Research In Motion's RIM 957 devices have several "secret" key combinations that let you obtain a little more information about signal strength and cell site connectivity. Secret 1: If you hold down the orange key and type dbon (decibels on), the signal indicator changes from bars to numbers that indicate the signal strength in decibels. The lower the number, the better the signal. Anything lower than 101 is generally considered a good signal. Between 102 and 120 is fair, above 120 is poor, and 256 means no signal. Hold down the orange key and type dboff to restore the signal indicator to bars.

Secret 2: If you hold down the orange key and simultaneously press CAP, then press R, the RIM 957 displays Mobitex radio status information. The second line in the display shows you the signal in decibels and the cell site that the device is currently connected to (e.g., Base 45 Area 24 Rssi —102dBm).