8/26/2009 12:40:00 PM
‘Me and my femto’
Why were you interested in a femto?
I quite fancied the idea of having a personal base station in my home. The added bonus is that most of my mates are on either Orange or O2 and I quite liked a comeback from all the braggarts on O2 declaring premature victory in the gadget wars with their iPhones.
How did you go about getting one?
I bought it through the Vodafone website. I paid the full £160 one-off fee. I didn’t fancy another on-going monthly charge.
How was the sales process?
There was no integration with my existing Vodafone account which was annoying. My family account contains four mobiles, but I had to re-enter my debit card and the mobile numbers that would use my Femto. In addition, you couldn’t track the progression of the order – something that is standard in nearly every e-commerce site (not only mobile) in the world.
Was it easy to set up?
In the home, it is idiot proof – just plug into power into an Ethernet port on the back of the broadband router, fill in a web form, wait for Vodafone to remotely configure the Femto and wait.
What it’s been like?
Fantastic. I’m in the suburbs and about 1km from the nearest Vodafone base station. Pre-Femto I got about a 60% signal quality and only GPRS data. If I was very close to the mast, I got HSPA.
Now, I’m at 100% signal with HSPA throughout the house & garden. Predictably, download speeds for emails have noticeably improved, and less predictably, so has battery life. But what I am most impressed by is that voice quality is much better. I have only had one dropped call and I’ve only had to reboot the femto once.
Does it stand out in your living room?
Not at all. My femto lives in the same space as my TV, Sky+ box and broadband router. The flashing lights could drive a traffic policeman crazy, but it’s the same problem with the broadband router. Both of them deserve to be in a closed space under the stairs.