PAYG Mobile Broadband O2 or T Mobile?

Discussion in 'Broadband' started by Nigel, Jul 15, 2009.

  1. Nigel

    Nigel Guest


    I seek the help and advice of the newsgroup (not sure if I should post this
    to uk.telecom.broadband or as my query relates to mobile
    broadband, so have posted to both!)

    I'm looking to get a PAYG mobile broadband service for use on the occasional
    week-ends away from home. Both O2 and T Mobile offer similarly priced PAYG
    services (£2/day £7/week £15/month).

    Is one preferable to the other? I guess it will come down to reliability
    and coverage - but as I'll be using this for away from home on impromptu
    trips I can't really say which parts of the country I'll be using it most,
    though its likely to be the Yorks/Lancs/Lakes area with the occasional foray
    to London.

    Any help much appreciated.

    Nigel, Jul 15, 2009
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  2. Nigel

    ChrisW Guest

    I use the Vodafone service which initially cost £39 for the USB dongle
    and first Gb which costs £15 a time. My reason being that like you, I
    wasn't sure where or when I would need it. Provided you login at
    least every 90 days the balance never expires. I have used it for the
    last couple of months when touring in my motorhome. Usually I can
    only get 2G (in Scotland) with the occasional 3G when I stop in
    supermarket car parks in places like Glasgow. For using webmail to
    check email and for the occasional weather forecast and
    information/news check it has worked very well on my Sony laptop.
    After 2 months my balance was still showing over £10.
    ChrisW, Jul 15, 2009
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  3. Nigel

    RCC Guest

    Do you mean "broadband" on the phone or on a laptop?

    If its the latter, a good solution for me was the Vodafone PAYG dongle -
    cost £39 with £15 worth of usage included. Its £15 per gig, so
    expensive if you want to download big files. I use it occasionally when
    away and sometimes at home if ADSL goes down for a while as it tends to
    round here far from the exchange. It costs between 10p and 20p to check
    my e-mails, get the attachments (I use big excel spreadsheets for work)
    and look at the odd web page like train times or BBC news. A bargain.
    Fast enough on 3G and 'tunes itself down' to GPRS if it can't find 3G:
    bit slow but for what I use fine.

    One big advantage is that your credit never expires, as long as you use
    the thing once every 180 days. The software comes on the stick so you
    can use it on any or all of your laptops, and Voda coverage is pretty

    Oh - you can send SMS using the laptop keyboard at standard SMS rates
    too, and the stick has a micro SD slot so you can use it as a flash

    By default it comes with content blocking: go into a Voda shop with some
    over 18 photo ID to get it switched off. Its not that I want to look at
    porn, but the blocking is so random it will sometimes cut off entirely
    legitimate sites. That was the only annoyance really.

    If its on a phone, Voda charge 50p a day for data usage now up to (I
    think) 15Mb.
    RCC, Jul 15, 2009
  4. Have you thought about Three? Their payg offers 150meg of internet free
    everytime you top up, or you can get 30 days fair use unlimited for £10 (not
    sure about their daily rates)
    John Blessing, Jul 15, 2009
  5. Nigel

    Steve Terry Guest

    Or Three Internet for 50p per day, £2.50 per week, £5 per month,
    2gb d/l fair use.

    Add them when the first 150mb is used up on 3pay

    Steve Terry
    Steve Terry, Jul 15, 2009
  6. Nigel

    Nigel Guest

    Thanks for the suggestions so far - I'm now even more confused with
    suggestions for Three and Vodafone being thrown into the hat!

    It's unlikely that I'll be using the connection for more than a day or two a
    month - similar to ChrisW I'll be using the laptop when away for week-ends
    in the motorhome (the Camping Club seem to charge outrageous amounts to
    connect to their wifi for a day!).

    What steers me towards O2 and T Mobile is that the daily usage is generous
    (subject to fair use) so I wound be having to 'watch the clock' so to speak.

    I'm now even more confused.

    Nigel, Jul 15, 2009
  7. Nigel

    R Johnson Guest

    This may be interesting if you want a 'cheap' 3 dongle;
    R Johnson, Jul 16, 2009
  8. Nigel

    Steve Terry Guest

    Obviously go for 2 or 3 different network PAYG 3g sims, to improve your
    chances of getting coverage.

