Trying to get my head around Pay As You Go Mobile Broadband

Discussion in 'Broadband' started by MB, Aug 25, 2008.

  1. MB

    MB Guest

    I am trying to get my head around Pay As You Go Mobile Broadband.

    I want something that I use occasionally on trips away from home but I
    don't want charges if not using it for several months.

    I thought that 3's Pay As You Go service would meet my requirements then
    noticed that you could still be charged high charges if you exceeded your
    1GB bandwidth. Do they need your credit card details when purchasing
    top-ups and converting to "add-ons" (I think that is their terminology).

    I don't understand why mobile bandwidth providers have this excessive
    charge if you exceed your bandwidth allocation, why can't they just cut you
    off until you top up? Would Pay As You Go mobile phones have sold in such
    large numbers if they started charging £10 a minute for a call if you used
    up your £10 top-up?

    I refuse to give a company what is effectively an open cheque so might just
    end up not buying a mobile broadband service.


    MB
     
    MB, Aug 25, 2008
    #1
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  2. MB

    MB Guest


    Thanks

    I would have thought that it would only charge you £1/MB is you have used
    up your 1GB (or whatever), so cannot understand how they can charge you
    once it is used up.

    Presumably you could buy another 1GB in a couple of month's time, activate
    it and start again on that 1GB until you use it up or the 30 days runs out.


    This on the 3 website under Pay As You Go is what confused me

    Step 3: Convert your Top-up to an Add-on at My3.

    IMPORTANT: You don’t need to log in to activate your Top-up voucher. But
    you must convert your Top-up to an Add-on, otherwise you'll be charged £1
    per MB.



    Similarly the My3 site has

    Mobile Broadband customers - You must convert your Top-up to an Add-on
    otherwise you'll be charged £1 per MB





    The TinyURL you quoted was wrong?

    MB
     
    MB, Aug 25, 2008
    #2
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  3. MB

    Charani Guest

    I'm considering 3's mobile broadband as well for the same reasons as
    MB, however, I find your paragraph above a little confusing.

    Mobile broadband is a new area for me, so I'm not au fait with it yet.
     
    Charani, Aug 26, 2008
    #3
  4. MB

    Stephen Guest

    t-mobile's mobile broadband service is £4/day!!!
     
    Stephen, Aug 26, 2008
    #4
  5. I have a 3 SIM which usually has 0 pounds on it. Between me topping up a
    tenner and buying the mobile broadband addon it has 10 pounds cash balance.
    Once I've bought the addon 'Check my balance' on the 3 WAP site shows me how
    many MB I have left as well as my cash balance of 0 pounds. Once I run out
    of MB or after a month the data connection stops working outside 3's WAP
    site. No doubt if I had a non-zero cash balance at this point I'd be
    charged a pound a megabyte until it was exhausted.

    It's just the same as if you bought a 200 texts bundle on PAYG - after the
    texts were exhausted or expired you're just back to normal PAYG. The whole
    point of PAYG is that you can't go into debt. Otherwise they'd need credit
    checks on all their users or anyone could easily get free service.

    Theo
     
    Theo Markettos, Aug 26, 2008
    #5
  6. MB

    Charani Guest

    Many thanks :)) Your explanation makes it perfectly clear now :))
     
    Charani, Aug 26, 2008
    #6
  7. MB

    MB Guest


    Is that another way of saying that if you have a £2 / 200MB (for round
    figures extrapolated from the £10 for 1GB) left at the end of the 30 days
    then you will be able to connect to 3 to activate the top-up / add-on and
    it will cost a £1 a 1MB to do so?

    That is no problem because I would have considered the £2 / 200MB lost
    anyway though it is pity they do not have a method of free activation to
    people without a 3 mobile phone.

    I would expect to put £10 or perhaps £15 credit on the mobile broadband
    dongle before going away for a trip, using my connection at home.

    MB



    (I hate companies that give themselves stupid names! I used to have lots
    of problems at work talking about "thus" who we used for some circuits)
     
    MB, Aug 26, 2008
    #7
  8. No, browsing within Three's mobile site is free. On my phone I can go to
    mobile.three.co.uk -> My3 -> Buy Add-ons -> Mobile Broadband ->
    Broadband Lite 1GB
    to buy the topup, with exactly 10.00 balance on the account. If it cost to
    get to this page I wouldn't then be able to buy the topup because my balance
    would be less than a tenner.

