Mobile Data in Lieu of Broadband via BT – Open Reach

Sharpie

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If you check Trustpilot then Three have the best overall rating of all the big 5 UK mobile providers!

You have to look at the relative comparisons for Three, Vodafone, Orange, EE, and O2.

Three are the best by a wide margin in most cases!

Basically it is obvious (to me anyway) that Three are by some way the least complained about provider.
I agree, I've been with Three since the start and seen their network get better and better all the time. They built it with data use in mind from the start, and if you have a decent signal it works excellently.

A brother uses one of their homefi setups and gets blistering speeds. Has cut off his landline and uses his mobile for voice and other things. But he is mobile, lives in rented accommodation, and can only plan say six months ahead.

An ideal arrangement as well for e.g. students.

Cutting off your landline is a big decision, if you later regret and want it back it may cost over £300 to do so.

As for anyone who signs up to say a 2 year contract, well that is a contract, a commitment. When you sign up to one, don't just look at the headline monthly figure, work out what it is going to cost over the full term, that is what you are committing yourself to, if you want out early, well sorry you have broken the contract and must expect to pay off the remaining outstanding part. Whingeing about it is just cutting off your nose to spite your face, stopping the direct debit etc. is just likely to get you a poor credit record, just accept that you hadn't thought ahead and let it run, however imperfect you might think it is.and keep on using it instead of still eventually having to pay out but had nothing for it.

I've found Three to be far and away the best network with the best service, have used all the others over the years.

All broadband suppliers have introductory offers to attract new business, as with insurers etc.that's how life is, yes you can save a bit by swapping around at each renewal date but I prefer to stick with my good one (Plusnet) who I believe to be a solid, even caring, company. Better than BT (but owned by them).

Wouldn't touch TalkTalk with a bargepole, remember their serious data breach a few years ago ?

If your exchange is "unbundled" then you will have the option to contract directly with alternative suppliers and bypass BT. But the infrastructure will still be run by Openreach in almost all cases.
 

trevskoda

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Talk talk use the bt setup so a breach is out of there hands,anyway you should be using a encripted set up on your pc or smart ph so all they get is garbage.
 

Sharpie

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Do your homework. I'm not talking about the security of the internet data but the billing systems, customer records etc. TalkTalk messed up really badly with that a few years ago. Hopefully they have learned from that.
 

saxonborg

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I agree, I've been with Three since the start and seen their network get better and better all the time. They built it with data use in mind from the start, and if you have a decent signal it works excellently.

A brother uses one of their homefi setups and gets blistering speeds. Has cut off his landline and uses his mobile for voice and other things. But he is mobile, lives in rented accommodation, and can only plan say six months ahead.

An ideal arrangement as well for e.g. students.

Cutting off your landline is a big decision, if you later regret and want it back it may cost over £300 to do so.

As for anyone who signs up to say a 2 year contract, well that is a contract, a commitment. When you sign up to one, don't just look at the headline monthly figure, work out what it is going to cost over the full term, that is what you are committing yourself to, if you want out early, well sorry you have broken the contract and must expect to pay off the remaining outstanding part. Whingeing about it is just cutting off your nose to spite your face, stopping the direct debit etc. is just likely to get you a poor credit record, just accept that you hadn't thought ahead and let it run, however imperfect you might think it is.and keep on using it instead of still eventually having to pay out but had nothing for it.

I've found Three to be far and away the best network with the best service, have used all the others over the years.

All broadband suppliers have introductory offers to attract new business, as with insurers etc.that's how life is, yes you can save a bit by swapping around at each renewal date but I prefer to stick with my good one (Plusnet) who I believe to be a solid, even caring, company. Better than BT (but owned by them).

Wouldn't touch TalkTalk with a bargepole, remember their serious data breach a few years ago ?

If your exchange is "unbundled" then you will have the option to contract directly with alternative suppliers and bypass BT. But the infrastructure will still be run by Openreach in almost all cases.
Surely a contract works both ways, if the provider doesn’t supply what he committed to why should the individual carry on paying?
 

Sharpie

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Surely a contract works both ways, if the provider doesn’t supply what he committed to why should the individual carry on paying?
Possibly Maingate's problems are nothing to do with Three, but his mifi might be slowly dying.

In any case with any new contract you get at least 14 days "cooling off" period to try it all out. I don't believe in talk of "signals getting weaker and weaker, now it's rubbish". Quite the opposite, they know what's going on and are constantly striving to improve them, whether they use Huawei kit or not. If the local cell is being overloaded they will notice and try to add capacity where necessary.

But with mobile data there is only so much that they can feasibly put in, and if at peak times it is all being consumed by people using streaming HD video, facebookery, twattery, whatsappery, well something has to give. Stamping your feet when frustrated doesn't really help anyone.
 

antiquesam

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I was told by Three customer service that I've been with them for 15 years and I find them excellent. I wouldn't get rid of my Virgin cable service though. I only use the phone data when away and find my 4gb and unlimited calls at £7 more than enough for me. I have never actually used more than 1gb in a month, probably because I'm an old fuddy duddy.
 

maingate

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Possibly Maingate's problems are nothing to do with Three, but his mifi might be slowly dying.

