Mobile Hotspot Tips

Explore these tutorials to discover the key features, user interface and customization options for your NETGEAR AirCard® device.

Improve Signal

Since performance is dependent on signal strength you will want to ensure you have the best signal to obtain optimal speed and battery experience.

Your hotspot has two signals that need to be optimized – the mobile broadband signal from your Network Operator that lets you access the Internet, and the local Wi-Fi network signal from your hotspot that lets you connect all your Wi-Fi devices.

Improving the Mobile Broadband Signal

The mobile broadband signal that your device receives from your Network Operator is impacted by many factors including the distance that you are located from the nearest cell tower, the number of concurrent users in your cell area, and geographic barriers such as buildings and mountains.

You can get an idea of your current signal strength by looking at the number of signal bars on the LCD (maximum 5 bars). For a more exact measurement of the signal strength, open the Homepage and view the WAN status from the Advanced Settings menu.

To improve signal strength, try relocating the device away from interference. In fringe areas an external antenna accessory may help to boost signal strength. To find an external antenna accessory for your mobile hotspot check with your Network Operator.

Improving the Wi-Fi Signal

The Wi-Fi signal range generated by your mobile hotspot can be modified. By default, the range is set to a more battery-efficient short range; however, this can be adjusted through the Homepage to a longer range. Depending on the mobile hotspot model and whether the device is used indoors or outdoors, the short range can be up to 120ft / 30m and the long range up to 375ft / 90m.

Where To Place Your Hotspot

Here are some general tips on where to best locate your mobile hotspot to improve mobile broadband and Wi-Fi signals:

  • Keep 1-2m away from electronics that generate RF interference, such as a laptop, microwave, TV, or portable phone
  • Place the hotspot device so that the signal can pass through a window, doorway, or drywall and avoid concrete, brick, metal and walls with insulation.
  • Place the device in a central location

We also recommend that you avoid moisture and extreme temperatures.
If you are experiencing week signal, try re-orienting your device and moving it and your computer to another location.