How to quickly fix weak cellular signal strength for your iPhone

“There’s nothing more frustrating than trying to use a phone in an area you know has cellular signal or data connection only for it not to work,” Jason Cipriani writes for CNET. “There’s a lot that goes into providing your phone with consistent voice and network connections, and there are bound to be hiccups during that process.”

“Thankfully, most of the time fixing an issue with your phone’s signal is simple and only takes a few seconds,” Cipriani writes. “Toggling your phone’s connection is the quickest and easiest way to try and fix your signal woes… Open Control Center — iPhone X-series users can swipe down from the top-right corner, older iPhone models swipe up from the bottom of the screen — and tap the Airplane Mode icon. It will turn orange when it’s enabled… Wait about up to a minute before turning it off.”

“Our phones are miniature computers, and just like computers, sometimes you can fix issues by restarting them,” Cipriani writes. “If you’ve used an iPhone for a while, you’ve probably seen an alert, even if just briefly, that your carrier settings are up to date. Those updates help the iPhone optimize connectivity. To force your iPhone to check for a carrier settings update, open Settings > General > About on your phone. If an update is available, you’ll be prompted to install it.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Yes, try the Airplane mode trick first before rebooting your iPhone (which is what we eused to do to fix weak cell connections in areas where we knew there was good cell service.

If that fails, to force restarting an iPhone X, XS, XS Max or iPhone 8:

1. Press and release the volume up button.
2. Press and release the volume down button.
3. Press and hold the side button until the screen turns off and then back on; release the side button when the Apple logo appears.


  1. Wow, Cnet is top! I am thinking of writing reviews now. If this type of paper can get traction… We are in for a downslope ride…

    Nevermind, I hate Cnet…

  2. Yes, you can toggle it and you will suddenly get full bars back again, but they fade away over the next few minutes, and honestly the call sounds just as good, and dropped calls are still a thing of the distant past.

    Has anyone else noticed (at least on AT&T) when you call another iPhone user, the call quality is BRILLIANT. The call is loud, clear, static free, not muffled at all. It sounds better than any land line call or VOIP call I’ve ever experienced. I always wonder is it like this on all carriers? It doesn’t happen if I call an Android user though.

    1. it’s called HD voice. It works either iPhone to iPHone, or iPhone to any Android phone that supports it (Samsung, LG, etc.) . However, both phones need to be on LTE for it to work . carrier doesn’t matter. Except I don’t know if T mobile supports it. Verizon and ATT do.

  3. I’ve started getting a little 5Ge note on my screen as well lately, in some areas of Los Angeles, like on the UCLA campus.

    My download speed with the 5Ge note is around 80Mb/s.
    My upload speed with the 5Ge note is about half that.

  4. Remember when “it just works” was an accurate description for Apple products?

    Now iPhone users here are advocating rebooting like we were discussing Windows 95. The irony is sickening.

    I am not impressed with Apple’s quality mediocrity of late.

    1. Not really advocating it per say. I just notice that when the phone is off a fresh reboot, it shows all bars for a few moments. Then I think it feels bad for lying to you and tells you the truth. Either way, that call quality is excellent.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.