Saturday, August 4, 2012

Wandering with the Hotspot

Decided to go for a drive this morning with the goal of doing some testing of the Millenicom 4620 Hotspot.  In order to set a baseline, I took a reading using before leaving the house.  The Hotspot was indicating 3 bars of 4G and the test indicated 20Mb/s download and over 7Mb/s upload.  Pretty good if I do say so myself.

Unfortunately, once we got away from 4G service, the speed dropped off precipitously. Parked across the road from the cell tower in Rye, with the cell tower filling our windshield and showing 5 bars on the Hotspot, we got our best 3G speeds of the day, less than 1/10 of the 4G performance.

It appears that signal strength does not have as much impact on speed as I'd anticipated. Further tests suggest that it may be related to time of day or luck of the draw for the ISP the hotspot uses. It took several tries when we got home to connect to the specific ISP used for the baseline test, and the afternoon results were notably slower than the morning.  We'll see if there are other factors we can control as we get more experience with the Hotspot.

Meanwhile, we had fun touring a bunch of streets, roads, and backroads on the north side of Payson. Found several nice looking houses at reasonable prices. Even found a boondocking spot with a great view of the rim.

Fire Control Road (NF-64)  is 10 miles of gravel that connects Highway 87 to the Houston Mesa Road. There are several spots at the western end that would be viable. The one I liked is south of the road about 100 yards, about 2.5 miles from the intersection with Highway 87.

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