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Standard User beartai
(newbie) Sun 12-Jan-20 11:44:19
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Poor download speeds, great upload speeds, 3's 4G, Belfast/


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Hey everyone, my first post on here!

Just moved into a new flat, recently refurbished town house - we're in the attic.

To our horror fibre broadband was not available, leaving us two options: standard broadband that EE said would likely only get 2mbps, or a 4G router.

EE's 4G subscription costs £35 a month here, which is a little bit steep when you're on a bit of a budget, but three offered unlimited 4G for £27 a month, and a free sim contract which replaced my SO's £15 a month pay as you go sim, and had a much better tariff.

When I do a speedtest, the most I am getting is 14 - 16mbps, but often over 30mbps upload, which I've never seen before on any of my previous ISPs.

I checked the status of their coverage in my postcode on Three's website, and it says they are experiencing issues with coverage in my area, and that they are working on fixing it, but could take up 7 days, which is as long as I have to return the router and cancel the contract without cost, which leaves me in a bit of a predicament.

Does anyone else with Three for 4G home broadband experience these types of speeds, and can it be improved with an external 4G antenna? Three's nearest 4G mast is under a mile away, and EE's nearest is frustratingly at the bottom of my street, and my phone with an EE contract is getting speeds of over 40 mbps all day long, Would getting an external antenna yield similar speeds from Three's mast as I get with my EE phone? Any input from anyone with 4G broadband or an external antenna is greatly appreciated!

Many thanks!

John.
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Sun 12-Jan-20 12:28:06
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Re: Poor download speeds, great upload speeds, 3's 4G, Belfa


[re: beartai] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by beartai:
Any input from anyone with 4G broadband or an external antenna is greatly appreciated

You have multiple variables:

1) Signal amount and quality (of which an external antenna can help)
2) Radio spectrum capacity deployed in your area (by the network you choose)
3) Number of users of that network in your area

You can't control 3, but you can control 1, but only IF that is your problem. You can only control 2 by switching network. EE and Vodafone have more 4G spectrum than Three and O2. They paid more at the auctions.

For some more info on 2 try this: https://www.redsplace.co.uk/mobile/

VirginMedia 200/20 (22 Nov 19). Was FTTC for 7 years (55/12 to 46/5)
20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM
Standard User andynormancx
(member) Sun 12-Jan-20 12:28:09
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Re: Poor download speeds, great upload speeds, 3's 4G, Belfa


[re: beartai] [link to this post]
 
It may not be a signal issue, it could be that the mast is having capacity problems.

The 30mpbs up suggests you probably have fairly good signal. Does your router show you SINR and RSRP values ?

Unfortunately the Three network status page can be unreliable. For my postcode it always says there is a problem with the network, even when everything is working perfectly at full speed.


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Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Sun 12-Jan-20 12:29:58
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Re: Poor download speeds, great upload speeds, 3's 4G, Belfa


[re: andynormancx] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by andynormancx:
It may not be a signal issue, it could be that the mast is having capacity problems.

Most likely there are a lot of users of the cheap unlimited deal on Three using it a lot. If Three have built a 2 lane road and it is full, there isn't much more Three can do, unless they have also the ability to add another lane.

VirginMedia 200/20 (22 Nov 19). Was FTTC for 7 years (55/12 to 46/5)
20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM

Edited by jchamier (Sun 12-Jan-20 12:30:45)

Standard User andynormancx
(member) Sun 12-Jan-20 12:39:00
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Re: Poor download speeds, great upload speeds, 3's 4G, Belfa


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
Agreed, but still worth checking the signal strength in case (though with 30 up that looks unlikely to be the cause).
Standard User beartai
(newbie) Sun 12-Jan-20 14:17:54
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Re: Poor download speeds, great upload speeds, 3's 4G, Belfa


[re: andynormancx] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by andynormancx:
The 30mpbs up suggests you probably have fairly good signal. Does your router show you SINR and RSRP values ?



RSRP is -77dBm
SINR is 6dB

Kinda new to this so I'm not too sure what to make of these values! What do you make of them?

Thanks!
Standard User epyon
(fountain of knowledge) Sun 12-Jan-20 15:17:25
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Re: Poor download speeds, great upload speeds, 3's 4G, Belfa


[re: beartai] [link to this post]
 
Fine enough, the lower download would suggest most people on the same cell download more than upload which is pretty accurate in most real life cases.

Edited by epyon (Sun 12-Jan-20 15:22:44)

Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Sun 12-Jan-20 15:30:38
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Re: Poor download speeds, great upload speeds, 3's 4G, Belfa


[re: epyon] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by epyon:
Fine enough, the lower download would suggest most people on the same cell download more than upload which is pretty accurate in most real life cases.

One way to test is to try a speed test in the early hours when most are asleep, around here speeds jump around 2am.

This appears to be one of the downsides of "unlimited" data price plans, those that have home WiFi stop using.

VirginMedia 200/20 (22 Nov 19). Was FTTC for 7 years (55/12 to 46/5)
20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM
Standard User beartai
(newbie) Sun 12-Jan-20 16:53:27
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Re: Poor download speeds, great upload speeds, 3's 4G, Belfa


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by jchamier:
One way to test is to try a speed test in the early hours when most are asleep, around here speeds jump around 2am.


Won't be up in the early hours as I've work at 8am, but I'll stick on a big 40GB download on steam over night, and see what the peak speeds are in the morning.

Thanks for the suggestions! smile
Standard User beartai
(newbie) Sun 12-Jan-20 17:43:18
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Re: Poor download speeds, great upload speeds, 3's 4G, Belfa


[re: beartai] [link to this post]
 
Okay so it's peak times! 4G all but slowed to a halt, could hardly google a thing!

Girlfriend suggested switching to 3G to see if that helped, surprisingly getting a much more stable connection, yet slower speeds, but can now stream 1080p videos no issue; Ironic that! Will just have to grin and bear this till I get an antenna to see if that alleviates any of my issues, if not, just hold tight for 5G and hope for the best, as all other 4G home broadband packages available to me are at least £10 more expensive, have high upfront costs and have 200GB - 500GB caps, which is no use to me at all.
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