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M1keC

Casual Member
I decided to make the switch after a few weeks of consideration. I currently use directsave (which I believe is part of talktalk) which gives a cheap deal (£17/month) and is fairly reliable apart from once or twice a day it drops out and the router has to be reset. Now I have signed up for three mobile with unlimited data and a B311 modem which is even cheaper at just £16/month as I'm already a 3 user for my phone.
I have tried some speed tests using my phone on the mobile internet and it seems quite encouraging. I get download speeds of about 30Mb and upload about 2. This is about twice the speed of my fixed line internet.
I should get online with mobile internet next week so will update the results here.
 

Mark.J

Administrator
Staff member
ISPreview Team
Good to hear. I do think that if you're not doing anything too complex with networking then generally a mobile broadband service today can, signal and performance allowing, be quite an effective alternative to fixed lines.
 

Hunterdog

Member
I went away from fttc to 4g 3 months ago and best thing I did. I choose three and the speeds have been great. I live in a rural location and fttc varied between 15 and 20mb down and 2 up. With three I average about 80 down and 30 up.

I had been worried about reliability, but 4g seems more stable than my old fttc line. I work from home twice a week and can stream films on 2 different devices without any issues.
 

Captain_Cretin

ULTIMATE Member
One thing you may find with online gaming is that the latency is a LOT higher; how this will affect you depends on the game obviously, and where the server is located.
I connect daily to a US server on the East coast and get 83-90mS on my FTTC line, but never less than 140mS on my 4G connection, sometimes spiking into SECONDS.
For the game I play, 200mS* is just about acceptable, but for fast paced game's you can be left for dead at half that.

* I played on a 250mS connection from China last year, not an enjoyable experience in combat.

Hype is that 5G will remedy this; if so, I may dump my landline.
 

Mark8253

Casual Member
Curious..., I’ve just tested latency to a variety of US servers, and generally get around 50 ms. That’s measured on the iPad via 2.4 GHz wifi to the access point in the next room, a 5 GHz fixed wireless link to the outbuilding where the router is, and then on to the EE 4G network!

I log latency every 5 min on a Raspberry Pi in the house, and a typical plot is shown here. The Pi connection is wired, so the ping represents the combined 5 GHz / 4G response. The higher latency is during heavy downloads, so I recognise that a system that regularly downloads multiple TB of data every month will be more challenged than my typical 300-350 GB.

Capture.PNG
 

Mark8253

Casual Member
PS - that is by ping command to Google 8.8.8.8. Presumably the Linux OS is picking a close server, but time additions above this will be a function of the rest of the network, not the 4G link.
 

johnf

Casual Member
Ive done the exact same thing, but with Voda and a B525.

One great unanticipated benefit of this is I can plug my old landline phone into the router and it can use the sim's unlimited minutes.
 

Verita

Casual Member
"Now I have signed up for three mobile with unlimited data and a B311 modem which is even cheaper at just £16/month as I'm already a 3 user for my phone. "

That's a very good price. My Three 4G has been up since June with the same modem, without issues. 40 down, 25 up, which is excellent.

The other bonus is you can take it with you if you leave the house, I put the SIM in a Mifi for travelling. Feels like freedom! (but freedom at £22 a month.)

The tip about using a B525 or similar for the unlimited minutes is good, the B311 has the socket, but apparently it's not enabled.

I don't game so can't comment on Ping times.
 

ithomas7

Casual Member
First post on these forums....I'm also looking to move to 4G from FTTC. I'm likely to go with Vodafone as can get speeds of around 80/20 via my work mobile sim. I've ordered the TP-Link MR600 which is 4G+/Cat6 so will hopefully be able to test late this week or next
 

Captain_Cretin

ULTIMATE Member
Curious..., I’ve just tested latency to a variety of US servers, and generally get around 50 ms. That’s measured on the iPad via 2.4 GHz wifi to the access point in the next room, a 5 GHz fixed wireless link to the outbuilding where the router is, and then on to the EE 4G network!

I log latency every 5 min on a Raspberry Pi in the house, and a typical plot is shown here. The Pi connection is wired, so the ping represents the combined 5 GHz / 4G response. The higher latency is during heavy downloads, so I recognise that a system that regularly downloads multiple TB of data every month will be more challenged than my typical 300-350 GB.

View attachment 140
Something odd going on then, the Atlantic jump from UK to US is 70mS, plus the time it needs either end.



I think you must be pinging a cached version somewhere.
 
