Broadband News

New larger data allowances on 4GEE Home Router

  • Thursday, September 20, 2018 10:00 AM
  • 9 comments

With the Universal Service Obligation slowly progressing through the paper work stages there are signs that physical services may be gearing themselves up to handle things in 2020 and beyond.

EE launched its 4GEE Home Router some time ago, which is a small 4G router with built in antenna that can be simply posted to people and if needed an engineer visit at £100 can be arranged to install an external 4G antenna on a property. One problem in terms of replacing a fixed line service with 4G solutions is often the limited usage allowances but with up to 500 GB plans now available EE may have largely removed that obstacle even if the price is a bit more personal shopper rather than pound store.

  • 500GB is £100/m, equivalent to 20p per GB
  • 300GB is £80/m, equivalent to 26.6p per GB
  • 200GB is £60/m, equivalent to 30p per GB
  • 100GB is £45/m, equivalent to 45p per GB
  • 50GB is £35/m, equivalent to 70p per GB

 All the plans are based on an 18 month contract, but you can pay £100 upfront and have the freedom of a 30 day contract. One fly in the ointment is that the router appears to be out of stock, maybe the rush to buy at this price has already started but you can still order and will receive the device once back in stock

The £100 price tag is still well above what would be considered a reasonable cost but is still a lot lower than the £1/GB equation that has lasted for some years, and if you are otherwise stuck with sub 2 Mbps ADSL it might be tempting.

The Broadband Universal Service Obligation is meant to belivered using services that can provide an over 10 Mbps down and 1 Mbps upload connection speed (i.e. sync rather than speed test result) and a 100GB or larger usage allowance. With the USO in mind the 100GB package is still a bit too expensive, if this was to drop into the £25 to £35/m region that would tick the price box we are fairly sure.

4G is increasingly expected to be used for the broadband USO, the main advantage is that in many instances the router can simply be posted and the 4G routers even without an external antenna can often provide a better connection than a mobile phone. Add to this the option to mount an external antenna fairly high on the outside of the property and people who currently get no 4G signal may actually be able to get the service.

For those looking at 4G options, if your existing fixed line broadband service is annoyingly slow it may still be worth retaining depending on your usage patterns e.g. download a boxset to a device over the slower connection to save expensive 4G allowance. If the BT Plus and EE fixed/4G convergence delivers everything promised then a very interesting USO solution exists, i.e. combined ADSL/ADSL2+ service with 4G for when extra speed is needed. Load balancing solutions have offered something like this for a while, but they are all too often for those who enjoy tinkering rather than just plugging in and using.

Comments

The 4GEE router is junk though. So you'll need to buy a third party one when it starts crashing.

  • tombartlett
  • 3 months ago

I pay £30 for 100Gb with Three (existing customer deal), which also has free Netflix data which for me means I can get UHD Netflix where my broadband can only manage 720p.
So EE still a long way off the mark. With a bit of load balance thrown in there it works well for me until someone decides to bring us out of the dark ages of ADSL.

  • rolandrat
  • 3 months ago

@tombartlett

Junk? It's the fastesr 4G router out at the moment, sounds like you need a firmware upgrade.

  • DrMikeHuntHurtz
  • 3 months ago

@rolandrat

I'd love that option from Three with 100Gb for £30. Does that allow you to tether, or is that the "Home-Fi" option I've heard of, for use with a 4G router? If so, I've also heard that it's only available in select areas (can't find it on their website).

Unfortunately, I can't get Three 4G signal where I live - only EE (and to a lesser extent, Vodafone, with a weaker still signal from O2). In our area, EE is the best option for a good 4G signal.

  • AdamInTheSticks
  • 3 months ago

@DocotrMyCuntHurts

How do you upgrade the firmware if you cant login to the admin panel?

  • tombartlett
  • 3 months ago

@AdamInTheSticks

Home-Fi and currently only available to "select" people via phone call to CS.

Its proper Mobile broadband, do what I like etc, not a mobile plan for a phone.

  • rolandrat
  • 3 months ago

@tomfartlett What happens when you try to login?

  • DrMikeHuntHurtz
  • 3 months ago

There is one serious problem with 4G that rarely gets mentioned.
I live in an area where the population locally increases several times in the summer due to tourists.
Consequently, our 50Mb/s 4G EE broadband in the winter drops during summer daytime to less than 100kb/s, that's right old fashion dial-up speeds. Ping times are measured in SECONDS. We can barely read our emails so no hope of Netflix, etc.
As 4G becomes more popular and with more use of video streaming the same will probably come to a mast near you soon. EE don't seem interested in solving the problem.

  • jwdjwd
  • 3 months ago

Looks like there are lovely additional benefits for BT/EE from tens of millions of pounds of public money being paid to EE to build 4G masts in very rural areas as a matter of extreme urgency to provide the new ESN (Emergency Services Network), to mitigate risks for emergency services from huge "not spots" in 4G coverage.

Until the ESN goes live, tens (hundreds?) of millions of pounds are being paid to Macquarie Group Limited (described in the Australian Press as "The Millionaire Factory"!) to maintain the Airwave trunked digital radio network well beyond the original contract end date.

  • GraceCourt
  • 3 months ago

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