1. Cowadin's Avatar
    Hey all, have a quick question for you.

    My family is looking into cutting costs, due to the economy and such, and at this point in time (with all of us on cell phones) we're thinking of getting rid of our home line and just using our vzw family plan for all our calling needs. however, we live on a hill and reception is a little choppy -- certain areas have good reception, others you can only text, but not chat on the phone.

    so it's not TERRIBLE, but it's not entirely reliable, which we would prefer if it was our only source of phone communication. i was talking to a coworker (who's on ATT) who said she had an antenna installed on her roof that boosts her reception... i was wondering if verizon had something similar?

    after doing a quick search i see that these types of things exist, but im looking for some first-hand experience from the lovely crackberry community -- do these things work, what is best, is it worth the money, etc etc.

    any/all help is greatly appreciated!

    CB love

    -Cow
    07-03-09 04:53 PM
  2. lastraid's Avatar
    If you have a home network for computer and an open ethernet port, you can look into teh VZW network extender. They run $249 with no additional fees. This is like putting a cell tower in your home.

    You can check it out here www.vzw.com/networkextender
    07-03-09 05:01 PM
  3. Cowadin's Avatar
    If you have a home network for computer and an open ethernet port, you can look into teh VZW network extender. They run $249 with no additional fees. This is like putting a cell tower in your home.

    You can check it out here www.vzw.com/networkextender
    thanks for your quick reply -- i was just going to post a link that i had found that^ and wanted to update my post.

    $249 one time sounds entirely reasonable. i would just want to make sure it really works -- but i assume if it didn't i could always return it after trying it for a few days. right?

    is anyone currently using one of these?

    thanks!
    07-03-09 05:08 PM
  4. lastraid's Avatar
    thanks for your quick reply -- i was just going to post a link that i had found that^ and wanted to update my post.

    $249 one time sounds entirely reasonable. i would just want to make sure it really works -- but i assume if it didn't i could always return it after trying it for a few days. right?

    is anyone currently using one of these?

    thanks!
    You would get 30 day to try it.

    They work well but only support 1X data not EVDO. Also you can only have 3 devices attached to it at any one time. You will with your question will get some positive feedback and some negative feedback. You can also set a whitelist to let the device know which phones get priority on the device.

    With the 30 trial period, you will see if works for you. ALso to let you know, I do support them for part of my living
    Last edited by lastraid; 07-03-09 at 09:51 PM.
    07-03-09 05:12 PM
  5. Cowadin's Avatar
    hey no problem -- i appreciate you mentioning the possibility of your bias .

    we wont often have more than 3 of us on the phone at the same time, and the priority list will help to make sure it's my family's phones getting access, rather than my neighbors (i assume).

    sounds good... and with a 30 day trial i guess that's how ill be able to make a solid decision.

    thanks a lot!!

    edit -- what's the restocking fee if we return it? $35 like phones?
    Last edited by Cowadin; 07-03-09 at 05:19 PM.
    07-03-09 05:16 PM
  6. lastraid's Avatar
    hey no problem -- i appreciate you mentioning the possibility of your bias .

    we wont often have more than 3 of us on the phone at the same time, and the priority list will help to make sure it's my family's phones getting access, rather than my neighbors (i assume).

    sounds good... and with a 30 day trial i guess that's how ill be able to make a solid decision.

    thanks a lot!!

    edit -- what's the restocking fee if we return it? $35 like phones?
    This is sold as an accessory. I do not believe there is a restocking fee. Also unless you are in an apartment or condo, your neighbors could not use it. There is an 15ft authenication foot radius one must walk through to activate on it.
    07-03-09 05:39 PM
  7. Cowadin's Avatar
    This is sold as an accessory. I do not believe there is a restocking fee. Also unless you are in an apartment or condo, your neighbors could not use it. There is an 15ft authenication foot radius one must walk through to activate on it.
    what do you mean by 15ft radius? i thought i read that it covers 5000 sq ft or something like that? i dont want to huddle around my ethernet port to make a phonecall... lol
    07-03-09 05:54 PM
  8. StayFly's Avatar
    yep the mifi is for you.
    07-03-09 06:07 PM
  9. Jim from NW Pa's Avatar
    yep the mifi is for you.
    What planet did you drop off of? Read the post...... No mention of mifi

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    07-03-09 06:41 PM
  10. lastraid's Avatar
    what do you mean by 15ft radius? i thought i read that it covers 5000 sq ft or something like that? i dont want to huddle around my ethernet port to make a phonecall... lol
    It will go up to 5000 sq feet after you authenticate to it. The 15 ft authenication is to help unauthorized users from using your Net Ext.
    07-03-09 08:42 PM
  11. crackalackberry's Avatar
    Too confirm, There is no restocking fee if you need to return this device and you have 30 days to try it, no matter how much you use it
    07-03-09 08:44 PM
  12. mpafr012's Avatar
    hey no problem -- i appreciate you mentioning the possibility of your bias .

