The idea of proper land-line rivalling broadband is a dream many of us hold dear, and it seems like networks are finally starting to take notice of the potential demand. Companies like Relish offer mobile broadband in limited areas, and Three introduced its own plan earlier this year. Now EE is moving in with its own deals, but don't expect them to be generous and cost-effective.
The new 4GEE Home Router is designed to let people access EE's extensive network and use it to power the data connection on their home devices. According to the network it's ready to go straight out of the box, offers speeds up to 90MBps, and can connect to 32 different devices around the home. It's supposedly designed as an alternative for people who can't get regular broadband speeds over 10MBps.
Here's the bad news: this thing is really not cheap. In fact, compared to the prices you'll pay for fibre or regular home broadband it seems like extortion.
The cheapest plan is £25 a month and gets you a measly 10GB of data. 50GB is £50 a month, 100GB is £75GB, and 200GB is £100 a month. Those are all on 18 month contracts, with the router thrown in free of charge. If you want the router on its own, with the intention of paying pay as you go, it'll cost you £130 and comes with 10GB of pre-loaded credit.
Each plan comes with a cap to ensure you won't go over your allowance, and you can buy top up credit of various sizes. £10 gets you an extra 5GB, £15 for 10GB, and £20 for 15GB.
This is my reaction right now:
I think you'd have to be pretty desperate for that. Three and Relish offer much better value, though admittedly they are far more restricted than EE from a geographical/signal perspective. Plus, if you're in any sort of semi-urban area you should be able to get decent broadband or fibre for a fraction of that price.
Someone living in the country where broadband infrastructure is terrible might disagree, then again I suppose they're the type of person EE is marketing this towards.
The 4GEE Home Router is available today, apparently available in-store, online, and via telesales. I can't see it on the EE website, however, so if this appeals to you (somehow) you might have to wait a few hours for everything to update.