ISPreview - How to Use Mobile Broadband - Vodafone
How to Use Mobile Broadband - Vodafone
By: Mark Jackson - March 2nd, 2009 : Page 6 -of- 6
"We also found that popular instant messaging (IM) clients, such as MSN, refused to connect"

To demonstrate this we looked at one picture, first via our land-line broadband ISP (image on the left) and then through Vodafone’s Mobile Broadband link (image on the right):

Mobile Broadband Compression Image Quality Comparison

The image on the left from our land-line is clearly pin-sharp, while the one on the right through Vodafone is heavily distorted through compression. We noted that this did not appear to affect website background images or FLASH content, though it is still a serious problem for web designers, journalists or anybody working with images online.

We also found that popular instant messaging (IM) clients, such as MSN, refused to connect. This did not appear to be uniform as the older ICQ IM system worked and you can usually use web-based MSN interfaces to get around the problem. Similarly Skype (VoIP) didn’t work either and we wouldn’t be surprised if P2P and VPN connections were also difficult to establish, if not impossible.

It’s understandable that a mobile operator might not want VoIP services to work over Mobile Broadband because cheap data could threaten the operator’s natural non-voip revenue. However the inability to support something like MSN instant messaging, which is crucial to many modern inter-business and user communications, is deeply frustrating.

Conclusion

Mobile Broadband appears to be an excellent technology, provided you only intend to use it for general/basic Internet activity. It certainly makes for an effective remote working or land-line backup connection too. However the comparatively slow and unstable speeds, lack of value-added extras (email) and inability to use certain common services only serves to restrict its productive value.

Some operators also impose costly or harsh overuse terms and the service is best avoided entirely if you’re planning on connecting from outside of the UK (massive per MegaByte global roaming data charges). It’s still incredibly useful, if not quite yet a true mass market land-line broadband alternative.

Note: We're currentlylooking for more readers to post reviews about their experieces with different Mobile Broadband providers here:
http://www.ispreview.co.uk/review/categories/7.html


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