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Old 03-31-2014, 09:19 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by switz View Post
Photos will be posted after the modification program is completed. I will arrive at the modifiers location on 10 April to pick up the truck and trailer and drive the rig back home to Arizona.
Thanks - I look forward to seeing the pictures as this is something I would like to also do

TKS
Doug
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Old 03-31-2014, 09:46 PM   #58
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It works with Apple products quite well.
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Old 04-01-2014, 05:31 AM   #59
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Doug,

We are still very pleased with the PepWave Surf on the Go router and the Millenicom service. During 2013 we spent 105 nights in the Airstream including a 2 month trip from NC to Colorado and New Mexico. We stayed primarily in state parks. We also spent considerable time in Florida in January and February.

My wife uses the Pepwave with an iPad while we are in the truck traveling from place to place. The Pepwave moves to the trailer for overnights where it serves as a router and hotspot for two Macbook laptops, the iPad, and a wireless Epson X410 compact all-in-one printer. The system works superbly.

Here are some specific observations:

1) So far I've seen no need to buy an outside antenna. When in camp we stick the Pepwave on the glass in one rounded corner of the panoramic window at the rear of our 27FB Safari with its suction cups. If there is Verizon service in the area (Millenicom is on the Verizon network) we pick it up. Our cellular phones are on a separate Verizon plan. If we have Verizon phone service in a location we have data service through Millenicom. If the phones can't pick up a signal outside the trailer, we won't have data service via the Pepwave and Millenicom.
2) Overall Millenicom service coverage on the Verizon network has been good. There were a few isolated locations in the west, both on highways and in very rural mountainous areas of Colorado where Verizon did not have service. We expected to experience some out of service areas and weren't particularly inconvenienced. Most places we stayed overnight we had service. The one major exception was in the panhandle of Oklahoma at Black Mesa State Park where there was no cell phone service for miles.
3) The Pepwave router has worked flawlessly as a hotspot and seems to have a broadcast range around the trailer of at least 50 feet. It has good up to date password security and encryption so we've never had an issue of another camper using our wifi.
4) The most data usage we've experienced is 12 GB in one month. That particular month we had some very heavy downloading of large data files and software updates due to the after replacing a crashed hard drive on the road. We leave the router and internet service on 24/7 while traveling.
5) Upload and download speed on the 4G Verizon network feels as fast as on our cable modem at home. When were are in 3G only service areas downloading is definitely slower. We do very little video downloading, except the occasional short YouTube video. Streaming is often choppy on 3G but adequate on 4G.
6) Now that we are comfortable with not exceeding the data limits, we almost never try to access campground wifi. The Pepwave Millenicom setup is invariably faster and more reliable than campground service.
7) We we aren't traveling with the Airstream, we often carry the iPad and Pepwave around with us in a tote bag. On car trips DW can access the internet on the iPad while I drive. We have a 110v adapter, as well as the 12v, so if we are in a public location without wifi, and have access to an electrical outlet, we can use a laptop or our iPad.
8) It is possible to set up a separate guest network on the Pepwave if you want to give a camping neighbor wifi access.
9) I have performed one firmware update on the Pepwave since I purchased it. I noticed no change in performance after the update. The update was simple.
10) Our uses are primarily internet surfing and email. We do sent photos via email and I have both uploaded to and downloaded from YouTube. We have never tried to stream a TV show or movie. My consulting clients will occasionally send a large document file and I've never had a problem sending or receiving these files.
11) Only once have I experienced what I suspected was Verizon limiting the download speed. I was in a remote 3G service area in rural Colorado and had a large (1.2GB) software update to download. It took nearly 12 hours (overnight) to download and in monitoring the download it was obvious the download speed after about 20 minutes of downloading had slowed significantly. As this was a unique exception to the excellent service we've experienced I wasn't too annoyed.
12) If your cable or DSL service goes down at home, this is a nice backup to have available.
13) To date we have not tried to suspend service with Millenicom and then resume. This is a nice feature to have if you aren't going to be camping for a few months, but so far we seem to be using the service almost every month.
14) There is no contract with Millenicom (you buy your USB modem) so if for some reason the service no longer works for us we can cancel at any time without penalty.

We are extremely satisfied with this approach to providing a reliable wireless hotspot with internet service for our Airstream. It is simple and easy to set up as well as operate. Simple and trouble free is nice to have on the road!
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Old 04-01-2014, 06:15 AM   #60
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Will these work on the T-Mobile network?
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Old 04-01-2014, 06:45 AM   #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick56Safari View Post
I am curious about this WiFi Ranger. Will it allow me to set up a hot spot within the trailer? My 56 Air Stream has metal screens on the windows and I can't get any signal inside. My previous solution was to run an USB wire from my laptop to an Hawkings Antenna outside, thru the trunk door. But now we both have tablets and Ipods and need WiFi inside.
Also can I just set it on a pole outside and use the same USB cable to access it???
Thanks
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It's meant to be installed on the batwing antenna, and it uses the coax cable for power.