Last edited:

M1keC

Casual Member
OK. I received the new mobile modem and SIM yesterday and had it up and running in no time. It works really well and I get average download speeds of 50Mb and upload of 15Mb. This makes it 3 times as fast as my previous fixed line broadband for download and 12 times as fast for upload! It has been reliable so far.
The modem supplied by Three is the Huawei B311 which seems unobtrusive and efficient. I did have a Huawei A1 mesh network on my old system but although there is a WAN port on the B311 I haven't yet managed to get this working. I'm ot even sure that I need it - the wifi signal is quite strong.
 

Captain_Cretin

ULTIMATE Member
Oh, I forgot to say that the latency is a little slow at an average of 38-40 ms
A latency number is just that, a number. you need to say where you are and where the sever you were pinging is located for the number to make any sense.
 

M1keC

Casual Member
The only problem so far is that I haven't been able to attach my Huawei mesh wifi. There is an ethernet port on the back of the modem but it seems this is only to connect to another wifi connection. Really I need the B315 4g modem which has 4 ethernet ports on the back to connect other devices. But three don't supply this one, only the B311 which doesn't. The good news is that the wifi signal is quite strong and not needing to connect to a phone line I can put it in a more central spot which gives ok coverage.
Anyone want to buy my A1 mesh with 3 routers?
 

Verita

Casual Member
The B311 I have (on Three) has the yellow gigabit port. It does work with multiple wired devices and will feed an Ethernet network. You can add a cheap 4 port gigabit switch if you want to add more devices.

My B311 feeds an Ethernet switch, a couple of IP phones over Powerlines, with a couple of PC's and printers attached over wired Ethernet through the switch.
 

hunch1969

Member
Hi Guys, So I currently have the last few weeks of my slow basic sky ADSL (7-8mbps) package and have bitten the bullet and gone for 3s B535 router with unlimited data (£18pm :) ) .

What I have noticed is that the performance isn't very consistent on my 4g router so I need to figure out if there is a problem or not. Is there a way on the router to see the signal quality? using my 3 phone (pixel 2 xl) I've got the app that shows it is pretty crap (-105 Db) but i think this is more my pixel rather than reality.

Performance really varies on my router - when it's bad I'm getting about 2mbps - but for some mad reason I had to get up at 530am on a Saturday and ran a performance test where I got 47Mbps. This suggest to me that the signal strength is OK, but the Cell is getting overloaded during the day. Would this make sense? Would getting a signal boosting antenna (either just the short bits that go on the back of the router or proper outdoors antenna) make any difference if the cell is getting over loaded? 2mbps is pretty unusable but 9-10mbps would be fine. I assume 3 doesn't do any form of QoS for home broadband?
 

kommando828

Regular Member
Install LTEInspecteur on a PC and use that to see what frequencies you can connect to on the mast and what speeds. You should also see if carrier aggregation is kicking in when you do a speedtest.

For my local Three mast I set carrier aggregation (CA) to Band 3 upload and down load and then band 20 as download only for my fastest speeds.

External antenna in theory do improve downloads but to every rule there are exceptions, an external antenna works for me as I am rural so even a long distance from the mast means there is little other signals about to interfere.

Your router is CAT 7 so if the mast supports it then CA will be available.
 

hunch1969

Member
Install LTEInspecteur on a PC and use that to see what frequencies you can connect to on the mast and what speeds. You should also see if carrier aggregation is kicking in when you do a speedtest.

For my local Three mast I set carrier aggregation (CA) to Band 3 upload and down load and then band 20 as download only for my fastest speeds.

External antenna in theory do improve downloads but to every rule there are exceptions, an external antenna works for me as I am rural so even a long distance from the mast means there is little other signals about to interfere.

Your router is CAT 7 so if the mast supports it then CA will be available.
Thanks, Just want to understand a few bits of what you said.

I'll down load the app to my PC when I get home.

So CA could help. I think I need to read up on the Bands as not familiar with what the impact is of different bands. So I think I'm between 2 LTE masts. The one that I lock onto primarily is onto of a Gym, so I guess when it's busy in the gym then that impacts performance. The other one is probably less hit with load like that. Can you also setup a router to connect to those..

Sorry for all the questions :) Final one is do those short little indoor antenna you can plug in the back of the route make any difference? I don't think I need an external one yet, but just wondering if getting a couple of these cheaper ones will help in anyway whats so ever.

Thanks for all the advice.
 
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