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Clever_Proxy
Premium
join:2004-05-14
Villa Park, IL

Clear in Chicago

I'm going to check out the service after work today. Anyone have it yet? Does anyone LIKE it?

From what I have been seeing, people are having horrible latency problems.


daragh

join:2003-03-11
Arlington Heights, IL

I was just in the new Clear store in the Ogilvie train station. Calvin there was very helpful, but the district manager is in the Michigan Ave. store if you have a lot of questions.

I am interested in the service, but noted that the deals on the Internet are $5-$10 more than available in the store. The store guys are on commission and super-helpful so if you want the personal touch, the extra $120 for a 2-year plan might be worth it (Calvin even offered to come to my house so I could do a speed-test before ordering). Also, there is a referral program, so if you refer 5 people the $120 is cancelled out.

I'm interested in other's experience too. My concerns are speed/latency (of course), but also E911 and how it will work with my alarm system. I will continue reading here, but look forward to a good coverage (excuse the pun) of Clear in Chicago.


RushenYYZ
Premium
join:2007-05-20
Chicago, IL
Reviews:
·NetTalk
·Net Virtua
reply to Clever_Proxy

I actually dealt with Calvin as well and he came to my house to show me the speed I would get.

I live on Randolph and Desplaines and my building has a terrible 2Mbps connection that i've seen drop to 500Kbps leaving me unable to work (I VPN to my office), game, or watch youtube videos at a decent speed.

So, I decided to give Clear a try and on average i'm downloading at 3 to 4.5Mbps and get an amazing upload on average around 1Mbps or above.

So, all in all, i'm pretty happy with the service. I hoped on Xbox live last night and played Annex on GoW2 and didn't experience any lag. So far so good (it's only been one day).

However, they did have an outage yesterday that lasted from 7 until 10:15 or so at night. I was on the phone with their tech support for an hour trying to troubleshoot my setup until it was announced that there was an outage.



Clever_Proxy
Premium
join:2004-05-14
Villa Park, IL

Thanks everyone for your responses! I'm actually going to go to the Michigan Ave. store today after work to see it live. My curiosity is beginning to overwhelm me. I'm thinking, for now, that I'm not going to replace my Comcast home internet service for now. I just don't know if I trust the service that well. I do want to get a card for my laptop though.

I'll shall keep everyone updated!



MrHootz

@clearwire-wmx.net

I've been using it for about an hour and, unless something changes drastically, Clear WiMax will NEVER replace cable/dsl. Seems more like a competitor to dial-up...



gfagsfdfd

@comcast.net

What speeds are you getting, and what are you paying for??


danclearwire

join:2009-11-03
Lockport, IL
reply to Clever_Proxy

Using it now in Lockport, IL and I'm getting good download, consistently over 4 meg. Uploads not as good, about 300k, about the same as my DSL. Tomorrow, I will test on the train.



jtl
Premium
join:2002-02-14
Arlington Heights, IL
reply to Clever_Proxy

I've been talking to one of the guys in the Schaumburg store, and he's been extremely helpful and eager to answer my questions. It's clear (hah) these guys are on commission.

I'm in Arlington Heights and I currently have WOW which has been good for me. What's making the Clear offering attractive is the pick-two option, with home and mobile access for $55/mo.

Today I noticed, like others have stated here, that the web deals are slightly better. The pick-two is $50/mo. They also have a couple offerings that aren't advertised in the store.

I'm getting a nagging feeling, though, that I'm in the "Monorail" episode of _The Simpsons_. I'd really like to get a feel for what performance is really like here in Chicago.

I've been told there's a 7-day period at the beginning of your service that allows you to decide whether or not this is for you. If I go for the service, I am going to put it through its paces with Skype, online video, etc.

I appreciate any Chicagoans' postings here about their experiences!



hcb123459

@clearwire-wmx.net
reply to Clever_Proxy

Just signed up for service, speed is horrible... agree with other poster this is competition for dial up at best... peaked at about 200KB during a large FTP transfer, but is slowly grinding to a halt... averaging only 60KB down. Will try a few more test later today but it looks like I am going to cancel the service.



dafdfsa

@comcast.net

Please post speedtest.net resolute not the speed when you are downloading off of the internet.



Clever_Proxy
Premium
join:2004-05-14
Villa Park, IL

I tried it, and, meh...

Compared to other wireless services, clearwire rocks! I wouldn't dare consider replacing my home connection with their service though. I'm a power user, and this kind of connection is what drives power users crazy.

