We’ve said it before, … and I’ll say it again, If you really *need* the Internet, you need more than one way to connect. On the road, that means wireless, and there are 3 ways – Wi-Fi, Cellular, and Satellite. See our video on High Speed Internet on the Road: 3 Ways to Connect.
We’re at a hotel in San Jose, California at the moment, and we’re using the in-room Wi-Fi … at $12.95/day! But, just now I tried to use the Wi-Fi and, even though I connected fine, there was no Internet. So, I used the Ethernet cable and plugged it into the wall connection for ‘Network.’ All is well. Wired is always better than wireless if you have that option.
You may be wondering why we’re in a hotel in San Jose? This is where Google headquarters are, and they invited us to be on a panel to discuss customer support issues. We will also be co-hosting a Webinar (seminar on the web) on Picasa. If you take digital photos – we highly recommend using Picasa, a free program from Google. Please join us for this free webinar on Friday, November 13 at 10am Pacific time.
Wired is Better than Wireless – usually
We are spending the winter season at our home park, Paradise Island RV Resort. There is WiFi here, and it is pretty good right now. But as more “snow birds” flock to the park and connect, the bandwidth and speeds do suffer. And a single infected computer can really bring things to a crawl.
We have the option of a wired connection here because there are phone connections at all the sites. I called AT&T and had our site set up with high-speed DSL for the months we will be here. They have a month-to-monthplan where you can get only data if you do not need a voice line and pay $47/mo for the highest speed. That is perfect for us, because we use our Verizon cell phones and Google Voice.
We were very happy with the speeds on our DSL connection until the DSL stopped working Friday. Tech support determined the line was bad and a tech would be out in the morning.
Back to Wireless
To get work done, I connected to the WiFi. It worked pretty good, but it wasn’t as fast as our dedicated DSL
The tech didn’t make it in the morning, but he did call and said he would be out at 2pm. He was here promptly at 2 and traced the problem to 2600 feet from our site. He found the problem, connected me back up, and we were back in business!
I sure hope that doesn’t happen again. But we are prepared. If the DSL goes down, I’ll connect to the park WiFi. If that is not good enough, I’ll turn on the Verizon Cellular Broadband.
What will we do next year when we are traveling out west? Cellular and WiFi is not always available. We will probably need to upgrade our MotoSat DataStorm satellite Internet system because we Gotta Have Internet!
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When we went fulltime in 2004 the only realistic solution for running a business on the road was satellite internet, and we bought a Datastorm. We also had an old 1x aircard that we used sometimes for in-motion and when away from the RV.
Fast forward to the present. We now have both Sprint and Verizon aircards along with a professional grade wi-fi booster and we almost never use the Datastorm. Amazingly we were in Yellowstone NP this past August and had EVDO internet with Sprint. We might drop service on the Datastorm if we don’t use it again for 6 months. Yes, there are still big gaping holes in the coverage area for the wireless companies, but we’re finding more and more that we don’t stay long in those areas.
We have had the sprint connection card for several years. Most of the time, it is like dial up. When free wifi is available, we opt to use that. We have used the connection card in the midwestern states, the eastern states, and alaska. My plan is unlimited (i don’t think they offer that anymore). For us, it is a more cost effetive choice.
We don’t like being without internet.
We love our Verizon for Internet, too. It is what we recommend.
The major drawback for us is the 5Gig data limit. That is a lot of data and most users don’t have a problem, but heavy users (Geeks) can exceed it and the overage costs are quite high.
We just returned from a 10-week road trip, 10,000 miles, traveling to most places west of the Mississippi River. We began in Georgia, traveled for 2+ months. We used Verizon Wireless with our laptop, and had excellent service EVERYWHERE, both while driving and while parked. The only site we were not able to get any reception was Yellowstone Park, unless we went to the Old Faithful Hotel, where reception was perfect. It was wonderful to be in constant contact via emails, and we sent pictures as attachments each day to family and friends. We purchased a bundled service with Verizon to include wireless phones and computer. Far better service nationwide than AT&T or other providers. I would highly recommend you consider Verizon.