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Old 15-03-2016, 10:07   #16
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re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

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Originally Posted by tanglewood View Post
We have used Verizon and ATT on the US side in the PNW, and Telus in BC. Be very careful of roaming charges from either, particularly near the boarder where the devices can roam when not expected. We found coverage pretty much everywhere.

If you go north of Seymour narrows, coverage really starts to thin out. And once past Port McNeil and Port Hardy, there is essentially no coverage at all until you get to Prince Rupert, with only one or two isolated exceptions. SHearwater/Bella Bella has coverage, and I think Ocean Falls too, but I'm pretty sure that's it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Schooner Chandlery View Post
Verizon 4G hotspot worked well for us as we anchored in various places from Port Townsend over to Eagle Harbor. No other experiences there though. Sprint hotspot worked out in Neah Bay though. Surprise on that one.
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Originally Posted by Lepke View Post
I use Verizon traveling between the Columbia River and Alaska. I pay for both US and Canada data coverage when cruising. I usually can connect as far as 25 miles offshore when cell towers are present. It's not cheap and not for streaming much video. Most ports you stop in have WIFI. A few have wired internet. Where I winter (Columbia River) I use satellite internet. Cable isn't available. If you're in one place satellite works ok. Goes off in snow or heavy rain. Look into Exede.
Most dockside WIFI is slow. A few better marinas have cable but are at the top end of dockage pricing.
Quote:
Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post
Hi Nick,

It depends upon what you want/need to use the internet for... At best, we can stream a movie; at worst, we can still do SMS and text-only email. These using a combination of cell and sat phones. [We have a WiFi booster, but open WiFi seems to be extinct, and I understand why...]

We traverse a good chunk of the PNW (Alaska-British Columbia-Washington; mostly anchoring out) and have always had great success using our US AT&T mobile phones as a hot spot when we can receive a cell signal...

One of our AT&T cell phones typically lives in a booster cradle with an external antenna and feeds the internet connection via our wireless router [WiriePro- which also brings in distant WiFi, but there is rarely open, available WiFi these days... The WiriePro also has its own cell modem with its own data only SIM card if you don't want to use your cell phone... ]

When we cannot pick-up a cell or WiFi signal, we rely on our sat phone using UUplus email service for Wx, email, SMS, and voice.

This is what we could afford vs., say, an Iridium Pilot or the like.



I have detailed posts on these topics on my blog, and will be happy to provide those links if you are interested.

Best wishes with your new boat-to-be...

Cheers!

Bill
I already have Verizon, which works good but you can't stream Netflix, well not with out blowing your data limit right out of the water and having it get very expensive on you.

I am trying to find an unmetered connection.
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Old 15-03-2016, 10:24   #17
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re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

For a while I had a Verizon Broadband "stick" that looked just like a data stick. I used it on the boat for internet. It worked real well. I used it all over florida on the boat. It was available without a contract if I bought the stick for about $100. Not something they advertised though. Not sure they still have or do that. This was 2010. I was not streaming movies though.
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Old 15-03-2016, 10:24   #18
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re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post
Hi Nick,


One of our AT&T cell phones typically lives in a booster cradle with an external antenna and feeds the internet connection via our wireless router [WiriePro- which also brings in distant WiFi, but there is rarely open, available WiFi these days... The WiriePro also has its own cell modem with its own data only SIM card if you don't want to use your cell phone... ]

Bill
Bill,

What are you using for a booster cradle? Your link went to the antenna...

Bruce
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Old 15-03-2016, 10:37   #19
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re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigNickMontana View Post
I already have Verizon, which works good but you can't stream Netflix, well not with out blowing your data limit right out of the water and having it get very expensive on you.

I am trying to find an unmetered connection.
Understood, Nick.

Let us know if you do find some unlimited data sources as I suspect we will all be interested...

Once we adopted a life afloat, we found we had to separate the need for internet from the desire for movies/entertainment.

Many cruisers who enjoy movies have gone to storing ripped DVDs [or whatever other source] on a dedicated hard drive/thumb drive collection. We have a 4TB hard drive just for movies... Streaming movies via our cell data only happens when we have excess data toward the end of a billing period that won't roll forward into the next billing period- and even then sometimes the results are not optimum... [AT&Ts rollover (rip-over?) plan is really every-other-month at best as nothing rolls over until unless you use last months roll over minutes- which by default are used last...]

If you end up hanging around US PNW ports on your new boat-to-be, you could also try juggling DVDs in the mail from Netflix.... We have had mixed success with that in the past...

