03 January, 2010

Back To The Past Of The Internet

I'm suddenly stuck in the last century.  I once used dial-up at blinding speeds like 14.4K, and I remember when 28.8k arrived, I was amazed watching downloads suck down so fast.  Then 56K arrived and it was all a bit "so what?" until ADSL technology ushered in broadband, and suddenly it was 5M speeds.

Which was all fine.  Because where I lived, in a capital city, in a well populated suburb, no amount of coaxing could get more than 250k out of the crap landline that Telstra provided and still hasn't bothered to upgrade, five years later...

But oh yeah - I moved, didn't I? Just south of the city, again a reasonably populated area, but no ADSL2 or ADSL2+ out here - all ADSL basic out here...  Once again, I fought and argued with the ISP and with Telstra but despite being rated for 2M speeds, about 120K was the best I ever got out of the line.

So I bit the bullet and got a USB, mobile broadband modem.  I pay about $75 per month on a prepaid basis, that gives me about 4Gb of download for the month, at an average speed of 200K, and is about as expensive as my landline broadband was at $50/mth plus $24.50/mth line rental for 5Gb of download at 120K.  Stupid ridiculous isn't it?  Anything Telstra touches turns to soft slippery overpriced poo, it seems.

And that was fine, except that I'm on a pension.  Sometimes, when you buy christmas presents and christmas goodies and so forth, the money isn't there for the mobile broadband, and you've cancelled your landline cos you use the mobile phone so much more anyway...

So my mobile broadband cut out almost a week ago and I can't renew it until next week.  And then I remembered...  A few weeks ago, I got a prize for recharging online - 500Mb of mobile data.  Hmmm.  Bluetooth. Check.  Mobile was getting m.facebook.com, albeit slowly. Check.  Computer has all the bluetooth drivers installed. Check.  Houston, we have a go.

The only problem is that my mobile phone doesn't have a 3G engine in sight, it's an old and basic Nokia 2360, so it's GPRS all the way.  Yep, after going all the way from 1200baud modems to 10M fibre links, I now officially have 1900baud connection speeds.....

And watching pages load patchily with images chopped off halfway through rendering, taking 2 - 5 minutes to do so, not loading scripts and all the usual accouterments of slow modem speeds, I have to conclude that I must have been a lot tougher and less prone to impatience back then...

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