This is more of an FYI than anything… I’m travelling this week, and am connecting via StarLink, the Elon Musk internet company. I know from experience in rural areas data is very slow and unreliable. In most of the area where I am this week, I do not have cellular coverage, and what I do have is spotty & often without data. It’s very rural to say the least.
Anhyhow, StarLink… I like it. The speeds vary quite a bit, but have never been unusable from a gaming point of view. I think the lowest I saw was 29mps, and that was in a torrential downpour. I’m not sure if the weather effects it or not. I understand it’s global & works as long as you can see the sky.
So, if you’re struggling for data to play, maybe this is an option for you. It’s certainly better than Dish Network.
I have used something similar in the past, but you have to have cellular data coverage. That’s a huge issue with that particular solution. Then, there’s the disparity on speeds and reliability based on your location. Cities and interstate highways are great… Or in rural areas, not so much.
Then, there’s the undeniable reality that 5G sucks. It’s an absolute downgrade from 4g in almost every way.
That’s an infrastructure issue more so than a tech issue there are huge swaths of the country that don’t have 5g yet outside of major transportation lanes from urban centers. Even older legacy 2G & 3G networks are spotty like that though.
That’s still infrastructure with enough towers you shouldn’t have to hand off to other network architectures with the exception of going to private wifi when available. Ours got better when buisnesses started to lease rooftops for small 5g towers. They’ll probably never work it out all together though because 6G will probably start rolling out before that happens.
I think it’s the tech… Since the 5g signals can’t penetrate anything more solid than a ghost’s fart, there’s will never be enough towers to make it truly viable. Every device will be 4g AND 5g until better tech comes around.
4g (which is actually a few different technologies) hands off to other 4g, 3g and wifi fairly seamlessly. I don’t know why 5g apparently can’t handle the same task.
For example, until I disabled it, if you started watching a YouTube video outside, then walked into the house, you’d lose the 5g connection (again, you can almost SEE the tower from the front yard). Instead of switching to 4g or our very robust wifi, you’d just lose data all together. You’d literally have to turn data off, then back on to continue any video.
This was one of the issues with 3g GSM. It couldn’t even hand off to the next tower very well. 5g is way worse.
I hope I’m wrong. Just about every phone has 5g, now. Maybe other phones do it better, but I’ve read other people making the same complaints.
I know it’s an issue on Galaxy 22s, iPhone - whatever the newest one is (neighbor has them), and my cheapo dual screen LG.
5G performance is dependent on so many factors - this include
Fundamentally, as applies to any frequency used above 30 Mhz, your best link quality (based on SQ) comes from a direct LOS between ‘stations’, so by the time you hit 5Ghz or so, it’s pretty much an absolute you need a good LOS and your transmission as received be above a minimum threshold to get a good SQ.
Digital communication tends to be, bar a few exception modes of operation, dependent on the minimum threshold previously mentioned being met or basically not excessively exceeded both directions.
5G isn’t limited to a specific narrow allocation, so you’ll find the SP has 5G frequencies in a lower freq allocation such as 3Ghz, and in some cases up in the 6 Ghz territory. So, if your ‘modem’ is linking at 5Ghz, you may find you get a better LQ, due to a more stable SQ, if you force the ‘modem’ to use the lower frequency allocation.
Signal degradation and attenuation - Up in the Ghz territory, almost everything that technically impedes the path increases the effect of already very sig degradation over distance as the impeding element causes signal attenuation by means of direct attenuation and with certain elements, substantial signal scatter. A single ply of tissue paper put in front of the waveguide of an LNB will cause very tangible attenuation - make it a wet ply and you’re talking at least a tenfold attenuation increase. Even smoke will have attenuation effects, and scatter due to the particles being both attenuator and a cause of scatter reflection.
And that just scratches the surface of the RF basics, at schoolbook textbook level.
Put it this way, I’ve worked both as a hobbyist and professionally in radio communications engineering (30 years, plus 10 years previously purely as a hobbyist) on frequency ranges from 30Mhz up into the THF territory, and literally once you get into the Ghz+ arena, it’s a matter of almost anything and everything makes a difference. Using wave guides as an example - any imperfection that alters the design symmetry impacts, even silly things like stray metal flash left over from poor manufacture has an impact.
I use 5G & 4G links entirely for BB, the secret to my pretty good throughout/SQ/LQ combination comes from employing an array - each output from my ‘modem’, which is a MIMO breakout for external antenna use, feeds a composite array of 3/4/5/6Ghz optimized waveguide antennas and each array is close aligned to each other for best LOS to a cellsite nearly 30 miles away - so thats 60dBd gain effectively on each mimo channel with inline digital attenuation that’s controlled by a PID loop which reads error rates and RSSI info and where ER is caused by too much sig on a given array, the appropriate calculated attenuation level is keyed in.
And to avoid questions - no, you can’t buy that system off the shelf - i manufactured it in my spare time to solve a dire 4G and zero 5G coverage problem. Even with the cost involved, makes sat systems quite poor in terms of SQ/LQ stability. In fact, i also use a homebrew coax-collinear antenna (20 element) on a modified 5G phone for when i need portable HQ datalinks in field ops.
it’s gone up a lot. they offered 3 year starting contracts including the hardware for 30 a month when they were first testing (to get people to sign up). I imagine most of those contracts have expired now.
edit: btw. you dont need high bandwith for gaming, unless the game is really crappy, you need a stable and low ping. youre not exchanging large packets with the server, but a great many of them at a high rate.