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Author Topic: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month  (Read 8886 times)

Ronski

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #45 on: February 01, 2021, 08:58:00 PM »

Alex, you're getting great 4G results there - hope you're able to get 5G soon. 
I've had my connection over 10 days now and it has been pretty consistent. 
Just got this speed during the evening peak - bloody impressive.


That is impressive, if I could get 5G like that then I probably wouldn't bother with FTTP if/when it becomes available, you can get an unlimited 3 sim for around 15 a month, a fraction of the price of comparable FTTP speeds. I'm currently running on 3 4G, see my thread for further details https://forum.kitz.co.uk/index.php/topic,25565.0.html Best I've got on 4G is 207/19 but more often get closer to 100/30, I'm 440 meters from the cell with line of sight - should be perfect for 5G
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Formerly restrained by ECI and ali,  now surfing along at 390/36  ;D

Alex Atkin UK

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #46 on: February 03, 2021, 04:33:58 AM »

Especially as I believe the average for 4G is 20Mbit and 5G 200Mbit.
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INTAKE (ECI) Home Hub 5A (OpenWRT) on Zen, 2xHauwei CPE Pro 2 H122-373 (VOXI 4G,Three 5G) Router: pfSense (i5-7200U) WiFi: Zyxel NWA210AX + Ubiquiti nanoHD (OpenWRT)
My Broadband History & Ping Quality Monitors

meritez

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #47 on: November 04, 2021, 10:51:22 PM »

Just a quick update on the Huawei b525-23a, it's at a relative's house and today I manually set it to b20+b32 only.

It's hitting 60 down 20 up without issue on Smarty.

https://www.hetinternethuis.nl/productbestanden/HUAWEI-B525s-23a-datasheet.pdf

It's the last supported carrier aggregate on the attached spreadsheet.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2021, 10:55:09 PM by meritez »
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celso

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #48 on: January 23, 2022, 06:58:19 AM »

I was testing Smarty as I was planing to move networks and noticed my phone was showing 5G (5G NSA according to Network Signal Guru, not "proper" 5G). They enabled it a few days ago.

It's not as fast for me as other speed tests shared here, but my flat is half under the street level and it's still faster than my wired ~60Mbps FTTC connection.

Indoors, by the window, I can't get past ~130Mbps during the day. I've seen speeds just over 200Mbps after mid night. If I open the door and walk just 5 steps, I can get very good download speeds:



This is Vodafone 4G in the same spot:



Speeds can fluctuate a lot, especially during the day. One moment I might be getting 300Mbps, see a drop to 50Mbps for 30 seconds, and then an increase to 100 or 400Mbps.

I wanted to see how good or bad it was in practice, so for the past few days I've been using my phone's hotspot. Web browsing, video calls, 1440p YouTube videos, some heavy downloads (1-5GB), email, etc. After 100GB I can say that it's usable, but not super reliable/stable (keep in mind that Three's signal isn't good inside my flat).

While it works fine 95% of the time, sometimes I may have to reload a page because it failed to load. Pings can be as low as 15ms and then jump to 100ms. YouTube videos at high resolutions will be fine most of the time, but I may experience buffering during one of the speed drops. The slow upload speeds cause problems with VPNs (due to the encryption overhead) and obviously 5Mbps might not be enough if you have multiple people uploading stuff (eg: video calls).

Most of these issues seem to be related to Three's signal in this area... I'd like to compare Smarty's 5G to Vodafone and GiffGaff (O2) as I have their SIMs too, but neither support 5G in this area. In any case, indoors, Smarty's 5G is better than Vodafone's (40/10Mbps) and GiffGaff (terrible, 2/2Mbps) 4G. I think EE's 4G could compete with Smarty as I've tested with a PlusNet Mobile SIM and was getting 110/40Mbps during the day (and PlusNet has a speed cap and doesn't have access to all EE's bands).

