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320 posts

Ultimate Geek


Topic # 204584 8-Oct-2016 08:39
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Hello All

 

We had a Spark notification and a phone call that they want to move us over to WB and I have a few questions;

 

  • Is the land-line getting 'cut' and the existing land-line being diverted over the wireless?
  • I assume that with any power loss we do not have a phone connection any longer?
  • Have any of you noticed speed problems at peak times with WB?
  • Spark offers a Huawei b315 modem, are those any good? The only option?
  • Can I leave the existing network(with Fritzbox7490) in place as it is?

Is it time to move our second/last 'land-line' over to 2talk at this point?

 

Thanks


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Glurp
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  Reply # 1647612 8-Oct-2016 09:17
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I'm on VF but the principle is the same. We were able to choose with the phone and we chose for the bundle. Yes, when the power goes so does the phone and Internet, but it would not be difficult to make an emergency back-up for that. You could do it with a 12-volt car battery.

 

We have had major problems with speed at peak times, especially during school holidays. It seems to be better now but at its worst, streaming becomes impossible. At its best, we get up to 50 mbps down. We have two antennas and are 20+ km from the mast, not line of sight.

 

We also have the Huawei b315. It seems to be standard for 4G RBI. Ours hasn't given us any trouble. I can't answer your network question.

 

 





I reject your reality and substitute my own. - Adam Savage
 


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  Reply # 1647628 8-Oct-2016 09:54
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In regards to getting cut over to Wireless Broadband.

 

- Your PSTN Phone number is cut over to the Huawei B315 router so you plug your phone into the router for POTS service and it's VoIP over the Mobile network on a dedicated private network.

 

- When the power goes off so does the landline number. So getting a UPS like the sentry lite would be recommended.

 

- The B315 is "ok" and works well enough. The Wifi isn't amazing so if you have a very large (200SQM+) House it may not be sufficient, but a regular sized house it should be fine. In regards to how stable it is. I have had one work flawlessly for the last 2 months.

 

- You can only use the B315, as it's a fully managed router by Spark. You can plug your fritz box into the B315 for Wifi but you will always need the B315 for VoIP.

 

- The B315 does support secondary ring so you can get a second number on the line for faxibility etc.






 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1647645 8-Oct-2016 10:54
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Noig:

 

Hello All

 

We had a Spark notification and a phone call that they want to move us over to WB and I have a few questions;

 

  • Is the land-line getting 'cut' and the existing land-line being diverted over the wireless?
  • I assume that with any power loss we do not have a phone connection any longer?
  • Have any of you noticed speed problems at peak times with WB?
  • Spark offers a Huawei b315 modem, are those any good? The only option?
  • Can I leave the existing network(with Fritzbox7490) in place as it is?

Is it time to move our second/last 'land-line' over to 2talk at this point?

 

Thanks

 

 

If you can divorce yourself from a landline then you could go with Skinny Wireless Broadband for internet $52/100GB and get a Skinny Direct all you can eat/talk mobile plan for $30/mth. Both use the Spark network so effectively your experience should be no different from using Spark Wireless. I'm doing it this way, one advantage being I have a truly mobile home phone and I can still use it during a power cut - assuming the cell tower is not affected.

 

Speed will vary depending on usage the cell tower gets during the day and how good a signal you get from it. I'm currently testing a Skinny one and it gives me about 30Mbps both ways on an average day. I have seen download speeds fall to 10Mbps on a rare occasion and up to about 60Mbps sometimes - this is without any additional external antennas. If you want a reliable signal strength and connection then you should get some external antennas like this. You will need two of them with low loss cable connecting them to your wireless router for best results - speak to your local antenna installer for best advice.

 

Huawei 315 does the job but as already said, the 2.4GHz wifi is pretty crap and I connect mine to a TP-Link wireless router to do that job. The 315 feels a little cheap and under-powered to me but that my opinion and it seems the defacto with ISP's offering wireless broadband.

 

 


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  Reply # 1647693 8-Oct-2016 14:38
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We switched over to the service about 4 months ago as we had moved to an area with crap ADSL.  Initially I was in second heaven with the speeds being achieved. However, they do crap out partic at school holiday time.  I'm waiting till Monday to check that again. They also drop during term, about the time kids arrive home. Having said that speeds were better than the ADSL. The router drives me nuts once every 24 hours and needs to be powered down and restarted. It advises me security is suspect and logs into the router.  We are about 4km from the tower, but the routers sits on a window ledge facing the opposite direction (because the office happens to be in that room) I do notice that the PC in the living room - 2  gib walls away - receives a signal which leaves a bit to be desired, but cant let on cos SWSKB is generally on that screen




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  Reply # 1647703 8-Oct-2016 15:26
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Rikkitic:

 

.........We have had major problems with speed at peak times, especially during school holidays. It seems to be better now but at its worst, streaming becomes impossible. ...

