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Monday, 31 August 2015


Stopping Network Abusers: An Open Letter to T-Mobile Customers

 

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Some of you may have seen my Periscope this afternoon where I shared a preview of this blog -- and to those of you already supporting my position in social media, I appreciate it! However, I am following up now, because I want to make sure I am being really clear and transparent on this issue as we take action tomorrow morning.
 
This week, I am taking aim at a select group of individuals who have actually been stealing data from T-Mobile. If their activities are left unchecked their actions could eventually have a negative effect on the experience of honest T-Mobile customers. Not on my watch.
 
We’ve built the T-Mobile network to reach 290 million Americans with the fastest 4G LTE speeds around. We drive hard every day for our network to reach more people and to keep giving customers the fastest data speeds in the USA. I won’t let anyone jeopardize that. So we are going after a small group of users who are stealing data so blatantly and extremely that it is ridiculous.
 
Here’s what’s happening: when customers buy our unlimited 4G LTE plan for their smartphones we include a fixed amount of LTE to be used for tethering (using the “Smartphone Mobile HotSpot” feature), at no extra cost, for the occasions when broadband may not be convenient or available. If customers hit that high-speed tethering limit, those tethering speeds slow down. If a customer needs more LTE tethering, they can add-on more. Simple.
 
However, these violators are going out of their way with all kinds of workarounds to steal more LTE tethered data. They’re downloading apps that hide their tether usage, rooting their phones, writing code to mask their activity, etc. They are “hacking” the system to swipe high speed tethered data. These aren't naive amateurs; they are clever hackers who are willfully stealing for their own selfish gain. It’s a small group – 1/100 of a percent of our 59 million customers – but some of them are using as much as 2 terabytes (2,000GB!) of data in a month. I’m not sure what they are doing with it – stealing wireless access for their entire business, powering a small cloud service, providing broadband to a small city, mining for bitcoin -- but I really don’t care!
 
These abusers will probably try to distract everyone by waving their arms about throttling data. Make no mistake about it – this is not the same issue. Don’t be duped by their sideshow. We are going after every thief, and I am starting with the 3,000 users who know exactly what they are doing. The offenders start hearing from us tomorrow. No more abuse and no risk to the rest of our customers’ experience. It's over. If you are interested, you can find more info in our support forum.
 
I’m not in this business to play data cop, but we started this wireless revolution to change the industry for good and to fight for consumers. I won't let a few thieves ruin things for anyone else. We’re going to lead from the front on this, just like we always do. Count on it!
 
John Legere
President & CEO
T-Mobile USA 

 




 
Friday, 21 August 2015

FCC Fines Another Company for Blocking WiFi Hotspots

  

Almost a year ago, the FCC fined Marriott $600,000 for blocking guests’ personal WiFi hotspots. In January of this year, Marriott withdrew a petition they had submitted to the FCC looking for ways to legally block guest’s WiFi. More recently, the FCC has accused Telecom provider Smart City for practicing the same illegal acts in their meeting centers and hotels. It appears the FCC thinks Smart City should have learned something from Marriott and is fining them a hefty $750,000.

In June 2014, guests had complained about problems connecting to the Internet at several Smart City locations. To avoid having to pay the company $80/ day to use their services, guests were trying to use their personal hotspots - whether those be from their cell phones or dedicated mobile hotspots (e.g. Verizon’s Jetpacks). However, when trying to do so, they found that it would not work and in turn had no choice but to use Smart City’s service.

Per Travis LeBlanc, head of the FCC's Enforcement Bureau, "It is unacceptable for any company to charge consumers exorbitant fees to access the Internet while at the same time blocking them from using their own personal Wi-Fi hotspots to access the Internet...All companies who seek to use technologies that block FCC-approved Wi-Fi connections are on notice that such practices are patently unlawful."

Smart City did not admit liability in a recent statement, but as part of the settlement, they will cease WiFi blocking practices and pay the $750,000 civil penalty. That being said, perhaps they may have learned something from the Marriott case. They said that fighting the FCC would be too costly and time-consuming. However, they did make a point of justifying why they implemented such practices with the following:

As recommended by the Department of Commerce and Department of Defense, we have occasionally used technologies made available by major equipment manufacturers to prevent wireless devices from significantly interfering with and disrupting the operations of neighboring exhibitors on our convention floors...This activity resulted in significantly less than one percent of all devices being de-authenticated and these same technologies are widely used by major convention centers across the globe as well as many federal agencies.