    I would go for in order of preference:
    Three (3pay sim and tariff)
    T Mobile

    Steve Terry
    Steve Terry, Jul 16, 2009
  9. Nigel

    Grumps Guest

    No, I'm not hijacking this thread, but I'm now looking for a SIM only PAYG
    mobile broadband with no expiry after 30 days (too much to ask?).
    I've been to the web sites of 3, O2, T-mobile and Vodaphone. To be honest, I
    can't find didly that fits my requirements.
    But I am now getting confused! The 3 site says
    So, 1GB (that is bytes, yes?) allows you to send 1000 emails. Is that for
    Download 32 music tracks. This is where it starts to seem that 1GB is 1G
    Can anyone jumpstart my brain and tell me what am I missing?
    Grumps, Jul 17, 2009
  10. Nigel

    IanM Guest

    says it doesn't run out after 30 days

    I agree with you about the 3 site data - those figures are way out if it
    is 1GigaByte. They do sat 1GB and elsewhere 3.6Mbps, implying they
    mean't bytes.
    IanM, Jul 17, 2009
  11. Nigel

    Grumps Guest

    Thanks for the link. Ideally I'm looking for a SIM only. Do these USB
    dongles/modems have a SIM inside?
    I had an online chat with a 3 rep. It is indeed 1Gbyte. He was unable to say
    why a music track (by their numbers) was 32Mbytes, and an email 1Mbyte. He
    said that "it was variable"!
    He also asked which post code I would be using it in. I thought this a
    strange question for mobile use.
    Grumps, Jul 17, 2009
  12. Nigel

    alexd Guest

    Perhaps performance of their broadband varies by location, and knowing your
    postcode would help them tell you what kind of performance to expect.
    alexd, Jul 17, 2009
  13. Nigel

    Steve Terry Guest

    Three 3pay 5quid p.m. internet, has a fair useage of 2gb.

    Plus 150mb free for 3 months after topping up a tenner.
    So use that up, then add on 50p daily, £2.50 weekly, £5 monthly

    Steve Terry
    Steve Terry, Jul 18, 2009
  14. Nigel

    Grumps Guest

    Thanks. Do you have a link for this offer?
    Grumps, Jul 18, 2009
  15. Nigel

    Grumps Guest

    Ah, I see. Found it. It's not in the mobile broadband section. Looks good to
    Grumps, Jul 18, 2009
  16. Nigel

    Grumps Guest

    Unfortunately you are out of date Steve.

    '3' smuggled in a halving of the data allowance quite some time ago.
    It is now only 1gb. You will see this ( wrongly written as 1GB )

    Does that also mean that the 150mb for £5 is mega-bits, not mega-bytes?
    Grumps, Jul 18, 2009
  17. Nigel

    Bob Eager Guest

    Are you saying it's gigabits, not gigabytes?

    Even if you are, it should be a capital G, not a small one as you have
    Bob Eager, Jul 18, 2009
  18. Nigel

    rousseau Guest

    Grumps wrote:
    150 mb is 150 millibits :)

    rousseau, Jul 18, 2009
  19. Nigel

    Grumps Guest

    They suggest 4 minutes.
    Come on, the average email is not 1Mbyte!
    Point is, that being mobile internet you can't say what postcode you'll be
    using it at. Only you home address and some regular places.
    Grumps, Jul 18, 2009
  20. Nigel

    Steve Terry Guest

    Speed should be the same as 3 BB, difference is some ports are blocked,
    and 3mail SMTP on port 25 is charged for, so I use Googlemail on it's SSL
    SMTP port of 465 for free.

    You'll need a 3pay Sim, not the 3BB PAYG sim provided with the dongle

    I would now recommend buying a Three Skype S2 for 39.99, as it'll have
    the 3pay Sim and planet3 wap to add the internet add ons.

    Also you can use the phone with it's free 3to3 300text and Skype for
    3 months after each 10quid top up you'll allocate for 2 months of internet

    The S2 has a HSDPA modem in it, just connect a USB lead to the PC

    Steve Terry
    Steve Terry, Jul 19, 2009
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