In any case with any new contract you get at least 14 days "cooling off" period to try it all out. I don't believe in talk of "signals getting weaker and weaker, now it's rubbish". Quite the opposite, they know what's going on and are constantly striving to improve them, whether they use Huawei kit or not. If the local cell is being overloaded they will notice and try to add capacity where necessary.

But with mobile data there is only so much that they can feasibly put in, and if at peak times it is all being consumed by people using streaming HD video, facebookery, twattery, whatsappery, well something has to give. Stamping your feet when frustrated doesn't really help anyone.
Why don't you check the 3 reviews and you will find it is a common problem with customers. I have had a 3 mifi at this address for a long time, I also upgraded my Mifi to a Huawei 315 just recently. So you spout off all you like about wonderful speeds, they are not happening here because 3 have no masts at the end of my street. What was once adequate is now not and 3 have not kept up with demand.

As for the 14 day cooling off period, I have been on this contract for around 20 months of the 24, which is a bit more than 14 days, even you can work that one out.
 

TJBi

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<snip>

I could borrow long term a Samsung Galaxy Ace mobile but am not fond of Google and Android things.
I rather fancy a Nokia Lumia 640 XL Windows phone.

So question 1 is: Any comments and advice on Windows phones?

<snip>
I bought a Lumia 950 a couple of years ago because Android can be difficult to control (it thinks that it knows better than the user) and because I had experienced serious problems with data corruption in the past when synchronising Outlook contacts with an Android device. Initially, the phone performed well with the limited apps available (an issue of which I was aware before buying it and that did not concern me overmuch), but for some time I have been having issues with the phone turning itself off and as I don't check the screen every few seconds I sometimes miss calls as a result. The battery life has also become a major problem, and I am now debating whether to buy a replacement battery for a phone whose OS is no longer supported or whether to bite the bullet and replace it with Android. If purchasing a phone now, I would not go for a Windows 10 mobile.
I know that when I was originally researching Windows 10 mobiles I discovered that one of the XL models had some serious problems, but forget whether this was the 640 or a more recent model.
 

harrow

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What I would say in support of using a windows phone as a hotspot is a secondhand one will only cost £10 to £20 eg a Nokia lumia 550
 

Asterix

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As a full-timer I just couldn't find a landline long enough,so I've just used mobile internet for the last five years,buy a sim free phone to give network choices,although I just use EE and never had any issues,and great UK wide coverage. Not sure I'd go with a Windows phone,Android works for me.
 

Sharpie

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Why don't you check the 3 reviews and you will find it is a common problem with customers. I have had a 3 mifi at this address for a long time, I also upgraded my Mifi to a Huawei 315 just recently. So you spout off all you like about wonderful speeds, they are not happening here because 3 have no masts at the end of my street. What was once adequate is now not and 3 have not kept up with demand.

As for the 14 day cooling off period, I have been on this contract for around 20 months of the 24, which is a bit more than 14 days, even you can work that one out.
Sorry to hear about that.

Previously you said that you had had a data contract with them for "6 or 7 years" using a mifi.

But now it seems are locked in to them on some new contract for another four months or so. I'm guessing you signed up to a Three homefi that came with a "free" router.

That do actually cost them money. Which they amortise over the contract duration.

Many of us are very happy with them, I'm sorry that you are not, but at least you have only four months to go, plenty of time to try out other suppliers and see if they are any better for you. What other options are you considering ?

Maybe talk to them nicely and they might send you a new router, just in case your old one is going bad (they are currently issuing the latest B535 which is potentially twice as fast).

Please don't slag them off just based on your single poor experience, and turning that into a sweeping generalisation.
 

trevskoda

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Do your homework. I'm not talking about the security of the internet data but the billing systems, customer records etc. TalkTalk messed up really badly with that a few years ago. Hopefully they have learned from that.
Yes sorry im with you now and do remember that,these days lots of co make big bo bos with folks data and billing ,banks esp, we loose out of course and they just keep taking the money (y)
 

maingate

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Sorry to hear about that.



Please don't slag them off just based on your single poor experience, and turning that into a sweeping generalisation.
I have been unhappy for quite some time and slagged nobody off. Then I checked Trustpilot to find that a lot of customers had the exact same problem as myself, so it is a researched generalisation. :giggle:

After speaking (and complaining) to someone at an Indian Call Centre, it is no surprise that I got a text message saying that "We're planning work in your area this week. If your device is affected click here for updates". The smell of bull***t is very strong today.
 

Sharpie

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The thing is, if you believe these review sites, all you ever get is moaning by dissatisfied people, rightly or wrongly.

Fair enough, but all the people who are quite content with their service just keep going and don't have any reason to post negativity, so obviously what you might read is skewed only one way, and likely to further re-enforce your personal worries.

