I was a happy user of a Mobitel HSDP+ connection on a Huawei E5331 until I bought the Note 4. Because Note 4 comes with a 4G connection, and suddenly my phone has faster internet than my home WiFi. After a week of using the phone I was on the market for a new mobile 4G router.
My choice of router was Prolink PRT7005L. I did not have to change my Mobitel 2490 connection, because it was 4G enabled by default. But I had to get a new SIM card that support 4G. This is what I think about it after using it for couple of months.
First of all speed. I am getting 28Mbps download and 10Mbps upload speeds consistently. 4G suppose to be lot faster. I tested with Mobitel and Dialog connections, using both the router and the phone, at Home as well as at my work place, and this is as fast as it got. May be its a limit set by ISPs. Ping delay was well bellow 100ms most of the time.
Even though this is not the best that 4G can do, this is good enough for most of the things I need to do. Downloads and HD streaming runs pretty fast with no lagging. When I connect to office network from home it feel almost as I am directly connected to office WiFi. Well, except the air conditioning. With HSDPA+, working from home was a pain and I tried to avoid it as much as I can, that’s not the case with 4G.
WiFi speeds of PRT7005L is 150Mbps. Which is twice as fast as Huawei E5331. WiFi range is almost same. There isn’t much of a difference in web-based interface when it comes to what you can change.
One issues you would experience with drastically changing your internet speed is change of habits. I now find myself using data lot more than I used to and running through my monthly data allowance within the first week of the month.
Here comes what I did not like. Compared to E5331 this device feels bit cheap to the hand. Also the LED indicators look bit cheap. When this device cost almost three times that of E5331, I expect it to have better user experience too. I also wish the seller had better customer support. Because my unit started giving a problem in the web interface.
Basically web-based admin page started crashing. As a result, I can’t check usage info delivered by Mobitel through SMS messages. And changing configuration is a pain when the admin interface keep crashing every 30 seconds. You have to restart the device to recover it. This started happening after few days of using. But this does not affect the WiFi network or the internet access, it only affect admin interface.
Now the problem is, to get this unit replaced, I have to take the device to the service center of the seller somewhere in Papiliyana, instead of where I purchased in Rajagiriya. Ideally for such a small consumer device you should be able to get replacements from same place you buy it. Specially if it start giving issues within days of buying. Internet and WiFi is working and you don’t change your configuration everyday. So I haven’t replaced the device, simply because its annoying to having to go to another place.
This is something consumer electronic device sellers should think of. We should not have to go out of our way to get support for stuff that we paid for. It’s their job to give support. WiFi routers, specially Mobile WiFi routers are consumer devices and therefore support must be handled accordingly.