Roaming Control

Google Play Link

What is Roaming Control?

Roaming Control automatically enables or disables mobile data connection, airplane mode or auto sync based on the currently active network operator.

Roaming Control can also intercept outgoing calls in selected networks, and ask if you want to allow the call.

Besides manually defined network operators, Roaming Control also supports special rules for your home network, for national roaming, for EU roaming and for unknown networks. For certain networks, free roaming partner networks are also supported.

Why do I need Roaming Control?

Possible scenarios, where Roaming Control helps you, are:

  • Your network provider is a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) and uses national roaming to connect to other network providers.
  • You want that your mobile data connection automatically turns off as soon as you leave your country (and turns on again when coming back).
  • You live near the border and want to avoid outgoing calls when connected to the foreign network.
  • You want an easy way to enable data roaming for your Sprint network.
  • Your device should try to connect to a stronger network if the signal strength drops below a defined threshold.

How does Roaming Control work?

Roaming Rules

In Roaming Control you can define a list of roaming rules that get checked as soon as you network operator changes.

There are already 5 predefined rules:

  • Home Network: this rule applies to the network of your network provider (where you got your SIM card from)
  • National Roaming: this rule applies to all other networks that are in the same country as your home network provider
  • EU Roaming: this rule applies to all networks within the European Union
  • Other Networks: this rule applies to all foreign networks which are not separately defined in your list of rules
  • No Network: this rule applies if the phone is not connected to any network

For subscribers of certain home networks an additional rule, which covers all free roaming partner networks, is listed. Currently supported are:

  • 3 Like Home: covers free 3 networks in Austria, Denmark, Hongkong, Ireland, Italy, Sweden and Great Britain (currently only for Austrian and Italian subscribers)
  • Feel At Home: covers free 3 networks in Australia, Austria, Denmark, Hongkong, Italy, Ireland and Sweden (only for UK subscribers)

Rules are listed according to their priority. The top most rule (Home Network) has highest priority.

The currently active rule is highlighted.
 

Adding rules

You can add the current active network to the list of rules via the menu (usually by pressing the menu button on your phone) by selecting "Add Current Network". Then you can select which options should get enabled or disabled in this network (phone radio, mobile data connection, auto sync and notification).

You can also add a country to the list of rules via the menu by selecting "Add Country".

Editing rules

You can edit the settings of the rules (turning phone radio on/off, turning mobile data on/off, turning auto sync on/off or turning notifications on/off) just by clicking on the according rule.

There following rule settings are available:

  • Enable rule: enable or disable the entire rule - disabled rules are ignored completely during rule processing
  • Phone radio (calls): enable or disable phone radio for the rule - possible settings are: on, on but restrict outgoing calls, off, off but try to reconnect.
  • Mobile data: enable or disable the mobile data connection for the rule
  • Auto sync: enable or disable auto sync for the rule
  • Notification: enable or disable the notification if Roaming Control switches to the rule

The option "off, but try to reconnect" turns the phone radio off (airplane mode on), but regularly tries to reconnect to another network by turning on the phone radio for a short time (airplane mode off) to check if another network rule applies (these checks only can be performed with an active phone radio). The turn on and turn off periods can be specified in the "Phone Network" settings. If the user turns on the screen, the application automatically tries to reconnect to the network immediately. For automatic reconnection attempts the SIM lock must be disabled on the device.

The WiFi state is automatically restored after automatic airplane mode toggling (because many devices turn off WiFi when enabling the airplane mode).

Note, that there are some restrictions for the available settings (mostly for the rules "Home Network" and "No Network").

Deleting rules

Rules can be deleted via the context menu (long press the item). The 4 predefined rules cannot be deleted.

Settings

The following settings are available:

Data Connection

  • Keep Mobile Data State: keep manually changed mobile data connection unmodified until changed again by another rule: Deactivated, When manually turned on, When manually turned off, When manually turned on or off
  • Keep Manually Turned Off: if turned on, a manually disabled mobile data connection is kept always off, even if another rule would enable it again (only in conjunction with the previous setting)
  • Show Status: if turned on, show a status info in the notification bar when the mobile data connection has been manually changed
  • Auto Sync with Wifi: if turned on, Auto Sync is always turned on if a Wifi connection is established
  • Notification Sound: select the notification sound that is played for notifications (you can also choose "Silent" or "Default")
  • Notification Vibrate: if turned on, the device vibrates during a notification
  • Any Connectivity Notification: if turned on, show a notification after automatically triggered changes of the connectivity (i.e. something has been turned on or off) - use this setting to be sure, that you do not miss any modifications

Note, that the first three options do not work when Roaming Control is used in conjunction with Battery Control.

