Your recent TelCel Banda Ancha experience, please.
06-16-2013, 03:37 PM,
Your recent TelCel Banda Ancha experience, please.
As an alternative to TelMex Infinitum i hope that TelCel Banda Ancha is viable.

1. Is it still too slow?
2. Streaming video is o.k.?
3. Cost is close to TelMex basic at around $400 pesos per month?
4. I use the internet about 10 hours per day. Any experience?
5. Do you consider a contract a better deal than pay-as-you go?

Thanks, Doyle Phillips
06-16-2017, 11:53 PM,
RE: Your recent TelCel Banda Ancha experience, please.
Hi, Doyle

I've had Telcel Banda Ancha for 12 years at my house in the hills above Valenciana. (No fixed phone lines) Started out with a dongle and unlimited Gigs at $399. Now pay $599 for a monthly 10G plan. Think their next pan goes up to $1099/mo. for 20G. Got my own Huawei router (better than what's included in the Telcel package) but use their chip. Speed? So so. I don't stream because it'll eat up those gigs pronto. I use only for e-mail and web browsing. Reliability? Not BAD, but not great. Had hoped At&T would offer a better deal, but their prices were exactly the same as Telcel when they first arrived on the scene. I GET BY with what I have, but I think you'd find it pretty pricey to be online 10 hrs. per day. Also, performance may depend on your proximity to relay towers and the traffic saturation in your area. You CAN get a Telcel engineer who will come to your location and run some tests on signal strength, speed, etc. for you, but expect to wait a while to get an appointment. Good luck!
06-16-2017, 11:55 PM,
RE: Your recent TelCel Banda Ancha experience, please.
Sheesh! Just now noticed your post was ancient! Sorry, Doyle!
08-20-2017, 01:08 PM,
RE: Your recent TelCel Banda Ancha experience, please.
I made the same mistake you did multiple times, something is wrong with the forum that I'd have to spend some time duplicating to actually report the problem. I think it is after you make a post, other posts appear under your posted reply and they appear to you as new posts, yet they may be several years old. I was once challenged for why I was responding to so many old posts and this was the reason. You have to look carefully that the ones coming to the top of the post list are from a recent date.

Otherwise my 2 cents on this subject, I ordered some of these off eBay
Unlocked Huawei E397Bu-501 100 Mbps 4G LTE FDD TDD Mobile Broadband Modem

From what I can tell from a few days of research, the 501 version of the E379Bu is only for Telcel and while they are being sold in the US on eBay, this may be due to Telcel no longer carrying many of the USB style modems and perhaps they dumped their supplies to a US wholesaler. By the way I pity those in the US who are buying these thinking they will get LTE on the US carriers. They won't because Telcel's 4G is different than any US carrier.

I called all over northern Mexico (July 2017) and I couldn't find a single city's main Telcel office selling these high performance USB modems any longer, even though they are advertised as still supported on Telcel's website. Do take note here that Huawei E397 comes in many different versions, supporting different bands of different phone companies and the 501 iteration is only for Telcel Mexico. Also note that I think this is the only modem that will deliver the desired premium speed on Telcel's new 4G service. Still you could argue that speed does you little good when the data is so expensive and with this idea, some might opt for the cheaper 3G equipment just to keep from going over their limit. I know I easily use 30 +G per month on my wired connection and I don't stream.

Now with this modem, adding something like a GL-AR150 mini router loaded with firmware from , a multi-band yagi antenna like the weBoost 700-2700 MHz Wide Band Directional Antenna along with the proper TS9 to N pigtail, this setup could be put in a waterproof container and mounted outside any house in a line of sight with the Telcel towers and a near 100% signal could likely be enjoyed for the Telcel service. So performance can be addressed with the proper equipment, while not the data cost.

Outside the city, however Telcel while traditionally the carrier with the widest coverage is not always available with data. I have seen many occurrences while traveling cross-country where a 5 bar will be seen on voice and the infamous E or Edge data will appear with sometimes a 1-2G data rate, less than dial up.

But cross country coverage was not the topic of this post.
08-21-2017, 08:20 AM,
RE: Your recent TelCel Banda Ancha experience, please.
Sr. Donjuane
You seem knowledgable on things Internet and Telmex, so a simple question.
Can one replace the Telmex furnished modem with a modem of my choosing and still have service?
08-23-2017, 12:30 PM,
RE: Your recent TelCel Banda Ancha experience, please.
MY modem from the US worked fine

My Telcel modem is 650 pesos a month for 10 gigs. Cost goes up fast with overuse
My Mexico Page
08-26-2017, 09:23 AM,
RE: Your recent TelCel Banda Ancha experience, please.
Greetings jesm:

What is the definition of a fool again? I can’t remember, but I also can’t remember to use an external editor to compose posts here because this marks a seemingly infinite amount of times I have typed a full page of information and right before posting, have lost everything. I used to depend on Lazarus for Firefox to hold my text in buffer, but like all good things I seem to catch onto, it has fallen out of support. I simply must remember that I must pre-compose in Word. It’s a hard habit to learn for me for some reason.

