Going unlimited Verizon vs Viasat

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I have been with Viasat for awhile on the unlimited silver plan. However, we recently cut the cord and use sling TV. We only need around .6-1.0 mbs to stream. However, when we run out of priority data we cannot even pull .5mbs. Does anyone think it would be better to get an unlimited Verizon phone and jet pack plan. My Verizon speeds around my house range from 2mbs rarely to the usual 5-12mbs. High end we can see 20mbs.. we usually get 1-2 bars LTE.
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tb174

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Posted 6 months ago

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J&J

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This is an obvious case of "Haven't you suffered enough?"

ViaSat will NEVER treat residential customers like they are real people.  Residential customers are a scourge to ViaSat.  Whenever they can declare "Mission Accomplished" on this latest cheat-scheme racket they are running, the knobs will be turned down and everybody's speeds will go down into the pits.  Here comes the tried-and-true "we're sorry your speeds are so slow, we are experiencing congestion in your area." And for the even slightly more tech-savvy, they'll be saying "Well, with the shift from all the Freedom plan, and a lot of unlimited plan subscribers changing plans, now we have more users on your beam, so congestion is becoming an issue, but we're working on it."

Need proof?  Read this forum's articles for the past 2 months for the recent showing of colors and go back for as many years as you like and see how it's always been and always will be.  If you can get ANYTHING other than ViaSat you'll have less stress in your life.


(Edited)
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Unless you have cable internet, you shouldn't be cord cutting.
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tb174

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I am aware of this... however, due to various reasons, it was necessary... Now we are just trying to steam with only 1.0 Mbps which we are more than happy with. When we run out of priority data we cannot get 1.0 mbps speeds on viasat. Our cell speeds tend to be much better than Viasat on prime time. Was wanting to see if it was feasible to use 4G LTE as our home internet. 
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tb174

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Update: I switched to unlimited Verizon today and have been streaming to my TV via an Apple HDMI adapter all night at SD quality. Best part is, I don't have to feel guilty about using priority data and I can stream whenever I want (including prime time). I guess i'll see you later, Viasat!
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Welcome to the party pal!
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Rich Holm

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My wife uses an "unlimited" jetpack for her office.  At 25GB it slows to a crawl...it is in the fine print.  
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Casual Observer

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Folks here are typically talking about Verizon's latest prepaid unlimited plan introduced in November 2018 - there's no data usage threshold however it is subject to (de)prioritization at any time due to network congestion. Best synopisis I've seen is at:

https://www.rvmobileinternet.com/verizon-overhauls-prepaid-introducing-unlimited-data-plans-for-jetp...


(Edited)
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Casual Observer is correct. I have probably used 80GB this month, no issues.
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Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

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I have used over 56GB in the first 13 days with my prepaid unlimited with no evidence of a slowdown, even in the evening hours.

Too many are confused between the Verizon prepaid and post paid unlimited plans.
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Indeed so. And the postpaid is suppose to have a video resolution downgrader to 720p, but I get 1080p with no buffering.

Have had the prepaid for a month now. My full report on the status of my home internet will be due shortly.
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Al Santayos

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I guess I am considered "post paid" on Verizon since I am a long time customer and just added the wireless internet to my cell phone plan. When I went over my 15GB and got throttled I could still watch 480p video and stream internet radio without buffering. If I tried anything over 480p buffering happened. My speeds were just under 600kps like around 580kps when I was throttled. Just checked my speeds which are typical, 7.5Mbs down 1.5Mbs up while it is raining hard enough where my VIASAT would be dropped out.
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Al Santayos

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Does rain affect cell wireless signal, like it can satellite internet? I have noticed cell issues during thunderstorms, but not sure of when it is just raining. With the rain getting lighter I tested at 12.2 Mbs down and 3.1 Mbs up just 3 minutes since the last test.
(Edited)
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Rain does not.

You are post paid Al. You need prepaid. Completely different plan, plan rules, etc. You can't even have the prepaid plan on the same account with your normal cell plan. But Verizon does offer prepaid cell plans too. I am thinking of money to that and save more $$$$.
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aabbcc

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I stopped keeping track of what I use. Also, playon pc recording has worked well for me. I think it was $30 for lifetime on sale a while back, got it before I had decent internet.

