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Thread: Uptime for Verizon Mobile Broadband versus AT&T DSL

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    Uptime for Verizon Mobile Broadband versus AT&T DSL

    Hi, I would like a rock-stable and reliable connection to the internet. What service will have the most uptime and lose the connection to the net the least? Do you think it would be AT&T DSL for $30/month, or do you think it would be a Verizon Wireless USB mobile broadband modem (their USB760) connected to my desktop's USB port for $60/month? Or maybe it's some other service like AT&T U-verse? My main wish is a constant connection to the net (I value that more than speed). I don't want a service that goes out for an hour or two once every week or two. I'll be moving to St. Louis, Missouri soon if that makes a difference. Thanks.

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    Don't forget that the mobile broadband plans are capped at 5GB and have overage charges

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    True, but 5 monthly gig is more than I need (I rarely use YouTube), and Millenicom will give 10 gig for the same $60 price. And some folks say GroupAccess.com is also a good option, but their homepage has been down for revision for at least a month, I think. What's going on there? I don't mind the topic being expanded.

    But my main question is which will give me the best uptime: Verizon Mobile Broadband (through Verizon directly, Millenicom indirectly, or through GroupAccess--does it matter which?), or will AT&T DSL give me better uptime, or possibly AT&T U-verse?

    I have great uptime (near 100 percent) where I live now through a Mediacom cable modem, but where I'm moving soon (to St. Louis), most folks says Charter Cable is awful in St. Louis, so I need an alternative.
    Last edited by Built_Well; 06-27-2010 at 12:30 PM.

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    A mobile broadband is much more prone to problems. DSL is a constant connection that is supposed to never turn off. Cable IMO is really good. u verse is also good too. I would have to say I choose those over the broadband card. There is less ping and speeds are tremendously bigger on cable or sometimes dsl.

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    Thanks, you mentioned that mobile broadband is "much more prone to problems." I'm surprised to hear that because I've never had a problem the times I've used my Page Plus smart phone to connect to the net on Verizon's mobile network in Columbia, Missouri (100 miles west of St. Louis). I've always connected fine to the net.

    I used a friend's CenturyLink DSL modem to connect to Yahoo yesterday, and his DSL modem conked out midway through the page load. After a minute, I gave up trying to load Yahoo. That's why I'm thinking Verizon Mobile Broadband would be better than DSL, but maybe I shouldn't let the CenturyLink DSL experience yesterday affect my impression of AT&T DSL (two different companies, and it will be two different cities).

    Sure would be nice if Mediacom Cable were in St. Louis. This company is awesome in Columbia. Great customer service, techs come out on schedule if a repair is needed, cable modem connection is rock solid when it comes to uptime and it's also fast.

    So the question remains for St. Louis:
    Verizon Mobile Broadband using a USB760 usb modem (connected to my desktop)
    or
    AT&T DSL
    or
    AT&T U-verse.

    Schucks, maybe simple dialup would be best for uptime. I really don't know.
    Last edited by Built_Well; 06-27-2010 at 01:50 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Built_Well View Post
    Hi, I would like a rock-stable and reliable connection to the internet. What service will have the most uptime and lose the connection to the net the least? Do you think it would be AT&T DSL for $30/month, or do you think it would be a Verizon Wireless USB mobile broadband modem (their USB760) connected to my desktop's USB port for $60/month? Or maybe it's some other service like AT&T U-verse? My main wish is a constant connection to the net (I value that more than speed). I don't want a service that goes out for an hour or two once every week or two. I'll be moving to St. Louis, Missouri soon if that makes a difference. Thanks.
    My speeds with Verizon are very close and sometimes better then my AT&T DSL. In St. Louis, speeds are great. I use to live up there. It all comes down to: Do you want data with your laptop where ever you go or not, I guess.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Built_Well View Post
    Do you think it would be AT&T DSL for $30/month, ...
    I have to ask, who owns and maintains the DSL street hardware you're asking about? Is it actually AT&T itself?

    I know that for where I live, a "no name" company owns and maintains the fiber on our street, bulk sells bandwidth to our local cable companies and ISP's like Earthlink, who in turn, re-sell internet service to their own retail customers.

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    That's a good question. I don't know who owns the street hardware. I do know that years ago there used to be a big telephone office building (Southwestern Bell, I think) about a quarter-mile away from where I'll be moving soon. The building, however, is no longer owned by a telephone company, I think, and probably doesn't have phone functions anymore.

