Smart 3G to Baguio
Just after midnight today, we headed off to Baguio City to spend the holiday. I brought my Globe Visibility account with me and I borrowed my cousin’s 3G phone (N6680) so we could road test both 3G connectivity along the way. I am trying to do some head to head comparison of both services during our stay here, the results of which will be posted later.
Ok, moving on with some points to ponder for Smart 3G:
- 3G does not always mean broadband speeds. While your conection will automatically switch between GRPS to 3G, whichever is faster, do not expect you’d get some good numbers even if you’re hooked up on 3G. Major reason? Signal strength – the lower the signal strength, the slower the 3G connection. My lowest recorded Smart 3G speed is around 90kbps.
- Coverage is relative. When Smart tells you they have about 800 locations on 3G, it doesn’t mean that the entire area is covered. I noticed that 3G signal only becomes available when we’re at the center of cities we pass thru, not in between them. Not sure how far is the coverage for a certain cell site but my experience with Globe Visibility tells me it’s around 500 meters.
- Smart 3G does not allow all ports so forget about accessing your site’s cPanel, WHM and Webmail. Google Talk, YM and other IMs wouldn’t work. Globe allows cPanel ports t pass thru.
- Smart 3G is cheaper — still Php10 per 30 minutes. Globe doesn’t have that tingi pricing.
The Globe Visibility I used is connected via the PCMCIA while Smart 3G is connected via a 3G phone on USB cable. I don’t think their speeds are affected by these.