Advertised vs. Actual Fiber Speed

Internet access discussion, including Fusion, IP Broadband, and Gigabit Fiber!
53 posts Page 4 of 6
by alxyang24 » Mon Nov 05, 2018 10:44 am
wfallen wrote:
Any reason why the Google router linked below would not improve wifi speeds on my home network? (The fiber installer told me that my existing Airport Extreme router was better than, presumably, a Sonic-supplied router, which I was not offered.)

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01MDJ0HVG/

The Ubiquiti 'router' recommended in responses above does not have wifi, and a second bit of expensive hardware (an access point) is required, not to mention configuration skills way beyond the 'plug-and-play' ones with which Apple has thankfully spoiled me.


It's possible the fiber installer was mistaken, Newer Airport extremes should still be okay, but it can be hard to tell the models depending on the model/shape size. Furthermore, Apple themselves have exited the business of continuing to make routers, so each year that goes by the extremes have no support or security patches.

The google router would be a potential option, but keep in mind that it only has one ethernet port out which may or may not be sufficient for your needs, you could always purchase another gigabit unmanaged switch (I recommend Netgear prosafe) to add additional capacity.

The Ubiquiti stuff linked is more of a hassle to setup, but its what you would call small business level, enterprise-lite equipment and would be very dependable. It does sound like overkill for your situation, you may want to consider their consumer line called "Amplfi' which is like the google router, but I think has some additional benefits like a display on the front and 4 additional ports on the back. Plus it looks like an apple product to an extent :). I work for an IT company and we deploy these to our residential customers, I'd consider the Amplfi line a worthy replacement of the Airport Extreme line for ease of use/setup. I believe google wifi system would probably be the same ease of setup.

https://amplifi.com/

The google wifi system and the amplifi are considered "Mesh" wireless would probably be most sensible if you want a lot of coverage without running wires. Both have the option of getting one base unit and seeing if that is enough for you.

EDIT: Overall though, consider that both the google and amplfi and other mesh wireless points or even regular routers made in the last few years will still probably not get you 1000 mbps of speed on wireless, you should only expect 900+ Mbps realistically while on wired with the appropriate wiring (CAT 5e/6 cables) and equipment. You should realistically hit 300-500Mbps on wireless in optimal conditions.
by dane » Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:00 am
Today Sonic is offering a whole-home managed WiFi solution, which takes some of the complexity out of the decisionmaking and deployment. We've partnered with eero, who now has a carrier management portal that allows us to deploy and manage their equipment for whole-home mesh WiFi, providing Sonic with support visibility and management capabilities that are key to our delivery of an end-to-end solution: from the internet backbone to the fiber optic network to the WiFi on your couch.

The solution is not yet available via our website, but you can get more info and obtain units sent by contacting support at 707-547-3400 or via support@sonic.net. A member tool for ordering will be launched in the future. Pricing is $8/month for the wired units (at least one is required), and $4/mo for each wireless beacon. For fiber customers, these units replace the current router, so they're a very cost-effective upgrade. Fusion and IP Broadband customers can also add the mesh WiFi, but must retain the DSL modem too.

If you have Ethernet in your home, you can mix and match wired and wireless units for maximum performance. Typically folks will deploy one unit for each 1,000sqft of home, but long shaped homes and multiple story homes may require more units.

I've also found them to be great for outdoor coverage, by plugging in a beacon to a sheltered outdoor outlet in my yard, and an outlet in a detached garage, I've finally got the coverage I've always wanted in the outdoor spaces where the family spends time. Basically, this means me on the lounge chair while the kids are all in the pool - this makes up a huge percentage of our summer weekends. ;)

But I should also be clear that WiFi cannot today deliver gigabit speed. To experience the full speed of your Sonic fiber connection, devices should be wired with Ethernet. So, that desktop computer in the home office and the 4K ultra-HD TV; take the time to wire those to Ethernet for the best experience.
Dane Jasper
CEO
Sonic
by wfallen » Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:19 am
Many thanks, alxyang24, for your helpful response. Will have a look at the Amplifi link you provided. From what you say, the Google unit may also suffice.

