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Old 12-20-2018, 08:21 AM   #57
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My 2019 Airstream Globetrotter 27 was delivered to my dealer a week ago and on Monday I went to go see it for the first time, finalize paperwork, and discuss particulars on some enhancements their service department will do to my trailer before I pick it up in March. Among those enhancements are the installations of cell and wifi boosters. My dealer has been in contact with their Airstream rep on the availability of the AT&T/Airstream OEM "retrofit". Like many of you, I've been monitoring Airforum threads on the rollout of the system in the 2019 Classics, and it's clear there are some (perhaps to-be-expected) teething pains.

I'm confident these issues will be ironed out in time. When I asked, my salesperson says his rep reports that it may be "some time" before the retrofit is available and MY2020 at the very least before trailers other than the Classics feature prewiring. Without official word from Airstream this is all rumor, of course, but the last official word from Airstream on the availability of the retrofit was that there would be more information by the end of the year, and here we are (more or less).

In any case, I'm moving ahead with Plan A, which was to install non-OEM, non carrier-specific booster equipment in the Airstream. I'm thankful to those who are beta testing the new system (especially you, Turk123, who have also been sharing your experiences candidly). It'll be a nice system for those who get it once everything is worked out--to have a system like this covered by warranty and serviceable (presumably) at any dealer should greatly streamline a basic need for pretty much everyone these days--connectivity.

I'm more interested in the RV-specific plan than I am the hardware. I agree with Rocinante that the technology in these trailers should be kept simple--Airstreams are supposed to be trailers built for life but the lifespan and relevance of these electronics is often less than five years. More than a "built in" system, I would love to get a trailer pre-wired for boosters that we could choose or that had conduit run to areas of the trailer where such equipment is often installed.

In any case, I'll still follow these threads. As I said, technology moves quickly and I may well find myself upgrading these systems in a few years. For now I'm just eager to get on the road with equipment that has been in the field for a while.
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Old 12-20-2018, 08:32 AM   #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocinante View Post
As a consumer, I'd be reluctant to have AS do anything but build the most technologically basic trailer they make. From them I want no fancy touch screens, no electric awnings, nada. I just want them to get the big stuff right so I can go camping (or live in it full time, as we have done this year). Then, if I want high-tech touches I'll have professionals add them afterward, or maybe do it myself.
Agree in general, but the main appeal, for us at least, of the new AT&T/Airstream plan is the ability to add it to older trailers, and get a really good deal on the entire package, data-wise . . . even without using it in the Airstream.

This packaging of the usage plan is TBD, but it could prove to be a real savings financially, if AT&T wants it to be, for the benefit of having the Airstream name be part of their marketing.

Using the new setup while OTRA would just be icing on the cake!

Peter

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Old 12-21-2018, 05:19 AM   #59
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AT&T briefly offered an awesome plan with truly unlimited data, called Unlimited Plus, for $99 / month. If they cared to, they could still offer that plan, but it’s gone. So it’s pretty clear that meeting this need isn’t something they care much about at present.
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Old 12-21-2018, 11:22 AM   #60
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Old 12-21-2018, 05:01 PM   #61
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Just got this from my dealer: Airstream of Scottsdale

We’re excited to announce more information about Airstream Connect, internally known as the Aftermarket Connect Kit. More information about Airstream Connect will available on Thursday, December 27 when it is formally announced to the public on airstream.com

Airstream Connect features include:

Compatibility with any Airstream Travel Trailer or Touring Coach
Unique data plans from AT&T without activation fees
$25 for 5GB of data (can be used over the course of a month)
$360/year, unlimited data, annual pre-pay
Boost performance of weak campground Wi-Fi
Connect and stream entertainment for up to 10 devices
Integrated GPS so owners can find their way back to their Airstream
Arrival and departure checklists


The Airstream Connect hardware (MSRP of $999) includes the following components:
Powerful, easy-to-use Wi-Fi and cellular (LTE-A) router
Roof-mounted, high-performance antenna with 5M of cable
Mounting bracket and custom gasket


Airstream Connect will be sold through the Airstream dealer network and will require professional installation. The Airstream Connect hardware kit can be ordered through PAWs starting January 7, however, dealers should not schedule installation appointments before February 4, 2019, to ensure proper stock levels.

Since Airstream Connect is only available through the Airstream dealer network and requires professional installation, all marketing materials will instruct customers to contact their preferred dealership to schedule installation. Airstream Connect installation instructions will be sent in January.

