One question people often ask me is what 3G or 4G broadband is like in rural areas, such as for downloading, streaming or gaming. Unfortunately, the areas with the slowest fixed line services tend to also have the most congested 3G/4G cell towers. This is due to other people turning to mobile broadband in a hope of getting faster Internet access.
I live in an area outside Kilcar (Co. Donegal) with many houses that get less than 5Mbps on DSL. Many houses here are not even on the Open Eir rollout map for FTTH. The only 4G service available here is from Three, so just how does it compare with DSL? How does Meteor 3G and Vodafone 3G compare to the supposedly superior 4G service that Three offers? Continue reading Mobile broadband vs rural 5Mb DSL with real world tests
Over the years, people have complained about getting signed up to premium rate SMS services without their consent. These text messages involve a reverse charge, typically €2.50 per SMS received for a 57xxx or 59xxx number.
I have checked over various complaints reported on the Boards.ie discussion forum. One thing is very clear – Premium rate SMS services in Ireland are badly implemented (unlike collect calls), leaving them open for abuse. Continue reading Reverse charge premium rate SMS sign-up theories and opinion
Although the newer DOCX Word format has been around since Word 2007, many people still have older DOC files laying around. Anyone that has tried saving many to the newer DOCX format has probably noticed a loss in image quality, particularly when printed. Continue reading How to convert DOC to DOCX without compressing images
With every previous fridge we owned, replacing the light bulb was as simple as removing the cover and inserting a new 15W SES appliance bulb. When the bulb blew in our Samsung fridge freezer (model RL38SCTB), it was a rather surprising challenge to replace.
The cover is tricky to remove and the lamp holder base is recessed. Its 40-watt bulb is smaller than a typical GLS size. Even with a bulb that screws in, it may not even light! The instruction manual was anything but helpful, advising to get a service engineer to replace the interior bulb. Continue reading How to change a Samsung fridge freezer 40W light bulb
Up until the end of 2016, we used a filter coffee maker to make a pot of coffee each day. The first cup in the morning was fine and the next cup near midday was so-so. By the afternoon, it was barely drinkable.
I researched various single-serving machines such as Nespresso, Tassimo and Dolce Gusto, but they have ridiculously expensive running costs. A bean to cup machine sounded like the answer, but it had a high upfront cost. Then someone from Germany mentioned about the Philips Senseo. Continue reading Philips Senseo HD7829 review – Coffee at 1/3 cost of capsules
Ookla’s Speedtest measures the ping time to each server it operates around the world. What it lacks is the ability to run extended ping tests that the command prompt offers. With each test, it also runs a full speed test. This is incredibly bandwidth intensive if all the user wants to check is the response times to various countries or cities.
One workaround is to ping from the command line. Before we start, we first need the host name or IP address to ping. Continue reading Servers that respond to ping requests around the world
Dual SIM phones traditionally provide two lines with a single phone such as for personal and work numbers. They are also brilliant for prepay users to combine the benefits of two mobile operators or even with two SIM plans on the same operator.
Depending on the combination, this can either reduce data or call costs or improve network coverage compared to what’s possible with just one prepay SIM. It can also replace a MiFi (mobile router) by using the second SIM slot for data-only SIMs. Continue reading Improve coverage, data bundles, etc. with a dual SIM phone
Like mobile phones, most mobile broadband routers are considered plug and play where you just insert your SIM card and it’s ready to use. However, in some instances routers and modems will need some further tweaking to improve the connection stability or to even get online. Continue reading Troubleshooting 3G/4G mobile broadband and antennas
If the device / modem shows a signal, but will not connect, it is very likely that the APN setting is incorrect, particularly if trying to use a phone SIM in a modem/router. Most routers automatically configure the APN from the SIM or have preconfigured APNs per the SIM type, so it’s likely it is either trying to configure an obsolete APN or picking up an incorrect APN from the SIM. Continue reading Irish mobile broadband SIM card APN settings
Electric oil filled radiators, fan heaters, halogen heaters, bar heaters, convertor, panel heaters and so on are all 100% efficient at converting electric power into heat. However, as for how efficient they are at heating the room varies from one type to another.
Another form of electric heating involves a heat pump, where heat is taken from the outdoor environment and pumped into the house like a refrigerator operating in reverse. Air to air heat pumps do this by extracting heat from the outdoor air and humidity and releasing it indoors. Technically, a dehumidifier releases heat from indoor humidity as it condenses it to a liquid, so just how effective is one at warming a room? Continue reading How effective is a desiccant dehumidifier for room heating?