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Old 12-28-2018, 11:24 AM   #1
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Reliable high-speed internet

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everyone ... We're new to The Forum .... after retiring from the phone company with 40 years .....We plan on liquidating all our land assets and purchasing a trawler. We have a large beautiful home on the Intercoastal Waterway in South Carolina (19 Dirt rd , Seabrook SC). We plan on listing our home with Sotheby's in the spring .After doing some research I believe we would need approximately a 50ft vessel to have the necessities for a live aboard. I really like the nordhavn , but we won't be purchasing a new vessel so we'll have to see what's available. With that said we are looking for information and advise on internet... My wife is planning on working a few more years and we'll need a reliable connection for video conferencing ... I was thinking of tethering off a cell phone or satellite connection... any advice would be greatly appreciated....
Thanks Wayne
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Old 12-28-2018, 11:41 AM   #2
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There are some options available but with limitations. Satellite internet is available for marine applications but the service will depend on where you plan to go and your bandwidth needs. For smaller craft there is also the limitation of where you can mount the satellite dish system so that it can work properly. My dock mate has a Nordhaven 50 and we could not mount a sat system due to deck layout. Coverage, speeds and performance will be improving late next year and into 2020's with the launch of new satellites. My suggestion might be to hold off until the new sats are up as it will give you more options.
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Old 12-28-2018, 11:53 AM   #3
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Hey thanks for the info... Will probably be at the residence for another year anyway ... and you're right Technologies changing fast... thanks and have a great New Year
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Old 12-28-2018, 12:04 PM   #4
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Where you'll be cruising is very important. If close to shore then cell may be adequate. We cruise offshore and must have connectivity so have satellite communications. Works well, but expensive. However, prices will continue to drop over time.
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Old 12-28-2018, 12:05 PM   #5
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If the question was TV, I could steer you towards some very reasonable satellite and service options. I have yet to find a reasonable internet satellite or service option. I noticed last year at the Seattle Boat Show there were som big improvements in satellite options but not in the service options. So far my best option while on the move has been cellular service.
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Old 12-28-2018, 12:09 PM   #6
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Hey thanks for the info ... We'll probably spend a lot of time in the ditch.... and maybe venture to the Bahamas....
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Old 12-28-2018, 12:19 PM   #7
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I would use a router that can utilize a variety of connections in a priority fashon as the internet connection.

A brand I like is www.cradlepoint.com

I have their MBR1200B product which I think was recently discontinued, but the concept remains the same.

When near a Cellular source we prefer to use Cellular with our 60Gig data plan.
If that cellular is unavailable I use another carrier with a 50Gig plan.
If out of Cellular range we fall back to the expensive option which is KVH satellite service.

If you are planning to travel away from areas that are covered by Cellular I highly recommend the equipment and services of KVH at www.kvh.com

We have a US based phone number that can reach us world wide, and satellite based internet with a 2mbps download speed. Yes it is expensive, but if you really want to be connected to the world anywhere you travel, the service will provide that.
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Old 12-28-2018, 12:30 PM   #8
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As noted above, satellite internet is slow and expensive. Cell service may work, but not in remote coastal areas, only areas near big population centers. But in many such places it is good enough for streaming TV if you can afford the GBs.


And in some cases if you are adventuresome, you can grab someone's nearby wifi signal.


So the combination of cell and wifi has worked pretty well for me.


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Old 12-28-2018, 12:33 PM   #9
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Hey thanks for the info I'll definitely check out that site
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Old 12-28-2018, 12:43 PM   #10
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Today there is no one-size-fits-all answer: cellular is spotty and frequently slows due to the local towers overloading, wifi is short range even with a booster, is often too slow to stream and is always password protected.
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Old 12-28-2018, 12:48 PM   #11
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These folks (TF Members I think) professionally evaluate and publish info on plans, gear, setups, etc for both marine and rv applications:

https://www.rvmobileinternet.com/

Panbo also has a lot of good gear info:

https://www.panbo.com/category/network-control/

I've also been reading good things about Verizon's $65/mo unlimited 4G data hotspot plan. I have similar needs when we're onboard (zoom video conferencing, email, accessing network resources, etc). Wifi is just too spotty and unreliable in marinas and satellite is still too expensive so a Mifi with a booster seems like a good solution for most working stiffs that cruise close to shore.

https://www.panbo.com/65-for-verizon...ve-that-a-try/
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Old 12-28-2018, 01:32 PM   #12
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Sounds good... I'll check into it ... I'm already a Verizon subscriber... might be able to upgrade my plan... run some tests at home before we get on the water....
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Old 12-28-2018, 01:57 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MissMaggie View Post
Sounds good... I'll check into it ... I'm already a Verizon subscriber... might be able to upgrade my plan... run some tests at home before we get on the water....
We're just completing our Great Loop here in W. Florida, the Great Wake State. I worked from the boat every day since we moved on board in spring of 2016 using feeble marina WiFi and mostly our fones/devices as hotspots. We were only truly out of full time service range for about 3 days on the Ten Tom in northern Alabama/Mississippi. Oh, there and around the tip of Michigan's thumb where the towers all belong to Ed's Welding & BBQ.

Best coverage we ever had was anchored in a bay in the Georgia coastal marshes. 2nd worst was downtown Ft. Myers. Stick with Verizon and you should be good to go.
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