And some localities offer 'premium' WiFi services for a fee. Watch out though, if you are in a port that caters to cruise ships, that bandwidth will be saturated as well [i.e., streaming will be more like hiccuping...]

Another cost effective option [which we are too far north for, but our boat came with one...] that may work in WA/BC is TrackitTV.

Of course there are many domes you can hang off of your new boat as well to accomplish both internet and movies/TV, but those may be too much for your proposed 36 footer... [At least they would be for our 43 footer- and our budget...]

At least if you stay in the Puget Sound area I would think you would have the most options available anywhere...

Best wishes on your quest, and keep us informed if you find some alternatives worth considering...

Cheers!

Bill
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Old 15-03-2016, 10:55   #20
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re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Macblaze View Post
Bill,

What are you using for a booster cradle? Your link went to the antenna...

Bruce
Whoops...

Thanks for letting me know, Bruce.

We use a Wilson Sleek 4G Cell Booster [Now labeled WeBoost; here is the link to the latest model.]

It works with all the major carriers and most frequencies. [i.e., it is as universal as it gets today...]

Use with this antenna for trials and land-based use, and/or this marine grade antenna [With appropriate marine grade antenna coax wire...] for the best performance/longevity on the boat.

This is the one that most of 'us' seem to use, and that was reinforced by a fairly recent newsletter from Active Captain... [...about half way down this newsletter: Com products we use...]

The cradle design has trade-offs:

While it eliminates the need for a cell relay transceiver to a booster [2 devices to accomplish the same results...] so you can hand hold your phone, the phone must remain in the cradle to use... This is fine for data, but voice calls require either speaker phone, or a headset...

We travel with ours. Works great in our vehicles and truck camper too...

Hopefully I got the links right this time...

Cheers!

Bill
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Old 15-03-2016, 11:18   #21
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re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigNickMontana View Post
I already have Verizon, which works good but you can't stream Netflix, well not with out blowing your data limit right out of the water and having it get very expensive on you.

I am trying to find an unmetered connection.
Nick T-Mobile is what we use on our phones and we stream Netflix and the boys U Tube constantly. Never d any issues in the central sound
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Old 15-03-2016, 11:35   #22
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Re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

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Originally Posted by newhaul View Post
Nick T-Mobile is what we use on our phones and we stream Netflix and the boys U Tube constantly. Never d any issues in the central sound
Thanks, Newhaul.

Now that you mention it, I do remember seeing a T-Mobile commercial sometime recently, where they are offering unlimited streaming [of 'popular' services including Netflix...] on this plan.

That sounds like a great solution, and you can buy unlimited data for an additional $US45/mo per phone to avoid the throttling they impose after you hit your high-speed data quota.

I'll have to try a T-Mobile phone up here... Their coverage map shows coverage where I get it now, but I need to try it on for size first...

I know my vessel monitoring system's international SIM card defaults to T-Mobile up here, so it should be good...

I'll report back if I get a chance to try T-Mobile in these waters...

Cheers!

Bill
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Old 15-03-2016, 11:41   #23
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Re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Macblaze View Post
Bill,

What are you using for a booster cradle? Your link went to the antenna...

Bruce
Right now I am land yachting so I can work right off the cell.



For my on the water setup I am looking at the Ubiquity Titanium Bullet.
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Old 15-03-2016, 11:46   #24
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Re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post
Thanks, Newhaul.

Now that you mention it, I do remember seeing a T-Mobile commercial sometime recently, where they are offering unlimited streaming [of 'popular' services including Netflix...] on this plan.

That sounds like a great solution, and you can buy unlimited data for an additional $US45/mo per phone to avoid the throttling they impose after you hit your high-speed data quota.

I'll have to try a T-Mobile phone up here... Their coverage map shows coverage where I get it now, but I need to try it on for size first...

I know my vessel monitoring system's international SIM card defaults to T-Mobile up here, so it should be good...

I'll report back if I get a chance to try T-Mobile in these waters...

Cheers!

Bill
Yeah let us know how that works.
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Old 15-03-2016, 21:07   #25
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Re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post
Thanks, Newhaul.

Now that you mention it, I do remember seeing a T-Mobile commercial sometime recently, where they are offering unlimited streaming [of 'popular' services including Netflix...] on this plan.

That sounds like a great solution, and you can buy unlimited data for an additional $US45/mo per phone to avoid the throttling they impose after you hit your high-speed data quota.

