If you’re like me, and have moved to Canada for a long stint, and need your own private internet connection, then you might want to consider Wind Mobile’s Infinite Laptop Plan, going for around $29 a month and “promising” speeds of 7.2Mbps on the Huawei-made E1691 data stick, and even more on the 4G-capable stick. Of course, if the price difference is $70 (E1691 at $29, E366 at $99), then it would make more sense for you to try the cheap way out first – since reception can vary in different areas.
As it is right now, Wind has provided highly satisfactory service. If you searched the web, you’ll see various claims such as,
- Throttling after 5Gb
- Frequent drops (defined as moments of no internet access)
- Higher speed than Mobilicity
I cannot confirm the last two points as I have only been on Wind for a few weeks but what I can say is that while throttling might be happening to me, it has not been as obvious as some have claimed it to be – 256kbps up/down. So far, I have downloaded around 10Gbs of data – including a game off Origin and I am still getting 250Kb/s download speed. Others claim that Wind might throttle depending on how hard the cell tower is worked – guess it’s a good thing of living far away from the crowds, while still being near a Wind cell tower.
Some tips that I would share is that you’ll get higher reliability if you attempt to get 5-bars worth of signal quality. This can be achieved by using an extension USB cable and leaving the modem out of your room. Wrap it in a plastic bag if you are afraid of rain. Also, forget the $129 hotspot that Wind sells – you don’t have to spend extra money to buy a router that can share your connection at home - just follow this guide.
One month’s of experience has shown that the connection varies from time to time, however, it seems to have degraded over the course of the month – perhaps that is throttling in action? Either way, towards the end of the month, I have not been able to get 300kb/s download rate, and I have gotten a few (less than 10) 10-minute drops which are times where the modem cannot connect to the internet. This is highly frustrating, especially since it spoils your momentum when doing work. The connection is terrible when it rains. I would say uptime is 90% of the time, though I would expect 99%.
However, I wouldn’t stress too much about it because the Huawei modem can be easily unlocked. At this website, you simply need to enter your device’s serial/data and it will spit out an unlock code. This unlock code will be needed when you are using another SIM card that is not from Wind. The next best alternative is, without doubt, Mobilicity.
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