How to Speed Up a 3G Connection

By Richard Kalinowski

Third Generation mobile technology, often called 3G for short, provides high-speed Internet connectivity on your cellphone. 3G technology allows for download speeds as fast as 14.4 megabits per second and upload speeds as fast as 5.8 mbs, according to DSL IP Guide. This maximum connection speed is fast, but a 3G phone still can perform sluggishly if your device experiences glitches or if your signal strength is weak. 3G cellphones rarely reach the maximum operating speeds, but there are methods available to help speed up a 3G connection.

Things You'll Need

  • USB cable

Step 1

Restart your mobile phone. In some cases, minor software glitches on your cellphone can slow down the 3G network. Think of your phone as a miniature computer. Just like a home computer, a phone can experience minor operating bugs. Rebooting the phone purges the system and starts fresh, without certain errors. Some errors may remain, however, if the errors tend to appear during the boot cycle.

Step 2

Update your phone's software. Restarting the system sometimes offers temporary relief, but long-term glitch prevention will require updating the phone. Many smartphones will download updates automatically when they are connected to a computer with a USB cable. With the latest updates installed, your phone will run smoother and surf 3G networks faster.

Step 3

Close peripheral applications. If your phone uses several online apps, consider closing these down before you browse the web. While instant weather updates, online messaging and other Internet apps are fun, they consume bandwidth and slow down your 3G speed. If you want a faster connection, get rid of clutter before going online.

Step 4

Move close to a window or go outside if possible. Like a regular cellphone signal, 3G wireless signals are weaker indoors. Get out into the open for a faster 3G connection.

Step 5

Make sure your Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) card is properly attached to your phone. A loose SIM card can greatly diminish signal strength, according to CNet. Every phone's SIM card is in a different location, and some require special tools for access. Consult your user manual for details, or visit your mobile phone provider's storefront.

Step 6

Reset your mobile phone to factory conditions. If your 3G phone is still very slow, you can restore your phone to its original, fully functional condition. This is only useful for people who notice a general decline in 3G speed. If your phone used to be fast, then it became slower over time, a system reset can return the mobile phone to its earlier operating condition. Just remember, a full reset will delete your personal information, so backup any address books, music or pictures before resetting your 3G phone. To reset your 3G mobile device, you will need to locate "Reset" or "Restore" in the "Tools" menu, and you will likely need to provide a password. If you don't know your administrative password, call your service provider for details.