    What's going to give my desktop the best uptime in South St. Louis county (the municipality is called Affton):

    Verizon Mobile Broadband's USB modem (the usb760)
    AT&T DSL
    AT&T U-verse
    or Simple dialup networking

    Oh yes, now there's another option too. The clear.com web site says
    Clear Mobile Broadband is available now in the St. Louis zip code I'm moving to. Clear must have become availabe just in the last few weeks.

    And there's Cricket too. Cricket's been around a good long while there, I think.

    I'm tending to lean toward a Verizon Mobile USB modem, but want to be sure uptime is close to 100 percent like I enjoy in Columbia with Mediacom Cable.

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    It's great that DSLreports.org will compare speeds between providers, but what about uptime. Does anyone compare that?
    Last edited by Built_Well; 06-27-2010 at 05:19 PM.

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    Long story short, "it depends".

    I would ask about the DSL on somewhere like dslreports, and give a more specific address -- maybe not an exact address but at least within a block or so; since the thread is already up feel free to give that info here too. DSL is highly reliable, *IF* the copper is not all roached out, however in some neighborhoods the copper IS in poor condition, or too long, or both, or possibly the equipment is jut not in good shape, so the DSL is unreliable. Whereas in other areas the copper is in great shape (as long as it's "good enough" there won't be problems though). This is why I recommend stating the neighborhood.

    I've found my mobile broadband to be quite reliable as well; if you don't hang up it'll hang up and redial after 24 hours. Verizon do have generator backup, keep on top of maintenace, and so on. However, it is a shared radio channel so you may move somewhere just to find out the signal is weak, there's interference (I don't think this is real likely...but.. I should bring it up), or there's excessive congestion (again, unlikely, Verizon keeps on top of this, but also possible.). Also, the cell site has to have SOMETHING hooked up to it (well.. I guess it could be microwave, but inside St. Louis I'm sure it's not...), so a failure in the "wrong" location could cut off data connectivity to the cell site just as well as it cutting off the DSL.

    If I were to guess I would think the DSL would be more reliable. But, if you give your rough address and people say the DSL drops a lot around there, then the air card probably will be.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hwertz
    I've found my mobile broadband to be quite reliable as well; if you don't hang up it'll hang up and redial after 24 hours.
    Oh, so mobile broadband isn't always on, it sounds like? After how many minutes of inactivity will your Verizon usb modem close the air connection? Maybe an air card isn't ideal for a desktop.

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    It's definitely not always on. It has software that you use to connect and you connect and disconnect similar to dial-up. Like others said, it will disconnect after a certain amount of time and you have to reconnect. It's not meant to be always on. I also wouldn't consider a wireless connection as reliable as a hard wired land line connection.

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    My Page Plus smart phone will disconnect from the Verizon internet after 2 hours. How long will Verizon Mobile Broadband let you stay connected using a USB modem?

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    yeah, the usb modem my parents had dropped every 24hrs but was solid outside of that. The mifi they got in December is a POS and sporadically disconnects. If it wasn't for being grandfathered in on an unlimited alltel data plan, I'd terminate it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Built_Well View Post
    Oh, so mobile broadband isn't always on, it sounds like? After how many minutes of inactivity will your Verizon usb modem close the air connection? Maybe an air card isn't ideal for a desktop.
    It is seen as a PPP connection really. In my case, if I don't hang it up, it just hangs up and redials, which takes well under 30 seconds. If I dial at 8PM, it hangs up at 8PM the next day even if it's in mid page load. So, either hang it up when you're done using it each day, or have it connect at like 4AM or something, so the couple seconds of down time is not while you are using it.

    As for inactivity -- technically an EVDO connection goes from an active state to an idle state after 30 seconds of inactivity. This is to save power and to save network resources (EVDO Rev 0 has a limit of 59 simultaneous users, and Rev A 114 -- but idle users don't count against that number, so even when I'm connected 24/7 I'm only using one of the 59 for minutes a day.) It's transparent to the user, you don't lose your IP address, the computer sees an uninterrupted connection. The only consequence is a short delay to go from idle->active -- I just did a ping on my rev 0 card and got times of 734ms, 175, 186, 180. In other words idle->active took a little over 500ms. Rev A cards have lower ping times and have faster idle->active times though. Even if I'm using something like Slacker radio, the song loads far faster than it plays so there's loads of idle time.

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