fbpx
MEGATech Reviews: weBoost eqo Cell Phone Signal Booster
Pros
  • Very quick and easy to setup
  • Works with all carriers
  • No monthly fees
Cons
  • Questionable effectiveness
  • Relatively small coverage area
  • Cumbersome cabled connection
5.5Overall Score

Do you have problems with dropped calls in your home? Are you tired of looking down on your phone to see that you’re barely hanging on with but a single bar of reception? If you don’t feel particularly inclined to climb up on your roof to install an external antenna, the weBoost eqo could be a far simpler and more convenient solution to provide your home with far better cell phone coverage. At least that’s the idea.

No More Dropped Calls

MEGATech Reviews: weBoost eqo Cell Phone Signal Booster

Cell phone signal boosters have existed for practically as long as cell phones themselves. Years ago, I reviewed a compact external antenna — about the size of a Kindle — that literally plugged into the back of my Motorola flip phone. While there are much larger and much more robust solutions meant to cover much larger areas, the weBoost eqo is a more modest offering that’ll give you up to 1,500 square feet of better reception.

The package consists of two main parts, both of which have been adorned in fingerprint-attractive glossy black plastic. The “booster” is what grabs onto existing cell phone signals, amplifying those to give you better coverage away from your window. The “antenna” is the other unit and this is what will actually deliver the boosted signal to your mobile device.

These are physically larger than I had expected, measuring about 12 x 9 x 4 inches each. They’re not going to be all that inconspicuous in your home, even if the antenna can be wall-mounted. On the bright side, the weBoost eqo should support the majority of carriers and bands in North America, covering both 3G and 4G frequencies. You can check the weBoost website for a full list.

A Literal 60-Second Setup

MEGATech Reviews: weBoost eqo Cell Phone Signal Booster

You might think that setting up a contraption such of this can be overwhelmingly complicated and difficult, but it is no exaggeration to say that you can be up and running in under 60 seconds. Literally.

First, place the “booster” unit near a window where you have the strongest signal in your house, ensuring that the front of the booster faces the inside of the room. Second, use the provided cable to connect the “booster” with the “antenna,” placing the latter at least six feet away and facing in the same direction. Third, plug the AC adapter into the “booster” to give it power. Wait for the solid green light and you’re in business.

That’s it. Realistically, this poses two main challenges. First, you need to find the best location for the booster. Depending on the depth of your window ledge, this might be easier or more difficult. Second, you’ll want to find the least ugly way to run a thin cable across the room to the antenna. Remember that you need at least six feet of separation.

Does the weBoost eqo Actually Work?

MEGATech Reviews: weBoost eqo Cell Phone Signal Booster

For the purposes of our test, we used a ZTE Axon Pro on the Fido network (Rogers) in Canada. My home has always suffered from sub-par coverage. I never get a dropped call, but I never get to see “full bars” on my phone either. To measure the signal strength, I simply went in the “status” section of “about phone” on the ZTE Axon Pro. For reference, a reading of -60 dBm is better than -100 dBm. Hit -120 dBm and you’ll drop calls.

In the above test, the booster unit was placed on a windowsill near the front of the house on the lower level. As you can see, the improvement is quite negligible and can feasibly be attributed to natural variation. For this test, I allowed the eqo to run for several hours before grabbing the “with eqo” reading. I then unplugged the unit, waited a minute, and took a “without eqo” reading. A difference of 2 dBm doesn’t mean much in the real world.

MEGATech Reviews: weBoost eqo Cell Phone Signal Booster

In the second test, I tried placing the booster unit on the upper floor, near a window toward the back of the house. I propped it up such that it wasn’t sitting right at the base of the window either. I also ran the cable at least a couple of feet further to the antenna unit than I had in the first test. I reversed the order too, picking up the “without eqo” reading and then plugging in the eqo and taking a “with eqo” reading a couple minutes later.

Even so, the improvement offered by the eqo was once again negligible: about 4 dBm. Following up a couple of hours later from the same location, the “with eqo” reading was still about the same. If anything, I saw it fluctuate anywhere from -89 dBm to -97 dBm, and this was when I was relatively close to the antenna. Stepping a few feet away, I’d start to see signal strength readings as poor as -105 dBm.

MEGATechie More Bars for Everyone or MEGATechie Lost in the Echo?

MEGATech Reviews: weBoost eqo Cell Phone Signal Booster

In looking over customer experiences with the weBoost eqo over the web, I found quite the mixed bag. Some people are saying that they really do get a significant improvement in cell phone reception in their homes, whereas other people are finding practically no improvement at all. In speaking with the representatives from weBoost, they indicated that this does work best when you start with a better signal.

Given this, since reception in any part of my home has never been great, the weBoost eqo may not be all that useful of a solution. Your mileage may vary. For my part, I am disappointed at the questionable performance, coupled with the larger design and inconvenient cabled connection between the two units. And seeing how the weBoost eqo is listed at US $349.99 ($499.99 in Canada), I’m not sure it’s worth the money.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Share This With The World!
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •