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Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

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Melbourne
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Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

Yes, another pocket wi-fi question... Sorry!

So, I went with Global Advanced Comms about 1.5 years ago and just checked my email to see the speed that I was using, at that time I had the 7.2mbps (this option is no longer there) and it costed almost ¥8000 for 11 days.

I was going to go with GAC again when I realised now there are heaps of options (and faster speeds) by other companies that offer it slightly cheaper.

1. Japan-Wireless: 21 days ¥7700 for 21mbps or ¥9100 for 42mbps (free delivery/return)

2. Wifi-Hire: 20 days ¥7980 (plus return cost, not sure about speed)

3. GAC: 21 days ¥9900 (free delivery/return)

So 2 questions:

- I know GAC is reliable because I experienced it first hand, but what about the other two companies?

- Is 21mbps fast enough? Or do I need to look at 42 or 75mbps?

Will be most likely using it for maps, email/social media, upload photos, general browsing and occasional YouTube... on iPad & iPhone simultaneously.

Thank youuuu :)

Melbourne
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1. Re: Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

Just checked and found out that the Wifi-Hire mifi is for the 75mbps version, which makes it the cheapest among the 3 (albeit having to pay for return post). How much is return post usually?

Any other company suggestions (cheap/reliable) will also be appreciated, thank you!

Toronto
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2. Re: Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

>> Is 21mbps fast enough?

Fast enough for doing what?

Perhaps you need to find out the internet speed you have at home and do a comparison. Not to mention you used 7.2 yourself 1.5 years ago. Was that fast enough? 21 is almost 3x as fast. It's simple math.

Edited: 02 October 2013, 15:12
United States
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3. Re: Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

If I were you, I'd go with a company you have had good experience with, especially if there's not a huge difference in price. I have seen a lot of good reviews of Global Advanced Communications. On the other hand, one forum poster had a pretty bad experience with a different company earlier this year. It could have been an isolated experience so I'm not going to post a link or name the company, but if you try one of the others I'd be interested in hearing your experience (good or bad) as I'm looking to rent a Mifi device on my next trip.

Aoyama Dori and San...
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4. Re: Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

Why would you consider taking a risk with a company you have no experience with, especially if you're gaining something of little value? The difference between 7M and 21M or 42M or 1G is negligible unless you are running a web farm or something. You already took a huge risk by trying GAC. You don't need to take this risk unless you absolutely need the higher bandwidth. The use model you described can get by just fine with what GAC offers. You are visiting a foreign country and your time is most probably precious. Do you want to waste time troubleshooting an unexpected glitch in service that is going to consume your precious time or do you want a trouble-free experience?

Melbourne
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5. Re: Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

Thanks everyone :)

I've emailed Japan-Wireless since we are ordering 2 devices, and they can actually provide us discounts! Which makes me even more confused now hahaha.. I know what you guys are saying, that's why I'm hoping for more reviews so that I can see if others have had great reviews about the other companies - that way, the risk is minimised! LOL... Or at least that's how I think of it anyway.

Aoyama Dori and San...
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6. Re: Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

I'm not sure why you are confused. There is no substitute for your own experience. Reviews can be planted and shilled. For something so insignificant compared to the total cost of your trip, the time you save from having a trouble-free experience, etc., I'm baffled why you would take this sort of risk with accompanying uncertainty. You already did that once.

Long Island, New...
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7. Re: Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

I'd like to give another strong recommendation to rent from Global Advanced Communication. They have extremely reliable service, their pricing is very competitive and I've rented from multiple times and they always have good customer service. It's very easy to rent and return and I definitely recommend them: http://www.globaladvancedcomm.com

Also, GAC can rent the GL06P (be sure to request it) at no extra charge and you get longer battery life. This has been *very* convenient for my long days.

Edited: 13 December 2013, 19:34
melbourne
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8. Re: Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

i rented a wifi (small huawei device) and included sim from a kiosk at narita airport - if i recall it cost about AU$18 a day. coverage was good - some sections of the country between sendai - tokyo - osaka - hiroshima has coverage black spots, but that was while travelling on a 300km/h+ shinkansen.

sorry, can't remember the name of the company.

audio skype was good, net browsing was good.

Renton, Washington
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9. Re: Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

I recently returned from a 19 day trip in Japan (Tokyo, Kyoto, Hiroshima, Osaka, Nara). I rented the 75 mbps mifi device from japan-wireless.com. In short, I was very satisified with the performance of the device. The total cost - including all fees (included taxes, shipping fee, I added insurance) was around 11000 yen.

I had a couple of questions before I ordered from japan-wireless - they promptly answered my questions and concerns. Pickup at Narita was easy. Setup and connection to my devices (2 Android phones, iPad) was simple. The 75 Mbps advertised speed is most likely an exaggeration. That speed is probably at its peak when you're one feet away from the cell phone tower. I got peak speeds more in the range of 5-10 mbps download and upload when I checked with Speedtest. 4G LTE vs 3G coverage was around half and half. I was a little disappointed that there isn't more 4G LTE coverage in Japan, but it's the same case in the US. Coverage was good - the device worked everywhere I visited. The only time when I lost coverage - and only briefly - was when I was on the shinkansen or subways and I was traveling through tunnels or through more rural areas. Nevertheless, the speeds were good as I mainly used it for Google Maps, but I tried Google Hangouts video once and it seemed to be sufficient for a video call. There was only once when I had to reset the mifi device. The device's battery also lasted its stated 10 hours - and it really was 10 hours. Because you cannot replace the battery on the device (you can only recharge), I sometimes had to ration use when I knew I would be away from my hotel more than 10 hours in a day.

Dropoff at Narita airport was easy as well. The folks at japan-wireless haven't charged my credit card again, so I assume they received my return. I think that's my only complain - I haven't received an email indicating that they received the mifi device. All in all, I'm a happy customer.

Foster City
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10. Re: Pocket wi-fi: company & speed suggestion please

Don't understand why the OP is only asking from the point of view of speed of the wifi device. I'm going to Japan in a couple weeks. I made my reservation for the 75mpbs device from GAC mostly because of the 10 hour battery life. The 21mpbs model is only rated for 4-5 hours of battery life which I think would be inadequate for my needs. Unless you plan on carrying extra battery pack with you OP, I would start looking at battery life as one of your criteria for making a decision. The speed is almost irrelevant. If your device doesn't have juice you aren't going to be able to use it, doesn't matter how fast it is. For me, battery life was my number 1 criteria for making a decision, speed was secondary.

Edited: 13 December 2013, 22:58