When my checkbook looks a little better, I will be picking up one of their wireless cards. As of now, I don't want to be tied to another monthly expense. No clearwire for me.


LineNoise

join:2006-06-25
Downers Grove, IL

2 edits
reply to Clever_Proxy





The speedtest is really messed up, I was getting 4mb/s not sure why it's not working now.

This is what I got when I first plugged it in:


I'm downloading at 7KB/s, it's ridiculous no matter what I download from a website. No torrents. Is there anyone else having these problems?



MrHootz

@clearwire-wmx.net
reply to Clever_Proxy

Results from out in Elk Grove Village @ the DFT datacenter located at Busse and Devon.

Was surprised to find I have full bars in this fortress of a datacenter. Most cellular is spotty inside the building. Guessing there must be a tower real close.

Also did a ping test while driving North on I90 and only noticed a couple short drops. Couldn't watch the ping stat details real closely as I was driving. Tonight I should be heading south on Busse to Lombard so I'll see how that looks.

LineNoise

join:2006-06-25
Downers Grove, IL
reply to Clever_Proxy

Light just went red, called support and while I was on the phone with them an email popped up.

"Marketwide outage Chicago"

No ETR, Engineers are working on it.

He's probably blowing smoke up my @55, but we'll see. I miss Xohm.


danclearwire

join:2009-11-03
Lockport, IL
reply to Clever_Proxy

I tried on the Metra - Heritage Corridor, Joliet to Union Station.
Lockport Station - Good.
Lemont Station - Fair
Willow Springs Station - N/A
Summit Station - Fair

Along the way many dropouts. The signal started to get consistent along I-55. A deadspot in Bridgeport, then good the rest of the way in.


MrHootz

join:2009-11-04
60642
reply to Clever_Proxy

I will most likely be taking the Blue Line from Division out to Rosemont tomorrow and then the Pace bus into the Elk Grove industrial area so I'll be sure and do some more mobile tests.



jtl
Premium
join:2002-02-14
Arlington Heights, IL
reply to Clever_Proxy

The sales rep I've been dealing with in Schaumburg just called to say that if you ask in the store for the web price, they'll give it to you.

Just mentioning this because the web deals are slightly better than the retail stores.


Capt Pischar

join:2004-07-18
reply to Clever_Proxy

I feel like I am going through the same old thing with Clear as I did with DSL. I live in Naperville and it turns out only half of Naperville can get Clear and the other part cannot and of course, the latter is where I live. We live in an unincorporated area which is surrounded by new subdivisions. We are always on the outside looking in, promised service that everyone else is getting but then the companies never follow through and we are stuck with nothing. I have been waiting for ages for WiMAX to come to us as it would be the perfect solution for my work. (if it works as advertised) But wait, a big clue there is that there has been NO advertising for this service and not even a mention in any Chicago newspapers. Hmmm....not a good sign in my book. So what I am asking is if anyone in Naperville can get Clear and has it, what is the service like, etc... and does anyone know when the rest of the town will go live? This last question is what I want answered but no one, not even Clear can help me on that issue....not good for a large company as this. So far, I'm not a happy camper and I don't even have the service yet....


LineNoise

join:2006-06-25
Downers Grove, IL

Where in Naperville are you?

There's a tower off of Ridgeland Avenue (Naper and Ogden area) that's being equipped right now, if not already equipped. I haven't been by there in a few weeks. It'll be soon.

If you're off Royce, then yeah, I'll agree coverage sucks. It used to work fine there, but they did something in april/may that took out the coverage and it hasn't returned.



jtl
Premium
join:2002-02-14
Arlington Heights, IL
reply to Capt Pischar

...But wait, a big clue there is that there has been NO advertising for this service and not even a mention in any Chicago newspapers. Hmmm....not a good sign in my book.
This week was Clear's "soft launch." The major marketing blitz starts at the beginning of December, so I was told by the retail guy.

LineNoise

join:2006-06-25
Downers Grove, IL
reply to Clever_Proxy

So I'm using it now and it's definitely different then when Xohm was in town, but now it's useless. Browsing is slow and doesn't complete at times. And it's not just location I'm at right now, on my way home I tested it and made sure I was on different base stations but had the same result. So it's something in my area, maybe not Chicago as a whole.

I've tried downloading a couple files from websites and yesterday the fastest I would get was 4KB/s. Today, I started the BlackBerry desktop manager (for the drivers) and it started at 200Kb/s and now it's running at 2.8KB/s.