A nearby friend just had Sonic fiber hooked up. His speeds on wifi are around 300Mbps, i.e. three times my current Sonic speed on wifi.

I don't know why, but when here the installers here didn't discuss the option of using (and paying the monthly rental payment for) whatever the hardware which Sonic installed at my friends house (which is getting him the 300Mbps). The tech said the Airport Extreme router I've been using was "better." (Though, in his defense, I take your point about the difficulty of recognizing different models of that router.)
by dane » Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:22 am
wfallen wrote:
I don't know why, but when here the installers here didn't discuss the option of using (and paying the monthly rental payment for) whatever the hardware which Sonic installed at my friends house (which is getting him the 300Mbps). The tech said the Airport Extreme router I've been using was "better." (Though, in his defense, I take your point about the difficulty of recognizing different models of that router.)


Sonic's mesh wifi solution just launched last week, so that's new. You could contact support@sonic.net or 707-547-3400 to get into that equipment! (See my other reply here for more details.)
Dane Jasper
CEO
Sonic
by alxyang24 » Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:26 am
dane wrote:
Today Sonic is offering a whole-home managed WiFi solution, which takes some of the complexity out of the decisionmaking and deployment. We've partnered with eero, who now has a carrier management portal that allows us to deploy and manage their equipment for whole-home mesh WiFi, providing Sonic with support visibility and management capabilities that are key to our delivery of an end-to-end solution: from the internet backbone to the fiber optic network to the WiFi on your couch.

[...]


Well that is certainly cool! This might be more suited for a separate thread, but some questions arise from this post :)

1) Can these be put into bridged mode? Eero support docs and your wiki page says yes, but not sure if anything is different when managed by Sonic.
2) Do they still qualify for wire repair plan since they are replacing the routers?
3) Isn't the $8 per month for one base unit cheaper than the $10 for the router?
4) Can they be requested going forward now for new installs? Are they still "free" for the first 12months of the $40 Promo being rolled out for New Fiber customers?
by wfallen » Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:33 am
The Google unit costs about $100. As I understand it, the monthly rental fee for Sonic mesh equipment would be about $10…ad infinitum.

Seems to me that either the Google unit at $100, or an Amplifi Instant System at $179, would pay for itself in ten or 18 months, respectively.

I understand that service for the Sonic mesh equipment would be covered by Sonic's monthly fee.
by dane » Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:59 am
alxyang24 wrote:
Well that is certainly cool! This might be more suited for a separate thread, but some questions arise from this post :)

1) Can these be put into bridged mode? Eero support docs and your wiki page says yes, but not sure if anything is different when managed by Sonic.
2) Do they still qualify for wire repair plan since they are replacing the routers?
3) Isn't the $8 per month for one base unit cheaper than the $10 for the router?
4) Can they be requested going forward now for new installs? Are they still "free" for the first 12months of the $40 Promo being rolled out for New Fiber customers?


1) Because they replace the existing router, they would not be put into bridged mode in a typical configuration. You could do so, but that'd require either retaining the Pace or SmartRG, or supplying your own router - and then we wouldn't be able to support the wireless etc. I'd say, if you're a roll-your-own DIY sorta person and want to run your own router, just run your own WiFi as well. ;)

2) Yes, because they're part of our end-to-end solution, you'd get the wire plan and avoid technician visit fees. Basically, when we provide the end-to-end solution, we want there to be no surprises on costs in the future. If you take that over and we have to dispatch for something that turns out to be beyond our ONT, we'd bill for the tech visit.

3) Yes, the $8 base unit is less costly than our current $9.50 router, but it's only offered as part of a mesh configuration. In other words, you've got to take two or more units to have a mesh, so you'll spend $12, $16, or more, depending upon the size of the home.

