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Old 09-27-2021, 09:14 PM   #1
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Should I keep my grandfathered Verizon plan?

I have kept my Verizon unlimited plan but I am wondering if I should still keep it. I am paying 153 a month for 1 phone and I have a google pixel 4xl that I rooted so I can have unlimited hotspot. We have been slowly transitioning to full time.

My wife needs internet for her job and most of the time the Verizon plan works ok. I do want to get a backup though. I am not worried about the cost. I just starting researching and I was looking at the Sprint FMCA TechConnect+ Plan.
Is this the best setup I can get now?

I would like to have a wireless router setup if possible. I currently do not as I just use my phone as a hotspot.
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Old 09-27-2021, 09:23 PM   #2
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Will your wife's employer pay for her internet access?
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Old 09-27-2021, 09:35 PM   #3
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Yes, she has up to 150 a month they will pay for anything to do with her mobile office. I will be using some internet as well so I don't mind paying more if we need to.
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Old 09-27-2021, 10:02 PM   #4
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Should I keep my grandfathered Verizon plan?

The fmca would be a good addition but I would keep Verizon service. If you really need internet …. a backup plan ( or 3) is the only way to go. For the past 5 years as we travel FT My DW still has a part time gig that requires almost daily zoom calls. We have both ATT and Verizon unlimited hotspots ( grandfathered plans ) and several times one of the other has worked while the other was marginal or non existent. You might want to consider the calyx institute “donation” if you can pay for a year up front ( “donate” and get “free” unlimited sprint/T-Mobile) it’s slightly less than the fmca plan and offers a 5 g option for a few bucks more. I have considered it but haven’t really “needed” it
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Old 09-27-2021, 10:07 PM   #5
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Take a look at this site - It can give you a good review of what is out there and what to think about.

They are supported by the mobile internet community - so they are unbiased
https://www.rvmobileinternet.com/

This list all the plans that are currently available
https://www.rvmobileinternet.com/planpicks

My .02 - I still have my grandfathered Verizon plan "mostly as a fail safe backup" because we still work while on the road. But over the last few years the other carriers have caught up to or passed the Verizon performance in most locations we stay at.

I would not get give it up until you are 100% sure you can live without it!

Also - you really need an idea of how much data you need per month because it makes a big difference -
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Old 09-28-2021, 07:31 AM   #6
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I have the FMCA Sprint Connection and so far it has performed very well. I got the M2000 have seen speed test readings of over 180 at times and of coarse location dependent.

I like the FMCA plans since it is month to month contract for 49.99 and since we are not full-timers we can pause it for 14.99 per month with just a couple of clicks on a web page. FMCA announced on their forums that they will be replacing the Sprint SIM with a T-Moble SIM over the next couple of months.

I have put the SIM in two different routers and the speed was cut by 80% or more. The problem could be with me and not the SIM but I have read on other forums that others are having the same problem
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Old 09-28-2021, 08:40 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by CWSWine View Post
I have the FMCA Sprint Connection and so far it has performed very well. I got the M2000 have seen speed test readings of over 180 at times and of coarse location dependent.

I like the FMCA plans since it is month to month contract for 49.99 and since we are not full-timers we can pause it for 14.99 per month with just a couple of clicks on a web page. FMCA announced on their forums that they will be replacing the Sprint SIM with a T-Moble SIM over the next couple of months.

I have put the SIM in two different routers and the speed was cut by 80% or more. The problem could be with me and not the SIM but I have read on other forums that others are having the same problem
My understanding is the plan is connected to the router they provide and not movable to another hotspot. Perhaps that is the issue.
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Old 09-28-2021, 08:50 AM   #8
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My understanding is the plan is connected to the router they provide and not movable to another hotspot. Perhaps that is the issue.
That is the conclusion I come with also. I got it to work but not at an acceptable speed. Went from over 100 to less than 7 on the speed test.
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Old 09-28-2021, 09:13 AM   #9
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Not sure that grandfathered plan is good value anymore. My total Verizon bill for two "unlimited" lines is about ten dollars less than that. My line I can hotspot the other cannot. (Wife doesn't do that anyway.) It would be right about what you are paying for that single line if both lines had hotspot.

"Unlimited" in quotes because of how in cell phone company speak unlimited doesn't actually mean unlimited.
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Old 09-28-2021, 10:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phil454 View Post
I have kept my Verizon unlimited plan but I am wondering if I should still keep it. I am paying 153 a month for 1 phone and I have a google pixel 4xl that I rooted so I can have unlimited hotspot. We have been slowly transitioning to full time.

