Update 3 Home Hub Review – In this guide, we reviewed three 4G hub routers known as the ZTE MF286D. credibility and the value of three home broadband
Instead of using your phone line to connect to the Internet like traditional landline broadband, the Three 4G Hub uses the Three mobile network to help you get online.
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Three broadband routers work just like regular broadband routers. You plug it into a power outlet, turn it on, and create a WiFi signal that you can connect to and go online. The only difference is how 4G uses the network rather than three broadband phone lines.
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You also get unlimited data with 3 home broadband. You won’t have to worry about hitting your limit or incurring additional charges for enough data downloads.
When you sign up for Three Broadband, you enter your zip code on the Three website, just like you would when buying a regular broadband deal. when using this information All three can check to make sure you have a good cellular network signal in your area. To make sure you’re getting the best speed with your new home broadband device.
After ordering You will receive your new 4G hub router in the mail within 1-2 business days, along with the SIM card you need to insert into the router. There’s no need to send three engineers to your address – you can set up a contact whenever you want.
As long as the 4G hub is in “like new” condition, you have the option to return the router after 30 days if you are dissatisfied with the quality of service.
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Three also sells 5G hub routers at higher prices. The device uses a 5G network to deliver faster speeds than three 4G hubs.
The machine is not big, but not small, and the weight is right. Similar to your normal WiFi router, it sits on a small base instead of laying flat like other WiFi routers.
To start using Three 4G Hub, the first thing you need to do is insert a SIM card into the device. You want the bigger SIM card they send you instead of the smaller micro or nano SIM that you can punch out.
Once you put the SIM in place Push the SIM into the slot as shown. until you click the SIM into place.
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Then plug in your 4G router and turn it on using the switch on the back to the right of the power port.
The hub takes about three minutes to set up. when ready The indicator on the right will light up and turn blue. If it turns green then you are getting only 3G signal instead of 4G signal.
At this point, you can either connect to WiFi using the details on the bottom of your router or plug in an Ethernet cable to get a wired internet connection. You can also plug in an external antenna if you want. But found it unnecessary – the included internal antenna works well to give you a good signal.
There are three states in the quick start guide that the device is best placed on the window. And even small movements can make a difference in how fast you get.
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From our test We found it to be very accurate. It is important to place the router in the right place.
Three recommends that you avoid placing any obstructions, such as screens, between the router and the window. But we found that it didn’t make a huge difference to our speed or latency.
Standing about 10 meters from the router, using the Samsung Note 20 Ultra we got a download speed of 23 Mbps and an upload speed of 17 Mbps.
When using a wired connection between the 4G hub and our PC We got download speeds of 199 Mbps and upload speeds of 43 Mbps.
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This was the best test we could do in a day. A total of five tests were performed. Speeds sometimes drop in the 50-75 Mbps range, but never lower.
It’s worth noting that our address has a good 4G signal – there’s a mast at a very high point about 50 meters from us. We currently live in an area without 4G network coverage.
Before purchasing Three’s 4G hub, be sure to use the network coverage map to determine the best indoor and outdoor 4G signal based on your location. Your speed may be lower than we can.
In each game, we experienced very little lag when connecting the 4G hub to our PC via the included Ethernet cable. and there was no noticeable difference in latency.
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Our gaming experience was very smooth, with pings to nearby servers in the range of 20-30ms, which is around 5-10ms higher than what we get on a normal broadband connection. This small increase didn’t have much effect on our in-game performance.
To see footage of our gameplay with a 4G hub, check out our YouTube review of this home broadband router.
In this section we saw how much this device will cost. How do contracts work? And is it worth buying?
All three broadband deals are pretty flexible. 4G Hub is available in either 24-month or 12-month plans, each of which comes with unlimited data. So you don’t have to worry about usage limits.
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Whether you sign a 24-month or 12-month broadband contract with Three, there are no upfront costs and shipping is free.
When it comes to price and value, using a 4G hub is cheaper than a landline broadband plan with similar speeds. If you sign up for a 12 or 24 month contract, your monthly costs will be very reasonable.
However, please read the terms and price terms carefully – three providers usually offer this device at a discounted price for the first six months – at the end of this period. Your monthly expenses will increase. which is something to be aware of
Additionally, three increase your monthly broadband costs by 4.5% every April. This is important to note. Especially if you are buying a long contract.
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If for any reason you are dissatisfied with the service You can return your hub for three within 30 days, as long as the devices are in “like new” condition.
Basically It will allow you to test three broadbands and see if they have the highest speed and reliability at your address. during this time It’s a good idea to get the hub through its stages. including gaming tests (if there is a gamer in the house) and video streaming on multiple devices simultaneously.
Also, please check the router in the evening to see if there is network congestion in your area. in some parts of the UK Three broadband channels can be oversubscribed. Although in most areas this is not the main problem.
This means that if you want You can use this device with another SIM card before the end of the contract.
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4G hubs have some drawbacks. Although our gaming experience is very smooth. Latency isn’t perfect. And you don’t get the minimum speed guarantees that some broadband providers offer. You must be careful to ensure that the router is placed in the correct location in your home to achieve the fastest speed.
However, you have the ability to test the router for a month to make sure you get good download and upload speeds. And return the router if the performance is not up to standard.
You can also use the 4G hub in a caravan or while on holiday in the UK. Unlike some competing products such as Vodafone, you can use the hub router without limits.
Overall, we gave Three Home Broadband a rating of 4.5 out of 5. For many UK families, Three at Home offers a fast and cost-effective way to get online.
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If you’re looking for an alternative 4G home broadband solution that offers more flexibility or faster speeds. Here are some of the competing products and their pros and cons.
To learn more about these types of alternative broadband solutions, such as 4G hubs, read our 4G router reviews.
In addition to the 4G router, the ZTE MF286D, Three also sells a 5G router, the Zyxel NR5103E.
This device costs slightly more than a 4G hub and isn’t available on a pay-as-you-go basis. However, it delivers maximum speed using three 5G networks.
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Except for speed, this 5G router works like three 4G hubs, using the same modern WiFi standards. Up to 64 devices can be connected simultaneously. and comes with unlimited data.
Finally, if you can get 5G from your address.
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