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India: Reliable Internet Help Needed

India: Reliable Internet Help Needed

Old Nov 7, 16, 10:55 am
  #1  
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India: Reliable Internet Help Needed

My husband works on the back end of websites. He'll be traveling to India with me for a few months and I promised I'd find a way for him to have a very reliable Internet connection. I've searched here, other forums, and on the net and still don't understand what the best solution for him will be.

Do any of you have experience with getting reliable internet, that allows up/download and isn't slow? There's some type of dongle thing that I read about, but I wasn't sure if that would work right.

We'll be needing it for one full month in Jaipur, then for about two months as we travel through Gujarat and Rajastan. Internet cafes won't work since he has a fairly big computer setup with double monitors...he'd be setting up office for long periods of time in different places where I'm studying art.

Thanks for any/all suggestions and help!!

Love,

Wendi
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Old Nov 7, 16, 11:11 am
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Originally Posted by gypsyardor View Post
My husband works on the back end of websites. He'll be traveling to India with me for a few months and I promised I'd find a way for him to have a very reliable Internet connection. I've searched here, other forums, and on the net and still don't understand what the best solution for him will be.

Do any of you have experience with getting reliable internet, that allows up/download and isn't slow? There's some type of dongle thing that I read about, but I wasn't sure if that would work right.

We'll be needing it for one full month in Jaipur, then for about two months as we travel through Gujarat and Rajastan. Internet cafes won't work since he has a fairly big computer setup with double monitors...he'd be setting up office for long periods of time in different places where I'm studying art.

Thanks for any/all suggestions and help!!

Love,

Wendi
Wendi, While I don't have an answer to your specific question, I can tell you that the time I spent in India, even in hotels, was sketch at best wrt internet. When it was working, it was slow. the rest of the time, it wasn't working. I wish you luck in finding a good answer.
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Old Nov 7, 16, 11:40 am
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Please continue to follow this discussion in the FT India Forum.
Thanks..
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Old Nov 7, 16, 12:54 pm
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Maybe the Airtel 4G Hotspot will work well?

If we buy it in Delhi, will it make a difference if we're mostly using it in Jaipur and then some in Gujarat and a few weeks in Udaipur? I'm wondering if the plan when we buy it is tied to the location of the purchase and using it in other places will be more costly?

Does anyone have experience with the Airtel 4G Hotspot and the plans available?

Thanks!
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Old Nov 7, 16, 1:13 pm
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It's really hard to generalise. You won't know what kind of reception you're going to get in any one location until you're there, regardless of the company.

Keep in mind that prepaid SIMs and datapacks are dirt-cheap in India, by any standard. There's some bureaucracy involved in registering a SIM certainly, but apart from that, and given that this is for your husband's work, I'd suggest you load up on SIMs from every company serving your route. Then use the one that works the best in any particular spot. Buy a minimum datapack on each SIM and then add to it as needed.

(Unless the rules have changed very recently, there's no roaming charge on data. But the plans and the costs of the plans, even from the same company, do differ based on where you buy the SIM.)
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Old Nov 8, 16, 6:54 am
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Originally Posted by gypsyardor View Post
Maybe the Airtel 4G Hotspot will work well?

If we buy it in Delhi, will it make a difference if we're mostly using it in Jaipur and then some in Gujarat and a few weeks in Udaipur? I'm wondering if the plan when we buy it is tied to the location of the purchase and using it in other places will be more costly?

Does anyone have experience with the Airtel 4G Hotspot and the plans available?

Thanks!
i use airtel all over the country & it generally works well....it won't matter where you buy it....
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Old Nov 10, 16, 12:19 am
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Wendi:

I've used Air-Tel pre-paid service quite reliably throughout India over the years with reasonable 3G-4G speeds in the metropolitan areas. If you are US based then I'd recommend that as a hedge you get Google's Project Fi service at $20/month for unlimited voice and text per month within the US and free text in over 100 countries and data at $10 per GB and voice roaming at $0.20 per minute in the above countries. There is a thread here in the "Technology Forum" on member's experiences with Project Fi. I did have a slight hiccup this past month in India but the problem turned out to be a bad SIM which was replaced on my return to the US.

I use my Project Fi as my primary communication service in the US as well as while travelling overseas and tether my laptop to my Google phone when needed. In addition you can get as many free data SIM cards for your account that share in the same data allocation as the primary Project Fi phone. I use the extra data SIMs in my iPad and in a spare unlocked iPhone for browsing and emails if my primary phone is tied up tethered to my laptop. The spare SIM can also be used in an unlocked phone to make VOIP calls such as Skpe so that you and your husband can be in touch with each other using the data service or you can use it to tether a laptop.

