LTE is a Viable Option for Broadband Services

5.20.2015

Frankly, I’m a little taken aback by this story about a Washington state-based homeowner’s fight for broadband service. Not because of the support issues, but rather, the fact that broadband was ompletely out of reach in a country where LTE deployment is growing by leaps and bounds.

One important takeaway from this tale is that connectivity is an underlying driver for decisions consumers make – including where to buy or build a home. Whereas people once typically abandoned their homes because of fundamental issues like cracked foundations, flooding or structural damage, access to broadband is now becoming a must-have in determining a home’s worth.

This also brought to mind some things that people may not know, such as the fact that broadband can mean anything from a fixed landline to LTE. So the first question I would ask anyone having problems getting broadband is have you tried all your LTE options? There are devices that do a bang-up job of connecting to a cellular signal and converting it to Wi-Fi for use by multiple devices in the home. In fact, depending on location and signal strength, mobile data services can be a lot faster than a landline-based connection. An investment in a smart signal booster such as the Cel-Fi PRO or Cel-Fi DUO can also play a big part in getting indoor cellular signals to the strength needed for a compelling wireless experience.

Others will argue that pricing for LTE service is a big issue. But if you go through what it costs to get 5 gigs of available data from a landline-based network versus an LTE provider, they can be strikingly similar in many cases. Even if their cellular towers seem out of reach, keep in mind that some can cover a 62-mile wide area. Of course rates will depend on the quality of signal where you are, so there will always be some poor signal areas – although these are becoming fewer and further between as LTE expands.

I see a few simple lessons that can be learned in this tale. One, check out all your options before putting up a ‘for sale’ sign on your home. Two, talk to providers about their rates and LTE coverage/options in your area. You might be surprised at some of the bundles they have to offer. Last but not least, talk to providers about what tools can be used to help boost mobile network signals in the home.

If all these options fail, it may be time to throw in the towel. But I’m willing to bet that very soon, we won’t be seeing coverage stories like this one.

Have you thought about LTE as a broadband alternative? We’ll be happy to fill you in on some options.

From the Inside by George Lamb, VP Operations and Support

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