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Old 07-10-2013, 09:50 PM   #43
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The WiFi in some campgrounds works great. Frog Hollow (Grenada, MS) and EZ Daze (Southaven, MS) have excellent WiFi. Other campgrounds have very weak signal where the trailers are, but the WiFi works great in the restaurant (Lake Tiak O'Khata, Louisville, MS). I think that is intentional to persuade you to eat there.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:59 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by newroswell View Post
I know the idea of needing wifi while "camping" is completely foreign to many. I go camping with the Jeep and a tent. The Airstream is for traveling. There's a lot more people than you might think that have jobs flexible enough for traveling 100+ nights a year, as long as we have cell service and a small amount of wifi. Yeah it's a bummer when we're out and I need to work a little. But I wouldn't trade the morning walk on the beach and the nice view out the window for being pinned down in a office 50 of 52 weeks a year.

I'm going to defend the campgrounds for a second also. It's not as simple as just writing a check big enough to make it work. A lot of parks start out getting quoted a huge number for a turn key system. Then after they have the first phase installed, they find out that was 10% of what it will really cost to make it work. They usually don't even know it was 10% until after they've doubled down once or twice to solve their "new problem" that has everyone in the park pissed-off, raising hell at the desk, threatening to sue, "taking their business somewhere else" and leaving bad reviews on the travel sites.

This is still new technology! Once you build a system for a park that has 300 spaces, it's completely worthless 18 months later when 74% of cell phone owners upgrade to smart phones that constantly nibble at the wifi. Then Netflix streaming comes along. Oh you thought someone was just going to check the news maybe read a few Wall Street Journey articles? That is a fraction of the bandwidth needed to spend just 10 minutes on Facebook.

I have no involvement with selling wifi networks, but everyone of our customers has one. Some of these wifi networks support 10,000's of "devices". They have a lot of full time, smart people, huge budgets, and these networks must work reliably. It's hard.

I agree with Lynn. The idea the campground will supply you with wifi will be gone quicker than you think. It's not what they do best. It's incredibly expensive. Besides there are better solutions already available. Give me the $4 a night discount and you can keep your wifi.
^ This.

Based on reading this eye-opening thread, my advice to all campgrounds is to let your customers know that there is no warranty, express or implied, for compatibility or reliability of the wifi network (if one is provided), and that the facility shall not be liable for damage to equipment used in conjunction with same.

Let these connected campers complain to their mobile providers, who have infinitely better technology and the resources to deploy same.

4G/LTE smoke most business-class wireless solutions and are infinitely more secure.
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Old 07-10-2013, 10:02 PM   #45
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Blocking netflix streaming would probably solve 90% of the problem on many of these wifi networks. It floors me when I see people doing this when they know there is only so much bandwidth to be shared by everybody.
This assumes two things: people understand the available technology and its limitations; care about anyone but themselves.
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Old 07-10-2013, 10:12 PM   #46
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Please keep in mind, that the usual WiFi most of us are used to dealing with is in our own home or perhaps a coffee shop with 3 or 4 users. The other possibility might be a place like an Airport where the system is designed to handle many users.

The WiFi system's hardware in most campgrounds is of the same general characteristics as our home systems. However in peak evening usage there may well be 50 or more users online at the same time. So, take the speed you are used to at home and divide that by 50 or more. There are more factors than simply sharing the same bandwidth. The more users, the more packet collisions caused by simultaneous transmissions by different users. each one of those will have to be retransmitted at least once meaning a minimum of 2 extra transmissions. The more users, the more often this happens.

If one wants reliable Internet connection in a campground, then bring your own. In my case I have very good luck with the hot spot built into my Verizon smart phone.

If you really NEED it, then get satellite.

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Old 07-11-2013, 07:06 AM   #47
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If one wants reliable Internet connection in a campground, then bring your own. In my case I have very good luck with the hot spot built into my Verizon smart phone.

Ken
That's how we feel.

We rely on the phone/internet for many things when we are traveling. Like so many others, the wifi amenity in higher-end campgrounds can be iffy.

Better, for us, to spend half as much or less per night for water and electric and have reliable connections with Verizon MiFi.

When we choose a pricier campground, we still have reliable connections while others are frustrated.

It's just not worth it for us.


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Old 07-11-2013, 08:03 AM   #48
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i was at a guys house one day for a job and he was "looking for cell sites". He worked for a tower company and they get the site, erect the tower and work a deal with Verizon, att etc to put antenna up to provide service for that company in areas where cell service strengthen is low or non existent in some cases..

if more and more campers are going to mifi type cell internet service maybe the campground people should be talking to tower guys or cell providers, to get towers installed close to them to help boost cell service in that area. I know he was telling me some tower sites get about a grand a month in rent for the ground space for the tower and other equipment needed for cell tower service..

i am sure it is not all that simple to do but the campground owner could at least reach out to say verizon and see how to get a better signal for the campground to use.

some providers may decide to install a small station on the campground properties or somewhere to help boost signal for a larger area at not cost to CG owners..

be ahead of the "mifi" curve and get the ball rolling with cell providers.

