I'm in a fairly rural area and my land lines are pretty poor & worn out. I've been wondering about mobile broadband for a while and finally made the leap firstly as a backup because there's a fault on my adsl line and secondly for mobile Internet when visiting elderly relations who don't have broadband.
On my land line I'm currently getting 2.2 meg down and 0.6 up with TalkTalk but there's a fault on the line and it used to do 3.2 meg down. it seems until the fault is total loss that TalkTalk aren't going to do anything about it. There's constant clicking noise on the line. It's a bad connection in one of the junctions which happens every year or so, last time it was a squirrel eating through the cable.
Any way, with 3 mobile I'm getting 94ms ping, 4.71 meg down and 1.35 up at 09.56 in the morning. I know these rates may change at busy periods but I'm not in a densely populated area. The speed was 5.24 meg down and 1.54 meg up with a 74ms ping last night at 22.35.
I've got the dongle plugged into powered USB hub on a short extension allowing the dongle to lie on its side pointing towards the mobile tower. The dongle in a vertical position isn't as effective even though there are still 5 full bars of signal strength.
If the dongle keeps delivering the way it currently is then I'm going to buy an Android phone on 3's One Tariff (unlimited data) and tether it to my PC. This could work out faster and more reliable than worn out land lines for very similar money.
I'm currently paying TalkTalk £26/month including line rental for their Pro package. 3 mobile Androids are available on the One Tariff starting at £25/month for unlimted data (yes of course I wouldn't want unlimited to suddenly become limited though). Something like a Samsung Galaxy S costs £32/month and I'm going to wait to see what the Galaxy S2 is going to cost before making a decision.
There are some new satellite services launching soon which probably won't be affordable for general use but it's good to have some alternatives for rural areas and there's another satellite being launched next year too, so there might be some competitive pricing.
If 3 mobile proves reliable then I'll cancel my dedicated PC land line, after all it's not worth paying line rental for useless old lines if a viable alternative become available. I'm probably going to be able to go totally wireless years before there's any land line upgrades in this area. I'll feel a lot better not paying rental for BT's obsolete infrastructure particularly when they keep raising line rental charges.
You can view this morning's speedtest here; http://www.speedtest.net/result/1206198224.png
and here's an even faster one at 11.02 am; http://www.speedtest.net/result/1206273341.png
2pm speedtest; http://www.speedtest.net/result/1206509316.png
4pm speedtest - network gets busy when schools close ? http://www.speedtest.net/result/1206696318.png
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Edited by jsp21c (Thu 17-Mar-11 16:25:15)