My phone is prepaid too so I get the discount. Got a text from Verizon tonight, until the 25th, unlimited talk, text, data, regardless of plan since I live in a disaster area. Does Viasat do anything? :)
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The Playon Desktop worked "okay" for me, but it tied up the computer and was quirky. Netflix recorded okay, but Amazon only at times and I never could get HBOGo to record okay for a whole hour. I suspect the lack of consistent speeds with Viasat was part of the problem. But with the PlayOn Cloud, no issues at all. And I can queue up say 8 shows and not worry about tying up a computer all day or night.
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aabbcc

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True about the tying up, but I just let it go overnight, not often though. I haven't had issues, Tubi, Amazon, Hulu, tried a couple others but not HBO. It also doesn't matter if I do other things at the same time, within reason of course. Assembled i5-8400, 24 gigs ram, nvme os drive.

Cloud's a good option, I just like "free" (after the one time), as long as it works anyway.
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Overnight is okay. But the problem is HBOGo would get stuck recording and kept recording eating drive space and data. Sort of like the Viasat meter looping issue in the early days. Of course, that never happened. Allegedly ;).
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aabbcc

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Guess I should have tested that last month.  They gave me HBO/Cinemax/Starz/Showtime free for three months when I renegotiated my Directv bill.  I watched a total of ~two movies during that time out of all those channels.  So I don't see much point in subscribing for myself....

I didn't see the looping issue, I did have the fictional usage spike with Wildblue one time, only time I ever went over and it was their issue.  One hour under cap a fair bit, next hour over cap, next hour back under to where it started (and I had logs of all data use).
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The Wildblue usage meter was rock solid for me. It was more accurate, dependable, and had a date/time stamp. The Exede/Viasat usage meter was none of this.

I don't have HBO to watch movies. Just like Netflix or Amazon, it is a common misconception you don't need those because you can just rent movies by snail mail or Redbox. It is the series produced by those companies that I watch. Outside of sports, I haven't watched network television in about 30 years. The quality of series those companies make far exceeds any junk on network television. And they are FINALLY making another Deadwood. Alas about 15 years too late :(.
(Edited)
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Al Santayos

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I have an antenna and watch broadcast TV, ha,ha. It does suck. I am eventually going to have to break down and get either Dish or Direct. My issue is watching sports. It seems every year more and more is removed from broadcast TV. College football is now down to only having 4 bowl games on the major networks. I can't believe they still have as much March Madness on the major networks as they do, especially since it is so popular.
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Only about a 1/4 of March Madness is on network now. But at least I can watch all the games now!
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Gwen

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Well im getting 2 bars of 4 g lte and i stream allday nonstop in 1080 p without any buffering just fine so id say go with the jetpack 
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J&J

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The Verizon Jet pack seems to be a popular alternative to this mess we have here at ViaSat. If people would spring for a real, active booster, they would work even better in the boonies.  If someone needs one, I hope Verizon has them because the FCC grants required 'type acceptance' to the carriers themselves to use much higher amplifier gain than other companies with similar products.
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Gwen you need to get out and plant more trees!  Quit streaming all day :)
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Gwen

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lol your right , it was 26 today to cold to work so i stayed home and in where its warm 
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Jab

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Gwen....pipe down on 1080...be conservative 720p or lower.  Conserve...Really.
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Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

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Gwen, do you have AT&T or Verizon?
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Jab

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Gwen indicated AT&T, but tends to comment on VZW...regardless, YMMV
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Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

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@Jab, what do you think of the 7730L Jetpack?
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@Steve

7730L is a LTE category 9 modem, 6620L is a LTE category 4 modem, which means if your local tower can deliver higher bit-rates, higher DL speeds will be seen...if a signal booster is not being used. Kay is using a 8800L, but her am test today is no better than what I can obtain.  As a reviewer noted, "If you have the 6620L, MHS815L, or an older hotspot or modem, you will see very significant speed improvements by upgrading to the 7730L"  But, if your tower is limited in bandwidth, higher speeds will never been experienced.

All of these Jetpacks need to be tethered to a battery source if 24x7 availability is wanted.  I would have to rehook up my 6620L to a low current wall charger, but I think it goes to sleep after a period of inactivity.  Currently, it is hooked to a cheap used eBay router's USB port, and it has not gone to sleep (turn off).  Point here, an external device (router) may have to be used to keep a Jetpack from turning off. Otherwise, its a daily chore to turn it on.

