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The program (CSipSimple) seems to work not well when cell data network is unstable. It works OK hovewer if you manually switch it on and off.

How to simulate bad network connectivity (e.g. going by underground train) for testing the application?

It should be mobile network, not Wi-Fi.

Are there any programs or hacks (in software, with root access) for this or I should resort to wrapping the device in foil?

  • Use some metal case to create a Faraday cage should do? – Izzy Mar 4 '13 at 21:18
  • As I stated in question, usually just wrapping the phone in foil does the trick. (Actually also wrapping myself around the phone in an accurate way can reduce the weak signal to "No Signal"). – Vi0 Mar 4 '13 at 23:51
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    Get a contract on Orange and go anywhere in Central London. – user5506 Jun 4 '13 at 11:28
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Try those electrostatic-proof bags like you get hard disks in - you can press buttons too. Need more attenuation? put it in more bags. Go walk testing around the office.

If you put it in Airplane Mode or the other 'tricks' suggested - the mobile signals a DETACH to the network - it is a controlled clear down - not at all like driving into a tunnel. We use that to force DETACH/ATTACH cycle without the long wait of rebooting the phones.

Usually, the only way to force an uncontrolled loss of signal is to take the battery out - not much use for app testing.

Engineering mode might do it - but all phones are different and may not be available. Maybe the receiver can be told insert a load of attenuation or reduce gain or something.

In my day job have a RF shielded box (Ramsey Electronics) with mesh gloves for manipulating the device in the controlled RF environment... alone it is probably not suitable for controlling the RF to the mobile alone. But then, I have direct connection to my own private mobile network with base stations, adjustable attenuators and my own SIM cards and everything...

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Depending on the device there might be antenna connectors on the PCB. You could connect an external antenna to the appropriate connector though an adjustable attenuator. This would allow you to control the strength of the signal your phone would receive.

Still the foil would probably be much cheaper.

  • I look for software solutions primarily. Like type a command in a root console to stop connectivity (without Android directly knowing I'm stopping it), then a command to re-enabled it. – Vi0 Mar 4 '13 at 23:53
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    If you're using a custom rom with network toggle. Switching 2G/3G will simulate sudden signal loss. Try it while the app is running. – forums Mar 5 '13 at 1:56
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In ICS and JB, a menu item exists which you can use to disable mobile data. Go to Settings, then in the Wireless & Networks section, touch More.... Next, touch Mobile networks. Finally, you can touch Data enabled to enable/disable mobile data.

If you need more fine grained control over the mobile radio, many Android phones have secret menus which, among other things, allow you to control the mobile radio, e.g. you can switch it between 4G LTE, 3G, EvDO/1xRTT or just turn it off.

In some circumstances, if you merely need to simulate a total loss of connectivity, you can simply enable airplane (offline) mode. (But this takes down Wi-Fi as well, so may not work for you.)

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    It is already stated in question that if I manually disable the networking, programs receive "there is no network anymore"/"there is network again" messages and it works well. I want to simulate poor networking when the device thinks it's still connected, but in fact the connection is lost for some time. – Vi0 May 4 '13 at 22:46

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