    If you have data left at the end of the month it disappears - doesn't roll
    over (AFAIK).
    I think you can do this with the USB dongle too - presumably you can go to
    the same sites? I think you can also do it with Three's web site on another
    machine, but you need registration-usernames-passwords-etc.
    One thing to note is that registering a card for topups takes 7 days, so
    don't decide you want to topup with a new card in the middle of a field
    (BTDTGTTS).
    Yup, I always call them Three since it makes it a bit easier to Google.
    When I bought a topup in a shop it registered as 'Hutchison 3G Ltd' which is
    a more sensible name. Calling it '3G' as the shop assistant did is even more
    confusing!

    Theo
     
    Theo Markettos, Aug 26, 2008
    #8
  9. MB

    MB Guest


    That's interesting to know, is that every time that you do a top-up or just
    first time?

    Better get it organised now for my trip away.

    MB
     
    MB, Aug 27, 2008
    #9
  10. MB

    Roger Mills Guest

    In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
    Maplin are doing a '3' USB dongle for 50 quid -
    http://www.maplin.co.uk/Module.aspx?ModuleNo=225907&C=Newsletter&U=08P09-5&T=-11755906 -
    is that the sort of thing that this thread is discussing?

    The blurb says:
    "Getting online with Pay As You Go Mobile Broadband is easy.
    Just buy a Top-up, convert it to the Add-on of your choice, and you can surf
    the net almost anywhere.
    1GB ( 10) enables you to:
    - Send 650 plain text emails
    - Surf the web for 30 hours
    - Download 30 two minute videos
    - Download 60 music tracks"

    I presume that ( 10) means ten quid - though there's no pound sign shown on
    my browser?

    I also assume that your £10 enables you to do any *one* of the bulleted
    items - or a mixture of parts of each - rather than *all* of them.

    How is browsing charged for? 30 hours is only an hour per day for a month -
    is it *actually* timed or does it depend on what you download, such that you
    would *typically* use all of your 1GB in 30 hours?

    It seems to me that something like that may be useful when I'm away in my
    caravan - although only being valid for 30 days is a limitation since I'm
    likely to have several short breaks of a week or less, spanning several
    months in total - so I would presumably have to buy a new £10 top-up for
    *each* break? Since mobile reception isn't very good in a caravan (being a
    bit like a Faraday cage), is there any reason why I couldn't use a USB
    extension cable for the dongle, and dangle it out of the window?
    --
    Cheers,
    Roger
    ______
    Email address maintained for newsgroup use only, and not regularly
    monitored.. Messages sent to it may not be read for several weeks.
    PLEASE REPLY TO NEWSGROUP!
     
    Roger Mills, Aug 27, 2008
    #10
  11. MB

    MB Guest



    I think they are just trying to give an indication of what 1GB means in
    usage though it seems an odd way of doing it - plain text EMails take up
    very little bandwidth so you could send many more than that.

    The attraction of 3 is that there is no need for regular top-ups so handy
    if only needed a few times a year.

    I can't see why you cannot extend the dongle within the limits of USB
    (which I can't remember).

    MB
     
    MB, Aug 27, 2008
    #11
  12. The first time only. You can still buy topups in shops while you're
    waiting.
    Those kind of lists are so vague as to be useless. Get some download
    monitor software for your computer and you can see how much you use in the
    average session. For me about a week's frequent usage in a quite slow 3G
    area used about 250MB.
    It's all by what you download and what you upload. The list of 'X emails
    and Y movies' is merely an example. You can use it constantly for a month
    if you like, as long as you don't exceed your allotted byte count.
    Three Ireland have a mobile broadband deal available in weekly chunks. I
    think there's free roaming in the UK (so costs are the same as at home). If
    you can get hold of an Irish SIM and set it up then that might work. Don't
    use it for calls though, as you'll be charged as if you were making
    international calls from Ireland.
    No problem, or have a Bluetooth phone and stick it on the roof. I'd try the
    reception before committing lots of money as it can be patchy. Here's the
    way I tried it for 99p (assuming you have or can borrow an unlocked 3G
    phone):

    Ordered a free Tesco SIM with a pound of credit on it (any network will do
    here, but Tesco/O2's best - see why later)
    Made a few calls
    Ordered a 99p Three SIM from eBay.
    Phoned Tesco and asked for a PAC
    Phoned Three and asked to port in the Tesco number
    Three give you 10 pounds of credit for porting in
    Bought a Mobile Broadband addon with the 10 pounds credit, and tried it for
    a month.

