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 Post subject: Can I setup 3G/4G Cellular data plan for wired home network
PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 8:04 am 
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With no prospects for increase in salary, and rising cost of cable, I'm looking for other alternatives... Right now I'm paying about $215 a month between cell phone (without a data plan), 15Mbit/sec internet, & cable TV services, & I don't even have a TV...

So, I basically have 2 alternatives
1> drop cell service (contract was up 3 years ago) & switch cable service to home phone & Internet, keeping my nice 1.5MB/sec download speeds, but no longer having a cell phone... total cost $89/month + taxes for a monthly savings of about $120
2> drop cable & add data plan to my cell service, but only have 3G in my immediate area, though much of the surrounding areas starting about 15 miles out has 4G service I know 3G is way slower than my cable connection, total cost $79 or $99 per month + taxes depending on which data plan I get, 3GB/mo or 5GB/mo. Monthly savings up to $90 - $120

I think I'd rather give up the faster speed for the mobility of a cell phone... and 4G is supposed to be to my area by the end of the year (this time last year, I would have had to go out 50 miles to find 4G), so I'm definitely seeing progress toward that end.

What I'm wondering is, has anyone gone this route already??? If so are there any unforseen pitfalls? Also, how could I setup a home network under this plan?


Last edited by chaosdsm on Sun Apr 29, 2012 7:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Viability of 3G / 4G as internet / home network anyone??
PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 9:34 am 
Smithfield
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The only ISP that's using 4G (or WiMax, I forget) for home use is Clear Wire. Otherwise, if you're not going to consume a lot of data online (and 3GB-5GB is easily consumable if you visit say YouTube or something), then sure, a mobile hotspot would work.

I'm also very weary of wireless internet anyway. I've had nothing but reliability issues when I stayed at a place with it.


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 Post subject: Re: Viability of 3G / 4G as internet / home network anyone??
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 11:42 am 
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LatiosXT wrote:
The only ISP that's using 4G (or WiMax, I forget) for home use is Clear Wire. Otherwise, if you're not going to consume a lot of data online (and 3GB-5GB is easily consumable if you visit say YouTube or something), then sure, a mobile hotspot would work.

I'm also very weary of wireless internet anyway. I've had nothing but reliability issues when I stayed at a place with it.


I really should have put this in the Network Nook portion, as I'm primarily interested in the home networking capability / possibility involved, I already have a good handle on the rest of it.

AT&T provides the 3G/4G data plan, and is the ISP in this scenario.

Don't confuse "Wireless" or "Wi-Fi" (802.11) with 3G or 4G. Wireless & Wi-Fi are local short range solutions. I'm talking 20 - 50 yards without obstruction for most home based solutions, and some businesses with "Wi-Fi" are using those exact same home based solutions. While there are some business based solutions (like some of those used in AT&T's Wi-Fi HotSpots) which can extend that range to hundreds of yards omni-directionally, and up to a few miles uni-directionally, but are still subject to obstruction issues. Basically, you need to be close to the source to get good signal, especially if you're inside of a structure.

3G / 4G is a long distance solution. 3G & 4G are carried over the same digital signal as your cell phone voice communication signal & are bounced by local cell towers just as your voice signal is. Just as with your voice signals, the data signals (3G or 4G) pass right through most obstructions. I usually have 3-4 bars on 3G inside my house (tin roof), at my best friends house, I usually have 4-5 bars on 4G (shingled roof), at least according to my new iPad.

This is also why Wi-Fi is "free" & unlimited (free as in, there's no additional cost to me as I'm using it, or any additional cost to me if I exceed my download limit) and 3G / 4G is not. It costs a lot of money to send data to a satellite then back to Earth & that's not counting the cost of the satellite, or the cost to put it & keep it in orbit. Whereas Wi-Fi hotspots are hard-wired directly to an infrastructure that was paid for decades ago (like your cable or DSL internet) and has virtually no new costs involved beyond the equipment itself, and occasional maintenance.


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 Post subject: Re: Viability of 3G / 4G as internet / home network anyone??
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 12:04 pm 
Smithfield
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You confused what I mean by "wireless internet". I meant that, wireless internet, where the internet is transmitted over radio and the modem is a receiver. While I'm sure there are others, ClearWire is a wireless internet service provider. My brother used them before they went on to use something like WiMAX or 4G. It was horrible. Even with 3 bars, connection reliability was so bad I would've taken 56k over it.

And the "wireless hotpot" widget I was referring to is a 3G/4G modem with built-in Wi-Fi distribution capabilities.

I'm not as dumb as you think.

Actually, looking at ClearWire now, they might be a viable 4G internet service provider. $50/mo and unlimited data, unlike everyone else except Sprint.


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 Post subject: Re: Viability of 3G / 4G as internet / home network anyone??
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 7:32 pm 
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LatiosXT wrote:
You confused what I mean by "wireless internet". I meant that, wireless internet, where the internet is transmitted over radio and the modem is a receiver. While I'm sure there are others, ClearWire is a wireless internet service provider. My brother used them before they went on to use something like WiMAX or 4G. It was horrible. Even with 3 bars, connection reliability was so bad I would've taken 56k over it.


And you're not thinking about what I'm asking. 3G & 4G data service is NOT the same as Wireless Internet, though it looks like ClearWire is bluring that distinction.

I'm talking about AT&T 4G LTE data plan to go with AT&T cellular service. Where my iPhone 4S is a private hotspot for my home utilizing AT&T's 4G LTE data plan. The main concern is, how would I setup my existing CAT6 Wired home network to use that 4G hotspot for internet service???


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 Post subject: Re: Can I setup 3G/4G Cellular data plan for wired home netw
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 7:55 pm 
Smithfield
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... You can't. Unless you half assed it where a computer received the signal, shared its connection to a router, which would then distribute it over a network.

There, happy?

Also I'm using "wireless internet" to describe internet that you get over the air, not Wi-Fi. Unless you really want me to really get technical and call it "mobile web".

EDIT: Actually wait, you could probably get a wireless repeater. But I'm also thinking this is just asking for more headaches than it's worth. Besides that, aren't you supposed to pay something like $30/mo if you make your device a hotspot anyway?


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 Post subject: Re: Can I setup 3G/4G Cellular data plan for wired home netw
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 2:36 pm 
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LatiosXT wrote:
Besides that, aren't you supposed to pay something like $30/mo if you make your device a hotspot anyway?


No, well not with AT&T's 5GB Data plan anyway.

I think what I'm looking for is a "wireless gateway"
Quote:
A wireless gateway is a computer networking device that routes packets from a wireless LAN to another network, typically a wired WAN. Wireless gateways combine the functions of a wireless access point, a router, and often provide firewall functions as well.
However, I think I may also have some other options from AT&T including 18Mbps wired internet that includes 250GB download per month and a Wireless Gateway (So I wouldn't eat into my mobile data plan limit while at home). Guess I'll have to get up early one of these mornings & go see the folks at my local AT&T office.


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