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Old 09-11-2019, 02:30 AM   #1
Peter Tourin
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Default Winegard ConnecT 2.0 on new Unity models

I've been driving a '12 MB and carrying a Netgear JetPak with a small MIMO antenna - this has worked fine and I haven't paid much attention to other solutions. Both of us have had jobs that allowed us to work remotely, and for the most part we've been satisfied working with the JetPack on Verizon.

I see that the new Unity models come with the Winegard ConnectT as standard equipment. So I want to make sure I understand what it does and what the tradeoffs are.

Am I correct that it is good at grabbing nearby WIFI signals, if any? Is this very useful in real life? My experience with campsites and WIFI is basically that service is almost always slow and unreliable - thus the JetPak.

Am I correct that to use the Winegard's 4G LTE capabilities I have to have a cellular account and a SIM card? So if I wanted to run off Verizon I'd pull the card out of my JetPack and place it in the Winegard? Or if I wanted to use AT&T, I'd have to expand my AT&T account and get a SIM card for the Winegard? That is - you must pay for a data account in order to use the 4G capability.

If I have this correct, is the connectivity likely to be any better than using the JetPack?

And finally, what's the story on the no-contract 30-day data plans that Winegard advertises? Do I purchase these through Winegard, and does Winegard in turn have their own arrangements with cell providers to provide the service? Again, is this cost-effective and is the coverage good?

Thanks for any comments, pros and cons, etc. I'm not very good at reading company advertising and figuring out what they're really selling - hard for me to make sense of it until I've had my hands on it. So a bit of discussion here will go a long way towards helping me understand whether this gadget is a Genuine Good Thing or not.
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Old 09-11-2019, 04:09 AM   #2
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Default Re: Winegard ConnecT 2.0 on new Unity models

I don't know this device, but unless it has a better MiMo antenna than you do, I see no way how it could improve your cellular connection.

As for "nearby WiFi", if you want that, just get yourself a Ubiquiti WiFi receiver. These are external WiFi antennas with little routers built right in. This avoids having the push the WiFi signal through a long wire to get it inside the van. Instead, it is converted to Ethernet right at the antenna, and you run it into the van via Cat-5. You can get either directional or omnidirectional versions, as you prefer. These devices do require some skill at setting up a router, but they are very, very good at receiving distant WiFi. A pair of them can send WiFi for miles.

Are they worth it? Depends on where you camp. But I have one and have pretty much never used it. As you say, cellular MiMo rules.
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Old 09-11-2019, 04:21 AM   #3
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Default Re: Winegard ConnecT 2.0 on new Unity models

There is a Togo Roadlink 2 that is similar to the Winegard connect 2 (almost a copy but doesn't include TV antenna which I think the connect 2 has). Togo has an AT&T plan that is $360/year or $30/mo for unlimited data. Some users report using 200+GB monthly with no throttling.

Here's more info:
Roadlink Info

My plan is to purchase and install once the weather cools down.
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Old 09-11-2019, 04:30 AM   #4
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Default Re: Winegard ConnecT 2.0 on new Unity models

Quote:
Originally Posted by RV2019 View Post
There is a Togo Roadlink 2 that is similar to the Winegard connect 2 (almost a copy but doesn't include TV antenna which I think the connect 2 has). Togo has an AT&T plan that is $360/year or $30/mo for unlimited data. Some users report using 200+GB monthly with no throttling.

Here's more info:
Roadlink Info
As the article explains (if you click on the links), this plan (like all other hotspot plans) is NOT "unlimited data", except as defined in cell-provider fantasy land. It is subject to "network management", which is another name for "throttling". NO non-dedicated 4G device is truly unlimited, and never will be. If such a product were offered, people would instantly start using them for their home Internet service, and the market would fall apart.
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Old 09-11-2019, 08:09 AM   #5
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Default Re: Winegard ConnecT 2.0 on new Unity models

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Originally Posted by RV2019 View Post
There is a Togo Roadlink 2 that is similar to the Winegard connect 2 (almost a copy but doesn't include TV antenna which I think the connect 2 has). Togo has an AT&T plan that is $360/year.