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Old 07-11-2013, 10:00 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by wncrasher View Post
Blocking netflix streaming would probably solve 90% of the problem on many of these wifi networks. It floors me when I see people doing this when they know there is only so much bandwidth to be shared by everybody.
There are wireless routers that have that capability. I had one at the convention center and for all intents could either block services from specific sites or limit the bandwidth allocated for that site. In a public environment it's almost necessary to have some type of device that limits bandwidth per user or limits access to bandwidth to high bandwidth sites.

I've run into one campground, a KOA up in LaSalle Il, that has a bandwidth limit on users. They warn you on the sign on screen that if you exceed the maximum threshold (I forgot what it was), that you would be throttled down. So for grins I fired up my home Slingbox through my laptop that allows me to view my home Dish Network service through the Internet. It typically takes about 350K of bandwidth which was over their user limit. After about 2 minutes of viewing, it quit working. Subsequent speed tests showed that I was getting about 20K of bandwidth. That restriction stayed on my signon for several hours.

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Old 07-11-2013, 04:58 PM   #50
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Why not just have a CAT5 connector on the utility pole and do away with WiFi all together. I would much rather have a hard wired connection than WiFi that never seems to work even in hotels much less the wide open spaces of a camp ground. I have run the CAT5 cable several hundred feet. If they have a cable connection why not CAT5 internet. They you can hook that to a router and have WiFi in the trailer where it will actually work.

Perry
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Old 07-11-2013, 05:08 PM   #51
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Why not just have a CAT5 connector on the utility pole and do away with WiFi all together. I would much rather have a hard wired connection than WiFi that never seems to work even in hotels much less the wide open spaces of a camp ground. I have run the CAT5 cable several hundred feet. If they have a cable connection why not CAT5 internet. They you can hook that to a router and have WiFi in the trailer where it will actually work.

Perry
Cat 5 distance limitation is 100 meters from the switch port or hub. Bad cable could cause a broadcast storm that could take down an entire network switch dependent upon its level of sophistication. Cost of a wired infrastructure is probably cost prohibitive for most campground owners.
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Old 07-11-2013, 06:35 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by perryg114 View Post
Why not just have a CAT5 connector on the utility pole and do away with WiFi all together. I would much rather have a hard wired connection than WiFi that never seems to work even in hotels much less the wide open spaces of a camp ground. I have run the CAT5 cable several hundred feet. If they have a cable connection why not CAT5 internet. They you can hook that to a router and have WiFi in the trailer where it will actually work.

Perry
It's more expensive and labor-intensive to run ethernet to every campsite. Depending on the size and layout of the campground they may only have a couple of routers, and sometimes only one router with repeaters/range extenders to cover the territory and only need power for the devices that are remote from the office.
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Old 07-11-2013, 07:13 PM   #53
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Yeah and they don't really work so it does not matter how cheap they are. An Ethernet switch will isolate a bad cable and not take down the whole network. 300m is the limitation of a gigabit network but you can get more range out of 10/100 speeds. It is not that expensive. No worse than running cable TV to each sight. I wired my house with Ethernet. It is not that hard to do and not real expensive.

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Old 07-11-2013, 07:26 PM   #54
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Wanted to mention another option for AT&T wireless customers who are put off by $50/month added charge to tether wireless device to cell phone or use standalone Verizon device without cell phone from them.. A MiFi device from DataJack offers 3G speeds for e-mail and basic web access for $9.95/mo.. I runs over Sprint's data network, which is OK, though coverage in Boonies not terrific.. For those of us who work a little while traveling, and want to be "sort of connected" that isn't a bad compromise between no WiFi and really expensive access...
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Old 07-11-2013, 07:31 PM   #55
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i recently heard that the days of 'wired' phones are going to be a thing of the past by the end of the decade. where i live i now have a choice of two fiber optic companies both which offer their cable tv/internet/phone packages. i've also heard that the 'old' cable in most installations will need to be upgraded to support this. i suspect that this is where things will go. you'll have metered electric, water, sewer, tv, internet and phone in every resort!
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Old 07-11-2013, 10:59 PM   #56
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It can be done.

Hi, it can be done and was done at the camp ground where we are tonight. "Bakersfield RV Resort" This place has it right. I asked for a space close to the main buildings so I could use the WIFI. The young girl behind the front desk said that their system has been up-dated. Well this has been the best so far; Wife and I on our own computers and can whatever we want to and without problems. The reason [or part of] is the fact that they have WIFI poles located in all of the camping sights; One about every ten spaces.
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