If this doesn't define useless I don't know what does. And the download just failed.

Capt Pischar

join:2004-07-18
reply to LineNoise

I'm located in South Naperville between Book road and 59. Right behind Neuqua HS. Looks like I may have to wait until December then for coverage in my area? Oh, I'll wait as long as it works.


glamajamma

join:2009-11-07
Chicago, IL
reply to Clever_Proxy

I just signed up for the service and I came home to realize they are having an outage. Even with 5 bars I wasn't getting decent service. I am currently setup in an area in my house that only gets three bars and it takes forever to load a speedtest much less run it. If this does not improve by Monday it goes right back to Clearwire.


mierwins

join:2004-03-18
Montgomery, IL

What a joke!

Got my cards on Friday, had 6 bars @ work and stuck at "obtaining IP". Maybe they forgot to increase their scope from the initial 10 test users.

Get home and I'm supposed to be right in the middle of a 4G area with great coverage. Turns out I can get 2 bars right by the windows sometimes and other times it says "no networks found". Trying to connect with the two bars just gives me a "connecting to 4g" message for a bit, then reverts to 3G.

So far I've spent about 3 hours on the phone w/ techs and everyone says everything is great in Chicago and no problems. Although the last tech said he did see a few tickets out of Chicago so he thinks there might really be an issue.

How much are we getting paid for the beta testing?



bradhatter

@comcast.net
reply to Clever_Proxy

Just what is Clearwire doing differently here (US)? And why? I spent some time abroad over a year ago and used a branded Clearwire service in an apartment in Dublin and elsewhere in Ireland and was thoroughly impressed. Speeds were consistent, latency was low, and it was pretty cheap to boot.

I live in the Chicago area and was seriously considering the service, but I'm not so sure now.



Clever_Proxy
Premium
join:2004-05-14
Villa Park, IL

Well the service is brand spakin' new in this area. It might need a little time to mature. That seems to be the trend with any new service. I remember the shaky days of comcast/ATT Broadband. When I got my first cable internet connection I was plagued by horrible latency and frequent outages. I haven't had an area wide outage with my Comcast connection in a long time. I'm sure things will get better.

I guess I'm going to wait until the service matures a bit before I make any kind of jumps. I can honestly say I don't want to pay to "beta test" their network like the rest of the crowd.


LineNoise

join:2006-06-25
Downers Grove, IL

I agree the service is new, but it's most definitely not brand spankin' new. I was using this service over a year ago in Chicago and the build-out has been in progress since January 2007.



ivisuals

@clearwire-wmx.net
reply to Clever_Proxy

I'm on the north side of the City (Foster and Broadway). Some sites load super fast, and some are slower than dialup! I downloaded some mp3's and the speed was great, but when I go to check my gmail, it takes a minute (literally) to connect. I've continued to call tech support and have a level 2 ticket in. So far, no good.

What's really disheartening is that I also got service at my office (vicinity of Clark and Montrose). The WiMax tower is right there on top of the Public Storage building. I get 5 strong green lights, but speed is still crappy and inconsistent



OakParkDH

@clearwire-wmx.net
reply to Clever_Proxy


Ain't life grand!
Service is essentially useless for all but 2 days so far (I've had since day 1 11/4). First 2 days modem just scanned constantly, unable to lock on a signal. Next 2 days, worked as advertised. Since Friday at noon I have had the same .06 to .10 Mb/s DL speed as others (upload sometimes actually improves to .85 or better). Re-booting modem restores normal speeds, which for me are between 4 and 5 Mb/s but it only last a few minutes. Level 2 tech last Saturday said they were having an issue with the towers maintaining a "proper" connection with the modems. That's 5 days and no fix....if they don't have this handled by Monday, everything gets returned.

LineNoise

join:2006-06-25
Downers Grove, IL

You're lucky you were able to speak with a level 2 technician. They escalated my issue to an RF Engineer who was suppose to call me back, but hasn't yet.

After calling Tuesday I noticed some improvement, but browsing was still hanging up and I'd have to disconnect and reconnect. It was working better though, I didn't have to do it anywhere near as frequently.

Today, I fired up my card and I have 1 dot lit on the connection manager. My signal is "Weak". I've also noticed that I am connecting to a different tower based on the BSID under diagnostics in the connection manager. I don't know if this is right, but I am guessing that they just shut the tower off I was connecting too.