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Old 29-01-2013, 11:26   #16
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Re: Internet Connectivity

Thanks trimarannaga that is good info. We are not technophiles but will need reasonable access to the net for school. Ref the sim cards I gather we can change them regularly as we head down the island chain? What kind of cell range are you getting from shore with 3G and do you use the phone as a modem/hotspot or a USB device. Also did you install a booster antennae on the boat?
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Old 29-01-2013, 17:07   #17
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Re: Internet Connectivity

Really depends on where you are. Sometimes you dont get 3g you get slow connections like edge or gprs but slow is better than nothing. We used to have a booster antenna to pick up wifi but it broke and wasnt very good anyways. Perhaps they have gotten better.How far out the cell signal goes and how powerful really depends on the provider. Using a cell phone and checking connectivity for the different providers will show you who has coverage and where. Most cell phones show that info if you can find it. Its in there somewhere. For a while i used my phone as a modem hooking it to the computer via a usb port. Now i use a huawei modem. I just switch sim cards when i switch countries. Most have prepaid plans and you pay as you need it at the branch office or a small village cell phone store you pay for top-ups. I know this kind of thing works in the carribean because i did it in the usvi the bvi and the dominican republic. I do it now in thailand malaysia and singapore. I hope this all helps you. I am not a computer guru or techie... Just another sailor trying to figure it all out.
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Old 29-01-2013, 17:15   #18
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Re: Internet Connectivity

On homeschooling we used the Calvert program for the first year and then did our own program for the second year. Calvert is expensive but amazingly complete, and it is designed from the ground up for folks in remote locations--in other words you get everything you need in a box and you don't necessarily need the Internet for most of it. It is very "old school" but we liked it, and so did our kids for the most part. We also had a ton of books onboard and both our kids read constantly, and of course we traded books too. We also had a lot of computer programs, books, and other computer stuff that did not require an Internet connection. When in Colombia, we hired a school teacher to teach Spanish to our kids. When In Guatemala we studied the Mayans and then climbed all over Tikal. There are tons of opportunities like that you can use that don't require the Internet. When we checked back into the states my son was entering high school and my daughter was entering middle school and they had very little trouble with the school work--just the culture issues. My son is now in his second year at a great college and my daughter has top grades in high school. They did fine on our homeschooling, but in reality I think about 80% of what goes on in formal land school is a pure waste of time for intelligent kids.
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Old 30-01-2013, 05:05   #19
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Re: Internet Connectivity

An advantage to using a smartphone in hotspot mode (or a Mifi pocket router) instead of a USB 3g modem is that you have a lot more freedom in the positioning of the 3G receiver. That means that you can easily put it temporarily in the top of the mast to get a bit more range. It is a bit of a Rube Goldberg/Heath Robinson contraption, but I really recommend bringing a small waterproot bag to keep your phone safe and dry while hanging in the top of the mast for extra range.
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Old 31-01-2013, 18:50   #20
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Re: Internet Connectivity

Hi Check out Axxess Direct, its a company that has connected the Caribbean through the cell phone network. The Caribbean has a good cell phone network that is used for data. 3 G is the norm in 90% of the islands.

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Old 31-01-2013, 23:04   #21
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Re: Internet Connectivity

Wow $450 for the same 3 gigs I get in the states for $60. More than 7 times as much.

$450 would buy some time in a nice marina with wifi!

At least long enough to get 3 gigs worth.




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Old 01-02-2013, 04:17   #22
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Re: Internet Connectivity

Where does it cost $450 for 3 gigs of data? That sounds impossible.
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Old 01-02-2013, 04:37   #23
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Re: Internet Connectivity

I agree with the comment that mobile Internet access is cheaper in the US and other places like Europe. But we are not talking about the US. We are talking about 30 different countries throughout the Caribbean and Pacific

As shown on the site when you roam with your US service provider it becomes very expensive as much as 30 US per MB with Bell Canada.

Using the Marina WIFi is often not reliable and does not work when you need it to work.

It's a easy dependable and fast Internet service. You can sail from island to island without shopping for a local SIM cards and topping up.

Much cheaper then roaming, satellite systems and air time and more reliable then hotspots..
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Old 01-02-2013, 05:09   #24
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Re: Internet Connectivity

What i am talking about is not roaming... I mean that if you want to use your phone you get a local sim card from one of the local service providers. You can only do that with an unlocked phone.
Or get a generic usb modem and use the local service providers directly with your computer. And i found that the usa has the most expensive service second only to french polynesia.
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Old 01-02-2013, 07:17   #25
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Re: Internet Connectivity

TSTT in trinidad will cost you $40 for 30 days unlimited data usage. Prepaid. No contract required. A usb modem will.cost you less than $50 and you can use it for most sim cards all over the place and you can buy one in a mobile phone store. Poor people live in these countries and use phones and computers. So after looking at the prices for axxess direct service i would say yes i will take the time to go to a mobile phone store and put a local sim card into my modem. Axxess is a very nice service for very rich people. And then there are the rest of us. Please just do a google search for service providers in your target country and see what you come up with. I pay less than $30 per month for 3gb data on my smart phone and my boyfriend pays less than $40 for 5 gigs using a modem in his computer. No contract. This is dtac in thailand. If you are in the usvi you can use att locally for prices similar to what yoy pay for service in america. The majority of people in the carribean are not rich tourists. They can afford to use the internet and you can afford it too if you get beyond the tourist trap.
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Old 01-02-2013, 08:35   #26
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Re: Internet Connectivity

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Old 01-02-2013, 12:47   #27
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Re: Internet Connectivity

Humm.. A good directional antenna with booster, will bring in a weak wifi signal 4 miles away or more depending on line of sight. The booster is nice since it will amplify outbound signals. Anchor and get that marina wifi

Get a pure internet connection and run skype on your phones , tablettes or laptops.. With the mast being a natural tower the antenna will get you great results.
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Old 01-02-2013, 19:48   #28
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We are in Grenada and have a St Lucia Digicel SIM with data in the iPhnd for sone
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Old 01-02-2013, 19:51   #29
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We are in Grenada and have a St Lucia Digicel SIM with data in the iPhnd for sone
Sorry, iPhone but cannot set up a hotspot. Someone said that Digicel puts a block on using hotspots so they sell more plans... Can anyone verify this? It just means I have to type on the iPhone and make mistakes rather than have a connection to my laptop!
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Old 01-02-2013, 20:00   #30
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Quote:
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Sorry, iPhone but cannot set up a hotspot. Someone said that Digicel puts a block on using hotspots so they sell more plans... Can anyone verify this? It just means I have to type on the iPhone and make mistakes rather than have a connection to my laptop!
Providers can disable theathering on smartphone or control the data plan to charge you separately etc. it's one of these colusuons that phone manufacturers and carriers get into.

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