only: weBoost Destination RV (470159)
Best Overall

weBoost Drive Reach RV (470354)

The best-performing signal booster that can be used both when stationary and when moving

Pros

Unmatched 26 dBm uplink power

Excellent hardware design

Cons

Limited coverage area - signal drops off quick from internal antenna

Omnidirectional outdoor antenna makes it less effective when your RV is camped and stationary

Summary

  • Where the Drive Reach RV shines is in uplink power, which tops out at 26 dBm. When you're out on the edge of coverage, this is the single spec that matters the most. There's no other booster that will work as well as the Reach at the edges of a cellular network.

  • While the Drive Reach has great uplink power, it is limited by the FCC to just 50 dB gain, which means it won't provide a large coverage area. You'll need to keep your phone or hotspot near the indoor antenna for best results.

Before you buy:

  • Since the Drive Reach doesn't offer much of a coverage area, you need to figure out how to spread the data rates available next to the booster around the RV and camp site. We recommend either tethering other devices via wifi, or using a 4G/5G hotspot.

The Details

The weBoost Drive Reach RV is our top recommended RV booster. It's high uplink power rating (23 dBm) means that the Reach RV will allow you to connect where other boosters won't.

However, there are two caveats to be aware of:

  1. The Reach RV is a broadband mobile booster and limited by the FCC to 50 dB gain. This means that it won't have much of a coverage area - you'll need to keep your phone or hotspot near the indoor antenna to connect. You may want to keep one device near the booster and use wifi to connect other devices.
  2. The Reach RV comes with an omnidirectional outdoor antenna. Using a mast with a directional antenna (see our other recommendations below) may work better when your RV is stationary and parked.

We think the Reach RV is the right compromise between mobility and signal performance for most users, but if you're primarily concerned about boosting signal when your RV is parked and stationary, take a look at our next option.

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For Stationary Use Only

weBoost Destination RV (470159)

Best cell phone signal booster for use in stationary RVs

Pros

Includes 25' telescoping mast and directional antenna that help you get above obstructions to the best signal available

Excellent uplink power rating (25 dBm)

Cons

Can't be used when RV is moving

A bunch of setup each time you move from one location to another

Summary

  • If you spend most of your time in your RV camped out in one location, the weBoost Destination RV is the best RV booster available.

  • Unlike the Drive Reach RV and other mobile boosters, the FCC allows stationary devices to have 65 dB gain. the extra gain allows for wireless coverage up to 30 ft away from the indoor antenna.

Before you buy:

  • Just remember: the Destination RV can't be used on the road, only when you're parked. It's really the only drawback of the unit.

The Details

Many RVs and trailers spend most of their time stationary in campgrounds. And campgrounds often don't have great cellular signal.

The weBoost Destination RV is designed specifically to provide the best signal when RVs are stationary. With a mast, directional antenna, and up to 72 dB gain, the Destination RV is designed around use in one specific location at a time.

The FCC's rules limit the gain of cellular amplifiers to 50 dB when moving, and to 72 dB when stationary. The Drive Reach operates under the second set of rules for stationary boosters. That means that each time you park your RV, you'll need to pull out the 25' extendible mast, and aim your outdoor antenna towards the nearest tower. But the included mast allows you to get above obstructions to the best cell signal available, and means for those willing to take the extra time, they'll see even better results than with our top-recommended Drive Reach.

If you want connectivity while camped in remote areas, the RV 65 is hard to beat.

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The Best Cell Phone Boosters
For Boats

Best Overall

weBoost Drive Reach Marine Kit

The best signal booster for marine and boat applications

Pros

High uplink power means the best offshore connectivity

Includes weBoost's tried and tested marine antenna

Cons

Signal attenuates quickly as you move away from rebroadcast antenna, so for best result devices should be kept nearby

Summary

  • When you're out on a boat, signal gets weak as you move away from shore. The key to better coverage is a booster with high uplink power, and that's where the Drive Reach Marine shines. No other booster compares.