Phone Network

  • Reconnection Delay: length of period to wait before trying to reconnect to phone network (if connection has been lost, or signal strength is too low)
  • Maximum Duration without Connection: maximum duration the device may stay automatically disconnected from phone network before trying to reconnect again - this setting limits the maximum offline period
  • Disconnect when Network Signal Low: also try to reconnect to phone network if the signal strength drops below the specified value
  • Show Status: if turned on, show the phone network disconnection status in the notification bar
Note, that reconnection features are not available on unrooted devices in Android 4.2 or later (apps are no longer allowed to toggle the airplane mode). On rooted Android 4.2 devices you can use the app JB 4.2 Airplane Mode in order to get back airplane mode toggling functionality (this requires superuser access which is requested when entering the settings screen).

Restricted Calls

  • Restricted Call Action: select the action when making an outgoing call in a restricted network: Ask, Show Information Message, Block
  • Vibrate: if turned on, the device vibrates when making an outgoing call in a restricted network
  • Show Notification: if turned on, show a notification icon in the notification bar if calls are restricted in the current network
Note, that emergency numbers are exempted from call restrictions.

Advanced Settings

  • Prevent from Stopping: if turned on, the application is preventing the system from stopping the background task when memory is low (with this option enabled an extra icon in the notification bar is shown) - this option is usually not needed, except if you run low on memory very often
  • Lock Settings: if turned on, lock access to the application settings to prevent any unwanted modifications of the settings
  • Access PIN: the PIN that is required to be able to access the locked application settings - the PIN needs to be dialed as phone number to access the settings
  • Airplane Mode Workaround: if turned on, all rule processing gets delayed a few seconds (use this option if the manually activated airplane mode is not detected properly) 

Exporting/Importing Settings

You can export or import all settings and defined roaming rules via the menu from the Settings screen. Exported settings are saved in the root folder of the SD card and consist of 2 files (one for the application settings and one for the roaming rules).

Differences between Full and Trial version

The trial version offers the full functionality, but expires after 7 days.

FAQs & Troubleshooting

Manually changing the mobile data connection state

Using the option "Keep Mobile Data State" Roaming Control tries to keep any manually changed data state unmodified as long as possible. If for example "National Roaming" is the currently active rule with mobile data configured to be "on", and the user (or any other third party application) changes the mobile data setting to "off", Roaming Control will:

  1. not change the data setting if a rule gets active with mobile data configured to be "off" - because it is already off as manually changed by the user
  2. not change the data setting if switching to another rule (as described in point 1) and then switching back to the same rule (where the user manually changed the setting) - because it is still the rule where the user wanted the setting to be changed
  3. not change the data setting if losing the network ("No Network") and then switching back to the same rule (where the user manually changed the setting) - because it is still the rule where the user wanted the setting to be changed manually
  4. change the data setting if switching to another rule with mobile data setting set to "on" - because it is different than the current setting ("off" as manually changed by the user), and it is no longer the same rule where the user wanted the setting to be changed manually

A manually changed mobile data state is not kept when editing rules - after editing the rules are applied to reflect any edited settings.

Note, that the mobile data setting also might be changed by other applications (e.g. JuiceDefender).

Although Roaming Control is designed to work with JuiceDefender in general, JuiceDefender might interfere when having changed the setting manually. Roaming Control always tells JuiceDefender the desired setting of the active rule (it does not tell any manually changed mobile data state setting to JuiceDefender, because this would cause many problems). So if you are going to change the mobile data state setting manually, it is not advised to use JuiceDefender, because it might revert your manually changed setting at any time.

No data connection outside the home network

Ensure, that data roaming is activated in your phone.

You can leave the data roaming setting on, since Roaming Control disables the entire mobile data connection if required (according to your rules).

Phone stays in airplane mode

If you configure a rule to turn the phone off, the phone will stay in airplane mode then. Since there is no network available in airplane mode, Roaming Control cannot apply any roaming rule. If you turn off airplane mode manually, Roaming Control might even re-enable airplane mode as soon as a network is available again, and the roaming rule tells Roaming Control to turn on airplane mode.

To overcome this problem you might use the option "off, but try to reconnect" for the phone radio of a rule, which regularly tries to reconnect to another network.

Using in combination with other similar tools

Using Roaming Control in combination with other tools, that modify data connectivity settings (as e.g. Apndroid), is not recommended, since the overall behavior is not predictable. Currently the only exception is Battery Control which perfectly works together with Roaming Control.