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  >> Mobile Broadband (3G, 4G, 5G etc)

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Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Mon 11-Jan-21 12:44:23
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Re: 4G instead of Virgin?

[re: R0NSKI] [link to this post]
Even I, as a two-year exponent of home use of mobile networks, would be chary of heavy usage by multiple people on a single connection.

I took the plunge of ditching my AAISP FTTC on the basis of simply changing my EE phone SIM at just over £13 pm with 500 minutes, unlimited texts and 1GB data to the Three £20 unlimited everything. Very low risk, as a single retired non-gamer.

A month later I dropped the £14pm Pulse8 line as no longer needed. Neither that nor the AAISP cease cost me anything, and both easily and cheaply replaced if my circumstances changed.

That I also now have the original much slower Three B311 which is not a brilliant piece of kit is purely because I have since added an external security camera and expect to add more. I wish to have that/those recording to the Cloud rather on-premises recorder.

I also already had/have very cheap unlimited data space on what was 1&1, a product no longer on sale as far as I know. The B311 also happily supports my laptop, iPad and two-month old Sony Android TV simultaneously so I can happily go out taking my phone if necessary and record on the tele.

Simultaneous F1 on TV and Live Timing on iPad is great, though the lack of sync is amusing and often useful at times! Especially when the iPad is ahead.

Very different circumstances and risks from what I believe you have.

My broadband basic info/help site - Domains, sites and mail hosting - Tsohost & Ionos.
Connections: OnePlus 8 Pro max 165Mbps down, 24Mbps up on Three, and B311 4G, tbb tests normally 35-45Mpbs down, 65Mbps off-peak, 9-24 up.
Experience shows us that love does not consist in gazing at each other but in looking together in the same direction. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.
Standard User R0NSKI
(knowledge is power) Mon 11-Jan-21 13:30:51
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Re: 4G instead of Virgin?

[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
Thank you and John for your input, it's appreciated.

Both my wife and I have to go to work, neither of us can work from home. My oldest daughter works and lives away from home, my other daughter is currently furloughed. She does stream quite a bit, the wife uses pretty much zero data,, I'm probably the biggest data user, and over night off site backups hence needing a decent upload speed.

For now it's just an experiment, and possibly just to tide us over if I need to cancel Virgin, and then a month or so later become a new customer. I'm not going to payout potentially £20 per month extra just because I can - I'm a tight old git saving for retirement.

Standard User mlmclaren
(knowledge is power) Mon 11-Jan-21 15:21:50
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Re: 4G instead of Virgin?

[re: R0NSKI] [link to this post]
I tried switching from Virgin M100 to 4G Broadband for one of my accounts, I think the experiment cost me £150+ quid in the end after testing Three, Smarty, then EE and Vodafone....

The outcome was that EE was the best, achieving speeds at well above 100mbps and uploads in the 20-40 region BUT.

It didn't cope well multitasking, also got annoyed with it straying from Dual Carriage to single bands losing all bandwidth and also randomly switching from the main high capacity mast in the area and jumping to the lower capacity mast.

Three was just terrible, although the speeds weren't bad up to 50mbps the connections where not reliable at all, IP constantly changing, packet loss, and websites just not loading.

Vodafone was ok, however mast location behind hill so limited me to Band 1 and Band 20 which where busy in the area and Band 7 was unreachable making for sub 20mbps.

I understand the issues with Virgin support, I hold 3 accounts currently and they are giving me headache, but connection wise they've been pretty solid and mobile broadband isn't something I consider a replacement for them.

If price is of an issue, then downgrade to M100 or order FTTC

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Standard User ukhardy07
(knowledge is power) Mon 11-Jan-21 15:37:25
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Re: 4G instead of Virgin?

[re: R0NSKI] [link to this post]
I used 3 for a couple of weeks when I had broadband migrating over. Points to raise:
1) For a day or two the network was 1 bar due to an issue on local mast, it was horrific, like dial-up
2) Sky Q downloads almost always failed part way through, IP changed, router changed mast or whatever and SkyQ would just fail the download so you'd get 15 mins in, then it would stop, and then you'd have to redownload from the start for it to happen all over.
3) Teams was ok, with occasional poor quality network error, but screen sharing was a problem
4) Streaming always started horrifically low quality, I'd be watching 5 pixels move as it snailed up in quality to HD, even when speeds were 30+ Mbps
5) Under high load, there was total degradation of other services e.g. SkyQ download often meant every other device felt like a snail
6) Torrents basically did not seem to work, or if they did it was like sub 10KB/s

Avg speeds around 40Mbps, mast about 50m from house...

Overall pretty horrific and would not recommend for anyone unless they had very slow broadband already.

EE did fair better, as I ended up using their SIM from my phone in the end, no major issues other than when it chose band 20 a few times at random.
Standard User Pheasant
(committed) Thu 14-Jan-21 23:03:30
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Re: 4G instead of Virgin?

[re: R0NSKI] [link to this post]
For a permanent alternative I personally wouldn't jump from Virgin cable (even with their drawbacks) to a 4G service. Three don't fill me with lots of confidence given their recent extended issues.

When you do get 5G service it is a quite different proposition to LTE. The major improvement over LTE is download speeds - as long as you have decent signal strength. For the time being you would not notice any discernible difference between LTE and 5G on upload speeds.

In central London, I've been using a 5G Gigacube (unlimited @ discounted £50/month) as a "stop gap" for almost 18 months, which has been pretty good for heavy usage. Reasonable sub-25ms ping times, and still good enough for multiple SIP trunks. No issues with streaming. I've have a handful of serious mast slowdowns due to upgrades over that period, but its been a good service on the whole. Unfortunately public/routable IP is not possible (its all CGNAT), so you'd have to get crafty with a VPN.

My Broadband Speed Test
Standard User R0NSKI
(knowledge is power) Fri 15-Jan-21 10:14:35
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Re: 4G instead of Virgin?

[re: Pheasant] [link to this post]
Thanks for the feed back, I've yet to run any extended tests but have pretty much decided to use it just as a stop gap if my cancellation goes through, but hopefully VM will make me a decent offer.

The next town to us does have 5G, no idea why, perhaps they just needed to update the equipment. If and when we do get 5G I'm very close to a couple of towers, 400 meters to the Three tower, but if there is no fixed or sticky IP then using a VPN will lose most the speed. A&A are the obvious choice but they limit the download to 100Mbps.

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