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Old 20-06-2018, 02:27   #16
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Re: Help finding simple marine LTE solution

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Originally Posted by chris95040 View Post
Hey folks,

Does this exist:

1. A rugged little LTE antenna I can stick on my mizzen mast

2. A little box that gets wired to the the antenna, has a slot for a prepaid sim card, and has an ethernet jack.

??
There was a device, quite expensive, which had a multisection antenna and 3G router built in to it, powered by POE. When my mast was down some years ago, I pulled Cat 6 cable to the first spreader and installed a bracket for it. By the time the mast was back up, the device was obsolete and no LTE version was offered

I decided not to make any big investment in something hardwired and subjected to being quickly obsoleted.

I have been using various LTE routers -- a Huawei B593; another mifi device I can't remember the name of. They both have anntenna connections and I have a couple of different antennas which I've used with varying success. An expensive Poynting one was a dud, but one other cheap one from Amazon has been great, giving a big signal boost.

I normally stick the antenna inside the deck saloon window, which gives good results in 99% of cases. On very rare occasions I will send the Mifi device up up the mast on a halyard with the antenna in a plastic bag.

This ad hoc approach has worked well for me, but where I sail there is especially good mobile telephone service, and normally if you can even see land, you have a usable signal even on mobile phones in your pocket.

One data point FWIW.
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Old 20-06-2018, 08:38   #17
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Re: Help finding simple marine LTE solution

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Originally Posted by FabioC View Post
2. If you use a separate LTE small cell on the boat, you need to purchase a separate SIM card for it. With most providers, LTE data cards are comparatively expensive (e.g., last time I checked, T-Mobile data card was $25/month for only 2Gb of data).

It does not make economical sense to have a separate data card, when you can simply place your smartphone somewhere safe on deck and use the personal hotspot from it. The advantage of a separate LTE small cell with an antenna mounted high over a smartphone on a cradle on deck in terms of downlink and uplink speeds is fairly small and does not justify the cost.
That sounds expensive, I normally buy a 6Gb card for the mifi for about £15 which lasts us about 3 months. For some reason it is cheaper to buy a new sim each time rather than top the existing one up.

Pete
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Old 20-06-2018, 09:02   #18
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Re: Help finding simple marine LTE solution

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Originally Posted by Pete7 View Post
That sounds expensive, I normally buy a 6Gb card for the mifi for about £15 which lasts us about 3 months. For some reason it is cheaper to buy a new sim each time rather than top the existing one up.

Pete
Indeed. Cost varies a lot, and no place, in my experience, so expensive as the U.S.

I got 29 gigabytes (!) of LTE data in Denmark for 99 DKK (about $14).
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Old 20-06-2018, 11:59   #19
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Re: Help finding simple marine LTE solution

+1 on the Wirie Pro. Wifi extender and Cell booster with a simcard slot as well as optional GPS tracker (but need data for this to continue uploading). Had it on the back of the boat for a year and haven't had an issue. Then just need to figure out how to get data as cost effectively as possible which is different for different situations.
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Old 13-07-2018, 08:02   #20
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Re: Help finding simple marine LTE solution

I just went on the WIRIE website as we own an older model Wirie (we were considering an upgrade) and it seems that they have gone out of business. This message was posted on the website:
__________________________________________________ _____________
Island Consulting, Inc. has ceased all operations of The Wirie business effective immediately. We want to say a big thank you to all of our existing customers from the past 9 years. Unfortunately, a number of factors have played into us having to close our business at this time.

We are leaving the FAQ available, which we hope will provide some help to customers going forward. Click here: The Wirie Support System

We are also keeping the user manuals and firmware files available if needed.

User Manuals: http://www.thewirie.com/user-manuals.html

Firmware: http://www.thewirie.com/firmware.html

There will be no further support, and we will not be able to perform repairs on our products.



We wish everyone the best, and fair winds…….

The Wirie Crew
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