[SATLUG] OT: Broadband cards

Jonathan Hull masterr at gmail.com
Sat Jun 14 00:26:05 CDT 2008


I don't see the 595U on the website. They do have 2 other USB cards.
The Compass 597, which is cheaper, or the  Ovation U727 which has an
SD card slot (what for?) and actually lists Linux in the specs, so I
assume it will work.

I hate that all of these require 2 years and are insane prices without
the subsidies. Cell companies really like to rape you, eh?

-Jon


On 6/12/08, FIRESTORM_v1 <firestorm.v1 at gmail.com> wrote:
> I'll put my .02c behind Sprint as well.  I have had the Sierra Aircard
>  595U (USB) modem and have been extremely pleased with it.  It works
>  seamlessly on Ubuntu and I use kppp to bring up the interface in X
>  with no issues. (If you decide to go with Sprint, contact me offlist
>  and I can help you get it running.)
>
>  The 595U also has a GPS receiver that for the moment only works in
>  Windows.  If I can get the rest of my life to bugger off long enough
>  to analyze the data, I may finally be able to get the GPS port working
>  in Linux as well.
>
>
>  My supervisor mentioned something about AT&T doing something insane
>  with $20.00/mo prepaid data plan packages that I don't remember
>  requiring a contract.  I can't find any link on the AT&T site that
>  references it so some digging may be in order.
>
>
>  Good Luck!
>
>
>  FIRESTORM_v1
>
>
>  On Thu, Jun 12, 2008 at 5:09 PM, Jonathan Hull <masterr at gmail.com> wrote:
>  > Thanks for the feedback, guys.
>  >
>  > Ok here is another thing to throw in the mix. Any not require a contract.
>  >
>  > -Jon
>  >
>  >
>  > On 6/12/08, John Pappas <j at jvpappas.net> wrote:
>  >> On Thu, Jun 12, 2008 at 2:44 AM, Brad Knowles <brad at shub-internet.org>
>  >>  wrote:
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>  > On 6/12/08, Jonathan Hull wrote:
>  >>  >
>  >>  >   Any suggestions? Might not be able to match them all, but the more the
>  >>  >>  better. I've looked at Sprint, and it seems to be okay, but I wonder
>  >>  >>  if you guys know of any other good options to compare.
>  >>  >>
>  >>  >
>  >>  > To be honest, I'd say that you should start with your software and what
>  >>  > drivers will work with what hardware.  Then look to see if any of those
>  >>  > carriers have coverage in your area.  None of the carriers have true
>  >>  > universal coverage, and they're all going to have weak spots where some of
>  >>  > their competitors provide better coverage than they do.
>  >>  >
>  >>
>  >>
>  >> I have been using Sprint extensively, predominantly with Novatel cards.  The
>  >>  service is solid and I have not run into any of the mentioned hidden limits,
>  >>  but it is not my primary connectivity either.  It is plenty fast for most
>  >>  things and if you have good signal, I have done point-to-multipoint VTC (4
>  >>  sites, all VGA+ video streams) over RevA with no noticeable issues.  Upload
>  >>  and latency are the biggest issues vs "Broadband" service.
>  >>
>  >>  Sprint does not have any agreements with "roaming" into WiFi hot spots like
>  >>  TMobile or potentially ATT has.
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>  AT&T still has weak 3G coverage.  If you're in one of their designated
>  >>  > cities, you might be able to get 3G coverage in some parts of those cities,
>  >>  > but that's about the best you can hope for.  You'll be in 2.5G EDGE/GPRS
>  >>  > territory otherwise, and if you're really unlucky you won't even be able to
>  >>  > get GPRS.
>  >>  >
>  >>
>  >>
>  >> With an add on antenna, I have gotten at least 2.5G in many locations that I
>  >>  would not have thought possible (ie Northern NM/TX between Clayton and
>  >>  Texline), and Puerto Rico included (San Juan is 3G).
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>  > But outside of 3G, both AT&T and T-Mobile are GSM carriers, so as long as
>  >>  > the equipment you're using is quad-band, or even just tri-band, you should
>  >>  > get at least decent EDGE/GPRS access, if not 3G access.  This has the
>  >>  > advantage that it will also work overseas, and I think you might find more
>  >>  > driver support for GSM hardware than CDMA.
>  >>  >
>  >>
>  >>
>  >> I cannot speak personally for GSM gear, but much of my research indicates
>  >>  that the AirPrime or USBSerial drivers handle most cards, regardless of the
>  >>  radio.
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>  > Sprint tends to have the best overall coverage of the main carriers as it
>  >>  > sits right now, but Verizon is in the process of buying Alltel, and Alltel
>  >>  > is the major network partner for all of the "big four" carriers in rural
>  >>  > areas.  Going forward, you really have to wonder how much companies like
>  >>  > Sprint, T-Mobile, and AT&T are going to want to have their rural coverage
>  >>  > provided for them by the biggest cell carrier in the country.
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >> Agreed. Time will tell.
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>  > Of course, Sprint and Verizon/Alltel are CDMA carriers.  But they tend to
>  >>  > lock their equipment to their network, and since they don't have a SIM card,
>  >>  > you can't just take that equipment and go use it on another carrier.  You
>  >>  > have to buy different equipment, even if it's from the same model from the
>  >>  > same hardware manufacturer.
>  >>  >
>  >>
>  >>
>  >> GSM/EDGE/HSDPA is more of a global standard, and the SIM does make
>  >>  portability more of a possibility, but there are still "locking" issues
>  >>  regardless.
>  >>
>  >>
>  >>  Sprint has hidden caps on bandwith as well as throughput, and their
>  >>  > so-called "unlimited" data plan starts at $60/month.  Verizon is the same.
>  >>  >  T-Mobile "Total Internet for Data Cards" is $50/month.  For AT&T, their
>  >>  > DataConnect North America plan is $110/month, but then maybe that really is
>  >>  > unlimited?
>  >>  >
>  >>
>  >>
>  >> I have heard of the Verizon limits, but not of the Sprint limits.   I will
>  >>  have to try to see what they do!  Maybe I will go on an downloading spree
>  >>  and see what happens.
>  >>
>  >>  jp
>  >>
>  >> --
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