Stingray Shields claim to reduce radiation, increase signal strength, and turned out to be more testing that I was capable of doing with equipment I had access to.
This is a review of what I am able to measure, what I attempted, and some theory behind why it probably is not just playing on fears of cell phone radiation exposure and actually does what it says it does.
I’m going to preface this with I see no reliable repeated study that says cell phone radiation in moderate doses is doing anything negative. I do find plenty of rat studies with a cell phone on 24/7 above them. Most of my internet based research into shields and phone radiation has me fearing for scientific literacy.
I affixed the Stingray Shield in my case per the directions hidden on the inside of the product packaging. Attached photo with white thing in the case is the spacer they include so you put it in the right location. It appears most if not all of the Stingray Shields look the same and are just positioned differently by model.
I can immediately see an increase in signal strength. -93 without vs -85db with the Stingray Shields antenna on at my office, however the radiation emanation testing ended up being impossible for me to accomplish. We’ll go into radiation testing later.
The Stingray Shield doesn’t appear to negatively affect my wireless charging, if anything it looks like it may be helping through my thick Urban Armor Gear case, although I see nothing mentioned about whether it does or does not. I don’t see any indication that the NFC is compromised, but I’m only reading and not sending. I doubt it would be.
Quick update on the above line – it does affect wireless charging negatively on two of the discs I have and positively on one of the stands. I’ll mark this as probably negative influence against most wireless Qi charging pads.
So, signal strength increased. I can test that, tested it, signal is better, does not change a lot bandwidth wise because my Sprint tower is overloaded and the best or worst signal in the world is going to look about the same when the back end is a dial up modem.
So what about radiation exposure? I’ve talked to a couple of people involved in research that I’d assume would intersect, and… no clue on how to test it with equipment we had access to.
So I talked to someone who worked for an antenna company a long long time ago and he said that the operating theory here is probably that the top left of the device is shielded over the area your phone’s antenna tries to emanate from and diverts it down their very long zig zag antenna.
The net effect would be to broadcast (radiate,) off of a larger surface so any individual exposure to a finger was minimized. Larger antennas generally require less power to get out to the world, so that’s the operating guess of how this can claim to reduce RF radiation by up to 96%. Your phone’s using less juice to send a signal.
Basically a larger surface area for an antenna will radiate less per square inch.
This seems believable to prevent radiation from damaging fingers, however the question is how much of that is directed away from your head since it doesn’t appear to block anything from your ear/head area.
I was informed with a series of hand gestures and an attempted analogy of an onion that radiation drops off absurdly per inch – 360 degrees around, 360 degrees in any direction, every CM you go drops the effective power by an absurd amount.
Larger antenna isn’t only great for receiving, it’s great for transmitting. Less power required, less radiation sent, etc.
Still didn’t answer how much radiation is getting over to the ear side of the phone, but the guess was that 96% reduction may be underselling it.
So, yeah, my review is I can test that the signal strength is boosted, I can see that most things are at least not negatively affected, and I cannot test the radiation reduction however it’s probably doing what it claims. If anyone can test the radiation, feel free to drop a line and let me know if their claims are accurate.