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anyone have any cell phone repeater recommendations?


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#1 nyphonejacks

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 10:42 PM

a guy that feeds me lots of side work wanted me to help him set up his t-mobile cel-fi which is 2 parts.. an antenna unit that goes by a window, and a transmitter unit that you place somewhere inside your home - to increase cellular reception in your home...

i can not find much in the way of schematics for the cel-fi device, so i can not figure out if there is any way to install an external antenna to the device, as it barely registers 1 or 2 bars when near a window.. placing the unit outside increases signal to around 3-4 bars, however placing the antenna unit outside is not an option because the second unit that rebroadcasts the signal does not get the signal from the antenna unit, and because it is not water proof so can not be left outside.

i do not want to open the unit with out knowing if there is an antenna connection on the inside - there is nothing on the outside of the box to add an external antenna - because if i open it and there is nothing to connect an antenna to, the device is going to be returned and they will probably have a problem with the unit being opened up.

if no one can find a schematic for how to connect an external antenna to the tmobile cel-fi then does anyone have any recommendations for cell phone boosters/repeaters that have an antenna that can be mounted outside, and repeat the signal inside of a building?

i totally forgot about UMA that tmobile uses, i will check with him to see if that is an option with the handsets that he has - i believe that he does have wi-fi in his house..

#2 redshift

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 09:46 AM

Have you looked at any Femto Cells? most of the time you need a contract with the provider if you have a 3rd party Femto Cell so it is not really that feasible for the general public (as well as other items that are needed... Thank you FCC :dry:)

You could also look at these 'booster/repeaters'. I have not tested these particular units myself but maybe someone else on these forums has. You could also look at making a PA-LNA-Multiplexer (maybe called a PA-LNA-Duplexer. It is early and I have not gone to bed) ; which is the same thing you will find in the link.

Another question I would have is if this is just for voice, just data or both? That will depend on my answer.

A side note about T-Mobile's UMA. If your friend has a Android device and T-Mobile he will not have true UMA support for his device. Now when I say true UMA support for his device I mean that when he is making a call through WiFi and then leaves the coverage area of the WiFi unit his call will be dropped and not transferred to a BTS. Though it is unfortunate it is a reality that Android users who are with T-Mobile have to live with (I also do not know of any other US cellular provider who offers true UMA/GAN support for Android devices).

<rant>
On another way off side note but kinda relevant to my last point.
Things that Android needs to be the best cellular device period (I already like Android a lot, just a few more add-ons would make it epic)
Voice over LTE (more provider side)
Native SCTP support (The Linux kernel can support it, but still not in Android)
True UMA/GAN support (which can utilize SCTP (again provider side)
</rant>

Edit: Now I know my grammar and spelling suck, but I found one mistake that was just too bad to let go.

Edited by redshift, 26 February 2012 - 04:00 PM.


#3 nyphonejacks

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 04:35 PM

Have you looked at any Femto Cells? most of the time you need a contract with the provider if you have a 3rd party Femto Cell so it is not really that feasible for the general public (as well as other items that are needed... Thank you FCC :dry:)

You could also look at these 'booster/repeaters'. I have not tested these particular units myself but maybe someone else on these forums has. You could also look at making a PA-LNA-Multiplexer (maybe called a PA-LNA-Duplexer. It is early and I have not gone to bed) ; which is the same thing you will find in the link.

Another question I would have is if this is just for voice, just data or both? That will depend on my answer.

A side note about T-Mobile's UMA. If your friend has a Android device and T-Mobile he will not have true UMA support for his device. Now when I say true UMA support for his device I mean that when he is making a call through WiFi and then leaves the coverage area of the WiFi unit his call will be dropped and not transferred to a BTS. Though it is unfortunate it is a reality that Android users who are with T-Mobile have to live with (I also do not know of any other US cellular provider who offers true UMA/GAN support for Android devices).

<rant>
On another way off side note but kinda relevant to my last point.
Things that Android needs to be the best cellular device period (I already like Android a lot, just a few more add-ons would make it epic)
Voice over LTE (more provider side)
Native SCTP support (The Linux kernel can support it, but still not in Android)
True UMA/GAN support (which can utilize SCTP (again provider side)
</rant>

Edit: Now I know my grammar and spelling suck, but I found one mistake that was just too bad to let go.


forgot what device we ended up installing for him, but it was in the $500-600 range i believe, and i really do not think there is much of a difference.. the antenna is on the roof where the cell gets full bars, while the repeater inside the house is lucky to get him 1 or 2 bars.. not even sure if it is an improvement or not...

he does not have the android problem... he has a blackberry and believe it or not a palm pre - he actually changed carriers recently from sprint so had to get a new palm pre... they must have had to go digging in the bottom of boxes to find him a new one... lol..

he never mentioned anything else about it since i installed the repeater for him...

i do share your enthusiasm for android, however i have a shit phone, not because it is android, but because it is a cheap android (samsung dart) unfortunately some people would take their experience with a cheap entry level android device such as mine and assume that they all suck which IMO can hurt the android platform with less tech knowledgeable people who just assume that the crapple iphone is the best thing ever.. .




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