People can have issues with any Jetpack model, but other people don't.  My 6620Ls work fine, but Vet seems to have a glitch or two with his....YMMV, on any chosen model.  Would I buy a 7730L/8800L, the rural tower I use does not have enough bandwidth...No.  I have a pair of 6620Ls with signal booster, which means these newer models would have same speeds since MIMO is not engaged (tower must have MIMO engaged, and a signal booster can not be used, it defeats MIMO)
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Thanks for the information. 
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I have a 7730 on order to test it.

Ideally I would get an 8800 like Kay, but not there yet.

If you invest in a Pepwave Soho router it will power the mifi unit and also you could hook satellite internet in it too. You then decide which is your primary internet.
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Rique

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VeteranSatUser and others,

Years ago - before we were able to take advantage of a brief opportunity window and get on "Freedom" (there is much irony to that marketing term these days, hence the quotes), I tried the AC791L from Netgear, purchased from VZW with a contract (this was more than 2 years ago, contract has long since expired).

I ponied up for a WeBoost booster, installed it all myself and it worked... sort of. When it worked, it worked well, with almost no latency and decent speeds. The problem we had was that our signal was all over the map from 4GLTE all the way down to 1x. Given that I needed this for work, it just wasn't going to suffice - it was far too inconsistent and unreliable. Eventually, I started having issues with the booster and so now I find myself questioning if I should just try again once the weather warms up... without the booster (antenna only).

There's a question or two in here somewhere, so here goes: We range from a bar or less to 2 bars, we range from 1x all the way to LTE. We're on VZW because no one else in our area is worth a darn. We have the AC791L (contract expired and currently inactive), along with the booster and the antenna that came with it - is there a decent solution in there somewhere? Should I look into a different JetPack? Given my results with a booster, should we just give up on the booster and look into an antenna only? Are there other hardware options we should consider? How the heck can I determine if this is even worth pursuing again?

I am encouraged when I read of others on this site having decent results, but admittedly am also discouraged by my own past results, having dropped a few hundred - seemingly down a black hole. I would actually be OK to continue on with ViaSat, if not for the fact that they are strong-arming us to switch from our plan by essentially ensuring that our access is pitiful during prime time hours and weekends. Daytime speeds are decent, but evening speeds are crap.

Any advice from those of you trying to dig out of the same hole which we are trying desperately to extricate ourselves from would be tremendously appreciated! Thanks.
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Rique

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VeteranSatUser and others,

Years ago - before we were able to take advantage of a brief opportunity window and get on "Freedom" (there is much irony to that marketing term these days, hence the quotes), I tried the AC791L from Netgear, purchased from VZW with a contract (this was more than 2 years ago, contract has long since expired).

I ponied up for a WeBoost booster, installed it all myself and it worked... sort of. When it worked, it worked well, with almost no latency and decent speeds. The problem we had was that our signal was all over the map from 4GLTE all the way down to 1x. Given that I needed this for work, it just wasn't going to suffice - it was far too inconsistent and unreliable. Eventually, I started having issues with the booster and so now I find myself questioning if I should just try again once the weather warms up... without the booster (antenna only).

There's a question or two in here somewhere, so here goes: We range from a bar or less to 2 bars, we range from 1x all the way to LTE. We're on VZW because no one else in our area is worth a darn. We have the AC791L (contract expired and currently inactive), along with the booster and the antenna that came with it - is there a decent solution in there somewhere? Should I look into a different JetPack? Given my results with a booster, should we just give up on the booster and look into an antenna only? Are there other hardware options we should consider? How the heck can I determine if this is even worth pursuing again?

I am encouraged when I read of others on this site having decent results, but admittedly am also discouraged by my own past results, having dropped a few hundred - seemingly down a black hole. I would actually be OK to continue on with ViaSat, if not for the fact that they are strong-arming us to switch from our plan by essentially ensuring that our access is pitiful during prime time hours and weekends. Daytime speeds are decent, but evening speeds are crap.

Any advice from those of you trying to dig out of the same hole which we are trying desperately to extricate ourselves from would be tremendously appreciated! Thanks.
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@Rique

VZW will be dumping CDMA at end of 2019.  Your Smartphone or maybe AC791L can evaluate signal level at various locations inside/outside your house. If around Signal strength (RSRP): -100 dBm, a well position signal booster should work fine.

