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Author Topic: Best carrier for RVers  (Read 358 times)

SeilerBird

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Best carrier for RVers
« on: November 09, 2017, 07:28:58 AM »
One question that comes up around here is what is the best wireless carrier for RVers. Usually there are at least a dozen different answers with no one company getting most of the votes. Well Google is changing all that with their new Project Fi network. Right now it is the very best deal for most RVers. Here are the reasons why.

Google does not own one cell phone tower. They use Sprint, T-Mobile and US Cellular. At the same time. They monitor all three and use the one with the best signal. This means you get access to more cell towers and 4G LTE in more places. And they also have about a million Wifi signals they can also use if one is in range which will save you data charges. As you move they will switch between cell phone towers and Wifi seamlessly, even in the middle of a call. No other carrier uses as many towers.

Price. Google gets pricing right. They don't have plans at Fi, they have a plan. $20 per month for the first line, $15 per month for each additional line. Data is $10 a gig. But here is the difference. You get a refund every month for unused data of the previous month. Let's say you sign up for one gig a month like I did and you only use a half a gig. The next bill gives you a $5 reduction. Data is computed at one cent a megabyte. If you go over then data is added at the same one cent a megabyte. One cent a megabyte is $10 a gig approximately. You do not pay for data you do not use and you do not get throttled for going over. If you use a lot of gigs then Fi will probably not be the cheapest for you.

Free hot spot. Every phone has a hot spot built in and there is no extra charge for using it as a hot spot.

International calling is built in. No additional charges for international calls. There are 135 countries in their plan and you can use Fi in any of those countries without any problems. So you can travel to Mexico or Canada and not worry about will your phone work. You don't need an additional plan or a different SIM card to travel. And speaking of SIM cards, Fi doesn't use physical SIM cards they use eSIM cards that are baked into the phone.

Now as you know if it seems to good to be true then it is not is the usual response to this. And there is a huge problem. Fi only works on a few different phones. Specifically Pixel, Moto X4, the Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X and Nexus 6 are the only ones you can use. This is because they are the only ones with the software built in to switch between networks. I can only imagine that as time marches on more companies will built that into their phones. You don't have to spend a grand on a Pixel like I did to join Fi. Right now a Nexus 5X is under $200 new on Amazon and much cheaper used on eBay. Considering how much you could save on data charges Fi just might pay for a 5X.

Another great thing is the Share the Fi Love program. If you refer someone to Fi then you get a $20 discount and so does the person you refer. My code is 2KX6EY. I have been using Fi for the past week and it works much better than the MetroPCS network I was using. It had problems at my house. Sometimes it would not ring.

Here is a link to their website:

https://fi.google.com/about/

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UTTransplant

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Re: Best carrier for RVers
« Reply #1 on: November 09, 2017, 09:47:50 AM »
Am I missing that data seems expensive? We can easily use 15-20 Gigs a month on our Verizon unlimited plan. That sounds like $150-200 a month for data. We are in the West almost always, and we are hardly anywhere with WiFi so we really use the cellular data. The coverage looks good for more populated parts of the country, but in the open spaces of the west Verizon coverage beats all the others. The plan looks like something those in more urban environments might want to look into though.
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SeilerBird

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Re: Best carrier for RVers
« Reply #2 on: November 09, 2017, 10:00:41 AM »
Am I missing that data seems expensive? We can easily use 15-20 Gigs a month on our Verizon unlimited plan. That sounds like $150-200 a month for data. We are in the West almost always, and we are hardly anywhere with WiFi so we really use the cellular data. The coverage looks good for more populated parts of the country, but in the open spaces of the west Verizon coverage beats all the others. The plan looks like something those in more urban environments might want to look into though.
You are missing what I stated in the original post:

"If you use a lot of gigs then Fi will probably not be the cheapest for you."

No it is not for heavy data users. I looked at Verizon and Fi data coverage maps and I think Fi looks better in the west.
I would like to apologize to anyone I have not yet offended. Please be patient and I will get to you shortly.
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William52

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Re: Best carrier for RVers
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2017, 09:57:36 AM »
Something will consider but are married to Verizon  for another year or so. Seems every time a new plan comes along they all match it to keep customer base. Besides we need unlimited data.
2000 Pace Arrow M35N F53 V10 Ford  100,000 + miles purrs like a kitten. Yes I am old school.         2007 Honda VTX double dark side

Frank B

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Re: Best carrier for RVers
« Reply #4 on: November 17, 2017, 09:01:35 PM »
SeilerBird:

I had a look, but coverage in Arizona is spotty in the areas we like to visit.  One should check the coverage map before making a decision.

However, thanks for mentioning it.  I will keep an eye on the project. 

As a Canadian snowbird, I am always looking for a data connection that does not cost an arm and a leg.  So far, AT&T has been decent to deal with, and they have coverage most of the places we go.  Just pop a US SIM into my unlocked Galaxy Note 4 in Great Falls, and we're good to go.

Frank.
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