Perhaps it is actually true that Three is putting in some upgrades in your area. Actually they do let you know in advance when it's happening and that there might be some disruption for days/weeks when they do so.

But sometimes that is difficult, nimbys protesting about additional cells (but still expect perfect coverage), then there are the weirdos who say that 5G will fry our brains, as they have been doing ever since the start. Not just mobiles, powerlines, claiming to be hypersensitive to everything. Well the answer for them is to keep on wearing tinfoil hats, only turn their 'phones on when they want to make a call (bet they all have one), then off. Expecting the rest of the world to revolve around them. Well these people, trying to talk to like minded people, perhaps only ever communicate through voicemail. And text. Sadly I do know a few still like that.
 

colinmd

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Over the last few months 3 have been suffering problems with their network, in some areas things have improved, in other areas things are still bad or even getting worse
 

Sharpie

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They may be suffering from their own popularity and getting congested in places. I've not seen it myself, and being a bit nerdy run speed tests regularly (Ookla) when out and about and have a spare moment. But I live an an almost rural lifestyle so don't visit big cities etc. very often, so I'm not necessarily in a position to know.

Did a quick look and here is a link to a recent discussion that might shed some light on the matter.


I'm certainly not dismissing others' experiences recently, and just hope that whatever "upgrades" they are putting in place come good soon.
 

Nabsim

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I don’t doubt those who have problems but can only speak for myself. I have used 3 for many years, there are areas where there is poor or no signal but when others have been with me it is the same for them on O2. One bit in Newton Stewart I had an EE work phone and later realised it had roamed to a Manx provider to give signal when 3 didn’t.

I normally get some signal on my 3 router, if that fails on put the sim in my mifi, didn’t work on anything in parts of the Kielder Forest though.

Most places 3 works very well for me, to the extent I wouldn’t contemplate changing. Currently typing this close to the house in the sticks where we only get 2mb broadband over wire and no mobile phone signal but am using the 3 router okay without additional aerial.
 

REC

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I have a three data only contract which gives 40gb data, and go binge in uk. 20gb abroad. When we are in van, I put the SIM in a mifi Huawei E5577 and find that generally works well. This costs £15 mth, also have a phone SIM with data from different supplier to give extra gb abroad as well as a bit of choice of poor signal both UK and abroad. Many companies say they will refund money if in first couple of weeks the signal is no gokd. I haven't had problem personally, with 3 customer service. Go through Quidco to see if there is a good deal.
 

in h

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Two unrelated questions. To the question about a Windows phone, the answer is "don't". Even Microsoft is giving up on them. Android is excellent. Far, far better.
To the question about giving up your landline and replacing it wilth mobile broadband, that's a slightly more difficult one to answer. It is exactly what I have done, and it worked out really well.
Basically, I was paying line rental just for the line to carry broadband, and paying for the FTTC broadband on top. I decided to replace it with a Three unlimited 4G sim. It works fairly well.
Here's a geeky technical comparison:
We have a good clear line of sight to the base station which is about two miles away across the valley. The same mast serves EE and Three. So the signal is strong, though with more interference than is ideal.
The FTTC broadband gave about 33M/sec down, 6M/sec up.
The Three mobile connection gives between 35M/sec and 45M/sec down, 28 to 32 up. Significantly faster up, noticeably faster down.
However, there are drawbacks.
The latency is much higher. The FTTC was about 18ms, the Three broadband is about 38ms latency. The IP address changes fairly often, though the addresses are routeable public addresses which work with DDNS services.
Outgoing phone calls work very well, with the phone line plugged into the router, but their caller ID shows the mobile number of the broadband (which does work for incoming calls). Dialling out takes about 20 seconds, during which there is no ringing tone: every outgoing call felt like a leap of faith at first. The router drops back to 3G for the duration of the voice call, so speeds are lower for the duration.
I've used VOIP for over a decade, and the mobiles are on 1p mobile, so phone calls are really not much of an issue.
I used to have an EE mobile data sim in the motorhome's mi-fi but I cancelled that and now take the unlimited mobile broadband sim and put a pre-paid 24GB/24 month sim into the house router so the house is not left disconnected.
It has to be said that Three is nothing like as good as EE. With the same hardware in the same places, EE consistently has better signal and is at least half as fast again, with half the latency, and the IP address changes much less often.
But EE is twice the price for unlimited data and free calls, and Three is good enough.
 

in h

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I'm certainly not dismissing others' experiences recently, and just hope that whatever "upgrades" they are putting in place come good soon.
There have been issues since the weekend, and on Sunday, in the storms, it was very iffy indeed. But that may be due to network reconfiguration. Instead of ping times aroung 38ms, I was seeing 200ms times, starting at the third step of the tracert. In my area, Three said they were dealing with a "complex network issue" (whatever that means). Since that notice disappeared at the weekend, speeds have been more variable. I suspect that the storms have affected some of their microwave backhaul links.
 

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