The majority of pages which mention stick-on cell phone boosters are
on sites which sell the item, or offer it as a free premium when you
buy something else. I've gathered together a selection of
non-commercial remarks about the booster, and the news is not good...
"Remember the old saying: If something sounds too good to be true, it
probably is? We wanted to see if that was the case with a 'sticker'
the size of a postage stamp. It promises to get rid of the static and
drop-outs on your cell phone... Joe Gockowski saw the ads on TV. 'They
showed this guy sticking a sticker basically, on the phone, and it
didn't show how it boosted the antenna, but he said it would,' he
said... when asked his thoughts on the product: ('Overall experience
with the sticker is I don't think it improved the reception
significantly to warrant going out and buying the product.' Joe says
based on his marginal results, he can't see spending more than $5.00
on an antenna booster."
KOMO-TV News: Cell Phone Boosters: Does It Work?
It's always a bad sign when a product has its own section in Justin
Leonard's "Infomercial Scams" site:
Infomercial Scams: Antenna Booster
Here are a few negative reviews of stick-on cell phone boosters (the
only positive reviews I could find were from sites which were selling
"The only way we could get the reception to ever change was to move
closer or farther to the towers, now if the 'antenna boosters' are
only sold (and to be used) closer to the towers, then perhaps we can
see them working."
Pocket PC Magic: Do those antenna boosters really work?
"All antennas are optimized for each cell phone. That stick on thing
is a gimmik. It can even interfere with your reception!... Apparently
cell phone users are a great target market for electronic snake oil...
If you place it in the exact center of the back of the phone, raise
your left leg 46.8 degrees and blink repeatedly, it will increase
PDAGeek: Antenna booster boosts your wallet
"Sure you have seen it on Television and at flea markets. Some of you
have even bought them and paid anywhere from $2.00 to $50. They call
them Internal Cellphone antennas, patches etc. They claim the same
thing. Increase your range, works indoors, even in an elevator. As
SEEN on TV says one ad. Looks simple enough. All you have to do is
place this 'Circuit Board' sticker behind your phone and you are
supposed to get amazing results. The fact is, this is all a scam. The
device does not work... Without getting into the physics of why it
does not work, ask yourself why this product carries no FCC label and
there are no independent laboratories to back up their claims? We have
tested the device and found that the signal strength never increased.
The device does nothing. Suffice it to say that those people that have
purchased it have been scammed."
Cell Antenna Corporation: INTERNAL CELL PHONE ANTENNA: A FRAUD !!
Here's an interesting messageboard post regarding a legitimate
"Not all boosters are scams. Most are, but ONLY 3-watt power
amplifiers work. Note that these are not the 'Sticker boosters' that
you just place behind a battery. This is electrical hardware antenna
and amplifier you plug into your phone. These boosters are currently
only compatible with TDMA, CDMA, PCS, and GSM phones.
If you want to find more information out goto a search engine and look
for 3-watt cellular booster amps or something similar to that.
These work well in cars, homes, and work. Just stick the external
antenna close to a window or outside.
If you decide to buy a 3-watt amplifier, make sure that your phone has
a direct electrical connection for an external antenna. Inductive
pick-up wasn't so effective compared to phones with direct connection.
If sticker boosters worked, I'm sure mobile manufacturers would have
stuck them on all their phones a long time ago."
Mobiledia Forum: Signal Boosters
It should be noted that there is a very different sort of product that
is also called a "cell phone booster." This is a device that provides
a battery boost, and it seems to be legit:
"The Good Housekeeping Institute just tested six products to power up
cell phones and found two favorites.
Travis Martin, Good Housekeeping Institute: 'These products say that
they'll provide extra power when your phone battery goes dead. So to
test this, we drained both Nokia and Motorola phones and tried to
charge them as if we were making an emergency call. We found very
different levels of performance among these products. Many weren't
able to hold a charge long enough to place a call, let alone hold a
conversation. But the good ones were able to provide a charge within
several minutes - enough for a call.'
Good Housekeeping says The Instant Power 2 In 1 charger worked best.
Its oxygen power gives you extra talk time immediately."
KGO-TV: Cell Phone Boosters
Search terms used:
"cell phone booster(s)"
"cell phone amplifier(s)"
Thanks for asking an interesting question. I had wondered about these
gizmos myself. If anything I've said is unclear, or if a link does not
function, please request clarification; I'll be glad to offer further
assistance before you rate my answer.