How To See Your iPhone's Signal Strength By Entering A Secret Code

A kinda-sorta top secret iPhone hack has recently been unearthed that shows you how to see your iPhone's signal strength using numbers, not the traditional bars — and I'm sure I'm not the only one who thinks this would definitely come in handy when you're out and about and your phone is moving as slow as proverbial molasses. Sometimes, it happens when you're trying to watch a YouTube video and the darn thing won't load. Sometimes, it's as frustrating as not being able to send a simple text. Now, you can determine whether or not it's likely due to a poor signal strength — and it all starts with entering a secret code. This is so exciting.

The steps to access this number are fairly straightforward; however, I did run into a tiny bump in the road along the way, so fair warning. (No worries, though — I found a way around it.) Once you determine your signal strength number, here's how to read it: A score of -50 means that your signal is top notch and you can even stream videos. Hooray! But if you're closer to the -120 mark, good luck texting your buddies, because your phone isn't havin' it.

So, how do you see your iPhone's signal strengths? Here's a quick step-by-step guide for accessing this magical number.

1. Dial The Secret Code

Access your phone's keypad and enter *3001#12345#*. Then hit the green "Call" button. Doing so will bring up your phone's Field Test menu.

2. Once You're In The Field Test Menu...

Isn't that so crazy?! You'll see all sorts of weird things pertaining to your phone's inner workings. This is where things get a little confusing, though: You're apparently supposed to see the magic number in the upper lefthand corner, but I definitely didn't.

Note: If you do see the number and want to switch to this feature permanently, you should be able to hold down the power button while still in the Field Test until you're prompted to turn your phone off. Then tap the home button, and the switch should be permanent.

If you're having trouble like I did, this trick worked for me...

3. Hold Down The Home Button To Bring Up Siri

And there's the number right there! Top corner on the left. By the way, I have no idea who Susan Conway is. She's definitely not my mother, but Siri seems rather fond of her.

My score is -82, meaning my signal strength at home is not too shabby at all.

4. The Number Will Appear On Your Home Screen For A Split Second

When I went back in the Field Test menu and clicked "Back to Phone," I noticed that the number will stay there for, like, a nanosecond, before going back to the regular symbol showing signal strength. I was able to capture a screenshot. It took many tries.

If things get a tad complicated for you like they did for me, you might not be able to switch to this feature permanently; at the very least, though, you can figure out what the number is by enabling Siri or catching it for that quick moment when you click "Back to Phone."

Oh, iPhone. What else are you hiding?

Images: Pexels; Megan Grant/Bustle (4)