The remote sensor feature in WiFi Explorer Pro 3 and WiFi Explorer Pro for Windows allows you to scan for wireless networks using a Linux- or Android-based device while retaining full access to WiFi Explorer’s visualization, filtering, and advanced capabilities. This means you can validate and troubleshoot wireless networks remotely and from the perspective of your Linux or Android device.

This blog post will show you how to use WiFi Sensor (Google Play) to turn your Android device into a remote sensor for WiFi Explorer Pro 3 or WiFi Explorer Pro for Windows.

WiFi Sensor turns your Android device into a remote sensor by creating a server that allows WiFi Explorer to connect to the Android device and immediately start scanning for wireless networks. WiFi Sensor then sends back the scan results to WiFi Explorer for visualization and analysis.

Note that WiFi Explorer and your Android device usually connect over Wi-Fi. However, this is not a problem because Wi-Fi scanning is done simultaneously without interrupting the connection. WiFi Sensor is also compatible with VPN services like Tailscale or ZeroTier, which means you can scan wireless networks remotely from an Android device anywhere.

To use your Android device as a remote sensor, follow the steps below:

1. Install and launch WiFi Sensor. The first time you launch the app, you’ll be prompted to allow WiFi Sensor access to your device’s precise location to scan and gather detailed information about nearby Wi-Fi networks.

Why does WiFi Sensor need permission to access your device’s precise location? Your authorization is required because information about nearby Wi-Fi networks could be used to determine your physical location. However, WiFi Sensor does not collect, store, or share your location. It only requires your permission to conduct the scan and send the results back to WiFi Explorer.

2. Turn the switch on to start WiFi Sensor. Your Android device is now ready to accept connections from WiFi Explorer Pro 3 or WiFi Explorer Pro for Windows.

3. Add your Android device as a remote sensor in WiFi Explorer Pro 3 or WiFi Explorer Pro for Windows. Navigate to Settings > Sensors and add a new remote sensor using the address and port number indicated by the WiFi Sensor app.

4. Go to the WiFi Explorer Pro 3 or WiFi Explorer Pro for Windows toolbar and select the sensor to initiate a remote scan using your Android device.

5. The scan results will be displayed in WiFi Explorer after a few seconds. WiFi Explorer will continue to scan periodically until you stop the scan or turn WiFi Sensor’s switch off.

How often do scans happen? By default, foreground apps can scan four times in a 2-minute period in modern Android devices. However, you can remove this restriction by enabling Developer Options and disabling Wi-Fi throttling by going to Settings > Developer Options > Networking > Wi-Fi scan throttling. If Wi-Fi scan throttling is enabled, WiFi Sensor will adjust the interval between scan requests to one every 30 seconds after an initial learning period of 2 minutes.

In this blog, we showed you how to use WiFi Sensor to turn your Android device into a remote sensor for WiFi Explorer Pro 3 or WiFi Explorer Pro for Windows. Send us a message if you have any questions or find an issue.