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Standard User don9999
(regular) Wed 07-Jun-17 20:08:18
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Using 4G Data SIM for home network


[link to this post]
 
OK, I am one (of the many people) who have rubbush broadband at home. At best, we get around 1.3Mbs due to our distance from the exchange. We are unlikely to have fibre provisioned anywhere in the near future.

I have recently re-visited the idea of using 4G. My SIM comes with 25Gb data and using it as a hotspot and connecting my PC, I managed to get around 20 Mbs.
I have now bought a 50Gb data SIM, on a rolling 30-day contract.

Putting it into my phone and connecting my PC, I now manage to get about 45Mbs Up and 20 Mbs Down !

I'm wondering if there is some way of connecting my existing household router to this SIM, allowing the whole household to connect to it (50Gb will be enough even between us, but I would keep an eye on it). The router is hard-wired to my PC and printer, and also to powerline connectors throughout the house.

I understand that you can connect a router to an existing network via cable, but I need to connect it ('if' it can be done) to the SIM wireless hotspot.

Alternatively, I believe that there are special routers that accept SIMs, such as the ones here:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/TP-Link-Unlocked-Configurat...

Though these are £100 !

Is this the only way of sharing my 4G network? Or the 'best' way of sharing it?

Or is there some other way?

Cheers,
Don
Administrator MrSaffron
(staff) Wed 07-Jun-17 20:42:17
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Re: Using 4G Data SIM for home network


[re: don9999] [link to this post]
 
What is the make and model of your existing router? Some if they have USB ports will support a 4G USB dongle as the WAN/Internet connection

The author of the above post is a thinkbroadband staff member. It may not constitute an official statement on behalf of thinkbroadband.
Standard User pipcoo
(newbie) Wed 07-Jun-17 21:32:41
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Re: Using 4G Data SIM for home network


[re: don9999] [link to this post]
 
I am in the same situation as yourself with no usable fixed line BB available in my area so I use 4G/LTE. I don`t know about connecting the sim to your existing router but I have the router you linked to and it works very well and was easy to set up.
On a side note, is your 50Gb contract with Vodafone ? If it is there is a data cap available but it is not turned on by default and you have to contact customer services either by phone or web chat to get it activated.


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Standard User don9999
(regular) Wed 07-Jun-17 23:34:11
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Re: Using 4G Data SIM for home network


[re: pipcoo] [link to this post]
 
Yes it is the Vodafone SIM.
Thanks for the advice - I will look into this smile
Standard User Rolandrat
(committed) Thu 08-Jun-17 06:04:59
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Re: Using 4G Data SIM for home network


[re: don9999] [link to this post]
 
If money was no option, something like a Draytek 2860 LTE version.
All in one box for ADSL/VDSL and LTE - would allow you to setup policy routes and load balancing, which would let you stop certain traffic from a device or to a certain location not using up all the LTE and instead stay on the ADSL etc.
There might be some cheaper alternatives.

Edit: Sorry just seen price of that one, bit OTT really!

Edited by Rolandrat (Thu 08-Jun-17 06:17:26)

Standard User don9999
(regular) Thu 08-Jun-17 08:49:18
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Re: Using 4G Data SIM for home network


[re: MrSaffron] [link to this post]
 
Am with Sky Broadband, so currently using the latest Sky model.

And have a range of other 'free' supplied routers from EE etc...

The 'newest' independent router I have (but not currently using) is probably a Netgear DGND3700.
I'll need to check what functionality it haas.
Standard User baby_frogmella
(fountain of knowledge) Thu 08-Jun-17 09:26:44
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Re: Using 4G Data SIM for home network


[re: don9999] [link to this post]
 
If your existing router has a USB port then something like thismay work. But such devices won't use the radios in your router, they'll use the built-in radios to receive/transmit the data and due to their small size won't give you great coverage

A dedicated 4G/LTE router is your best bet, as this will transmit the internet signal through its own radios as well as through the lan ports. The TP Link you linked to is probably your cheapest 802.11ac router option.

------------------------------------------------------
Fluidone FTTP On Demand 330/30 Mbps
Powered by Netgear R9000 X10
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Edited by baby_frogmella (Thu 08-Jun-17 09:29:08)

Standard User AdamInTheSticks
(learned) Thu 08-Jun-17 09:39:57
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Re: Using 4G Data SIM for home network


[re: MrSaffron] [link to this post]
 
Hi,

I can recommend the TP-Link Archer MR200 (that you linked to before), as I have that one myself!

It also has 2 excellent 4G antennae, which will probably pick up a much better 4G signal than a smartphone (I can't get 4G on my phone indoors or even most places outside, but this modem does) or a 4G USB Dongle for that matter. Also, you could always attach an external outdoor antenna (e.g. Solwise 4G Omni-Directional Outdoor Antenna) later on if needed, to boost the signal further. Plus, it has built-in WiFi and 4 Ethernet ports, so you can connect your PC & printer to it direct, or via Powerline adapters. I have mine in an upstairs window (for best signal), and connect it to my network downstairs via powerline adapters/plugs.

Also, with that router (and some others), you can "force" it into 4G LTE mode, which is useful in areas with a weak signal (as in where I live!), as otherwise "Auto" mode will usually drop to a slow 2G or 3G connection.

So - I can certainly vouch for that router, yes it is quite expensive but I find it very flexible and it does the job well fore me at least.
(Admittedly, I keep my slow ADSL Max connection as it has unlimited data, and have an expensive DrayTek Vigor 2860Vac router that I use to "Load Balance" my ADSL link with the 4G connection coming from the TP-Link Archer MR200 router, which provides a good link plus backup in case either ADSL line or 4G connection goes down).

You can get USB "4G Dongles" (unlocked ones are around £50, e.g. Huawei E3372) that can be used in conjunction with existing routers *if* they have USB ports *and* support a 3G/4G connection via USB (I don't think, looking at the specs, that the Netgear DGND3700 router you mentioned does?) - but the dongles are less flexible, and don't have the more sensitive external 4G antennae that dedicated 4G routers have, or built-in Ethernet ports (although some 4G dongles have connectors for external 4G antennae).

One other option I've come across, where you can share the 4G link from a smartphone with your router, is via a service called Boosty, although I don't know much about it personally (I have seen a review of it here: Boosty Review).

Personally, based on my own experience so far, I would probably recommend the purpose-designed 4G Router (and, on personal experience, the TP-Link Archer MR200 is what I have, and has been excellent for me, so far), in spite of the £100 cost.

I hope this helps a bit anyway - other forum members may hopefully provide further information & advice.

Kind regards,

Adam.
Administrator MrSaffron
(staff) Thu 08-Jun-17 10:06:21
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Re: Using 4G Data SIM for home network


[re: AdamInTheSticks] [link to this post]
 
Okay based on the routers poster has mentioned, and cost of the USB dongle, then would concur best to go for the MR200 or similar.

The USB systems work, but have never found networking over USB to be that brilliant, if they had a decent Asus or other router around and a cheap dongle its worth a go maybe.

The author of the above post is a thinkbroadband staff member. It may not constitute an official statement on behalf of thinkbroadband.
Standard User Michael_Chare
(fountain of knowledge) Fri 09-Jun-17 19:51:00
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Re: Using 4G Data SIM for home network


[re: MrSaffron] [link to this post]
 
Can you make contact with a 3G connected router using Dynamic DNS or is this not possible because the mobile network operators use CGNAT?

Michael Chare
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