    Having a Tesco or O2 number on the Three phone makes the Three phone much
    cheaper to call from landlines.

    Theo
     
    Theo Markettos, Aug 27, 2008
    #12
  13. MB

    Roger Mills Guest

    In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
    In that case, 1GB is ample. I only use between 1 and 2 GBs per month at
    home, with 2 PCs permanently connected.
    All very ingenious! But presumably, if I buy a '3' dongle, that does it all
    without needing a physical phone? Does a dongle contain a removeable SIM
    card, or is everything hard-wired?
    --
    Cheers,
    Roger
    ______
    Email address maintained for newsgroup use only, and not regularly
    monitored.. Messages sent to it may not be read for several weeks.
    PLEASE REPLY TO NEWSGROUP!
     
    Roger Mills, Aug 27, 2008
    #13
  14. MB

    Roger Mills Guest

    In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
    Yes, but AIUI, I'd still have to buy a new top-up for each occasion if more
    than a month had elapsed - even though I wouldn't have used up all my 1GB of
    bandwidth?
    I think it's 5 metres - which is more than adequate.
    --
    Cheers,
    Roger
    ______
    Email address maintained for newsgroup use only, and not regularly
    monitored.. Messages sent to it may not be read for several weeks.
    PLEASE REPLY TO NEWSGROUP!
     
    Roger Mills, Aug 27, 2008
    #14
  15. MB

    Roger Mills Guest

    In an earlier contribution to this discussion,
    Very valid point! The Maplin blurb claims 91% *population* coverage - but I
    realise that that doesn't mean 91% *area* coverage. Is there any way of
    finding out where coverage is *actually* available, in order to see whether
    my usual caravan destinations are covered? When in a mobile-BB non-coverage
    area do you get nothing at all when using the dongle, or does it still
    work - albeit at a much lower speed?
    --
    Cheers,
    Roger
    ______
    Email address maintained for newsgroup use only, and not regularly
    monitored.. Messages sent to it may not be read for several weeks.
    PLEASE REPLY TO NEWSGROUP!
     
    Roger Mills, Aug 27, 2008
    #15
  16. MB

    DieSea Guest

    Does a dongle contain a removeable SIM
    Yes a removable sim card

    Watch how you top it up though

    wrong way costs a fortune

    DieSea
     
    DieSea, Aug 27, 2008
    #16
  17. MB

    MB Guest


    3 have a coverage checker on their website.

    MB
     
    MB, Aug 27, 2008
    #17
  18. MB

    DieSea Guest

    Geoff go to this URL

    https://my3.three.co.uk/myaccount/outofBundleCharge.done

    after filling in your various Numbers

    go to choose add on

    then chose your monthly data

    job done


    I bought my dongle from 3 g in the Trafford Centre ,

    where they were less than helpful , it cost me £99.99

    A couple of weeks later it dropped to under £50.00 guess who was peeved

    I've used it a couple of times with a month or so in between

    Your data lasts a month

    If you don't use it all you loose what's left

    DieSea
     
    DieSea, Aug 27, 2008
    #18
  19. MB

    DieSea Guest

    That URL is a bit slow with me at the moment

    I wonder why ?? !!

    DieSea
     
    DieSea, Aug 27, 2008
    #19
  20. MB

    [Lnz] Guest

    Do you mind explaining this a moment?

    Does it mean that the number appears to be a Tesco/O2 number and
    therefore will attract whatever in-network advantages there are when
    calling from other Tesco/O2 numbers and conversely, will NOT attract
    in-network rates when called from a Three number?

    This is mind-boggling.

    Lorenz
     
    [Lnz], Aug 27, 2008
    #20
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