OK, back to the modems. So frustrated it is hard to regain momentum but as I recall….

I know just enough about this to make myself crazy. What you have to do is check the frequencies that your modem transmits on (read the mfg. specs) and see if any of them matches what Telcel is using (see )

You’ll also have to get the modem unlocked if it is not already. There are other issues with unlocking a modem, in that while most carriers in the US are now giving free unlock codes to their existing customers, still because USB modems are not as popular as they once were, they may not even know where the unlock code is. For example I recently spent 6 weeks dealing with AT&T to get their top of the line “Beam” unlocked (Sierra Wireless 340U). Unlocking modems used not to be an issue but apparently with AT&T’s new user operated unlock web interface, no one bothered to enter their line of USB modem IMEI numbers with the unlock codes. I found this out after countless phone calls and tests. I ended up having to compose a snail-mail to the CIO of the company. I finally got a phone call 4 weeks later from the corporate office in Oklahoma and the response was, yes we get a few calls like these each year but for the most part no one ever wants to unlock their USB modem (really?). Now here I know I could have paid $40 and received a hacked unlock code online but how could I waste all the time I had already invested? At this point it was personal LOL.

Note I have also in past years used the AT&T branded Sierra Wireless 312U and 320U. Unlocking them was easy because prior to a couple of years ago, AT&T worked on “email to the guy with the paper” principal of finding an unlock code. Today their trained robotic help center cannot work out of the paradigm of their online unlock facility. If it’s not in there, they think, then YOU must be doing something wrong. Not true at all!

So hopefully you can match your modem to see if it works. I do know that the 4G service for Telcel is different than the US carriers and if your US modem is unlocked and is compatible with Telcel, it will only work at 3G speeds or less. I’d really suggest your buying the Huawei model I recommended (with the 501 suffix) while noting that there are vast differences in the various same model numbers of this unit having different suffixes. When I last checked, they could be found on eBay for around $25. And again these are also supported by the project. Using one of the palm routers like the GL-AR150 as long as you can supply 5V to power it (via any conventional USB charging apparatus) then you can remote mount this in a weather proof container to better pull in a distant signal. Couple that with the fact these modems also have external antenna jacks, it’s easy then to add an external antenna to pull in even more fringe signals.

08-26-2017, 10:09 AM,
RE: Your recent TelCel Banda Ancha experience, please.
And for anyone who might ask, "why not just use a hotspot device" - there are a couple of reasons. Most of the newer hotspots are dropping their external antenna jacks (add a few cents to bottom line). To really benefit from mounting a unit outdoors, the use of the modem's external antenna jack makes the most sense with a directional antenna pointed toward Telcel's tower. Also most of the hotspots have a user limit and are often plagued with not timing out properly when one device powers off and another powers on to take its place in the 5 device or so circle. Another issue is that a used modem and mini-router can usually be picked up for under $25 each, so for 50 bucks you have a much better performing device than the hotspot, with it of course having a bit larger footprint. The modem and mini router will need an external power supply, be it a battery bank (solar is an option in remote areas of course) or standard USB charger. The modem/mini-router setup also provides a wired connection option to feed your home network - something missing in a hotspot (found only in very old Cradlepoint routers).

With the "Rooter" firmware loaded into your supported palm router (eg. GL-AR150), an ethernet cable can be routed up to your weatherproof box and POE (power over ethernet) can be used to power your device mounted outside. The inside end of the LAN cable is then run through the POE transformer and then into the WAN connection of your existing home router where you can then enjoy either wired or wireless Internet. Having wired LAN in addition to wireless is great for older peripherals that depend on wired-only connections. I have also used the LinkSys ATA SPA-2102 for VOIP service while traveling and I find that I must be under a very strong signal on a tower that is not overcrowded in order to get a non-choppy audio phone call over the wire. Note that most ATA (VOIP) devices have only a LAN jack for wired internet and do not work on a wireless network. I have also found that these VOIP devices are far superior to smart phone VOIP apps in call quality, at least with the free aps on Android and $3 paid app on iPhone that I experimented with.

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