Booster's Yagi antenna must be elevated as high as possible. A good wideband booster will run $400.00+, but there are some single band boosters at less than $100 on eBay/Amazon for Band 13 only.  Only a Yagi antenna should be used for most gain



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Rique

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Jab, we have a booster which came with a Yagi antenna. I positioned the booster at that part of the roof where I seemed to be getting the best signal (right around a -102, which could improve to a -98 from time to time and could be as bad as -105, also).

The booster helped minimally for data, albeit it was more noticeable for calls. When I purchased the booster after having consulted with WeBoost, I was very clear with them that improved data speeds was my primary consideration. The booster and antenna were purchased on their recommendation, the AC791L was purchased on the recommendation of Verizon.

One of the frustrating things with the booster (along with the fact that it frequently seemed to provide no benefit at all) is that, when in use, I get error lights indicating a problem in positioning. This is particularly frustrating because I did not get the error lights the first several weeks of use. Accordingly, I've soured on the use of the booster and also wonder if perhaps I would benefit from a different MiFi or perhaps from abandoning the booster altogether in favor of an antenna-only setup.

Perhaps I just need to wait for VZW to upgrade their towers? I feel as if we are on the cusp of being in a workably situated place, but not... quite... there.
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Jab

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Chances are, with a pigtail adapter, that Yagi could plug into AC791L, and one can evaluate again.  I have no idea what connector is used on that Yagi antenna.
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Rique. Subscribe to DSLReports and hit me over there with a PM. You can find me easily, I am just older over there. I want to avoid cluttering this forum too much over alternative solutions. I will be happy to answer you there.

As for my Viasat connection, I have nothing to add as it has been off for 72+ hours now. Remind me why I am paying money for speeds below 500kbps?
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Rique

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I'm there, but can't find you. You can PM mr_rique, if you don't mind.
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SonyaA

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We have had a Wilson booster for quite some time its so old it only boosts 3G LOL but at the time cell signal just wasnt strong enough in the home and it did make it so we could make phone calls but internet not so much. Wilson was AWESOME as far as customer service and sent me a directional antenna for free since I didnt get much gain on the booster. But they are very finicky about placement you got to make sure the inside and outside antenna and booster are far enough away from each other or you will get errors kind of like feed back you get from a mic when its too close to stuff.  Been wondering if I can get enough extra bars with just an antenna on the jetpack but with the booster if I got another updated one I wouldnt have to worry about the jetpack being placed in one certain area. So still havent made up my mind LOL 
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SonyaA

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We have had a Wilson booster for quite some time its so old it only boosts 3G LOL but at the time cell signal just wasnt strong enough in the home and it did make it so we could make phone calls but internet not so much. Wilson was AWESOME as far as customer service and sent me a directional antenna for free since I didnt get much gain on the booster. But they are very finicky about placement you got to make sure the inside and outside antenna and booster are far enough away from each other or you will get errors kind of like feed back you get from a mic when its too close to stuff.  Been wondering if I can get enough extra bars with just an antenna on the jetpack but with the booster if I got another updated one I wouldnt have to worry about the jetpack being placed in one certain area. So still havent made up my mind LOL 
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For about $500 you can get a Wilson booster like you are talking about. Yes, it will do the same thing for 4G. Or, you can buy an external yagi antenna for your mifi device and spend $100 or so. Your choice.
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Jab

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3G VZW broadcasts farther than 4G VZW...if a 4G cellphone works at your place (even works for text message), then an antenna like this could work with a Jetpack and a pigtail., or with a signal booster. 
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SonyaA

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yeah phone called and texting work great and 4G on my jetpack in window on side of the house I know the tower is on gets 3 bars. And may wait on tree coverages to move in and see what I get and decide which way to go for sure. Also how do you guys keep power to the jetpack I have caught myself forgetting to plug it in a wake with no internet LOL 
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I just have my Jetpack powered through a cheap timer. It turns on for an hour every 6 hours, keeps the Jetpack battery charged very well.
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Jab

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I fetched an used TL-WR1043ND v1.x off of ebay....it is only used to charge Jetpack's battery, and it keeps 6620L unit awake  I did install OpenWrt 18.06.2, but I don't think this is needed.  If your Jetpack falls asleep, then consider installing OpenWrt.

I use this router now for Ethernet based printer, and charging Jetpack, 24x7.
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Al Santayos

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My Jetpack is a 6620L also. The only issue I have is it will slow down every couple weeks and need a reboot to cure it.

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