In any case, even with the issues I have, I think this is a good alternative for many. If it wasn't the slow upload speeds and my need for low latency (I play online games), I'd cancel my FTTC connection. Not only download speeds are better (and the lower speeds sometimes are faster than FTTC), but it's also cheaper than FTTC: 20/mo unlimited monthly Smarty plan vs ~30/mo.

I don't know if I'd do any long term contracts though. Three is investing a lot in 5G, but their cheaper prices paired with a lot of/unlimited data will probably lead to the same problems their 4G has in parts of the country. They oversold it and their speeds are a joke in places like central London. Unless they install one of those high band cells just outside, I'd be surprised if a year from now speeds are as good as they are today.
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Alex Atkin UK

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #49 on: January 23, 2022, 10:52:10 AM »

I was testing Smarty as I was planing to move networks and noticed my phone was showing 5G (5G NSA according to Network Signal Guru, not "proper" 5G). They enabled it a few days ago.

AFAIK all networks use 5G NSA right now apart from a few trials.  Its quite annoying as Three launched 5G here the middle of last year and during quiet hours:


However during the peak hours I get random bouts of high ping (much more frequently if you use their public IP APN 3internet rather than their CG-NAT APN three.co.uk) and much slower speeds, almost certainly down to upstream contention as I got identical behaviour on 4G which is why I originally cancelled Three and moved to Voxi.

As I don't generally play online games though it has been a HUGE improvement for downloading games while keeping my typical browsing to Zen and AAISP L2TP over Libera 4G as the main backup.

Considering its my cheapest broadband connection, its kinda hard to complain but I wouldn't want it as my ONLY connection.

Worth noting, I'm using a Hauwei CPE Pro 2 H122-373 which is really pricey and seems to be constantly out of stock now.  My phone could barely hold onto the Three 4G connection, a good router makes a world of difference especially as I have houses and trees between me and the mast.  So its actually performing far better than I expected.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2022, 10:57:07 AM by Alex Atkin UK »
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INTAKE (ECI) Home Hub 5A (OpenWRT) on Zen, 2xHauwei CPE Pro 2 H122-373 (VOXI 4G,Three 5G) Router: pfSense (i5-7200U) WiFi: Zyxel NWA210AX + Ubiquiti nanoHD (OpenWRT)
My Broadband History & Ping Quality Monitors

meritez

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #50 on: January 23, 2022, 02:41:39 PM »

Smarty unlimited is currently 16 a month, currently awaiting replacement sim card.
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celso

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #51 on: January 29, 2022, 11:24:04 PM »

Smarty unlimited is currently 16 a month, currently awaiting replacement sim card.

Where can you get unlimited for 16? On their site it's 20/mo.
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meritez

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #52 on: January 29, 2022, 11:26:36 PM »

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celso

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #54 on: March 25, 2022, 08:37:11 AM »

 ;D

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meritez

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #55 on: March 25, 2022, 09:55:06 AM »

;D



Impressive, both O2 and EE limit their unlimited plans to 600GB a month, you are way past that.
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celso

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Re: Leaving FTTC and going to Smarty 4G for 18.75 a month
« Reply #56 on: March 25, 2022, 09:27:48 PM »

No slow downs so far either (as far as I can tell) on 5G:



The weak signal inside my flat is still a problem. Sometimes my phone falls back to 4G and Three's 4G is terrible in this area (eg: see the upload speed in the screenshot above). On top of this, when doing heavy downloads, my phone gets hot and the hotspot sometimes drops.

But I still find it useful. I had to download around 200GB the other day and used 5G because it's way faster than my FTTC connection... I managed to find a spot near a window where I get up to ~500Mbps after midnight!

Regarding EE, I checked their site and it seems that they either slow down speeds during peak hours or ask customers to move to a business plan. But their business plan (which I assume doesn't have the same 600GB limit) is cheaper than the normal plan (30 vs 35/mo on a 24mo contract)? If that's the case, then it's cheaper and better to get a business plan.
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