 

We also have the Huawei b315. It seems to be standard for 4G RBI. Ours hasn't given us any trouble. I can't answer your network question.

 

Thanks@Rikkitic

 

I have mentioned to the Spark that I have heard about speed dropping. She said that would we have a network money back guarantee, or something along those lines.

 

BarTender:

 

In regards to getting cut over to Wireless Broadband.

 

- Your PSTN Phone number is cut over to the Huawei B315 router so you plug your phone into the router for POTS service and it's VoIP over the Mobile network on a dedicated private network.

 

- When the power goes off so does the landline number. So getting a UPS like the sentry lite would be recommended.

 

- The B315 is "ok" and works well enough. The Wifi isn't amazing so if you have a very large (200SQM+) House it may not be sufficient, but a regular sized house it should be fine. In regards to how stable it is. I have had one work flawlessly for the last 2 months.

 

- You can only use the B315, as it's a fully managed router by Spark. You can plug your fritz box into the B315 for Wifi but you will always need the B315 for VoIP.

 

- The B315 does support secondary ring so you can get a second number on the line for faxibility etc.

 

 

Thanks @BarTender

 

Ok, so we will port our second number and go naked rural WB. Put the B315 infront of our existing router and all should work. Tower in line of sight at 10 k's

 

cynnicallemon:......Huawei 315 does the job but as already said, the 2.4GHz wifi is pretty crap and I connect mine to a TP-Link wireless router to do that job. The 315 feels a little cheap and under-powered to me but that my opinion and it seems the defacto with ISP's offering wireless broadband.

 

thanks @cynnicallemon

 

no surprises as it hasn't really changed and I still remember the Thomson modem/router. It wasn't a fancy gadget though lasted a long time.

 

Perthman:...  Initially I was in second heaven with the speeds being achieved. However, they do crap out partic at school holiday time.  I'm waiting till Monday to check that again. They also drop during term, about the time kids arrive home. ... The router drives me nuts once every 24 hours and needs to be powered down and restarted....

 

Thanks @Perthman

 

Your report is not encouraging. As we are even further away and the reception might be weaker.

 

More doubts really after seeing what you guys had to say. I will have to ask Spark if they restore back to the copper line broadband if the RBI is not going to bring what they promise?


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  Reply # 1647731 8-Oct-2016 17:01
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Don't ever put a 2talk SIP connection behind double NAT.

You're asking for a world of pain as it will simply be unreliable.

Either use the Spark VoIP stack as it's a dedicated APN routed not NATed to the Broadsoft core or just stick with copper.






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  Reply # 1647767 8-Oct-2016 19:04
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I will throw you an alternative idea if you are going down this path. I have motorhoming friends who are using Netspeed and achieving great results from many locations around the country. The speeds they are getting  are brilliant and we are talking plans of 130 gigs a month. Most of the time no aerial is required, and the only reason I haven't gone down the path as I am under contract. Quite sufficient data for our use and the ability to pick up the router and take it away in the bus has huge advantages. So, become a motorhomer. Now of course this post should be in the NZ Mobile areas 

Edited to add, the NS service uses the Huawei B315 and I haven't heard any bad press from them



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Ultimate Geek


  Reply # 1647853 9-Oct-2016 07:50
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BarTender: Don't ever put a 2talk SIP connection behind double NAT.

You're asking for a world of pain as it will simply be unreliable.

Either use the Spark VoIP stack as it's a dedicated APN routed not NATed to the Broadsoft core or just stick with copper.

 

Thanks @BarTender

 

That does not sound good at all. As we have already one line with 2talk and like to do the same with the second line, because we want to use both while an extended overseas, RB wont be the solution for us then?

 

Or do you mean we shouldn't use the  Fritzbox behind the Spark modem? Or connect the VOIP to the Spark modem and not the Fritzbox?




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  Reply # 1648436 10-Oct-2016 11:47
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Update:

 

Spark could not guarantee, so I have been told by a Spark support person, the location discovery by emergency services if we would move to rural wireless broadband(RBI).

 

The very reason we kept one phone over land-line(copper)! If this is so, I would expect that Spark would need to make people aware of it.




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  Reply # 1649744 12-Oct-2016 13:36
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BarTender: Don't ever put a 2talk SIP connection behind double NAT.

You're asking for a world of pain as it will simply be unreliable.

Either use the Spark VoIP stack as it's a dedicated APN routed not NATed to the Broadsoft core or just stick with copper.

 

ok,

 

so do you know if the Huawei's firmware is easy enough to setup voip for 2talk?

