Cell phone connection help/suggestions

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I currently have a Liberty 25 plan – 25 MB and then limited to available bandwidth.

Additionally I have local DSL at about 2.5 MBPS, essentially unlimited.

 I have a multi-WAN  router – it can ‘multiplex’ up to five ISP signals at once and split the Internet traffic across  those ports based on demand.  Only two are in use as mentioned above.

 Each month I routinely use 70 to 90 Megabytes of data.  These figures come from the router and very closely match the ViaSat and DSL metrics provided by those vendors.  

 As an unexpected bonus, I have not had an outage for almost a year – if the DSL is down then ViaSat takes over and visa versa.  For redundancy, this setup cannot be beat. 

 AT&T just put in a new tower nearby and they have a data plan that goes to 100 M of data for reasonable cost – about $62/month including tax and license. 

 Like everyone else, I need more bandwidth.  I am not interested in movie streaming but do have reasonable interactions with various investment web sites.  That is what seems to be driving the data high usage.  The internal network has seven Windows computers, five Android tablets and various other dogs and cats like Alexa and TV and DVD microcode updates occasionally and all need to be updated periodically.

 Can anyone help with suggestions that includes whatever devices are needed to connect to the AT&T cell network and bridge that connection to my internal network?  As I understand it the solution needs to have some type of bridge from the AT&T hotspot to my internal network. 






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Bain9999

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Posted 2 months ago

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Tester Tester1

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It's easier than you might think, but will cost a bit but not outrageous:

If the tower is close-by, then you won't need all the external antennas

You need one of these to connect to AT&T (or T-Mobile)(selectable on setup screen)
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01N5ASNTE/

and two of these setup in MIMO configuration: (one tilted 45° Left, the other 45° right, pointed at tower)
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00J14YEHQ/

and two of these to connect coax to Netger box: (epoxy them in place to the box, they fall out easily)
https://www.ebay.com/itm/SMA-Female-to-TS9-Male-RF-Adapter-Connector-for-E5776-E392-E398-E3276-E5372...

and 2 of these to connect antennas, Longer or shorter as needed:
https://www.amazon.com/Low-Loss-Coax-Extension-Cable-Ohm/dp/B00QZEQ5EA

The Netgear LB1120 has built-in antennas but they are not powerful enough for extended range but it supports a single or MIMO external antennas.  The Wilson antennas are chosen because they are broadband and will work on any cell frequencies that may be in use at your location, plus they have good gain.

The LB1200 supports either internal DHCP or WAN in bridged mode.  In DHCP mode you can set the local LAN address you need, or supply an additional WAN to a load balancing router in bridge mode.

If you have even a clue of a signal, this setup will work great.






(Edited)
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Bain9999

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Thank you so much for taking the time to reply.   If possible I would like some more information.

I already have a Wilson setup operational with external and internal antennas.  My assumption is that I can just hook up the NETGEAR 4G LTE Broadband Modem near the inside antenna and connect it via Cat5 to my internal network.  True??

How does the Netgear device to call connection -- what protocol>

Is it possible to communicate directly -- I would be pleased to pay for your expertise/consulting.

bains    at  centurytel.net
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Tester Tester1

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This sounds like you already have a cell repeater system in place, Great !
The Netgear connects as a cell device directly to the tower as if it were a cellphone of sorts but it only extracts internet data.  It needs it's own sim card and internet account with the carrier to work and that's it.  Since the Netgear box has it's own internal antennas, you are in a perfect position to add this to your system.    The Ethernet output connection allows it to connect wired to your router, and this is one of the only devices that does this without "transmitting" the data over WiFi which would have made it problematic to connect to your system.

You only need the Netgear box, a micro sim card from AT&T and a data-only account for it all to work.  (yes, one more Internet bill).  In the Netgear setup screen you should select Bridged mode (Public IP output) and add this to your router's available WAN inputs.

I should also add an addition feature of the Netgear box:  It supports VLAN so even though it is set to Bridge mode, you can still access it through a numbered port of your router.  Connect the output of the Netgear box to a switch, one output goes to the WAN port of the router and another to a numbered output port of the same router making the "home" screen and all control settings available in the Netgear box without un-plugging cables or switching things around to access the Netgear unit live while it is in service.  Cool eh?  In the Netgear box, set it's internal IP address to whatever you like within your routers DHCP operating range for the VLAN to have an address to work with.

Pay me?  This forum is for free advice and nobody's make a dime from my information.

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Bain9999

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A couple more questions...

Is a data only account from AT&T the same as a cell phone account with data?  Or is there some type of special account called 'data only'

How is a connection established.  I am familiar with typical ISP connections and associated protocols.  In this environment is the connection essentially established by the hardware and the connection is always available for the transmission/receipt of data?

Thank you again for helping -- it is much appreciated and I will pay forward.
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Tester Tester1

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The Netgear box is in the category of an internet-enabled tablet.

Go to https://www.att.com/prepaid/mobile-hotspot-tablet/ and read down to the part that addresses you having your own device and how to activate it online.  They also have data plans that are not pre-paid but if you go there, you will pay taxes and all the other fees associated with a continuous monthly subscription service that you are billed for each month (except their "autopay" which is still pre-paid, just automatically done for you each month).

The Netgear box connects automatically. You need to do nothing after it is set up for use on AT&T at it's configuration screen (tick the AT&T choice). The box has time-out choices but most people set it to stay always connected, otherwise it can be set to disconnect after a period of inactivity and wake on demand and automatically re-connect to AT&T.

The protocol (4G LTE) is the same as any smart phone with Internet but the Netgear box is a data-only device, such as a tablet that can connect to the Internet.  It's nearly plug-and-play.

I think T-Mobile is cheaper?  worth looking into.  The Netgear box will go with either carrier.
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