    we wont often have more than 3 of us on the phone at the same time, and the priority list will help to make sure it's my family's phones getting access, rather than my neighbors (i assume).

    sounds good... and with a 30 day trial i guess that's how ill be able to make a solid decision.

    thanks a lot!!

    edit -- what's the restocking fee if we return it? $35 like phones?
    It's not a priority list. It's called a managed network extender instead of an open network extender. When you change it a managed network extender, you can add 3 phone numbers into the system that will be allowed to communicate through the 3 of 4 channels in the extender. If you leave it as "open" it is first come first serve. The 4th channel is only for 911 type calls and can not be changed. For the network extender to work, it needs to be as high as possible, located at a window or close enough for a 15' GPS cable to reach a window, have an outlet for power and be able to plug a network cable into it to connect it to the internet (can not be though a modem). I had one and it worked great. You also need to be aware that if you lose power, you will lose the network extender. If you are on a generator or have your network extender, router, and cable modem on a ups, then you will be okay.
    Last edited by mpafr012; 07-03-09 at 09:15 PM.
    07-03-09 09:11 PM
  13. lastraid's Avatar
    It's not a priority list. It's called a managed network extender instead of an open network extender. When you change it a managed network extender, you can add 3 phone numbers into the system that will be allowed to communicate through the 3 of 4 channels in the extender. If you leave it as "open" it is first come first serve. The 4th channel is only for 911 type calls and can not be changed. For the network extender to work, it needs to be as high as possible, located at a window or close enough for a 15' GPS cable to reach a window, have an outlet for power and be able to plug a network cable into it to connect it to the internet (can not be though a modem). I had one and it worked great. You also need to be aware that if you lose power, you will lose the network extender. If you are on a generator or have your network extender, router, and cable modem on a ups, then you will be okay.
    Wrong - in part - The device can actually have up to 50 numbers enteredin the whitelist

    Open means this. Say you have friends over and they are on the net ext, you have your number in the whitelist - you authenicate to the device, it will take one of those non-priority numbers off the Net Ext and place it back on a tower and let you access the Net ext. Keep in mind if that perosn is on a call and the handoff is not smooth, that person will drop their call. This means first come first serverd when more than three numbers on the white list is present.

    Closed means - only the numbers on the whitelist will be able to access the net ext. Yes this also means first come first serverd when the list closed and you have more than 3 numbers on the whitelist

    You can call it managed or open network - for simplicity a priority list is what most people will understand.

    Where you are correct is the fact that the Net Ext does only have 4 channels. can support 3 devices and 1 for 911 calls.

    Yes you can connect it to the modem, the problem with is nothing else will work on your network. We hook them to modems all the time to by-pass the router to see if the router is the problem.

    There are also at least four other things you forgot to mention

    1. There are 4 ports within the router that might need to be opened
    2. Your router must be VPN capable
    3. The best signal from the satelite to get your GPS signal is facing to the south.
    4. You must be in a VZW licensed area to use it.
    Last edited by lastraid; 07-03-09 at 09:55 PM.
    07-03-09 09:36 PM
  14. TwinsX2Dad's Avatar
    Another option is the one the OP originally mentioned - antenna booster systems. The passive ones aren't worth much, but the powered ones, from Wilson & others, can provide a 3W signal indoors from towers up to 50 miles away.

    Depending on the unit and the conditions, 3G signals can be a reality.

    No need for satellite views, no broadband connection & much less likelihood of latency. The downfall is that these systems range in price from a bit cheaper than a femto at the lower end & many thousands at the top.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    07-03-09 10:05 PM
  15. paulkalman's Avatar
    We have been using it for about 6 months.
    1. we had very poor reception from every carrier.
    2. We got the extender and here are some issues:
    A. Make sure you have a good solid broadband signal
    B. Make sure you are within about 10 to 15 feet of a window preferably facing the southern sky. (Like all cell towers, this one too has to have a connection with GPS as that is how emergency services locate you, and it is required or the thing will not work)
    C. Be patient with your first hook-up as it can take a couple of hours to finish booting handshaking with VZW etc.

    We went from no bars and poor reception to full bars on all our phones (with one exception and that is a corner where all of the plumbing and heater duct chases are).

    Set it up to only allow your family and friends (when they are there) to have access if you have poor access your neighbors do too and they can leach on to it if you do not block them.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by paulkalman; 07-03-09 at 10:29 PM.
    07-03-09 10:26 PM
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