 

edit: sbiddle made it 100% clear. No VOIP(2talk) possible.cry

 

[solved]


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  Reply # 1662671 2-Nov-2016 13:12
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Hmm, Spark called up my folks today and also talked them into switching to the rural broadband and away from copper. 

 

I'm not so sure about how reliable it will be as compared to the copper, especially when one of the comments above mentions having to turn the modem off and on every 24 hours. Phone really should be available 24/7 in case of emergency etc.

 

If you have multiple jackpoints they will give you the option of a dual handset or a $100 credit so you can buy more phone handsets for your particular base unit. 

 

I am still kind of worried about reliability though. The plan does have a 30-day money back guarantee, so we'll have to see how it goes. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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  Reply # 1662676 2-Nov-2016 13:30
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As has already been pointed out, if you lose power you lose the phone. We have had our phone go down from time to time for varying periods. Usually loss of power, but also a couple of other things. In our experience, it is generally very good overall, but it shouldn't be relied on for emergencies. Having said that, our copper Telecom connection used to go down more often and then we always had to argue with them about the cause, because we knew from experience that it was a fault at their end but they always insisted that we had to go through the rigmarole of unplugging all the phones, etc. What we have now is much better than what we had then, but it still isn't good enough to depend on for emergency communications, especially from our rural location.

 

 





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  Reply # 1662682 2-Nov-2016 13:35
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We're still on ADSL at our holiday house with no mobile reception on any network (west coast of Dargaville at Glinks Gully) and with the lines here deteriorating in the salt air with chorus being always called out for faults, I'm wondering what will happen eventually if we'll lose our service permanently. No mobile 3G 4G service here at all even 1km at top of the road it's very patchy and unreliable. We share our ADSL service with quite a few people in the local area due to the deteriorating lines and limited capacity (not a insufficient port/Conklin problem) there's insufficient working pairs from top of road and no one else seems to be able to a connection because half are apparently corroded and unusable. Satellite here is the only other option.

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  Reply # 1662695 2-Nov-2016 13:51
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[Disclaimer: I work for Spark, so take my opinion with a grain of salt if you wish, but the below is my factual experience with urban fixed wireless broadband & phone]

 

Yes I am talking about the urban wireless broadband product, but I believe most of what I say below is applicable to rural wireless.

 

I have been using the Spark wireless broadband + voice product for coming up on a year (I was initially trialing it, but I ended up keeping it).

 

After a move of address I suffered very poor ADSL speeds, and fibre at that time was not available at my new address.

 

The Spark wireless product works straight out of the box, with just one phonecall required to activate it. What I particularly like is that I can place the router anywhere in the house that has a power point, and move it at will - you are not tied to a location having to have a phone jackpoint. This has been excellent for me because in the last few months I have completely changed the layout of the furniture in my lounge area a few times to try and find the best fit, and moving the router has been effortless each time.

 

I am enjoying complete freedom to stream Lightbox or Netflix whenever I want, and have never experienced a single buffering issue - the thing just works. I am not saying that it doesn't slow down during peak periods - it probably does - but I have not noticed and I'm not one to carry out a thousands speed tests a day to check it, but it hasn't been a noticeable issue for me. From memory I was getting around 40/20Mbps on the day I first connected it which is ample for my needs.

 

When I first started the trial my data limit was 80GB, which proved not to be enough once I started really getting into my streaming. Since Spark upped the cap to 120GB I have had data to spare at the end of the month. I watch up to around 2 hours of streaming most days - that's equal to 3 x 40 minute commercial free episodes.

 

The voice calls are clear, and I noticed that the lag/echo I previously experienced on toll calls to Canada made over copper have completely disappeared. The phone works in exactly the same way as it did when I was on copper, using my 5 or 6 year old Uniden DECT handset.

 

As for worrying about power cuts, I have not experienced any, and I am not really worried if I do - that's what my mobile is for. And in any case my cordless phone wouldn't work either. Or my computer.

 

I find this product so good that even though fibre is now available at my address, I really can't be bothered going through the rigmarole of getting it installed, and I'm happy to stick with the wireless product.

 

 





The views expressed by me are not necessarily those of my employer Chorus NZ Ltd


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  Reply # 1663212 3-Nov-2016 11:20
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Thanks for your reply. 

 

I hope it works as well in the country as it does in urban areas.

 

One area of interest - Spark told my folks that they would not have to pay the Wiring Maintenance fee because, of course, they would now be on 4G. Does this mean that if our whole area decides to switch to wireless that then nobody will be having to pay the maintenance fee and that therefore the copper wiring will not be maintained at all and will be left to completely deteriorate? 

 

Is the ultimate aim of Spark, in phoning around and talking people into switching, to decommission the copper altogether in those rural areas? 


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