I'll have to try a T-Mobile phone up here... Their coverage map shows coverage where I get it now, but I need to try it on for size first...

I know my vessel monitoring system's international SIM card defaults to T-Mobile up here, so it should be good...

I'll report back if I get a chance to try T-Mobile in these waters...

Cheers!

Bill
Bill definitely let us know how it goes up there pm me as I'm not on most of the time from April thru October but once a week or so.
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Old 15-03-2016, 21:10   #26
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Re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigNickMontana View Post
Right now I am land yachting so I can work right off the cell.



For my on the water setup I am looking at the Ubiquity Titanium Bullet.
Nick nice toys both the trick trailer and the toy you are hauling. Who do you pull for if I may ask? I was independent 11 western
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Old 15-03-2016, 21:53   #27
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Re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

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Originally Posted by newhaul View Post
Nick nice toys both the trick trailer and the toy you are hauling. Who do you pull for if I may ask? I was independent 11 western
You're talking to the HMFIC

I run everywhere but Cali and New York/New England. In Ohio at the moment headed to North Carolina.

Really wishing freight would pick up out west, its been dead so I have been spending so much time back east I am normally waking up at sunrise on the east coast now. Really throwing my schedule off.
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Old 15-03-2016, 21:55   #28
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Re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post
Understood, Nick.

Let us know if you do find some unlimited data sources as I suspect we will all be interested...

Once we adopted a life afloat, we found we had to separate the need for internet from the desire for movies/entertainment.

Many cruisers who enjoy movies have gone to storing ripped DVDs [or whatever other source] on a dedicated hard drive/thumb drive collection. We have a 4TB hard drive just for movies... Streaming movies via our cell data only happens when we have excess data toward the end of a billing period that won't roll forward into the next billing period- and even then sometimes the results are not optimum... [AT&Ts rollover (rip-over?) plan is really every-other-month at best as nothing rolls over until unless you use last months roll over minutes- which by default are used last...]

If you end up hanging around US PNW ports on your new boat-to-be, you could also try juggling DVDs in the mail from Netflix.... We have had mixed success with that in the past...

And some localities offer 'premium' WiFi services for a fee. Watch out though, if you are in a port that caters to cruise ships, that bandwidth will be saturated as well [i.e., streaming will be more like hiccuping...]

Another cost effective option [which we are too far north for, but our boat came with one...] that may work in WA/BC is TrackitTV.

Of course there are many domes you can hang off of your new boat as well to accomplish both internet and movies/TV, but those may be too much for your proposed 36 footer... [At least they would be for our 43 footer- and our budget...]

At least if you stay in the Puget Sound area I would think you would have the most options available anywhere...

Best wishes on your quest, and keep us informed if you find some alternatives worth considering...

Cheers!

Bill
I will keep you posted. I will be doing a lot of sailing in the sound for quite a while, I grew up with power boats, was on Whidbey when I was in the Navy, worked at the base marina my last year in.

Learned a little about sailing there but it was just in a small 12' boat.

Going to get lots of practice and experience down before going and bashing it out in the Blue water.

Oh and driving truck we deal with that, the truck stops have internet that is pay to play, but it is horrible, at night it will get so slow you can't even download pictures.
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Old 15-03-2016, 21:57   #29
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Re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

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Originally Posted by newhaul View Post
Nick T-Mobile is what we use on our phones and we stream Netflix and the boys U Tube constantly. Never d any issues in the central sound
Quote:
Originally Posted by wrwakefield View Post
Thanks, Newhaul.

Now that you mention it, I do remember seeing a T-Mobile commercial sometime recently, where they are offering unlimited streaming [of 'popular' services including Netflix...] on this plan.

That sounds like a great solution, and you can buy unlimited data for an additional $US45/mo per phone to avoid the throttling they impose after you hit your high-speed data quota.

I'll have to try a T-Mobile phone up here... Their coverage map shows coverage where I get it now, but I need to try it on for size first...

I know my vessel monitoring system's international SIM card defaults to T-Mobile up here, so it should be good...

I'll report back if I get a chance to try T-Mobile in these waters...

Cheers!

Bill
I may have to look into T Mobile, the issue I have with them is they have no service what so ever in Montana.

Will have to see what I can come up with.
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Old 15-03-2016, 22:19   #30
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Re: Internet in the Pacific North West?

Check into it they say they have coverage in many cities in Montana now as of Oct 2015
T-Mobile confirms new Extended Range LTE coverage in Montana ยป TmoNews
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