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New Speakout Data Plan
October 11, 2013
8:20 am
NavyNarwhal
Manitoba
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Anyone know the speed of the new data plan? Also does iMessage work on it? What about the phone number activation?

rhoans said:

By the way, should we upgrade to IOS 7? We are still on IOS 6 and have lots of stories that their batteries didn't last long since they upgrade to IOS 7. Once again thanks.


You should. One especially useful feature of iOS 7 is the ability to turn off data for certain apps. Eventually new apps are going to require iOS 7 so you might as well make the move now.

October 11, 2013
6:36 pm
abbamovers
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Actually redjersey, the speed now as I type this is 30 kb/s down from the previous speed of 231 to 240 kb/s.
It seems the powers that be want us gone.
Although I am used to these speeds from the dialup days so I can work with this.
If it dips to 4-6 kb/s I gotta leave.

October 12, 2013
12:03 am
dennismiller
BC
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I'm getting 3.25Mbps down and .36Mbps up
Not bad!! -

October 12, 2013
9:07 pm
hothersall
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For what its worth, I just moved to Thunder Bay, ONT, and the data rate here seems to have increased from BC.

I just tried a speedtest.net and am getting 7.21 Down, 2.18 Up. Skype works fine.

I do need to get lots of calls though for my new job, so just signed up to a Bell plan. It is $45/month (+tax) all in for unlimited calls/texts/6Gb.

My monthly usage was in the region of 125-190MB, inclusive of usage of skype calls, so 100MB would not have worked for me.

Been great whilst it lasted!

I will use the remaining credit as an emergency phone in the car now.

October 13, 2013
5:51 pm
LimestoneBob
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100MB is to low for a smart phone. Android phone is using several MB a day just in background data requests. I just recently activated but suspect the 100MB will be used up in 2 weeks just by leaving phone turned on.

The cost for use is excessive. Compare to a residential dsl line at $30 for 25GB and fair to say this feature is gouging customers.

Not worth the cost.

October 15, 2013
3:00 am
wmccrack
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I still haven't seen any definitive responses about the speed of the new data plan.

abbamovers said:

Actually redjersey, the speed now as I type this is 30 kb/s down from the previous speed of 231 to 240 kb/s.
It seems the powers that be want us gone.
Although I am used to these speeds from the dialup days so I can work with this.
If it dips to 4-6 kb/s I gotta leave.


abbamovers seems to be mixing up terms 240 kb/s (kilo bits per second) is the same as 30 kB/s (kilo bytes per second). This is the speed that I currently get on UMB. Not sure what it was before the changes but this is very slow. Definitely not 3G/HSPA+ speed as it should be.

hothersall said:

For what its worth, I just moved to Thunder Bay, ONT, and the data rate here seems to have increased from BC.
I just tried a speedtest.net and am getting 7.21 Down, 2.18 Up. Skype works fine.
I do need to get lots of calls though for my new job, so just signed up to a Bell plan. It is $45/month (+tax) all in for unlimited calls/texts/6Gb.
My monthly usage was in the region of 125-190MB, inclusive of usage of skype calls, so 100MB would not have worked for me.
Been great whilst it lasted!
I will use the remaining credit as an emergency phone in the car now.


So is hothersall talking about the UMB plan, the new data plan, the Bell plan he switched to?

In addition dennismiller says he is getting 0.36 Mb/s up and says "not bad". That up speed IS bad and disagrees with numbers from others.

For the record I am getting a ping of 140 ms (i.e. pretty slow), 240 kb/s (kilo-bits) download (VERY slow) and 11.5 Mb/s (Mega-bits!!) upload until the upload test freezes after about a second. It appears that the speed of the upload is high but is capped at a size that is too small for the test to complete.

So what are the comparable numbers on the new data plan??

So . . . Could someone that has subscribed to the new plan please run speedtest and post the speed, and be clear what plan they are referring to.

Thanks

October 15, 2013
10:51 am
netyang
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maybe use Virgin Mobile

October 15, 2013
11:16 am
netyang
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does anyone know the new data is LTE? thanks

October 16, 2013
9:35 am
saxytim
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Don't know. I switched to Bell iPad (flex) plan @$20 for 1GB and it has LTE. I can make voice calls with this plan but at 50 cents/min. It does not matter because I don't use it to call (I use Fongo).My total monthly spend with Speakout has been about $20 per month.The Bell iPad plan will keep my total monthly spend within the same ballpark as before. One advantage over Speakout is that I can now enjoy the full functionality of my iPhone 5 with real data, including notification and LTE. No more autoproxy/vpn.

October 16, 2013
11:02 am
NavyNarwhal
Manitoba
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wmccrack said:

So . . . Could someone that has subscribed to the new plan please run speedtest and post the speed, and be clear what plan they are referring to.


Here are my results (Speakout Data):

SpeedtestImage Enlarger

Note that I live in rural Manitoba so don't expect the best results.

As far as I know, the new data plan does not support LTE.