My wife needs internet for her job and most of the time the Verizon plan works ok. I do want to get a backup though. I am not worried about the cost. I just starting researching and I was looking at the Sprint FMCA TechConnect+ Plan.
Is this the best setup I can get now?

I would like to have a wireless router setup if possible. I currently do not as I just use my phone as a hotspot.
Unlimited is great. You don't have to monitor usage. But, if you are going to get new equipment you should consider other options. There are threads here on iRV2 that go into the 100 pages range on the subject.

It is confusing, but I have reduced it to two carriers that cover most available towers. They are Consumer Cellular, and Visible. Consumer Cellular will provide a free sim card that uses either T-Mobil or ATT towers. Visible uses Verizon towers. More or less they charge about half what ATT and Verizon charge. Visible seems to be cheaper if you have two or more devices connected.

Next I am considering equipment. A multiple antenna array on the roof will provide a faster connection than a cell phone hotspot inside. Plus you can get a unit that will connect to both ATT and Verizon towers simultaneously for faster service than either one alone. They typically include a built in router.

https://winegard.com/industry/recrea...le-rv/cellular

There are other sources.

Then there are new systems coming soon. Star-link is planning to roll out mobile high speed service next year covering North America. All new receiving equipment will be required. Price may be $100 per month or more.

Lots of unknowns here.
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Old 09-29-2021, 08:42 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Persistent View Post
Unlimited is great. You don't have to monitor usage. But, if you are going to get new equipment you should consider other options. There are threads here on iRV2 that go into the 100 pages range on the subject.

It is confusing, but I have reduced it to two carriers that cover most available towers. They are Consumer Cellular, and Visible. Consumer Cellular will provide a free sim card that uses either T-Mobil or ATT towers. Visible uses Verizon towers. More or less they charge about half what ATT and Verizon charge. Visible seems to be cheaper if you have two or more devices connected.

Next I am considering equipment. A multiple antenna array on the roof will provide a faster connection than a cell phone hotspot inside. Plus you can get a unit that will connect to both ATT and Verizon towers simultaneously for faster service than either one alone. They typically include a built in router.

https://winegard.com/industry/recrea...le-rv/cellular

There are other sources.

Then there are new systems coming soon. Star-link is planning to roll out mobile high speed service next year covering North America. All new receiving equipment will be required. Price may be $100 per month or more.

Lots of unknowns here.
I looked at the link for the antennas. Which one can use with multiple Sims cards at the same time?
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Old 09-29-2021, 09:42 AM   #12
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Soo many variables, based upon the locations that we all travel, as far as which carrier provides the best coverage. (The referenced RVMOBILEINTERNET site, has a link to the coverages of the main carriers. FCC recently updated the info they data-mine, so it's up to date.).

Since your wife will need to have good access for her work, I personally would take the time to join RVMOBILEINTERNET, and due some basic research. They have a '101' basic area, and they do offer Tech Support Consultation to review what you are trying to accomplish. That might be money well spent, to get you up and going.

Besides encouraging the above, I'll share my opinion:

> Keep your Verizon gUDP plan. (It is not throttled, and or subject to Network De-Prioritization. Would be worth a call to Verizon to see if they can offer you any discounts. But always state clearly, and repeatedly thru any interactions when talking about this current plan 'I do not want to lose gUDP.). (Some companies have negotiated corporate discounts for employees, perhaps her company does? With my Group Retirement discount thru my Aerospace company, I'm below $110 for our Verizon plan, with gUPD.)

> Second carrier is a reality you need, and possibly a third carrier to, as mentioned. I'd start with a second carrier. In our travels, primarily West of the Mississippi, our Verizon and ATT plan's work the best for us. When going into Canada, I have a relationship with Millenicom, that I activate as needed Month to Month. It's and older MiFi that provides 100GB of data, via T-Mobile, which has an agreement with the Big Three Carriers in Canada, so which ever carrier's Cell delivers the best signal in a given area, I can access. The Millenicom plans change from time to time, but that is how it worked the last time I activated ours.)

> Gear for getting access to Internet Data:
- Over the last few years, we very seldom use a park WiFi for anything. That being said, we do have a roof top antenna, feeding an internal router and wifi repeater in our coach. So it remains available for if ever needed.
- On ATT we use a SIM in a Netgear Nighthawk MR1100 Hotspot/MiFi. The MR1100 has two external antenna ports, which we feed from a rooftop antenna.
- Rooftop Antenna's: MobileMark 2X2 MIMO (Feeds the MR1100). And WeBoost OTR (Over The Road) Trucker Antenna, attached to our OTA (Over The Air) TV Antenna Mast (This gets the Trucker Antenna up about 4 1/2' above our roof. And it feeds a Cellular Booster.). And the mentioned WiFi antenna, a WiFi Ranger EliteAC booster antenna (Which feeds our main router and WiFi internal repeater, a WiFi Ranger GOac.)
- Cellular AMP at this time, is a WeBoost Sleek. (It's not the most powerful Cellular Booster/Amp available, but the few times we need a booster, it has covered us most of the time.) (I'll note we recently changed coaches, and I left a more powerful Cellular Booster/Amp and rooftop antenna and internal repeater antenna in that coach for the new owner. Our most recent travels over the last 2-3 years, we found that we very seldom needed to boost our signal, as the roof tom MobileMark 2X2 Antenna did a good job at pulling in and sending out signals.)

