Rural 4G

Many rural communities are getting fed up with the lack of high speed broadband services and no longer want to put up with slow broadband because they are too far away from the BT exchange,

Many of these rural Internet customers are switching to 4G services because they can triple or quadruple their internet speed by connecting to their nearest 4G base Station.  This means that customers that previously has download speeds on 2Mbps are now getting 6Mbps or 8Mbps on average and many users are getting 20Mbps.

By switching to a Rural 4G Mobile Broadband Service all you need is:-

  • 4G Mobile Broadband Router
  • 4G Antenna
  • 4G SIM Card

For the router we recommend the Huawei E5186 becuase this provides a high speed CAT6 4G Module to get the best performance from your 4G mobile service and features Gigabit Ethernet ports for high speed wired LAN and includes 802.11ac super fast WiFi to provides high speed and long range WiFi connectivity for your wireless devices.

Huawei E5186 4G Router

As well as the High speed 4G connection and high speed LAN and WiFi, the Huawei E5186 4G Router has 2 x external antenna connections so you can connect this to an external 4G Antenna so if you have poor 4G reception where you locate the router, you can connect a high gain 4G antenna outdoors where you have a better service.  One of the most popular outdoor 4G antennas is the Fullband® MIMORAD® MiMO 4G Antenna.

MIMORAD 4G Antenna

The Fullband bit relates to the fact that it covers all 2G, 3G and 4G mobile networks and the MIMORAD part means that it provides 4G MiMo connectivity ie. 2 x antennas inside the RADome housing.  Because it contains 2 x 4G antennas, the MIMORAD therefore has 2 x antenna cables.  In this case the antenna is supplied pre-terminated with 2 x 5m long antenna cables, each with SMA Male connector which is suitable for the majority of 3G and 4G routers.

You can purchase pre-terminated antenna extension cables if you need a longer cable run – but please note that a longer cable run will reduce the effectiveness of the antenna because you will get signal loss along the length of the antenna cable.  The better your mobile phone signal at the antenna location, the longer you can have your extension cable.

An alternative to a long antenna cable if you don’t have a great 4G signal is to install your 4G router closer to the antenna and use an Ethernet cable to connect the router to your network.  The Ethernet cable can be up to 100m long – so you can run a long Ethernet cable from the router and connect it to a network switch and then connect your wired devices via the central network switch / hub.  For WiFi you can purchase and install WiFi Access Points which will connect to your network switch.

The final thing for an effective rural 4G solution is your choice of 4G SIM Card.  The first consideration is to choose a network that give you the best performance – at the outset you can purchase a few pay as you go 4G SIM cards and test each one in your router to see which 4G SIM give the best performance in your location.  You can then examine the available contract data plans to determine how much you will have to pay for your 4G SIM Card – a typical household will use 20-30GB per month with some households using nearly double that.  If the network with the best service is the most expensive then you can trade off speed against price and maybe choose a slightly worse network that still gives you an adequate download and upload speed but provides more inclusive data per month.