[SOLVED] 4G Broadband?

Sep 3, 2019
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Hi guys! Wasn't sure where to put this topic so sorry in advance if its not meant to be in the "Wireless-Networking" category.

I live in a rural area and for all my life have suffered from terrible internet I just done a wired speedtest on my desktop and got around 1.5mbps down and 0.7 Up, not very good
However I have started looking into 4g broadband deals, the one im looking at is from three (I live in the UK) which is a Huawei HomeFi B311 with unlimited data for 12 months or 24 months. I have also looked into getting an external antena to get the best possible reception/speed possible. I was wondering if anyone here uses this form of internet, has any experience in this area or has a better option for me. I'm all ears!
Thanks.
 
It will likely be a lot faster than your current connection.

Be very careful the vendor put the 4G label on many products you want to be sure you get LTE.



When you get a stong LTE connection it works extremely well. Depending on the system you can easily get 50mbit/s and 10-20ms of latency.....BUT when it works poorly your DSL line will work better,


How well this works all depends on how much signal you get from the cell tower and how many other people are using the same cell tower. Best if you can test this somehow maybe with a phone before you buy or commit to some contract.

There are no actually unlimited plans with no caps in the USA. All have fine print that spell out "limitation"

So lets say you can get a actual unlimited plan with no caps. Can I run bit torrent 24x7 at maximum rates. Say this is allowed. If I can use all the bandwidth in the tower what about the other guy who want to use his "unlimited" plan. This is partially why there are not unlimited plans because there is limited bandwidth on the towers and they use things like data caps to be able to share the bandwidth better.

I would be very hesitant to sign any long term contracts before you know how well it works. If they sell a short term like 1 month option maybe try that. Even if it means paying for equipment it is better than getting stuck paying a services for 12 months that works poorly and getting a free router.
 
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It will likely be a lot faster than your current connection.

Be very careful the vendor put the 4G label on many products you want to be sure you get LTE.



When you get a stong LTE connection it works extremely well. Depending on the system you can easily get 50mbit/s and 10-20ms of latency.....BUT when it works poorly your DSL line will work better,


How well this works all depends on how much signal you get from the cell tower and how many other people are using the same cell tower. Best if you can test this somehow maybe with a phone before you buy or commit to some contract.

There are no actually unlimited plans with no caps in the USA. All have fine print that spell out "limitation"

So lets say you can get a actual unlimited plan with no caps. Can I run bit torrent 24x7 at maximum rates. Say this is allowed. If I can use all the bandwidth in the tower what about the other guy who want to use his "unlimited" plan. This is partially why there are not unlimited plans because there is limited bandwidth on the towers and they use things like data caps to be able to share the bandwidth better.

I would be very hesitant to sign any long term contracts before you know how well it works. If they sell a short term like 1 month option maybe try that. Even if it means paying for equipment it is better than getting stuck paying a services for 12 months that works poorly and getting a free router.
 
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Sep 9, 2019
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I was in a similar siuation to you in a semi rural sparsley populated area miles from the nearest BT cabinet, frustratingly slow speeds (2mbps down 0.7mbps up), no sign of any future upgrade path for fixed line broadband, I was in despair. Then I discovered Three Homefi. We have line of sight to a cell tower so I checked Three used it (which they did), then I got a Three Pay as you Go Sim for my phone to check what sort of speeds I could get, checking it at different times of the day to see if the speeds were conssistent. I could consistently get 40mpbs so I went for it.
Once the B311 router arrived plugged it in and was able to get around 50mbps (I didnt use the B311 for my home Wifi, I connected it to my existing router with an ethernet cable because frankly the B311 is a bit crap) . Was pretty happy with that but the more I read the more I knew the B311 is not the greatest 4G router and I could probably get get better speeds with a better router. So I purchased a top of the range Netgear M1 router and also an external directional antenna. With these I now get 120mbps down and 40mbps up.

Of course this is all highly location dependent, depends on how far you are from Three cell tower and also how heavily used the tower is, I have seen other users complaining in more built up areas that the speed fluctuates wildly at certain times of the day due to congestion.

So long story short for me it has been transformational, gone from despair to joy, from the 1990s to the 21st century, and with the eventual rollout of 5G there is an upgrade path where it will get even better. I have been using it for six months and still can't help doing speed tests with a big silly grin on my face.
 
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