I've had one for a couple years now, and when we need it, it's great to have. There are a couple quirks, though:
1. It now seems to forget its settings every time I boot up. Presumably the internal battery is dead. I don't think there's any way to replace it. So I always have to use the default wifi network and reset the settings in it.
2. Powering off the coax works, sort of. I needed the extra power connection. Also, my antenna switch panel grounds the coax cable when it's switched off, so I blew several fuses before I figured out that I have to turn on the antenna first before hitting the second switch.
3. If I am using the Wifi Ranger, the TV antenna is also powered. What if I want to use a park's cable TV connection? We normally don't take a TV with us when we camp, so this isn't an issue for us, but others love to watch TV while camping and use the park's cable if it's equipped. For us, it'll be an issue during the 2016 Olympics, I'm guessing, which is the only time we have a TV with us while camping.

Overall, it works well aside from those quirks. I still kind of want to take my old WRT54G router and put some external antennas on it, mounted on the roof (perhaps on the plate that is between the A/C and fridge vent), and use that instead. I'm not sure if a WRT54G can actually do that job, and certainly the interface won't be as slick.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:46 AM   #62
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Hi Florida 55, Thanks for the update. What model Pepwave do you have?
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Old 04-01-2014, 09:00 AM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Florida 55 View Post
Doug,

We are still very pleased with the PepWave Surf on the Go router and the Millenicom service....
post clipped to save bandwith
We are extremely satisfied with this approach to providing a reliable wireless hotspot with internet service for our Airstream. It is simple and easy to set up as well as operate. Simple and trouble free is nice to have on the road!
Thanks very much Chuck (Florida-55) for the detailed post...
Cheers
Doug
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Old 04-01-2014, 09:01 AM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Florida 55 View Post
Doug,
We are still very pleased with the PepWave Surf on the Go router and the Millenicom service....
post clipped to save bandwith
We are extremely satisfied with this approach to providing a reliable wireless hotspot with internet service for our Airstream. It is simple and easy to set up as well as operate. Simple and trouble free is nice to have on the road!
Thanks very much Chuck (Florida-55) for the detailed post...
Cheers
Doug
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Old 04-01-2014, 09:33 AM   #65
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I had some of the same issues trying to mount the SKY to the BATWING.

I decided to mount and power mine independently and have been very pleased with the results.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f313...ml#post1144517




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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skater View Post
It's meant to be installed on the batwing antenna, and it uses the coax cable for power.
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Old 04-01-2014, 10:00 AM   #66
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The Sky WiFi Ranger RVPACK2 kit has the internal router box that draws about 14 watts and a permanently attached ethernet cable is installed into the antenna box. That cable carries the signal into a specific port on the router which also sends power upto to the antenna. The router box can be attached to either a 12Vdc power source or use the included wall wart plugged into 120Vac.

There is also an USB port on the router for the Verizon WiFi 4620LE modem to get both power and generate a tethered signal into the router.
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Old 04-01-2014, 05:36 PM   #67
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Works with any device. Just like your home router. Connect to the ranger and whatever the Ranger is connected to will be a pass through to your laptop/desktop/pad/pod/droid or froid. You do need to use one of them to connect to the WiFIRanger when you first power it up in a new location and tell the internal control panel what WiFi spot you want it to connect to. That might take a couple of minutes but after that every other device that connects is good to go.


So if I do not have any laptop with me I cannot tell the internal control panel what to connect to?
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Old 04-01-2014, 06:30 PM   #68
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Once the SKY or the Ranger is powered up, it will auto connect to the strongest open signal available.

Some of these signals, (Starbucks and others) will still require you to consent to their conditions before accessing the INTERNET on their signal. Just wait on that page to load before proceeding to the WWW.

By using the menu on the Ranger product, all your are doing is setting preferences.

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[/COLOR]
So if I do not have any laptop with me I cannot tell the internal control panel what to connect to?
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Old 04-01-2014, 11:15 PM   #69
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The Pepwave Surf to Go router will work on any network including T-Mobile. You just need a USB modem compatible with your network to plug into the Pepwave. Likely you can buy the USB modem directly from your wireless service provider. If you want 4G service make sure the USB modem you buy supports 4G on the wireless provider you are using. If you aren't buying your USB modem directly from the wireless service, make sure you get a list of compatible USB modems from your provider before you go shopping.
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Old 04-02-2014, 07:08 AM   #70
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Millenicom Price Increase

Yesterday Millenicom announced a price increase for all of its data plans to $89.99 per month for 20GB of service. The increase is effective May 1, 2014. The company explained its upstream provider (Verizon) raised the cost of service to Millenicom forcing them to pass through the higher costs. Up to now I've been paying $59.99 per month for 20GB.

On a price per GB basis Millenicom is still a good deal but no longer a fantastic deal. Depending on your data usage per month your out of pocket cost could now be lower going with a data plan with a lower GB per month (say 6 or 8) directly with Verizon, ATT, Sprint or another carrier, particularly if the minutes are shared with a smartphone package. It really depends on data usage. Heavy users will stick with Millenicom and light users will switch.

With a modem USB stick from any carrier, and the Pepwave Surf on the Go, you can achieve the same results for a mobile hotspot in your Airstream as I have using the Pepwave Surf on the Go and the Millenicom service.

I've now got to do some number crunching to determine if I'll stick with Millenicom for the Airstream hotspot or move to a Verizon family plan sharing data with my mobile phones. In any event I intend to keep the Pepwave Surf on the Go as the router in the Airstream.
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