Friday, 21 October 2011

Overheard in the Office

The Chairman has just taken delivery of a new Vodafone data dongle to use while on the move. On trying to use it, it fails to find a Vodafone data connection, despite the Chairman having a Vodafone mobile next to his computer with full signal strength.

After 18 minutes of sitting in a phone queue, a technician answers and enquires as to the problem.

Chairman: I have just taken delivery of one of your data dongles and it can't find a network.

Vodafone: Is the dongle flashing?

Chairman: Yes - two green flashes every 3 seconds.

Vodafone: Then it's working fine and just can't find a 3G connection.

Chairman: But why am I able to use my mobile and connect to the internet on a data channel?

Vodafone: Because your mobile is picking up a 2G signal.

Chairman: So your dongle is worse than using a mobile?

Vodafone: Yes, I'm afraid so. If you move around the building you may pick up a 3G signal.

Chairman: I've been all over the building and can't get a connection. The device is bloody useless - I may as well set my mobile into Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot mode and use it to connect my laptop to the internet. At least that works all the time.

Got home in the evening and tried it again - nothing! I Googled "Vodafone 3G coverage" and it's pitiful. I'm sending the bloody useless heap of junk back to Vodafone. Don't know how they have the gall to sell it.


  1. I am glad that I am baffled by dongles and therefore too ignorant to even contemplate buying one.

  2. SB: I was under the impression you are intimately familiar with dongles.

  3. You seem to be under the impression that incremental numbers equate with improvements - thus 3G is going to be better than 2G. Just think of Jaws and Jaws 2 : it is not always the case.

  4. I've got one of those, it works great (and abroad)? When it can't find a 3G network it usually drops back to 2G (which just means a slower connection) - I'm surprised at your experience. Sometimes I have to manually get it to hunt for networks and manually choose the one I want (often it picks the slower one), especially abroad, but that's fairly easy to do through the little utility that comes with it.

    Obviously there's a joke in here somewhere about comparing dongles, let's just take it as read.

  5. I have one of these from o2 and mine is also useless. I almost never get a 3g signal (I had one in Dublin and one in Hanover). It works on gprs/edge but it is so slow one can hardly download emails. The only time it is uselful is if there is a o2 hotspot in the hotel to which I am allowed free access instead of the usual £5 an hour or whatever. There are 3 of us in our small company and none of them work properly. I know of one person who has a dongle from Orange and that works really well.