Late last year I told you about CNET's new tool to accurately rate wireless coverage across the United States. With our partner Root Wireless, we're able to show average signal strength, data throughput, dropped calls, and failed data connections for the four major carriers (AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless) in great detail, even down to a city block.
Though we've received positive reader feedback about the service since its launch, we also know that you've wanted more coverage (no pun intended) beyond the current 16 metro areas. Well, the good news is that time has come and you can help.
At CTIA, Root Wireless released an application that you can download to your smartphone. The application periodically measures signal strength, the data connection speed, and dropped calls when you're at your home or workplace, traveling around your neighborhood, and on your commute. The data is then transferred to Root and is added to CNET's tool. The more users who contribute, the more data we have across the country.
Anyone who downloads the app also can create a personal Web page on Root's site to show all data gathered. It's a great way to track specific dead zones in your area and the data strength (2G and 3G). And if you're moving across town you can use it to gauge coverage in potential neighborhoods.
You can download the Root Mobile for Android app here and the Root Mobile for BlackBerry app here. You can also download the the app at Root Wireless's mobile site. Currently, supported devices include the Google Nexus One, Motorola Cliq, Motorola Droid, HTC Droid Eris, HTC Incredible, Samsung Moment, HTC Hero, T-Mobile G1, T-Mobile MyTouch 3G, and the RIM Blackberry Bold, Blackberry Tour, Blackberry Curve, and Blackberry 8830, with more to come.