Vondafone GPRS Internet / Europe Gloabal Roaming

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by Lonney, Feb 20, 2004.

  1. Lonney

    Lonney Guest


    Anyone out there using Vodafone GPRS for internet access?

    I'm thinking about getting a Bluetooth GPRS phone so I can access the
    net when out and about.

    From what I can find it would be pretty simple to use Bluetooth
    between my Apple PowerBook and a Bluetooth / GPRS cellphone rather
    than getting a PCMCIA card which is out of the question since Apple
    PowerBook 12" models dont have a PCMCIA slot.

    All I use the net for is really email, msn, irc and web browsing.

    Also has anyone had any experence with Global Roaming and GPRS? I'm
    going to the UK / Europe in a few months time for a while, I'm
    guessing I'm better off to use a Vodafone provider in the UK while I
    am there?

    Infromation on the costs and setting it all up is a bit sketchy. But I
    see its based on traffic which seems a bit old skool.


    Lonney, Feb 20, 2004
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  2. GPRS through Bluetooth works fine, presumablely this is pretty easy to setup
    on an Apple, especially if you are running OSX

    All the pricing is on the Vodafone website
    http://www.vodafone.co.nz/services/07.a.15_autoroam.jsp specifically

    GPRS data is generally charged at NZ$30/Mb. If you can get an account with
    a GSM carrier in Europe you should be able to get it significantly cheaper

    Old school getting charged for traffic? Is probably cheaper for you that
    getting charged per minute you're online
    Nathan Mercer, Feb 20, 2004
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  3. Lonney

    Chris Guest

    I see the the optimiser software will work with a phone or the card.
    Heres a full list of mobile data countries as well
    Chris, Feb 20, 2004
  4. Not all operators have optimiser installed. And not even all Vodafone
    operations have it.

    Also, at $30/MB it's way cheaper to get a local SIM card, prepay. In the US
    T-Mobile offer all you can eat GPRS for US$19.95 a month. The problem is
    that not many offer this on prepay. If this is an option, get a wi-fi card
    for internet while around the world, and fallback to GPRS if no wi-fi
    service is available. I did that a couple of times in the US and Australia.
    Way cheaper.

    Mauricio Freitas
    Handhelds, mobile: http://www.geekzone.co.nz
    Bluetooth guides: http://www.geekzone.co.nz/content.asp?contentid=449
    Performance Centre (Pocket PC reviews):
    Mauricio Freitas, Feb 20, 2004
  5. Lonney

    Alastair Guest

    Sure is. As far as I'm aware, OS X.2 and X.3 include native support for
    Bluetooth. I have a DSE USB bluetooth adaptor which works great. To get
    an Internet connection over GPRS, it's just a matter of firing up
    Internet Connect, selecting 'USB Bluetooth Modem Adaptor' as the
    configuration and entering *99# as the phone number. If 'USB Bluetooth
    Modem Adaptor' doesn't appear under the configuration options, then you
    may need to go into Network Preferences and set it up there.

    Note that some Sony Ericsson handsets have some issues with dropping
    connections when set up according to the above instructions. You can get
    around this problem by using an appropriate modem script; feel free to
    email me if you need help with this. Otherwise, http://www.geekzone.co.
    nz is a great place to go for help.

    Good luck and enjoy your wireless freedom!

    Regards, Alastair.
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    Note that my supplied email address is low priority and responses may be
    Alastair, Feb 20, 2004
  6. Perhaps what he means, is that you pay a flat rate which includes unlimited

    Definitely get an account in the UK, you could probably get a significantly
    better deal than you can here.

    In fact, I would buy a prepaid simcard in most countries which I spend a
    week or more. They are just so cheap to buy.
    Jed Meisterdude, Feb 20, 2004
  7. Lonney

    Chris Guest

    I guess this is the advantage of the SIM card system, though I assume that
    this would only work with a phone not the moblise card, still thats 1 less
    thing to have to cart around. I understand wi-fi is becoming more
    accesable as well in LAX and no doubt other airports but also in Star bucks
    Chris, Feb 20, 2004

  8. Your SIM will work in a GPRS PC card as well a phone

    Its up to the operator on whether they will give you a SIM card on prepay
    that has GPRS access (at a reasonable rate)

    Hotspots are literally just about every where in metro cities in the US,
    WiFi is very nice (read fast, reliable)

    Often you don't have to pay at all, sometimes businesses view them as a
    drawcard to use their services (cafes, hotels, conference venues etc)
    instead of their competitors, othertimes the WiFi is just sitting there
    asking to be used
    Nathan Mercer, Feb 21, 2004

  9. You will find that most often prepay doesn't have GPRS access, or doesn't
    have it at a reasonable rate when compared to a normal account SIM
    Nathan Mercer, Feb 21, 2004
  10. When you get there buy a prepaid sim and ditch it at the end of your trip.

    You'll need to do this in each country (figure on $10 base SIM price)

    Roaming is _expensive_. Last time I check Vodafone were still charging
    $3/min to divert to europe and the per minute costs in europe run at
    $1.50-$2.50/min local calls, vs 4-10c using a prepay.
    Uncle StoatWarbler, Feb 21, 2004
  11. Lonney

    Chris Guest

    Prices have come down since then.
    Also the data has come down from $65/MB to $30/MB
    Chris, Feb 21, 2004
  12. Lonney

    Lonney Guest

    Thanks for the info. Yup the Bluetooth phone/modem/MacOS X setup is
    pretty simple, I mean its MacOS it *is* simple. Unlike dodgy old
    Windows XP ;)

    I didnt figure the more populated parts of the world would have lots
    of WiFi around, I have an Apple Airport Extreme 802.11g card installed
    so that should do the trick... and a few tools for finding networks..
    anyone written a monitor mode driver for the Airport Extreme cards
    yet?? ;)

    I'll probably pick up a prepay sim in the UK, just be nice to have
    GPRS to fall back on when there is no WiFi around mooch off.

    Anyhow I sus it all out when I'm there and see what sorts of deals are

    What I ment by data based costing being old skool is I remember when
    dial-up was like that, even then at $2 a mb it wasnt too bad, email &
    local data was free, now I pay $20 a month for 250 hours which is bit
    more like it. overall the cost of data in NZ is still a joke.. And
    GPRS data rates are a total rip off in NZ at least.

    Its the year 2004 and you'd expect to get cheap mobile gloabal roaming
    internet access, well thats them backwards telco's for you I guess...
    then we still aint wearing tinfoil suits either haha.

    Thanks again..

    Lonney, Feb 22, 2004
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