Of course, we ourselves have seen issues caused by WiFi interference. To give guests no other choice but to pay more than most would pay for monthly service in one day though, it just doesn’t seem fair.




Last Updated ( Friday, 21 August 2015 )
 
Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Pepwave Surf SOHO vs. Cradlepoint MBR95

NOTE: The MBR95 had its last firmware release in April of 2014. It was announced at that time that the router would not receive any further firmware updates. Cradlepoint announced the MBR95 was discontinued as of June 30th, 2015. For those looking for a replacement Cradlepoint, the MBR1200B offers everything the MBR95 offers plus load balancing, ECM support, IPSec VPN, and more. For those looking for an MBR95 alternative or for something in the sub $200 range, keep reading!

The Pepwave Surf SOHO has been on the market for well over a year now, and since its release, it has made quite a lot of noise in the cellular router industry.  As a low cost, high quality professional-grade WiFi router, the SOHO has impressed countless new users and converted over long time fans of the competition. As its name implies, the SOHO (small office, home office) is meant to be a realtively inexpensive consumer router used by individuals and small businesses alike. With an impressive feature set, the SOHO dominates the competition. But what about the long standing king of consumer cellular routers, the Cradlepoint MBR95? Is the SOHO the 'MBR95 Killer' its made out to be? 3Gstore has created a quick comparrison chart looking at the major features of the two routers; these are the things our customers ask us for day in and day out.

 

Pepwave Surf SOHO

MAIN FEATURES

Cradlepoint MBR95

 

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150-200'

WiFi Range

100-150'

2.4Ghz or 5Ghz

WiFi Frequency

2.4Ghz

Yes – Add Up to 50% More Range!

External WiFi Connectors

No

Instant

Failover Time

8-90 seconds

Real Time, Hourly, Daily, Weekly, Monthly, per Connected Device

Bandwidth Monitoring

Per WAN in 'Samples/Hour'. Must Set Custom Data Usage Rules.

Yes, Health Check on all WANs

Keep-Alive (Ping Target)

Hidden Option, Not Configurable

PPTP Server and PepVPN

VPN Options

No

Fully Customizable

QoS

No

Individual Bandwidth Limit

Bandwidth Control

No

InControl 2 (free while under warranty)

Cloud Management

No

10/100/1000 GBE

Gigabit Ethernet (GBE)

No, 10/100 Only

Regular Firmware Updates

Current Support?

FW 5.0.4 Released 04/2014. Cradlepoint Has Announced There Will Be NO Future MBR95 FW Upgrades!

On paper the SOHO looks like a clear winner, and its easy for us at 3Gstore to recommend the SOHO over the MBR95. All of the other features aside, the support is enough to put the SOHO in the lead. Cradlepoint previously announced there would be no future updates for the MBR95 firmware. This means new USB modems may not be supported, and bugs and vulnerabilites are left untouched. Cradlepoint has also announced the MBR95 is discontinued, so you'll need to look to the MBR1200B as an entry point for Cradlepoint, and for some users this may have more features than they need. This means bug fixes and firmware updates are a thing of the past on the MBR95, no new modems will be supported. In fact, the last firmware update came out well over a year ago! We've seen the SOHO is great spec for spec, but what about in practice? Check out some of the great reviews left on the SOHO by verified 3Gstore customers.

Date Added: 08/03/2015 by McGann S. (Ruther Glen, VA)
Excellent in every way. Does things no other router will do.

Date Added: 07/23/2015 by McGann S. (Ruther Glen, VA)
The Surf Soho is one of the best routers I have ever used. I bought it because my Mi-Fi 6620L was deficient in one respect. It has a great cellular radio, but the wi-fi is definitely substandard. Even worse than the 4510 I had before. Enter the Surf Soho. I can connect by USB and the connection and wi-fi are rock solid. I have only had it for a few days, but so far it is excellent.***M.S.***
- See more at: http://3gstore.com/product/4136_surf-soho-3g-4g-router.html#sthash.RbMJW9Z2.dpuf
Date Added: 08/03/2015 by McGann S. (Ruther Glen, VA)
Excellent in every way. Does things no other router will do.

Date Added: 07/23/2015 by McGann S. (Ruther Glen, VA)
The Surf Soho is one of the best routers I have ever used. I bought it because my Mi-Fi 6620L was deficient in one respect. It has a great cellular radio, but the wi-fi is definitely substandard. Even worse than the 4510 I had before. Enter the Surf Soho. I can connect by USB and the connection and wi-fi are rock solid. I have only had it for a few days, but so far it is excellent.***M.S.***
- See more at: http://3gstore.com/product/4136_surf-soho-3g-4g-router.html#sthash.RbMJW9Z2.dpuf

Date Added: 08/03/2015 by McGann S. (Ruther Glen, VA)
Excellent in every way. Does things no other router will do.
 
