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Thread: Power outage data speed

  1. #1
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    Power outage data speed

    There have been three recent power outages affecting much of NorCal for a few days each. Not sure about other carriers, but the Verizon data speed dropped to very low levels. Sometimes like dial-up. I assume they do this to save power on transmitting equipment, which may be on generator backup.

    Unless you had your own generator, mobile devices were the only things usable. I used my phone directly, and as hotspot for a couple of notebooks. That worked pretty well if the running time was kept to a minimum. Phones are easy to charge, but larger devices could be a challenge. My notebook batteries are fairly good, so running time was not a problem.

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    Most likely a lot of people who lost line-powered Internet switched to cell data for info and entertainment which caused congestion on the cells.

    Power outages are a reason that I like having a tablet. Tablets and phones are easy to charge from battery packs or the car. For my notebook I have to get to line power. I do have an inverter that I could run in the car to charge the notebook, but I have never been that desperate.

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    Good point about the network congestion causing a speed throttle. I don't know anyone to ask on direct Verizon service if they noticed. Most don't have signal apps or do something like tethering/hotspot. One sour note is a friend's Verizon branded Galaxy S5 on Page Plus would not allow hotspot. That phone was made in the days when Verizon did not allow some network features unless on their Postpaid service, so locked it out on the phones.

    I will likely go to an inverter, but running off my large capacity travel trailer battery. Running off a car requires it be running if used for any length of time. It could also power the modem and router. Maybe the RV refrigerator too, as they don't use near as much power as home types, no more than 180 watts. I have AT&T wired Internet service and don't know if that was down during the outage.

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    Power outage data speed

    Same thing happens in NH when ice storms take out the power grid, Massive congestion, very low,throughput per user if any.

    Try your cable modem etc and you may find it works fine on generator/inverter power.

    Ps, did ya know that in a full stadium about three people per base station antenna can upload video and while they do it the other 59997 people are lucky to send a single photo? The reason is poor spectral efficiency. More transmitting antennas results in more interference. Mother nature cannot be fooled.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bald2718281828 View Post
    Same thing happens in NH when ice storms take out the power grid, Massive congestion, very low,throughput per user if any.

    Try your cable modem etc and you may find it works fine on generator/inverter power.
    I remember being in NH with a 2 1/2 day power outage. Not fun in January with no furnace! Many people in the area left for the duration, but I had spare water and portable propane appliances. I am from the West where there is a tradition of widespread propane use. Not much propane used where fuel oil predominates like the NE.

    I will have to check whether the AT&T hardwire Internet system here shuts down during a prolonged power outage. We have few options for Internet, especially much outside of the towns. Was glad that hotspotting worked.

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    Quote Originally Posted by loboheeler View Post

    I will have to check whether the AT&T hardwire Internet system here shuts down during a prolonged power outage. We have few options for Internet, especially much outside of the towns. Was glad that hotspotting worked.
    If its straight dsl copper back to the central office their generators will kick on and keep things powered forever. If it's fiber to the node to a cabinet or underground remote where copper connects to your home they may have small generators which if refueled frequently would keep things working. Straight fiber would/should work as long as you kept power going for equipment at your home.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bald2718281828 View Post
    Same thing happens in NH when ice storms take out the power grid, Massive congestion, very low,throughput per user if any.

    Try your cable modem etc and you may find it works fine on generator/inverter power.

    Ps, did ya know that in a full stadium about three people per base station antenna can upload video and while they do it the other 59997 people are lucky to send a single photo? The reason is poor spectral efficiency. More transmitting antennas results in more interference. Mother nature cannot be fooled.
    13 stadiums are now wired for 5G by Verizon so for those customers on Verizon with 5G phones things should be pretty good. I doubt too many people would make that their decision on a carrier based on that little use case though.

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    I have boost and data mostly did not work. Every once in a while I might get a web page to load but most of the time nothing worked for data.

    I am looking into getting a portable solar battery for my phone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by brad4cell View Post
    I have boost and data mostly did not work. Every once in a while I might get a web page to load but most of the time nothing worked for data.

    I am looking into getting a portable solar battery for my phone.
    That battery won't help the data congestion...

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    Quote Originally Posted by SoNic67 View Post
    That battery won't help the data congestion...
    True, but I wanted to use my phone longer unrelated to the data problem. I could still get data from free hotspots with my phone too.

    I might get a USB TV for my android phone too so I can watch TV.

    It is better to use a phone or tablet than a laptop during an outage because they use less power and are easier to charge.

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    Quote Originally Posted by loboheeler View Post
    Unless you had your own generator, mobile devices were the only things usable.
    A good 12V sine-wave UPS goes for less than $100 (just make sure you can silence the alarm). You can charge the battery from your car in maybe half an hour, and power your cable/dsl/fiber modems and WiFi routers for hours and hours. A PC will drain a little UPS in under an hour, however, so you're still stuck with your phone (or tablet, or a small laptop) for browsing. But if your carrier keeps their side working, you could get normal data speeds during a power outage, without a proper generator.

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    Quote Originally Posted by offthegrid View Post
    If its straight dsl copper back to the central office their generators will kick on and keep things powered forever. If it's fiber to the node to a cabinet or underground remote where copper connects to your home they may have small generators which if refueled frequently would keep things working. Straight fiber would/should work as long as you kept power going for equipment at your home.
    The fiber trunk only runs down main streets in my town. It is then brought in to the RV park using copper to each space. I think there is a cabinet near the street for the transition. The copper distribution is old, and likely pre-dates the fiber trunk. AT&T does not offer DSL here. If out of range of a fiber connection, you are SOL.

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