We’re using the AT&T $360/year unlimited plan on our Connect 2.0. Works great as long as we’re in their service area.

You wouldn’t want the Winegard plan. Very expensive.


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Old 09-11-2019, 02:31 PM   #6
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Default Re: Winegard ConnecT 2.0 on new Unity models

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Originally Posted by Simplified View Post
We’re using the AT&T $360/year unlimited plan on our Connect 2.0. Works great as long as we’re in their service area.

You wouldn’t want the Winegard plan. Very expensive.


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So how much data are you using and does it get throttled?
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Old 09-11-2019, 06:04 PM   #7
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Default Re: Winegard ConnecT 2.0 on new Unity models

I had the Winegard ConnecT 2.0 added to my 2018 UMB and have had mixed results after much trial and error. I won’t go into my early trials as a lot has changed and would no longer be relevant. First of all, it is an excellent wifi booster for any nearby signals available and for which you have the password. Even on public wifi without passwords, it creates a secure connection so you can do personal and private business without fear of being hacked. This part of the Winegard requires no subscription or fees and is well worth having in my opinion on it’s own. It will boost campground wifi systems significantly even though most of them are marginal at best. As for the 4G part, it’s a different story. The Winegard is superior to jetpacks, at least my Verizon jetpack. You do need a data plan either from Winegard (a very expensive AT&T version), an AT&T plan or a Verizon plan. The SIM card is a different size than your phone or tablet plus you won’t want to be climbing upon the roof to install/uninstall the SIM card each time as the card is in the Winegard device. After much wrangling and arguing, I was able to get the Winegard setup on my Verizon Unlimited Plan for $20 per month for the same amount of data as my jetpack which is 15GB unthrottled and then reduced to 660kbs afterward. This is not a lot of data especially for things like streaming movies. So I now use the 4G part as a hotspot while traveling in remote locations primarily for phone use or just surfing the net when wifi is not available. And again, it’s far superior to a jetpack. I know this is lengthy and hopefully I have covered the big chunks but this has been my personal experience.
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Old 09-11-2019, 09:19 PM   #8
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Default Re: Winegard ConnecT 2.0 on new Unity models

I have the Winegard Connect 2.0. The WiFi router is quite good. It can pick up distant Wifi that none of my phones can see.

You are correct that its of little value if the Wifi you are connecting to stinks, which is typical. If you park in a Mcdonald's parking lot though its probably great.

I don't use that feature though, because I have the Verizon prepaid $65 Unlimited plan (true unlimited, no throttling, I have put over 100 gig a month on it and could have used way more if I wanted to). As far as that part of it, I never bothered to try my Verizon sim on the rooftop Winegard. Too much bother to change the sim when needed, so instead I put a router inside the RV with an antenna on the roof.

So I ended up never using the Winegard. If you are staying somewhere that has good Wifi but just a bit too far away it could be beneficial. For cell signal usage I wouldn't bother. Any hotspot or router will do just as well. You will just get the same results you already have with your jetpack most of the time.

Last edited by TampaSteve; 09-11-2019 at 09:26 PM.
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Old 09-11-2019, 09:47 PM   #9
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Default Re: Winegard ConnecT 2.0 on new Unity models

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So how much data are you using and does it get throttled?


We're just part time and use it to stream Netflix and YouTube TV. Haven't figured out yet what we'll use monthly when we're out for a couple months later this winter. No throttling, but it is subject to Network Management after 22 GB.


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Old 09-11-2019, 09:50 PM   #10
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Default Re: Winegard ConnecT 2.0 on new Unity models

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I don't use that feature though, because I have the Verizon prepaid $65 Unlimited plan (true unlimited, no throttling, I have put over 100 gig a month on it and could have used way more if I wanted to). As far as that part of it, I never bothered to try my Verizon sim on the rooftop Winegard. Too much bother to change the sim when needed, so instead I put a router inside the RV with an antenna on the roof.

I wouldn't try that. They might cancel your plan if they found out. I tried to get that $65 plan on the Winegard and they wouldn't let me. I'm really happy with the AT&T plan that was designed for this purpose.


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