We have a 'Tech Cabinet' where the roof top antenna feeds come down into, and where we keep our gear. Inside the coach WiFi needs are centralized to the WiFi Ranger GOac router. It is tethered to the MR1100, and also when needed, connected via WiFi to the Verizon phone Samsung S21 HotSpot, and if ever used, a park WiFi signal. Using an internal Router as your gateway to the Internet, allows you to move to a new location, and determine which provider or source of Internet Data provides the best service in that location. And yet all the internal computers, or other devices needing Internet Data, are always logged into the Router. (And, in our usage we CAT6 connect ROKU, OPPO Blue Ray, DISH Gennie too, which saves a 'wifi' hop.

=======

All of this is working well for us. So much so, that at this time I'm remaining focused on 4G LTE as our primary data source for the next few years. Out gear is aging. For example 802.11AC is the best inside the coach WiFi signal we can use with our current WiFi Ranger GOac. (Though we do have a few phones that support 802.11AX and WiFi6, and one laptop that has WiFi6 - which can be directly connected to those data sources, bypassing the GOac Router.) Sure, faster is always better!!! And if zooming Upload is as important as Download. But we stream up to 4K with Dolby Atmos on a regular basis. If we can get 30mBPS download speed or above, we get along fine. And, we really also survive well down into the teens, with limited buffering. When in a real weak area, we Load Balance via GOac software, and use both ATT and Verizon combined.) My point, is that while we often are in locations with greater then 100GB mBPS - I know our gear is aging technology wise.

We're letting 5G rollout continue. And more important, the new wave of 5G Routers evolve a bit too.

For you, whether you do it yourself, and or get help via RVMOBILEINTERNET - I suggest you carefully add the components to your Communication Arsenal. Try to Future Proof as much as possible. If buying a roof top antenna, get one that is 4X4 MIMO, and that supports 5G Bands. I personally would try to work a plan that is 'Stage 1', getting a roof top antenna, add a second carrier with Hotspot that allows External Antenna input, and if you feel your travels will take you away from larger cities and or interstates, a WeBoost Sleek too (Not expensive, and not a throwaway, as easy to transfer over to a vehicle for when exploring out in the boonies!). I'd then see how the combo of your Verizon and new carrier (ATT for now, and probably T-Mobile/Sprint as the third carrier.) support you. Get some experience on how you two use Data in your coach. Then over the next few years - phase in more gear and 5G type routers. (Router now? Sure, you could get several years usage out of a 4G LTE router, with dual SIMS (CAT12 & CAT18 slots) - but you can spend lots of money now, that in hopefully 3-5 years you'd want to replace with 5G. For now, the MR1100 does have the ability to connect CAT5/6 cables, as well as can support as a router your internal needs pretty well. Not the strongest intent WiFi signal, but depending upon where you locate it, a relatively inexpensive in the scheme of things MR1100 or for Verizon Inseego 8800L - should provide good support.)

Most important message? Is that it will take time to develop a set of gear, and approach, that works for what you two want it to do... No Right or Wrong, just choices!

Good luck on your adventure ahead,
Smitty
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Old 09-30-2021, 09:34 AM   #13
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Smitty77 has provided some good advice. RVMOBILEINTERNET's basic site (non fee based) provides some excellent information on hardware & available data plans. Of particular interest is their take on 5G cellular technology.
If you have one of the older GUDP offerings from Verizon, I would hold on to it. The key is that it is truly a plan that allows unlimited data from a device other than a phone.
I have installed multiple Peplink Max Transit CAT-18 devices (no 5G yet, not certified on Verizon yet) & Verizon considers them tablets/hotspots, not phones. Installation is basically plug & play.
Have been full timing since 12/2019 & work from my RV. RV park WIFI, or any WIFI for that matter, is not something I would count on. If it's available & the signal is decent, consider it a bonus.
Save travels!
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Old 09-30-2021, 07:02 PM   #14
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Do they still have those GUDP's? I know they tried restricting/throttling them like the rest
a few years back and there was a threatened lawsuit or something but then I lost track.
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