The best app for measuring WiFi, carriers just got better

Nate Swanner - Jul 10, 2014, 2:06pm CDT
The best app for measuring WiFi, carriers just got better

Whether at home or on the run, a good mobile connection is often important. If you’ve got work to do while traveling, or just want to check on your own home connection, this simple app can help you. Even better, the iOS version received an update today, making it faster and much more responsive.

Open Signal is the handiest tool to have in your arsenal for measuring your own WiFi performance, or finding a connection elsewhere. You can run a speed test on your own WiFi, or turn it off to measure the signal strength of your carrier. Open Signal uses your results to map mobile networks, which comes in handy when using their coverage map function to find how good your signal strength is in any given area.

The coverage map shows the signal strength from carriers in the area, and also shows you which is best in your immediate vicinity. Zooming out will give you a broader range, letting you plan accordingly. The Dashboard feature is all about WiFi, where you can find a WiFi hotspot in your area. Dashboard can also show you where cellular towers are, if you need to migrate to an area with a stronger signal.

Speedtest is Open Signal’s barometer for success, though. Be it cellular of WiFi performance, a quick test will give you information on your download/upload performance metrics. It’s handy for simply testing your mobile network performance, but also unique in identifying weak WiFi spots around the home. IF all that weren’t enough, Open Signal also tracks your data usage, a handy reference tool she things don’t add up on your bill.

Other apps, like “Free WiFi finder” on the App Store will offer similar services to Open Signal, but none do it as well. No other app we’ve been able to find does as comprehensive a job at measuring signal strength and finding WiFi hotspots as Open Signal. It’s also free, whereas some others charge you for their service. It may not be an app you’ll use all the time, but Open Signal comes in very handy when you need it to, and that’s what matters the most. You can get Open Signal in the App Store or via Google Play.

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