Date Added: 07/23/2015 by McGann S. (Ruther Glen, VA)
The Surf Soho is one of the best routers I have ever used. I bought it because my Mi-Fi 6620L was deficient in one respect. It has a great cellular radio, but the wi-fi is definitely substandard. Even worse than the 4510 I had before. Enter the Surf Soho. I can connect by USB and the connection and wi-fi are rock solid. I have only had it for a few days, but so far it is excellent.***M.S.***
 
Date Added: 07/17/2015 by Joseph C. (Hatfield, PA)
This is the second Suf SOHO I have purchased! Has lots of features, and just works as you would expect it to.
 
Date Added: 06/07/2015 by Chris S. (Oxford, FL)
This has been a huge blessing for times when our satellite-based broadband is rained out, throttled, or just having a bad hair day. Combined with the AC313U (also purchased here), we have **BACKUP BROADBAND** for the meager cost of an add-on line to our AT.
 
Date Added: 05/12/2015 by Kurt S. (Wausau, WI)
Fantastic. Worked just as advertised, very simple set, no problems using it with my cellcom MiFI hotspot. I'm in a broadband deadspot, no DSL, no Cable Internet. My choice of internet then is 4g hotspot. Works pretty well, except for data pricing, limited range of Wi Fi and being limited to connecting only 10 devices (with kids, let me tell you, this is not enough). Anyways, enter the Pepwave Surf SOHO router. I plug my hotspot into this bad boy and I have great Wi Fi range and am not limited by the number of devices that can connect. Speed was not denigrated either. In my case, well worth it. Oh, and I can take it to our cabin to support Wifi for devices there as well.
 

 
Jack Mayer of http://www.jackdanmayer.com/ , wrote a rave review for the Pepwave Surf SOHO as well, showing that this isn't just a great router for home and business use, but ideal for RVers as well.
"The SOHO is an excellent device. It has a few rough edges in the user interface - the WiFiRanger has a more “groomed” interface. But the SOHO has above average performance with its external antennas, has excellent throughput, supports tethering of mifi devices, and has the best data collection facilities of the three routers. If monitoring data used is an important consideration for you, and you need detailed reports, then the SOHO is likely your best device."
And interestingly enough, the final line of his review...
"With the availability of the Pepwave Surf SOHO I see no need for a Cradlepoint 95. I think the SOHO is probably better for most RVers than the Cradlepoint 95."

The Pepwave Surf SOHO has set a new standard for the cellular industry, and so far no other product we have tested has come close to the performance and feature set of the SOHO, without paying quite a bit more. For more information contact the experts at 3Gstore , and to order a Surf SOHO, visit 3Gstore.com . For videos demonstrating the Surf SOHO and its user interface and instant failover capability, check out the SOHO playlist on our YouTube channel!

The Surf SOHO is available now at 3Gstore!




Last Updated ( Tuesday, 18 August 2015 )
 
Friday, 14 August 2015

Save $40 off weBoost Home 4G (470101) Repeater Kit Through 9/5!

 

470101

 

weBoost's popular Home 4G Desktop Repeater Kit is on sale now at 3Gstore for just $359.99 (MSRP $399.99). The Home 4G kit works for most voice, 3G, and 4G networks in the US and Canada and can cover up to 1,000 square feet with boosted signal. The kit includes everything you need to install the system and comes with a 2-year warranty. 

Features & Benefits:

  • Stronger cellular signal in 1 to 2 rooms
  • Fewer dropped calls and lost connections
  • Faster data downloads
  • Longer battery life – up to 2 hours longer talk time
  • Boosts voice & data signals
  • Works with all cellular carriers
  • All needed components included in kit
  • Works with virtually all smartphones and mobile hotspots
  • Simple installation

The Home 4G Desktop Repeater Kit is on sale now at 3Gstore!