October 18, 2013
12:51 am
Greg S.
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Hi all,
I would like to add my take to this thread and welcome any tips to optimize the following equation: Speakout + data + iphone.
This thread seems to be generally negative – mostly referring to the $10 100MB data option (which IS expensive). However, I think buying one of the data+calls+text Value Plans is currently a good option for regular but moderate use compared to all other mobile data provider options.

I just bought the $40 500mb + 200 voice minutes 30 day plan for my iphone 4 (locked to Rogers). Of course I'm using a cut Speakout sim card.
I've been happy with the value 711Speakout provides for the past couple of years, although have not used any data plan until 10 days ago when I bought a 30 day Data Value Plan. The data works well without installing any network profiles as described on this site on another thread. I simply bought the Value Plan, enabled cellular data and 3G on my iphone4, and I was online.

Likes:
-Pages load with reasonable speed. It's not fast but it's totally useful and not super-slow. (I can't compare to the previous data service)
-After 10 days of use my data consumption pace is well within the 500mb monthly data allowance.
-Data usage is extremely manageable by using the 711 webpage that has a new data "live usage" graph but even easier is dialling the free number from my phone (*777*4#) which instantly gives me my data usage. Also the Speakout usage sum is conservative (78% of) the iphone data usage number on my phone.
Dislikes:
-For $40 it's not super fast and unlimited
-I don't view any video (but I definitely could view some and stay within my 500mb monthly allowance)
-Signal very weak in my basement suite with iphone data+3G switched On compared to 3 bars with data off. (Max signal outdoors)

The other 2 big Likes I have which must be accounted for are:
-I've always found the network and customer service to be A+
-Anyone has to factor that any Speakout Plan or cost is discounted 20% if you buy the $100 top-ups every time the Bonus $25 top-up is offered – usually a couple times for months each year.

I've been tempted to go to Wind but I know the network is not as reliable from a couple friends with that service. Although the Wind negative internet reviews are overblown, I live in a basement suite and my signal is better than my friends' Telus, and Fido signal penetration (which is strange b/c doesn't Fido=Rogers=Speakout network?). I have not had the opportunity to test this factor with Wind.
Fongo sounds supreme with 1gb data, however the itunes app page has only two reviews saying it was previously great but now is terrible. More Fongo user posts would be awesome, thanks.

Well this is a long post! I hope it adds value and perspective to the thread. I may edit later.

Thanks to all contributors.

October 18, 2013
5:41 am
RedRiverSolar
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Where on the web site can I find the live usage graph?

Greg S. said:

Hi all,
-After 10 days of use my data consumption pace is well within the 500mb monthly data allowance.
-Data usage is extremely manageable by using the 711 webpage that has a new data "live usage" graph


October 18, 2013
12:57 pm
WetCoastGuy
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saxytim said:

Don't know. I switched to Bell iPad (flex) plan @$20 for 1GB ….


Great idea. Telus also have similar option for tablets up to 100 MB/ $10, up to 1 Gig/$20. Bonus for Telus is that you have Voice option with the plan, but at $1/min. The fine print says: "If a SIM card is installed on a voice device, local or long distance voice minutes to Canada and the US (except Hawaii and Alaska) are charged at $1/minute" so not violating anything if actually used in a smartphone.

See Telus tablet plans here

So, I would use Fongo normally for text and voice and as backup I can use the regular phone if I need real Voice, albeit at a steep price.

Just be really careful that the correct APN is used isp.telus.com (tablets) and not sp.telus.com (smartphone) which is pay per use otherwise you will get a big surprise on your next bill. You can probably get it reduce the first time for using the wrong APN but always check whenever updating the phone.

October 18, 2013
9:09 pm
Laridae
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Greg S. said:

Well this is a long post! I hope it adds value and perspective to the thread. I may edit later.

Thanks to all contributors.


Thanks for that thorough and thoughtful post. It's worthwhile reading about your experiences and thinking on this subject.
For myself, I'm still thinking about the data plan. The $10 price point for a small amount of data is certainly tempting, and a lot more convenient to use than the former "unlimited browsing" plan. But with wifi availability so widespread now I have to ask myself how often I would actually use it. I'll think about it, but it's interesting to know that it's available if I decide I need it.

P.S. I don't think you need to cut your sim card anymore. SpeakOut will sell you a micro sim card now.

October 19, 2013
7:34 am
billdehaan
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Greg S. said:

I live in a basement suite and my signal is better than my friends' Telus, and Fido signal penetration (which is strange b/c doesn't Fido=Rogers=Speakout network?).


Signal penetration is only half of the equation, and it's not always constant. The handset radio is also a factor. Since changing from an LG Optimus One to a Nokia Lumia 520, I've seen a noticable improvement in coverage. I don't mean getting 3 bars rather than 1, I mean, getting service now where I use to not get service.

As an experiment, I took the SO sim from my leave-in-car-emergency phone and put it in the Optimus, and carried both it and the Lumia for a couple of days. Whenever I noticed the Optimus said there was no signal, I'd call *777# using both phones. Sure enough, the LG couldn't get an SO signal where the Lumia was fine.

