Here at Go Wireless we've been asked a few questions about connectivity when it comes to 3G/4G/LTE gateways, modems and routers. This guide is here to help you understand and troubleshoot a few of the basics. First, I will go over the difference between the mobile technologies, and then we will look at why your connection may not be working.

3G/4G/LTE - Whats the difference?

3rd Generation, 4th Generation and Long Term Evolution. These are different forms of mobile technologies. Below you can see an example of Vodafones frequency bands and when they were released:

NZ Network Bands / Frequencies

The Vodafone NZ mobile network operates on the following frequencies:
2G - GSM 900MHz.
2G - GSM 1800MHz.
3G - 900MHz (U900) in rural and marine areas (up to 120 kms offshore)
3G - 2100MHz (U2100) in urban areas.
4G - 700MHz (LTE)(Band 28)
4G - 1800MHz(LTE) (Band 3)
4G - 2600MHz (Band 7)

The main difference between these mobile technologies are the speed and frequency. The lower the frequency, the greater the transmission through free open space, but this in turn causes slower throughput or speed.

This is where 4G-LTE comes in. You can get higher throughput with Band-28 compared to 3G, and you can also receive these transmissions in a rural setting.

Troubleshooting your mobile connection.

There are a few things to check here, and I believe its best if I list them:

1. Ensure that there is data on your SIM - this happens more than you would expect.

2. Ensure that the SIM is inserted the correct way up - If you are inserting a SIM into a Teltonika, make sure the gold plate is facing out. Otherwise there should be a diagram on other units.

3. If you are using a SIM that was provided with an RBI (Rural Broadband Initiative) router, you will have to make sure that this SIM hasn't been locked to the ISP provided router. Often this is the case with RBI connections, often they can also be locked to a specific tower also. If this is the case, you will have to contact your ISP about unlocking the SIM.

4. Check that you are connected to the right APN - APN stands for Access Point Name. Teltonika uses an Auto APN feature that will automatically select the correct one for you. If this doesn't work, un-tick Auto APN and type in "internet". Usually, this will work across most providers.