We’ll keep you informed with Airstream Connect developments - including when part numbers are released to PAWS and the website goes live.


Airstream Marketing
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Old 12-21-2018, 05:53 PM   #62
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That’s great!
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Old 12-21-2018, 06:46 PM   #63
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Unhappy

Ugh . . .

One is reminded of the punch line from that old tune . . .

"I owe my soul to the company store . . . "



What?
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Old 12-21-2018, 08:49 PM   #64
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Peter—were you expecting something different?
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Old 12-22-2018, 04:31 AM   #65
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Yes, definitely something different . . . hardware shipped to the owner to install as needed . . . no obligation to go to a dealer [many of whom -- IMO -- will not install the stuff correctly -- IMO] . . . much less expensive up-front . . .

Where to stop with the bewilderment about this "solution" . . . ?

"Sixteen tons, and what do you get? Another day older and deeper in debt" . . . was that a line from the same song?

This plan may make sense for new Airstreams, in which it will be pre-installed, but it will likely be fraught with the same QC issues that have plagued the company recently. [IMO]

No thanks!

Peter
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Old 12-22-2018, 06:39 AM   #66
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I guess this is exactly what I was expecting it to be. Some kind of off-the-shelf hardware that is made proprietary, installed by dealers so that Airstream can provide some baseline for inevitable warranty claims, and a special price on data services.

I can’t speak to the competence of dealers in general. They’ll get training (materials, perhaps hands-on, who knows) and of course some dealers will do a better job than others. But I can surmise that there’s no way that Airstream would offer any warranty a user install or accept a warranty claim on some other aspect of the trailer damaged by a warranty.

It seems like a pretty good deal to me, though it’s not clear whether the $1k hardware cost includes install or not. Candidly I’m more interested in the plan than in the gear. The gear to do this is pretty readily available but as far as I can tell, hotspot plans across all carriers really suck.

My salesperson emailed me today to say that if my dealer’s service department hasn’t yet done the install on the third-party gear (doubtful) they’ll wait for more information so I can decide which way I want to go. The third-party gear is still Plan A for me... I’ve been stuck in the “wait for it to be acceptable” loop way too many times with technology.
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Old 12-22-2018, 06:59 AM   #67
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Originally Posted by OTRA15 View Post
Yes, definitely something different . . . hardware shipped to the owner to install as needed . . . no obligation to go to a dealer [many of whom -- IMO -- will not install the stuff correctly -- IMO] . . . much less expensive up-front . . .

Where to stop with the bewilderment about this "solution" . . . ?

"Sixteen tons, and what do you get? Another day older and deeper in debt" . . . was that a line from the same song?

This plan may make sense for new Airstreams, in which it will be pre-installed, but it will likely be fraught with the same QC issues that have plagued the company recently. [IMO]

No thanks!

Peter
Hi

The initial announcement included the "dealer install" as well as a hint that the price was going to be "close to a thousand dollars". One assumes that part of that is hardware cost and part is pre-loaded labor to pay the dealer's crew.

If AT&T sticks to the "dealer install" approach, it may be to keep as many people from putting them in their "normal" homes. I suspect they have enough information on typical AS owners to bet that 500 GB per month 12 months out of the year is not normal data usage. It is what I run here at home. When I'm on the road, even with an unlimited plan, I run way less.

They offered this same sort of plan a while back with vehicle plugin hot spots. After a bit people started making adapter kits so you could put them anywhere. Once those hit the market in quantity (and YouTubers started pushing the idea) , the program went away.

Bob
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Old 12-22-2018, 07:02 AM   #68
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nryn, you know there are lots of other threads about cell and data plans, hot spots, WIFI boosters, etc. etc.?

Will provide links etc. if you wish. If you are on the desktop version of this site on a real computer, the new search function in the blue box above works great.

Good luck,

Peter
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Old 12-22-2018, 07:05 AM   #69
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Interested and tagging along for informational purposes!
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Old 12-22-2018, 07:26 AM   #70
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Peter—thanks—yes, I’m pretty sure I’ve been through all of them and have specced my setup accordingly. . The equipment is actually on my Airstream order already with an annotation to wait on ordering/install.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OTRA15 View Post
nryn, you know there are lots of other threads about cell and data plans, hot spots, WIFI boosters, etc. etc.?

Will provide links etc. if you wish. If you are on the desktop version of this site on a real computer, the new search function in the blue box above works great.

Good luck,

Peter
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