Bc66 all cell ids

We are using bc66 and capturing cell Id of the serving cell to locate the approx location of the device.

I am considering ways to improve accuracy including whether the bc66 can identify all cell towers.

I am using quecooen.


  1. So I know I could limit the band, and see whether I can connect and transmit a message. Will qeng etc be updated for cells that aren’t on my sim? I.e. If I use at&t will bc66 on report at&t cells? Or will I get a connection error but hopefully qeng will update?
  2. It seems at commands qeng I think it is has neighbouring PCI…
  3. Is there a way to make the network registration process continue looking for more cells?

I think perhaps I am asking too much of NB iot nb1 and this perhaps an lte-m use case.

Hi James
The neighboring cell ID cannot be viewed in NB, only the service CELL ID can be viewed.
You can view the adjacent PCI with AT+QENG=0.

@Abner-Q, AT+QENG=0 does report neighbor cells PCI, at least that’s how they are called in +QENG: 1 message description. But, in normal usage, I don’t get any reported. Only when I disable PSM and keep the module in RRC idle state for some time (at least a few minutes) I get some cells reported.

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@rastik thanks so much for testing. I think that is expected behaviour, that NB iot only does cell measurements in idle state (and perhaps on "first connection before PSM)… based on a rather brief read of the 3gpp spec.

What I am finding is my devices seem to switch between two base stations after every exit from psm. There isn’t much delay, so I don’t think PSM wake-up is failing (debug also confirms this) and in my head I thought the device would always use the last know cell tower?!

@James_Hillman I always thought so as well, but my experience shows that sometimes the module selects different cell. I don’t know the reason for that.

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I’ve seen this behaviour too. I believe it’s related to congestion - the low-priority (nb1) connection will be handed over to a less congested cell.

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@mcallistertad thanks for sharing. Really appreciate it.

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