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Old 15-01-2020, 17:50   #1
AST
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Cruising Bhamas; best internet option

Hi all,

I have searched the forum and the web, but posts I found might be too old considering today's technology.

Basically, I am planning to cruise the Bahamas & work. My work requires internet data (talk&text isn't that important) at least 5 Mbps.

I have google FI which should work there but I am not sure about the coverage map. Ideally, I will be anchoring and island hopping but I don't think all islands have coverage (or do they?).

I have also heard about my island wifi and read some reviews.

My questions, based on my needs, would
1- Google FI suffice, do I need some kind of a booster, if so what would you recommend?
2- I will probably buy local sim card for redundancy (I think BTC). How is the coverage?
3- Anyone has done comparison between google Fi and my island wifi? Would I need a booster with my island wifi? If so, which one?

Thanks
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Old 16-01-2020, 01:42   #2
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Re: Cruising Bhamas; best internet option

Here you can check the BTC coverage: BTC : Roaming

My own experience from the Exumas is that cell towers are few and far between. I didn't get decent data (5 Mbit/s bandwidth - not a chance!) even though I could see the tower. Only by going quite close to the tower (ie anchored not very far from it), the data became somewhat usable.

I can't image Google Fi doing any better over there.
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Old 16-01-2020, 04:42   #3
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Re: Cruising Bhamas; best internet option

Have you looked at the satellite options?
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Old 16-01-2020, 18:13   #4
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Re: Cruising Bhamas; best internet option

I've had Myisland wifi for the last two years and it's incredible. $75 per month truly unlimited with no throttle except because of the number of users and band width. The only place we didn't have service was from north of Compass Cay to south of Norman Island in the Exumas - basically the Land and Sea Park. We use A LOT of data between everyone on board and couldn't be happier - better than home.
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Old 16-01-2020, 22:58   #5
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Re: Cruising Bhamas; best internet option

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I've had Myisland wifi for the last two years and it's incredible. $75 per month truly unlimited with no throttle except because of the number of users and band width. The only place we didn't have service was from north of Compass Cay to south of Norman Island in the Exumas - basically the Land and Sea Park. We use A LOT of data between everyone on board and couldn't be happier - better than home.
Hey, this is great!

Do you know anything about the technology? I think I saw they are using the BTC towers, but are they using their own "receivers" and upstream? Or is it just a very good mobile hotspot device that magically delivers great data using the normal BTC infrastructure?
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Old 17-01-2020, 06:14   #6
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Re: Cruising Bhamas; best internet option

I don't. It just works and is IMO cheap.
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Old 17-01-2020, 10:07   #7
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Re: Cruising Bhamas; best internet option

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Originally Posted by mglonnro View Post
Hey, this is great!

Do you know anything about the technology? I think I saw they are using the BTC towers, but are they using their own "receivers" and upstream? Or is it just a very good mobile hotspot device that magically delivers great data using the normal BTC infrastructure?
Not to speak for Leo, the owner, but it's a relatively unused channel on the BTC spectrum, G5 (not 5G!); because it's relatively unused, it gets better bandwidth.

Truly unlimited, he has double-digit numbers of subscribers who use double digit TERABYTES a month, and a large flock in the single-digit Ts.

My personal experience is limited to the Abacos. External antennae, as well as more height, will boost your reception. Be advised, however, like any hotspot, data is watts, and you'll have to power it continuously if you are a heavy user .

Also be advised that it's available only in a few places over there; it's far more effective to have him send you one in the states before you go.

HTH...

L8R

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Old 17-01-2020, 10:38   #8
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Re: Cruising Bhamas; best internet option

I have used google FI in the Abacos and the Exumas for the past three years, the only place that we could not get a signal with it was at warderick wells in the exumas. We almost always had a good signal and the speeds we were getting were about 5 mbps unless we were close to a cell phone tower, though it never really topped 25 mbps.

As for a local service in the Bahamas we used Aliv for the last few years as well. they have an unlimited hotspot plan (with a fair use policy) that is pre paid for about $90 a month. Their hotspot always had better speed than our google fi phone (by about 5 or 10 mbps) and had good reliability as well as similar coverage. I think the difference is that FI uses BTC and Aliv seems to be on its own frequency.

Personaly I would not recomend using BTC as a backup. I have heard nothing positive about them when it comes to customer service or service quality. also, they do not have an unlimited data plan.

The Island wifi does look like quite a good option, though i do not have any personal experience with the product.
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Old 18-01-2020, 02:34   #9
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Re: Cruising Bhamas; best internet option

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Originally Posted by skipgundlach View Post
Not to speak for Leo, the owner, but it's a relatively unused channel on the BTC spectrum, G5 (not 5G!); because it's relatively unused, it gets better bandwidth.

Truly unlimited, he has double-digit numbers of subscribers who use double digit TERABYTES a month, and a large flock in the single-digit Ts.
Nice! Will certainly try to get one the next time we visit.
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Old 18-01-2020, 05:26   #10
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Re: Cruising Bhamas; best internet option

We used MyIslandWifi last year through the Abacos, Eleuthera, and the Exumas. As mentioned above, the reception was great except in Warderick Wells. It was fast enough that we could both stream simultaneously with no issues.

This year we had the device sent to us in Vero before we crossed (although you can also pick it up at the nearest Bahamian airport). We ended up with a faulty SIM card but Leo, the owner, was outstanding in quickly resolving the issue for us. The customer service really is great.
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