In India I use both Air-Tel and Project Fi and the advantage with Project Fi is that if the Air-Tel connection is slow you can try the Project Fi service by selecting their fastest roaming partner.
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Old Nov 10, 16, 7:09 am
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The LTE/3G dongles available in India are pretty good an relatively cheap. The problem is reception. To mitigate that you need a wifi router* you can plug the dongle into and place it at the spot in the room that has the best reception, even better if it has a extension cord so you can position it in the best possible place. I usually get 10+Mbit in a certain corner in our apartment in CCU, but less that 1Mbit in the rest.


* I use the MBRN3000 from Netgear: https://www.netgear.com/support/prod...etgear_organic
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Old Jan 5, 17, 12:31 am
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I am currently using the Airtel 4G hot spot in BLR. It has been working great. I can take it with me when I am moving around the city. I have been able to maintain and work using my corporate VPN access (fairly heavy network usage). I haven't been outside the city limits of BLR, so I can't say how reliable it is outside BLR city limits but I was assured that the coverage would be good for any large city in India.
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Old Jan 10, 17, 8:26 am
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We didn't have any issue with internet in the cities we visited, including Jaipur, but did experience significant areas with poor or no internet service as we traveled through Rajastan - so I guess it depends on where exactly you will be.
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Old Jan 11, 17, 2:07 am
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Exclamation Airtel is ripoff

Originally Posted by gypsyardor View Post
Maybe the Airtel 4G Hotspot will work well?

If we buy it in Delhi, will it make a difference if we're mostly using it in Jaipur and then some in Gujarat and a few weeks in Udaipur? I'm wondering if the plan when we buy it is tied to the location of the purchase and using it in other places will be more costly?

Does anyone have experience with the Airtel 4G Hotspot and the plans available?

Thanks!
I have used Airtel prepaid phone+data and as such service is ok however they rip you off with misleading plans, as well as straight rip off. I had explicit 1GB data pack and they gave me 1GB night time free for some other paid promotion I.e. Richarge any amount get 1GB night time free. First their concept of night time is 12:00 am to 6 am (some promotions 3 am to 6 am). Second ripoff occurred when I had 140MB left on my original plan and I finished my night time data, they immediately start charging (expensive 50 INR for meager 1MB or so) from my voice talk time. When my account shows 140 MB data I don't expect Airtel to dip in to my voice talk time.
And their website sucks in terms of transparency of how much data, money, talk time got used during which all sessions. The customer service request feature further sucks as in it doesn't work. Also doesn't take special characters like simple ' and erasing all your text and making you retype. So it gives an idea about their technological advances of customer support.

Totally avoid Airtel and try Jio (might require adhar card). They are currently under promotions mode (everything is free - 1GB per day free at 4G/LTE Speed, after 1GB they throttle the speed to 128Kbps unless you pay of additional 4G speed). Promotion is until end of march. Also they might have hotspot device. (Only thing is data connection would work on most 4G enabled phones however. Voice phone calls may not work on iPhone 5 since both reliance and apple decided to not support iPhone 5 - guess to make customers buy newer iphones)

There might be others like Vodafone etc. as well that might be same or better than Airtel. (The prepaid market is all confusing, misleading and source of rip off if you don't know the details of each plan)
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Old Jan 11, 17, 6:37 pm
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Just got back from India ... JioFi worked great for me. If you have a local contact, perhaps they can get one for you? It costs approx $30 for the device, data is free (until 3/31).

Last edited by malgudi; Jan 16, 17 at 10:51 pm
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Old Jan 13, 17, 9:54 pm
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Exclamation Avoid Airtel

Originally Posted by gypsyardor View Post
Maybe the Airtel 4G Hotspot will work well?

Does anyone have experience with the Airtel 4G Hotspot and the plans available?

Thanks!
Avoid Airtel, bad experience (misleading promotions, plans and non existent customer service to rectify issues around payment/billing. Service from connectivity point of view might be ok, just the billing issues - kept reducing my talk time balance even though had data pack balance).

Short term JIO might be better due to free data till march end. Hopefully after that they continue with lower rates and good service. Time will tell.
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Old Jan 26, 17, 5:29 pm
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For basic internet connectivity, US based t-mobile works well in metro areas as it picks up the strongest available signal from its local partners and it is FREE.

For high speed internet, Airtel has worked fantastically well in most metro areas. (you may have to find the best spot in the room and hence dongle/ext cord combo is essential). It is lot easier for your local client/friend/relative or hotel staff (with good tip) to arrange for SIM
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Old Jan 26, 17, 8:32 pm
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Currently using the Jio hotspot and its really good.
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