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Internet In A Motorhome
Internet In A Motorhome
Internet access in a motorhome doesn't have to be difficult, here are a few ways to get online.
Caravan & Motorhome Wi-Fi Boosters (aka Wifi Aerials / Wifi Extenders)
The simplest and most cost effective way is to use a Wi-Fi Booster antenna which can be used either directly connected into a laptop or compatible computer. A Wi-Fi booster is basically an external Wi-Fi antenna for your laptop or computer which will provide you with a greater signal compared to the standard or built in antenna in the computer. There are two types of Wi-Fi Antenna, Directional or Omni-Directional. Directional Antennae offer greater chance of getting a useable signal however require fiddling about with in order to get an optimum signal whereas an Omni-directional antenna does not need any adjustment.
Nowadays Wi-Fi Boosters are much more intelligent and are available as a 'fitted' option which allows you to use several devices such as tablets / iPads / phones through one single antenna.
Caravan Motorhome Wi-Fi Pros and Cons:
- Wi-Fi Boosters can be relatively inexpensive.
- Modern Boosters can let you use multiple devices inside your motorhome or caravan.
- Easy to install.
- A lot of Free Wi-Fi Networks now available.
- Direct / USB Wi-Fi Antennae do not always support Apple PC's
- If you can't get a signal you can't get online i.e. this is not a dependable way of getting online.
Mobile Data - 3G & 4G
Mobile Data services are becoming much more credible as a way of getting online these days especially when travelling, 3G and 4G technology offer fairly speedy access at ever reducing costs. 3G and 4G coverage across the UK and the continent is improving massively however there are still areas where coverage may not be available. 3G and 4G can provide speeds on average 6.8 Mbit/s and 18 Mbit/s respectively with response times similar to that of your standard broadband back at home.
Mobile Data Pros and Cons:
- Relatively high speed and responsive connection.
- Large coverage which is growing.
- Can be cost effective either as PAYG (Pay As You Go) or on contract options.
- Again with Wi-Fi this isn't always a dependable way of getting online however is handy when used as a backup when compared to Wi-Fi.
Motorhome Satellite Internet
Satellite Internet for motorhomes and caravans has been the popular go to method of getting online reliably when touring. Recently there have been significant price reductions from the ISPs to make running these motorhome satellite internet systems much more cost effective than they had been before. The Astra 23.5 Satellite that provides connectivity has a wide footprint that covers the UK and a vast amount of the continent as well. Satellite Internet in your motorhome can provide you with broadband transfer speeds almost anywhere and there are an array of packages to suit.
Internet via Satellite Pros and Cons:
- Reliable internet access across most of Europe, as long as you have a clear view to the South / South East you can get online.
- Broadband like transfer speeds - upto 10 Mbit/s.
- Loads of ISPs to choose from.
- UK IP Addresses available so you can view services like iPlayer etc
- Optional Wi-Fi router / access point can be fitted so you can use multiple devices at any time.
- Some systems can also receive TV and Internet at the same time.
- Relatively high upfront cost.