  • Because the Drive Reach is classified by the FCC as a "mobile booster" it's limited in gain. You won't get a huge coverage area, and might want to consider tethering or using a hotspot to give other devices access via WiFi.

Before you buy:

  • Make sure you understand the coverage limitations of the Drive Reach. You'll need to keep your phone or hotspot right near the Drive Reach's paddle antenna for best results.

The Details

The weBoost Drive Reach Marine Kit is the best cell phone booster kit for boats on the market today. We've been told time and time again that it provides the best coverage when you're off-shore.

The reason the Drive Reach Marine kit works so well on boats is that it's been designed to have the highest uplink power possible (26 dBm!). When you're at the edges of cell coverage, uplink power is what helps you stay connected for voice and data calls.

However, even though it's our top booster, the Drive Reach Marine isn't without compromises.

Like all marine kits, the Drive Reach Marine is considered by the FCC to be a broadband, "mobile" booster kit. That means it is limited to 50 dB gain. The result of this lower gain number compared to "stationary" boosters is that it won't provide much of a coverage area - just a few feet at most.

So, for best results, you'll need to keep your cell phone or hotspot near the kit's rebroadcast antenna. You may want to consider use a hotspot to rebroadcast the 4G LTE of 5G cellular signal as WiFi if you need wireless cellular coverage.

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The Best Cell Phone Boosters
For 4G/5G Routers and Modems

The best option for boosting signal for 4G and 5G routers and modems actually isn't a traditional "signal booster" at all.

We actually recommend connecting MIMO antennas directly to your hotspot, without any kind of booster at all.

Check out our antenna guides for 4G/5G hotspots to find information specific to your model, or look at the antennas we recommend below.

Some of the most popular hotspots on the market today include the Netgear Nighthawk M1 MR1100 and the Netgear Nighthawk 5G.

Best Overall

MIMO Log Periodic Antenna Kit For Hotspots

Great performing antennas, work best if you know direction of towers or have line of sight

Pros

Includes everything needed to connect to most hotspots/routers

Up to 11 dBi gain

Optional lightning surge protectors

Cons

Works best if you know the direction of your nearest towers or have line-of-sight

Summary

  • Our MIMO log periodic antennas are our top external choice recommendation for most people.

  • These antennas have relatively high gain, and work best if you know the direction of your nearest towers, and ideally if you have line of sight.

Before you buy:

  • Check the connectors on your hotspot or router prior to purchasing.

  • Most hotspots have either TS9 or SMA external antenna ports, but some hotspots don't have external antenna ports at all, and can't be used with these antennas.

  • You can also look for your hotspot in our device-specific external antenna guides.

The Details

If you're looking to get the very best data rates possible, using MIMO antennas with a 4G or 5G hotspot or router is your best bet. MIMO antennas work even better than boosters.

Log periodic antennas are highly directional antennas with between 8 and 11 dBi gain. These log periodic antenna kits combine two antennas in a MIMO configuration and include ultra-low-loss coax cable, adapters, and a J-Mount.

Not only are MIMO antennas cheaper than boosters, but they also get you the very best data rates. We couldn't recommend them more highly.

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If You Don't Have Line of Sight

MIMO Panel Antenna Kit For Hotspots

Slightly lower gain than our top pick. Use these for an easier, simpler install if you don't know the exact direction of the nearest towers

Pros

Easier to aim than other MIMO antennas due to lower directivity

Easy to assemble

Cons

Slightly lower gain than our log periodic antenna kits, and thus slightly lower performance

Summary

  • If you don't know the exact direction of the nearest cell tower, and you don't have clear line of sight, this MIMO panel antenna kit is the best choice.

  • The MIMO panel has lower gain than our log periodic antennas. As a result, they're less directionally sensitive. That makes them easier to set up and aim.

Before you buy:

The Details

This MIMO Panel Antenna Kit includes everything you need to improve signal for your 4G or 5G hotspot or router.

These antennas have slightly lower gain (8 dBi) than our log periodic antennas (11 dBi). That makes them meaningfully more forgiving: they're easier to set up and less sensitive to the exact direction of the nearest tower.

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