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How is MobilSat Cellular Different Than Major Cellular Carriers?

RV parked across from car parking lot in front of mountains

What is MobilSat Cellular?

MobilSat Cellular is the mobile cellular internet service offered by Mobil Satellite Technologies. In addition to offering up to 500 gigabytes of cellular data per month, MobilSat Cellular customers get access to enterprise-grade equipment that maximizes their connection as well as a top-notch technical support team that is available 7 days a week. MobilSat Cellular is designed specifically for RVers and those living remotely that need a large amount of data with the most reliable of speeds.

What can I get with a major cellular carrier’s data plan?

Most cell phone companies offer data-only plans through hotspot connected devices. These plans are usually offered for 1-25 gigabytes of data per month, using a device that you already have or can buy for less than $200 as the hotspot. If you buy a data plan through the same company you have your phone plan through, you can often save a bit of money.

The Verizon MiFi, one of the most popular hotspot options

How does the equipment differ?

While hotspot devices are made to generate a Wi-Fi signal and be very affordable, the cellular routers provided by MobilSat Cellular are specifically chosen to broadcast the highest quality Wi-Fi signal available as you travel. As such, MobilSat’s equipment is more expensive- but if you are looking for the best of the best, it is the right choice.

Mobile hotspots are usually connected to one particular service provider, so another network’s SIM card will not work. This means that the hotspot will only work with one network, and if you ever switch networks or want a backup SIM card from a different network, you’ll have to buy another device. MobilSat’s equipment is different by offering multiple SIM slots that are compatible with any network, even international. With these devices you will have the option to have multiple data plans from multiple networks and use them interchangeably as you travel.

How does the service differ?

It sounds a bit odd to say that MobilSat Cellular offers a better service network than the carriers themselves, but it is true. This comes down to the quality of equipment being used to acquire the cellular signal and translate it to usable Wi-Fi, as well as the cellular bands available to be read.

There are quite a few differences between a Peplink router and a mobile hotspot, but here are some of the main points. Hotspot routers are battery powered and are thus less powerful than the AC powered Peplink routers that MobilSat provides. This can be a benefit or a detriment depending on whether you have access to an outlet all the time or would prefer a wireless mobile option.

The Pepwave MAX Transit Mini, one of the routers provided by MobilSat.

MobilSat routers also have the ability to read different cellular bands that are largely unavailable to hotspot users. Band 71, the 600MHz frequency that was recently acquired by T-Mobile, is a gamechanger for many people living or traveling remotely. While the signal strength is not always spectacular, Band 71 has succeeded in widening the remote coverage of one of the nation’s largest networks and providing coverage where there was none previously- so long as the right device is used.  

How does the support differ?

MobilSat Cellular offers technical support from our Chesapeake, Virginia office. Using the InControl network management system compatible with the devices we provide, our support team can help troubleshoot connection issues. Though available 7 days a week, the support is not 24/7. During late nights and early mornings, technical support is not available. Still, this is a tremendous value compared to the support offered by most cellular providers.

Our office in Chesapeake, Virginia

Every major cellular network provider offers support, though it is usually a headache to reach someone. The first step is to enter your issue via an automated chat bot or automated phone call, and hope that your problem can proceed to a real person. Wait times for calls to support are often long, and the quality of support usually leaves a lot to be desired. The majority of hotspot devices do not offer any sort of management portal, so once you reach a support specialist, they will not be able to give you anything more than general advice about what may be the problem. On the bright side, support is available 24/7, though usually out of international call centers.

To sum it up

The choice between MobilSat Cellular and a hotspot plan through a network provider comes down to needs. If you do not use much data and do not require the best speeds, a hotspot plan should be perfectly fine. Better yet, it will save you quite a bit of money!

MobilSat Cellular is for the frequent remote traveler or someone living in a rural area without access to a fiber internet connection. While it is not quite home internet, it is the closest thing available in a mobile environment. MobilSat Cellular allows users to game, stream, and surf nearly as much as they would like- just as they would at home. The 500-gigabyte limit is more than enough for almost every user, and the tech support provided comes in handy if anything goes wrong. At the price point, it is the perfect solution for someone needing high quality remote connectivity. For those that travel very remote and need guaranteed connectivity, a mobile satellite antenna should also be considered. MobilSat offers the most affordable mobile antenna in North America, the RVDataSat 840, as well as the slightly larger DataSat960

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