Cell Phone Frequency Guide
Radio waves that carry mobile communications are defined by a frequency that is expressed by a number measured in megahertz. This number represents a range of frequencies and not the cell phone frequency itself. The 700 MHz frequency ranges from 699 MHz to 798 MHz, for example.
Bands that carriers use are numbered and may be assigned to one exclusive carrier, or shared by many carriers. The 700 MHz cell phone frequency range is comprised of multiple bands (12, 13, 17, etc.) and is used in the United States and Canada, and all other ranges are similarly comprised of multiple bands.
Cell phone signals are simply radio waves that operate on various frequencies:
- 3G normally operates at the 800 MHz and 1900 MHz frequencies. Therefore, a “dual-band” amplifier will boost those two bands that make up 3G.
- 4G / LTE can operate at the 700 MHz, 800 MHz, 1900MHz or 1700/2100 MHz frequencies. Therefore, a “five-band” amplifier will boost all of 3G and 4G.
Why Do I Need to Know This?
You’ll need to know which frequencies your phone operates on to purchase a booster that is compatible with it, or to ask the right questions when you decide to buy a cellular device that is not manufactured by your service provider. When you purchase a new phone, you need to be sure that it is compatible with the calling frequencies (MHz) and data connections (2G, 3G, 4G LTE, 5G) used by your network. Cellular phones, repeaters, amplifiers, and antennas are frequency-specific. The boosters you buy need to support the cell phone frequency used by your carrier in the area you plan to use them. PRO-CELL signal boosters are compatible with all cell phone carriers and all phones on the five major frequencies listed above.
Cell Phone Frequency Lookup
You can easily determine the frequency of your cell phone in your given area. Visit wirelessadvisor.com, enter your zip code, and hit the search button. A list of all the cell phone carriers in your area will appear. Find your carrier on the page and cell phone frequency is listed next to ‘SYSTEM:’ in MHz. They may have more than one frequency listed, and which one they use at a given time can depend on your location.
Please refer to our toggle chart below to find out more about the frequencies/bands generally used by cell service providers in the US.
My Carrier Isn’t Listed
Many carriers are not listed, but this table lists information on MVNOs that rent coverage space from large carriers, and therefore use the same frequencies/bands. Also visit Wikipedia for more information on MVNO relationships with big carriers.
|AT&T||Owns and operates its own network|
|Consumer Cellular||AT&T, T-Mobile|
|Net 10||T-Mobile, Sprint, AT&T, Verizon, U.S. Cellular|
|Project Fi||T-Mobile, Sprint, U.S. Cellular|
|Sprint||Owns and operates its own network|
|Straight Talk||Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon, AT&T|
|T-Mobile||Owns and operates its own network|
|Tracfone||Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon, AT&T, U.S. Cellular|
|U.S. Cellular||Owns and operates its own network|
|Verizon||Owns and operates its own network|