 
Thursday, 13 August 2015

SureCall Fusion2Go 3G/4G 50db Vehicle Repeater Kit at 3Gstore

 

fusion2go

 

SureCall has announced the Fusion2Go, a mobile repeater kit that works for virtually all networks in the US and Canada. The Fusion2Go includes everything you need to boost the signal to multiple phones/hotspots in a car or RV and comes with an MSRP of just $449.00

Specifications:

  • Frequency Range:
    • Uplink: 1850-1910 Downlink: 1930-1990
    • Uplink: 824-849 Downlink: 869-894
    • Uplink: 698-716 Downlink: 728-746
    • Uplink: 776-787 Downlink: 746-757
    • Uplink: 1710-1755 Downlink: 2110-2155
  • Standards Supported: LTE, CDMA, WCDMA, GSM, EDGE, AWS, TDMA and AMPS etc
  • Gain: 50dB
  • Impedance: 50ohms
  • Noise Figure: Maximum 5 dB
  • VSWR: Less than 2:1
  • DC Power Adapter: 12V
  • Max Output Power: 1Watt EIRP
  • Power Consumption: <25W
  • RF Connectors: FME Male on both sides
  • Dimensions: 9.25 x 6-3/8" x 1-3/8" (amplifier)
  • Weight: 3lb (amplifier)
  • FCC ID (US): RSNFUSION2GO

The Fusion2Go is available now at 3Gstore!




 
Tuesday, 11 August 2015

FusionHub Firmware 6.2.2 Released

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Today Peplink has announced a firmware upgrade to their FusionHub software package. Dubbed 6.2.2, this firmware brings a new feature, and resolves some previous issues in the software.

FusionHub is the virtual SpeedFusion appliance from Peplink. Any datacenter, business, or cloud resource equipped with a FusionHub image can create SpeedFusion connections to remote hardware. What is SpeedFusion? SpeedFusion is Peplinks WAN bonding technology. It allows users to combine the bandwidth of up to 13 WAN links from DSL to Cellular, Cable, or Satellite connections. As a rock solid VPN technology, SpeedFusion allows for unbreakable internet connections with full 256 bit AES encryption, VoIP calls that can't be dropped, and you can save money by combining the bandwidth of low cost DSL and Cable lines vs. the high cost of Fiber and MPLS lines.

Firmware 6.2.2 brings Peplinks WAN Smoothing technology to FusionHub. WAN Smoothing allows you to send data between two Peplink routers, or a Peplink router and FusionHub, and increase data consistency. Typical SpeedFusion connections are geared at max bandwidth, where enabling WAN Smoothing provides connection consistency when you need delivery of time-sensitive traffic. VoIP, video conferencing, and live broadcasting applications can all benefit from WAN Smoothing. This version of FusionHub also brings fixes to PepVPN connections failing if two devices tried to connect at once, and improved PepVPN behind NAT networks.

Read more about Peplink FusionHub Below

FusionHub Introduction

FusionHub Uses

FusionHub Speed Tests

For more information on FusionHub, visit 3Gstore.com . To find out if FusionHub is the right VPN or bonding option for you, contact the experts at 3Gstore and we'll create a solution that will work for your unique needs.

 




Last Updated ( Tuesday, 11 August 2015 )
 
Monday, 10 August 2015

Verizon Announces New Simplified Data Plans

In an effort to better accommodate their customer's needs, Verizon has provided simplified data choices, which will begin on August 13th. They now have additional plans of shareable data from 1GB to 12GB. This includes unlimited talk and text and can be shared with up to 10 users.

They’ve compared the new plans to sizes we’re more accustomed to see in drink cups or t-shirts. Here’s the breakdown:

  • Small: $30/month for 1GB of shareable data
  • Medium: $45/month for 3GB of shareable data
  • Large: $60/month for 6GB of shareable data
  • X-Large: $80/month for 12GB of shareable data

If customers require extra data, it can be purchased at $15 per GB. Those that need even more than 1GB at a time, will need to speak with a Verizon Wireless representative for more details. Rob Miller, vice-president of consumer pricing for Verizon Wireless, said, “Choosing a wireless plan is now easier than ever. Customers said they don’t want to have to do a lot of math to figure out their best options, and we heard them...A plan with small, medium, large and x-large choices makes sense for the way people actually use their wireless service.”

In addition to the new data plans, they are also attempting to simplify their monthly line-access charges as well as how the charges are outlined on customer’s bills. Here’s the charges for different devices on the new plans

  • Smartphones: $20 per month
  • Tablet & Jetpacks: $10 per month
  • Smart Watches or other connected device lines: $5 per month

According to Verizon’s News Center, new customers who want to take advantage of these plans will need to purchase a new smartphone using Verizon’s device payment option (formerly known as Verizon Edge) or by paying the retail price. While there are some restrictions, existing customers can keep their current plan or move to the new plan.




Last Updated ( Monday, 10 August 2015 )
 

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