Check out our more recent post, “Why we are loving our marine WiFi booster now“
Most of you folks know that I make my living by using the internet. I’m a graphic designer and web designer and I work out of our trawler. I absolutely have to have good internet access which totally clashes with living in a marina. I’ve come to learn that marina WiFi access in general, sucks. We were hoping that this wouldn’t be the case at our current marina, Snook Bight, but have found out that it isn’t much different from other marinas. Typically, there are too many folks trying to access it and it doesn’t help that we only have Century Link available on the island…vs. Comcast in other areas that offer cable internet (much faster).
Since moving to Snook Bight, I’ve had to deal with some really bad WiFi connections and some unproductivity. I’ve since, acquired a Verizon Jetpack device with mobile hotspot access and service which screams compared to the WiFi we have at the marina…the only issue is that I go through data like water. This being my first month with it, I’ve almost maxed out my 5GB plan in only half a month…it should really only be used as a backup, but internet access has been so bad that I’ve had to rely on it this month.
Last week I broke down and ordered a WiFi booster antenae, the same one my parents have on their vessel, Island Time. We ordered it from Island Time PC. I even posted a thread on a Cruiser/Living Aboard forum asking for advice about long range WiFi antenna’s and several folks responded back positively to the Island Time unit. So, today my father and Randy installed the antenna and we now have it up and running. Do I notice a significant difference? Not really, at least not yet. It should boost the signal we get from the marina WiFi, however, if the marina WiFi isn’t that good to begin with, it won’t help much. What I’m hoping it will help, is when the marina internet goes down (which is fairly often), I should be able to hook into another (unprotected) WiFi signal nearby and the antenna should be able to pick up a much wider range of these unprotected signals nearby. I guess, I’ll give it a real test this week when I’m back at work and I’ll have to do a follow up about the results.