We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Is Signal Strength?

By G. Wiesen
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
About Mechanics is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At About Mechanics, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Signal strength is a measurement that expresses the quality or value of a particular signal at a certain distance from its source. This is often used in telecommunications with regard to radio or wireless network signals, either through a wide area network or a local one. It typically indicates numeric measurements regarding how powerful the signal is at a certain location, and the way in which these signals are measured can vary. Signal strength can also be discussed in terms of either a strong or weak signal in a particular area.

The term “signal strength” can be used to refer to many different types of signals, although it usually indicates the magnitude of some form of energy used to send information. Radio broadcasts, for example, can be received at different locations in a certain radius away from the source of the broadcast signal. The maximum range at which the broadcast can be received and listened to by someone with a radio receiver is based on signal strength. Locations closer to the origin of a signal typically receive it more strongly, while more distant locations may only receive a weak signal.

Professionals in telecommunications and scientists researching energy and different forms of signals often measure and evaluate signal strength using numerical values. These quantitative measurements indicate the strength of a signal using different scales, though a higher value typically indicates a stronger signal. Wireless network signals and powerful radio station broadcasts both can be similarly measured in terms of decibels (dB) or in milliwatts (mW).

These types of values are not typically meaningful for most customers or users of a network, however, and so signal strength is frequently communicated in general terms regarding qualitative values. This means that words like “strong” and “weak” are frequently used to describe the strength of a signal. Signal strength is often expressed in terms of “bars” for wireless phone signals. This is based on the visual interface on many phones that indicates the strength of a signal using a number of bars on the screen.

There are a number of different factors that can affect signal strength, including distance from a signal’s source and environmental obstructions. Someone may be able to receive a wireless phone signal from just outside his or her home, but entering the house or going downstairs into a basement may disrupt that signal. Energy waves used in telecommunications can typically be interfered with by other emissions or signals, which means that there can be other complications for a signal in some areas. Construction equipment or various electronic devices can all interfere with a signal and reduce its strength.

About Mechanics is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Related Articles

Discussion Comments
About Mechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

About Mechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.