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Poor speed

SMARTY Maverick
SMARTY Maverick

I’m having a problem with speed on my Huawei b535 router using an unlimited phone sim.

router shows one bar of 4G and I get slow speed and then router will change to 4 bars of 4G+ signal but the download speed goes down if anything, sometimes struggles to get 1.5 mbps , is it network or router fault , coverage checker says it should be excellent



SMARTY Trendsetter
SMARTY Trendsetter

Hey @Nichola_1731669, the SMARTY plans with unlimited data have a clause in the terms & conditions stating they should NOT be used as a long term replacement for landline broadband. 

Perhaps your issues are as a result of this, or maybe SMARTY are working (disruptively) on their network infrastructure at your location. 

wait what? there is a clause saying they will limit your connection if you use it too much? but it specifically says there's no rate limiting etc..

nichola try switching to 3G and see if your speed improves. i've had awful speeds on 4G lately, usually during the evenings (peak times i guess?) and switching to 3G gives me a lot better speeds although obviously it isn't as fast as the 4G max speed i've had in the past.

SMARTY Trendsetter
SMARTY Trendsetter

Enjoy the 3G service while it lasts, @celozzip

SMARTY are switching of their 3G network infrastructure by the end of 2024. 

yeah i know i've just been using it the last week or so when the 4g goes down the toilet. been with smarty 3 months and with three before that for a few years and it's always been pretty fast. i've just come on here now to see if i can find out why it's gone slow.

SMARTY Trendsetter
SMARTY Trendsetter

Slow mobile data is often down to: 

  • Signal reception.
  • Local cell congestion.
  • Network fault(s) or other network issue (e.g. upgrade work). 
  • Operation of Three UK's TrafficSense - used for managing network bandwidth.



@celozzip  Three network (on which Smarty runs) are doing a fair bit of work on masts. I have just had a text warning of upcoming work in my area.

Have you completed a Network Status check?

Yes, from @Chalkychap way back in March 2023 :

”If you've got an unlimited data allowance, a word of warning about using mobile broadband on a permanent basis - section 5.15 & 5.16 of SMARTY's terms & conditions state: 

This SIM card should not be used as a permanent long-term alternative to home broadband. If we determine in our sole opinion that your use of the SMARTY Services is in breach of these Terms and/or exceeds that reasonably expected of someone using the Service for legitimate personal, noncommercial use, then we may at our discretion terminate (in accordance with Section 9), or Suspend (in accordance with Section 8), or  restrict your SMARTY Service. As an example, without limitation, we consider that if you regularly tether more than 8 devices that this is unlikely to be legitimate personal, non-commercial use.”

I know I am stating the obvious, but Smarty Mobile is a MOBILE PHONE service, not a cheap long term alternative to fixed line / fibre briadband.

SMARTY Moderator SMARTY Moderator
SMARTY Moderator

Hey  Nichola_1731669,

I am sorry that you have been having issue with coverage you can check your network status here but I recommend speaking to our customer care team who can give the most up to date account specific information available daily from 8am – 8pm.

I’ve checked status and that shows no issues and coverage checker for the area I’m in says should be good but must be the area because my phone is very poor also

Unfortunately, the online coverage checker isn't necessarily a reliable guide to the real-world reception for a given location, @Nichola_1731669. Reception might be better than predicted (by the computer models), sometimes its worse. 

Below the SMARTY coverage checker results, it states: 

Although we try to make these coverage results as accurate as possible, the information is only a guide. It doesn't guarantee availability in a particular location. The roll out plans are updated regularly and may change over time.

The site has real-world reception information for many locations in the UK.