The other factor is which band the phone is using. SO is only using two bands, Fido and Rogers user four. Unfortunately, many phones, if they locate a tower with one of the higher bands, will lock in on it, even if the signal strength isn't enough to maintain a lock, and ignore the lower signal.

I had that problem a few years back with SO. I got a used Nokia 5800 (a Rogers handset), and discovered it had worse reception than the 5130 feature phone. At both my home and desk at work, there was no signal. When I figured out what was happening, I went into the settings of the 5800 and set the phone to use GSM only, and the problem was solved.

It's possible that your basement may be GSM-friendly, so SO handsets are fine, but not well covered by the other frequencies, so the Telus and Fido handsets don't get a signal.

If you want to see if the problem is the phones or the service, the next time you have one of your friends over, try (a) swapping sim cards between phones, assuming they are both the same size, and (b) have your friends set their phones to use GSM only.

October 19, 2013
7:49 pm
Greg S.
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Re: last 3 posts-

RedRiverSolar –
The usage graph is on your Speakout account page, bottom left corner after you register & Login here: https://www.speakout7eleven.ca/my-account

WetCoastGuy -
I was very keen on Fongo just from the posts I've read here, but I don't know anyone who currently uses it and my limited web research gave me no confidence in trying it out. And although a $20 monthly bill sounds great, I do not want to be vulnerable to those big company hyper-exorbitant overage fees. I'd certainly like to hear any info about using the current Fongo and user total monthly costs.

Laridae -
The per mb cost is high with the $10 add-on. The $40 Value Plan lowers that cost and gives me the right balance of moderate use talk, data and unlimited text. I've said that $40 (minus the $'s saved with on-sale $100 top-ups) doesn't seem like an "affordable" phone plan, but I have not experienced more mobility for my money. This plan doesn't give me total mobile endless-blabbing freedom, but it gives me what I need and I'm not paying like +$65 what Rogers wants where I need part of their plan, but not , (for example), 1000 talk minutes.
And the biggest saving is not having the claws of any of the big phone companies grabbing you at every opportunity and making it hell to even try to escape them. All the big companies are absolutely a nightmare when trying to cut them loose. With Speakout, every month I can tweak my usage limits, or stop my plan for a few days, weeks if going on holiday… I really like that freedom. (Anyone ever notice with the big companies, the monotonous bills keep coming and coming and somehow the cost will keep creeping up – EVIL!)
Data usage update: after 11 days of moderate, (not heavy/not light), web browsing (and even some Pokerstars games!) my Speakout acct. page counts 89mb used which is nice that it's a conservative score compared to my iphone counter of like 125mb.

billdehaan – Good reception observations and testing. I do know a couple ppl with Wind and will test their phones in my apt. at the next opportunity. If the signal is sufficient I would strongly consider Wind, but I'd have to make a move from iphone to Android – that would require data back-up and device switching, and that is an awful deterrent for me (the data part)!

Thanks for all your replies! – more research comments welcomed.

October 23, 2013
7:13 pm
RedRiverSolar
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I am assuming this is only for Value Plan as I don't see the graph when I log in? I have only the $10 data plan turned on and nothing else.

Greg S. said:

The usage graph is on your Speakout account page, bottom left corner after you register & Login here: https://www.speakout7eleven.ca/my-account


October 24, 2013
5:38 am
wmccrack
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Heads up !!!

Just to let people know (maybe everyone but me already does??).

Don't run Speedtest on your data service to see what speed you are getting. I did that immediately after I switched from UMB to the new Data service. After the test I checked my data useage and was surprised that the test had used 25 MB of my 100 MB monthly allowance!! 1/4 of my monthly data in the first couple of minutes!!! Pretty obvious in retrospect I guess but I was surprised at the amount of data used.

FYI: I have good cell reception in my area and got a ping of about 40 ms, Upload speed of 10 Mb/s and Download of 1 Mb/s on the Speadtest app. Pretty god actually I think for HSPA+. So happy with the service so far.

October 24, 2013
10:20 am
Pete7383
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wmccrack, Thanks for the warning! I was thinking of running it...

October 24, 2013
1:02 pm
netyang
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thank you for your information. But it really depends on your speed. I did a test, if used0.99MB.
wmccrack said:

Heads up !!!

Just to let people know (maybe everyone but me already does??).

Don't run Speedtest on your data service to see what speed you are getting. I did that immediately after I switched from UMB to the new Data service. After the test I checked my data useage and was surprised that the test had used 25 MB of my 100 MB monthly allowance!! 1/4 of my monthly data in the first couple of minutes!!! Pretty obvious in retrospect I guess but I was surprised at the amount of data used.

FYI: I have good cell reception in my area and got a ping of about 40 ms, Upload speed of 10 Mb/s and Download of 1 Mb/s on the Speadtest app. Pretty god actually I think for HSPA+. So happy with the service so far.