4) Yes, these can be provisioned during installation at this point. During the beta period only a portion of our installers had them to offer, but now they're available universally. It's my guess that most customers will opt for the mesh setup, as it starts at just $2.50/mo more ($8+$4=$12) than the single-point WiFi router. But as with the single-point WiFi router, they're not free, customers can opt to spend $9.50, or $12, or more - but yes, any of these qualify them for the -$10/mo savings on our standard $40/mo intro offer.
Dane Jasper
CEO
Sonic
by wfallen » Mon Nov 05, 2018 12:12 pm
I now see a $99 Amplifi router, which would fit my needs. All I need is the single, built-in mesh point.

https://store.amplifi.com/products/ampl ... ant-router

My apartment is about 800 sq. feet. I might run an Ethernet cable from the Amplifi to my Apple TV brick. Otherwise, I prefer wifi for my Macbook Pro, phone, and iPad.

wfallen wrote:
The Google unit costs about $100. As I understand it, the monthly rental fee for Sonic mesh equipment would be about $10…ad infinitum.

Seems to me that either the Google unit at $100, or an Amplifi Instant System at $179, would pay for itself in ten or 18 months, respectively.

I understand that service for the Sonic mesh equipment would be covered by Sonic's monthly fee.
by alxyang24 » Mon Nov 05, 2018 12:40 pm
wfallen wrote:
I now see a $99 Amplifi router, which would fit my needs. All I need is the single, built-in mesh point.

https://store.amplifi.com/products/ampl ... ant-router

My apartment is about 800 sq. feet. I might run an Ethernet cable from the Amplifi to my TV. Otherwise, I prefer wifi for my Macbook Pro, phone, and iPad.

wfallen wrote:
The Google unit costs about $100. As I understand it, the monthly rental fee for Sonic mesh equipment would be about $10…ad infinitum.

Seems to me that either the Google unit at $100, or an Amplifi Instant System at $179, would pay for itself in ten or 18 months, respectively.

I understand that service for the Sonic mesh equipment would be covered by Sonic's monthly fee.


Wow, I missed the announcement about the instant, looks cool! You still may want to consider the original Amplifi HD base unit which looks like its $140-150 on amazon if you envision the need for the extra ethernet ports and maybe a tad better coverage/speeds (it has higher *theoretical* output), but if not, the instant looks good!

Check the bottom of this page
https://amplifi.com/instant/

The only thing that I'm planning to do on my install day is to keep the sonic provided router for 12 months since it's "free" to compare as baseline to my fancy equipment that I just upgraded in preparation for gigabit :). In addition to renting, you do get the sonic wire plan

https://help.sonic.com/hc/en-us/article ... -Wire-Plan

Which I see is probably not as valuable in the fiber world as there is no more modem, DSL filters, etc etc, but may be good for the average person.
by dane » Mon Nov 05, 2018 2:52 pm
wfallen wrote:
I now see a $99 Amplifi router, which would fit my needs. All I need is the single, built-in mesh point.

https://store.amplifi.com/products/ampl ... ant-router

My apartment is about 800 sq. feet. I might run an Ethernet cable from the Amplifi to my Apple TV brick. Otherwise, I prefer wifi for my Macbook Pro, phone, and iPad.

wfallen wrote:
The Google unit costs about $100. As I understand it, the monthly rental fee for Sonic mesh equipment would be about $10…ad infinitum.

Seems to me that either the Google unit at $100, or an Amplifi Instant System at $179, would pay for itself in ten or 18 months, respectively.

I understand that service for the Sonic mesh equipment would be covered by Sonic's monthly fee.


But a mesh with a single point isn't any different than just using the residential gateway (router and firewall and WiFi all in one) that Sonic supplies..?

Generally speaking, mesh units go behind routers. But, eero is different in that it can also be the gateway router, so for those on fiber, it can replace that unit. Not sure if Amplifi can - but point is, investing in a mesh access point is only worth doing if you are deploying two or more units. That increased coverage is the selling point of mesh, beyond the coverage possible from a single access point (whether built into a residential gateway with routing functionality or not.)
Dane Jasper
CEO
Sonic
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