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Old 11-20-2018, 09:22 AM   #1
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Question Staying Connected

Hi Fellow Travelers!
We are E-Pro newbies and will be mostly boondocking in California & Nevada. We are still working and need Internet when out and about.. Verizon is our provider. Been looking at the Verizon Jetpack but there are mixed reviews.
Thanks in advance for your experienced recommendations!
~Dave
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Old 11-20-2018, 10:05 AM   #2
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You can always use your phone as a hot spot rather then making a commitment to the jet pack. As far as carriers, coverage varies a lot and your going to find that especially in remote areas coverage will be spotty but is some cases one carrier can be better then the other.

What ever you do, make sure your plan has enough data since it will get sucked up pretty quickly if you try and stream netflix. What many carriers will do is give you what's in your plan at a higher rate of speed and then throttle you to a slower speed once you go over that amount... Once you get throttled it's really slow but if you're patient it may be enough for email but not streaming...
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Old 11-20-2018, 10:32 AM   #3
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I bought a Verizon Jetpack Mifi earlier this year (January, 2018) as I was selling the house in Denver and hitting the road full time in my 5'ver.

Well, I did that for a few months, decided I wanted my camper as a camper and not a home, and bought a new place in Yuma, AZ, so I am stuck with the remainder of a two year contract with the Mifi, so will make the best of it!

That being said, I am happy with the internet it provides, and very rarely in my 5000 miles around the western US of A did I find I had no internet.

However, I use computers for my internet activities and not tablets or phones (have them, just don't use them for that), and the computers will eat up the monthly allowance of GB's real fast if you don't watch yourself!

I don't download TV shows or movies, and I was finding myself hitting that 15GB monthly limit before the throttle down to slow speeds every month about five days before the end of the month.

Now, I don't care what anyone else says...but the instant that usage counter hits 15GB's...Verizon WILL slow you down to snail speed (which is OK on a phone or tablet, but not on a computer)...no matter where I was at in the western US of A...never fails!

And they'll gladly charge you another $35 for 5 more GB's to get you through those last five days of the month, and what you paid extra for will not roll over if you don't use it!

Now, I had the Beyond Unlimited plan, but early this summer they came out with a new plan (can't remember the name of this plan, Above And Beyond Unlimited I think...but get it) that gives 22GB/mo and the slowdown is from 4G to 3G...not too bad at least, and is only $10 more/mo than the Beyond Unlimited plan.

There are many other benefits to this new plan over the Beyond Unlimited, BUT there are some things that even the people in the Verizon stores didn't know about the plan when I added it to my service.

The biggie is that the Mifi unit is still limited to the 15GB/mo before the throttle down, and as it turns out the 22GB/mo is a combination of usage between the Mifi unit and the master phone, which means that I must use the hotspot on my Motorola Z2 Play for the rest of the monthly usage at times.

The Mifi does provide slightly faster speeds to my computers than the phone does , but it isn't really too bad.

Since I switched to the new plan I've only gone over the 22GB once, which was the very first month before I found out about the way the data is split up between the Mifi and the phone (and when I also found out that the people in the stores knew nothing about the new plan), and the slowdown wasn't that bad!

What I love about the Verizon Mifi plan is that I can have internet no matter where I go, as long as there is cell service!

When I was still traveling around in the 5'ver I spent a month in New Mexico out in the boonies.

Had full hookups, but no park provided Wifi (they had their own, but you had to sit in the office to use it)...but I had Wifi in my 5'ver (when I logged on with my computer, my Mifi was the only Wifi that was detected)!

Matter of fact, I was the only one that had Wifi in that park with exception of the other RV'ers there that may or may not have had cell service there on their phones.

Anyway, my fingers are getting tired...sorry for the long post!

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Old 11-20-2018, 11:12 AM   #4
Denver To Yuma In 90 Days
 
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Oh yeah...

10 months in and the battery is bloating...a sign that the battery is going bad!
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Old 11-20-2018, 11:29 AM   #5
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Definitely browse www.rvmobileinternet.com. They keep track of the latest goings on in the cellular space as it applies to RVers. They just broke that there is a pre-paid unlimited Verizon plan with no throttling (though you’ll always be subject to network management in busy areas). At $65, it’s a great deal.

I MUST be online and carry both AT&T and Verizon hotspots/Jetpacks. I also pay attention to coverage maps and am selective as to where we go. I’ve only been totally without Internet a couple of times and those cases, I dropped back to campground WiFi.

Having a device like the WifiRanger helps. It gives you a strong internal network that your devices can connect to and let’s you pick whatever Internet is best.

Lastly, I also carry a Netgear antenna that helps boost signal. I also have a cellular booster that didn’t do much, but I think it was a bad install.
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Old 11-20-2018, 11:44 AM   #6
Denver To Yuma In 90 Days
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnD10 View Post
Oh yeah...

10 months in and the battery is bloating...a sign that the battery is going bad!
Just got offline with Verizon support...

They said that the battery is not covered under warranty but to take the device to a Verizon store for them to check the overheating device as it is still within the one year warranty.

When it bloated the other day while it was charging it actually popped the device off of my computer desk and it fell on to the floor and the battery popped the back off of the device before it hit the floor.

It now only lasts about 4-5 hours per charge where it used to last about 48 hours.
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Old 11-20-2018, 12:18 PM   #7
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You need a new battery, soon. My better half had a Note 4 and that happened to her. She has Verizon with a Note 8 and I have ATT with a Note 8. We can and do hot spot then but we also have an ATT internet device with 50G a month that works great in the UP of MI, South Florida and Southeast Texas and most anywhere we have been.
The ATT device works so much better and faster then the Hughes Net that we did have at our home for many years.
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Old 11-20-2018, 12:25 PM   #8
Denver To Yuma In 90 Days
 
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Originally Posted by whj77372 View Post
You need a new battery, soon. My better half had a Note 4 and that happened to her. She has Verizon with a Note 8 and I have ATT with a Note 8. We can and do hot spot then but we also have an ATT internet device with 50G a month that works great in the UP of MI, South Florida and Southeast Texas and most anywhere we have been.
The ATT device works so much better and faster then the Hughes Net that we did have at our home for many years.
Yes...I'm going to the Verizon store in a couple of hours.

Hopefully they'll either replace the battery or the MiFi device as it is still under warranty...

I'm also going to check into that new plan, but after reading about it I think I might just stick to the plan I have as the new plan drops the hotspots from the phone and only allows connections through the MiFi device.
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Old 12-01-2018, 01:46 PM   #9
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Not using this yet. But I know a couple of people that use this system and claim it works pretty good.
I talked to a pal in Colorado that uses this and he averages about 40 mbps download and 18 mbps upload. Not too bad for a portable remote service.

https://www.ubifi.net/

A little pricey but might be worth a look at.

You have to spend the $300 up front for the hardware and then the $90 a month for "real" unlimited data plan.
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Old 12-01-2018, 09:08 PM   #10
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What they told us regarding the battery problems is not to over charge it and let it go way down before you charge it. Good luck
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