More business owners are working and learning from home than ever before, and there’s no telling how long this period will last. It’s already provided employers with a stark look at the realities of network speed and capabilities, and millions of people every day across the United States are likely questioning why their data is so slow as they attempt to download files, check email or video conference with colleagues.

Unlimited Data Plans Don’t Equal Faster Speeds

With the increased availability of unlimited data plans, the average smartphone user in the U.S. now consumes more cellular data than ever before, which can lead to networks getting bogged down and users experiencing slow data speeds. This issue can be infuriating for business owners, and the issue can be compounded if they miss out on a professional opportunity due to poor network speeds.

The most recent Mobile Data Consumption Report from NPD Connected Intelligence found that cellular data consumption on smartphones in March 2020 was up by 75% year-over-year and 27% month-over-month. This increase in usage was driven primarily by increased time spent using video conferencing platforms and viewing content via OTT video apps.

Given the rapidly increasing cellular data consumption needs among typical smartphone users, it’s no surprise that more business owners are concerned than ever before about their ability to consistently access their network so they can efficiently and effectively run their companies.

Other Causes of Slow Mobile Data

The quality and speed of your phone’s data connection can be affected by several factors, including how far away you are physically from nearby cell towers. In addition, building materials used in the construction of your home or vehicle can slow data speeds because cell signals can’t easily pass through metal, concrete or energy-efficient windows. Terrain such as hills, trees, mountains, foliage and rocks can also play a part in hampering data speeds.

Tips for Increasing Speed

Fortunately, there are several steps consumers can take to increase speed on their phones, mobile hotspots and other devices, including:

  • Establish a baseline

The first step towards determining why your data is so slow is to specifically define the problem so you can establish a baseline and measure the improvement. To begin, try using an internet speed test app to see just how slow your data is. This will provide you with the point of comparison you need after you’ve tried to solve the issue using the below recommendations. Then, after you’ve tried some of the tips you can retest to see if you’ve gained any improvement in data speed.

  • Check for software updates

This may sound like a no-brainer, but outdated software can be a problem for both Android and iPhone users, as using an old OS can lead to data being on but not working and can cause several other problems.

  • Optimize your phone

Remember to frequently reboot your phone, which will close unnecessary apps. If you have an Android phone that features a removable battery, take it out to completely reset your phone. Doing this is akin to rebooting a computer and wipes the proverbial slate clean, closing out any unnecessary apps. Make sure to also regularly close apps running in the background manually to increase data speeds.

  • Clear your browsing history

One reason that your mobile data is slow could be that your device is filled with your browsing history. A full browser history can significantly slow down mobile data, so regularly clear your browsing history to ensure your phone can run more efficiently.

  • Consider a cell phone signal booster for your car or home

Cell phone boosters overcome the obstacles that prevent people from having reliable coverage at home or on the go, regardless of the carrier network. By amplifying the existing cell signal, phone boosters help reduce dropped calls, improve voice quality and increase data speeds. As long as there is an available signal outside your home or vehicle, the booster can amplify it into your space to give you faster data speeds and more.

Most researchers agree that over time, the demand for data will only continue to increase, even if you take the current global pandemic out of the equation. Slow speeds can be incredibly frustrating, so if mobile data is not working on any of your devices, try out the above recommendations and fixes to improve mobile speed. Taking the time to determine which strategies work best for your usage preferences will allow you to continue operating your business as usual, even during this “not so usual” time.

Josh Barnes, Director of Consumer Product Management, Wilson Electronics. Wilson Electronics, LLC, home of WilsonPro and weBoost, is a market leader in cellular signal booster technology, dedicated to delivering wireless network coverage to everyone, everywhere. For more information, visit

Speed stock photo by jamesteohart/Shutterstock