LTE stands for ‘long term evolution’ and is a way of connecting to the internet and communicating through a data connection. In general terms it is faster than a 3G connection, but not as fast as a 4G connection. A mobile LTE internet connection requires a SIM card and a connection device, like a dongle or device that you can carry around with you (for example a mobile phone). Obviously, the difference with fixed LTE is that the router (that contains a SIM card) would sit in a fixed location. Meaning that it is plugged into an office(s) or home(s) main electrical sockets and therefore it sits in a single fixed location. Fixed LTE routers normally allow for several devices to connect wirelessly or with hard wire connections into that single connection.
Therefore, when choosing an LTE provider for fixed LTE you need to consider the strength of your coverage and make sure that the fixed LTE router is of decent quality and functionality. With a fixed router you will have the option to either run physical network cables or enable a wi-fi network so that multiple devices can connect wirelessly to the router.
The router for a fixed LTE connection does not have an internal battery storage facility. One of the compromises for fixed LTE is that the primary connection device needs to be in one position and must have a consistent power supply. This is the main difference to a mobile dongle* or mobile mi-fi device. Whilst having the advantage of mobility, a mobile LTE solution will suffer versus a fixed LTE router when providing a stable and fast connectivity, because mobility requires the need to roam between cell towers for coverage.
A dongle is typically a USB connected device that contains a single SIM card. The benefit is that it is mobile and can be plugged directly into your laptop. The downside is that the connectivity will vary based on your location. Additionally it is not that easy to configure a dongle to allow other devices to connect to it (it is possible but requires some “tech savvy” skills)
A “mi-fi” device or router is like a dongle but has its own battery supply and therefore can be charged and does not need to be physically connected to your device. The other advantage of a mi-fi dongle is that they typically allow for multiple devices to connect to its wi-fi signal.
When choosing a fixed LTE provider make sure that you ask questions around the set up and hardware (router) that comes with the service. Ideally it should be pre-configured, meaning it has a SIM already installed and connected to the service provider. Additionally, it should have the capability to connect multiple devices to it, without limitation or capping on the number of allowed devices.
Also you need to make sure that the router has the ability to connect both a network cable for inward connection and onward connections, so that you can “hard wire” your devices to the router and not rely on a wireless wi-fi connection. The hardwired option will always be slightly more reliable than using a wi-fi enabled connection.
Back up & fail over
Fixed-LTE packages are a quick and easy way to get connected, especially if you do not have fibre coverage at your home or office.
Even if your office or home has a fibre connection, we all know that fibre does sometimes fail or have service interruptions. That is why many companies and home users will have a fixed LTE connection as a backup for web connectivity when fibre fails.
When using fixed LTE as a backup connection, it is obviously important to have a flexible package. This is because you may use it for occasional periods and in different data consumption volumes. So just make sure that your provider offers flexible packages and pricing that can scale as your usage increases and decreases over time, or even needs to be paused for a period of time.
For more information about what LTE is, read our recent article that explains what Fixed LTE solutions are and how they can help you and your business.
Fixed LTE deals
We also recently wrote about LTE deals and what to look out for when choosing an LTE solution for your business.
Mytelnet Fixed LTE
If you are looking for fixed LTE with short contract terms and excellent pricing contact Mytelnet to find out more about our fixed LTE packages and our complimentary Communications Platform Solutions. Be a part of the business communication revolution.