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Thread: What's the deal with Public Mobile?

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    Default What's the deal with Public Mobile?

    All of this has been discussed a few times, but the questions keep coming up, and I think I'd like to point people to a cleaner thread to answer the questions.

    So, here's some info, hopefully laid out clearly and simply. Public Mobile is NOT PERFECT FOR EVERYONE. There are some drawbacks.

    - Public Mobile is a sub-brand of Telus. Owned by Telus, uses Telus network, exact same reception as Telus. If your phone works on Telus or Koodo, it works on Public.

    - They ONLY have prepaid BYOD (Bring-Your-Own-Device) plans. You CANNOT buy a phone through them. This means no contract, no "tab" or anything like that.

    - Because it's a prepaid plan, you also CANNOT have any kind of overage charges of any kind. For example, if you run out of data, your phone stops using data. You need to buy more in the form of a top-up or a large plan if you want to use more, or wait for the next month to start. It's important that you purchase the plan that has the features you need.

    - Public plans are pretty cheap, but not always cheapest. Some of the retention plans from other carriers are better. You'll never get any kind of retention plan from Public, and you can't negotiate with them on the plan costs. They do change plans from time to time, but the posted plan price on the day you sign up is the price you'll pay, minus the few incentives.

    - You get incentives for referring people, having auto-pay set up, and for posting in the support forums. I get $4/mo off and my wife is getting $7/mo off right now. These are a good deal. Sometimes there are bonus incentives for referrals.

    - Most of the plans are "3G speed", which means that the data speed is throttled down. The network is still 4G or whatever Telus currently runs, but this could be a problem for some people. It's not a problem for me.

    - There are no "family share" type plans. All plans for for a single user.

    - There's virtually zero customer service. No phone line to call, no email address, no stores you can walk into. If you can't solve your problem on the self-serve site, you need to post in the support forum and hope someone answers. There are a few employees in the forum, who act as moderators, but most of the answers come from regular users. Making a request through the forums is also how you get your invoice if you need it for business expense tracking purposes. That's a hassle, but it hasn't been problematic for me. I can see some people would hate it.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Current plans are posted at : https://www.publicmobile.ca/en/ab/plans
    You get $2/mo off for having autopay set up, which everyone should do.

    I think the $40/mo (really $38) is probably good for most people:
    Public Mobile Plans.PNG
    Quote Originally Posted by Tik-Tok View Post
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    I'd be lying if I said I didn't disagree.

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    I thought you worked in oil and gas?

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    Yessir I do.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tik-Tok View Post
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    I'd be lying if I said I didn't disagree.

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    3G data?! Nooooo

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    ExtraSlow? Phht. ExtraShill.

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    3G works for people who still procures risque magazines from the convenience store.

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    Streams 720p pornhub just fine
    Last edited by AndyL; 12-14-2019 at 11:18 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tik-Tok View Post
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    ExtraSlow? Phht. ExtraShill.
    I'm pretty transparent that I get my $1/mo when people sign up with my code, but also, seriously trying to be helpful here.

    The 3g thing hasn't been an issue for me. I have wifi most places, and even when I don't, I can watch YouTube without any lag or anything, so that's plenty fast for me. Others may choose differently, which is why I highlight this issue so prominently in my aummary
    Quote Originally Posted by Tik-Tok View Post
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    I'd be lying if I said I didn't disagree.

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    I've been with Public Mobile for around 3 years now and so far its been working really well for my needs and don't see myself switching anytime soon. I'm on the $120 / 90 day plan which gives me 12 GB of data, unlimited international text and unlimited provincial talk. I was previously with Rogers and was paying double that and don't feel like I was getting twice the service. The 3G data concerned me at first, however, in practice it's quick enough to stream a high def youtube video, stream my Apple music at the highest bitrate or even facetime with family and friends without issue.

    It's definitely not for everyone, though. One of my friends travels quite a bit and his provider (think it's Bell) has a feature where an international data plan would automatically kick in when he's abroad which was something that Public Mobile didn't offer which was a deal breaker for him. The only international options that are available are for the US and you do have to go into the Public Mobile self serve portal and manually add that add-on. This hasn't really been a concern for me since I usually just add that add-on for the US or pick up a sim card from a local provider and use that if I'm overseas.

    Also, for anyone that's currently on Public Mobile they are running a promo where you can add an additional 1 GB and 400 min of international calling for no additional cost in the add-ons section of their portal.

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    New sign-ups get thier second month free for a limited time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tik-Tok View Post
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    I'd be lying if I said I didn't disagree.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ercchry View Post
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    3G data?! Nooooo
    The LTE throttled to 3g on public mobile still typically gives you 2 megabits per second. Plenty for day to day life
    Nolan

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    IMHO 3G speeds are worse than what is being describe here - there is a pretty huge difference. Depends on your expectations/usage though. I personally find 3G boarderline unusable, and when my pocketwifi dips to 3G speed while traveling abroad, it pretty well slows to a standstill and we have to walk around searching for 'real' WiFi. 2Mbps is 0.25MB/s which barely meets the recommended speed for 480P YouTube videos or the minimum for 720P, just as one example. It's also not enough to keep vehicle navigation constantly updated, at least in my experience.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mitsu3000gt View Post
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    IMHO 3G speeds are worse than what is being describe here - there is a pretty huge difference. Depends on your expectations/usage though. I personally find 3G boarderline unusable, and when my pocketwifi dips to 3G speed while traveling abroad, it pretty well slows to a standstill and we have to walk around searching for 'real' WiFi. 2Mbps is 0.25MB/s which barely meets the recommended speed for 480P YouTube videos or the minimum for 720P, just as one example. It's also not enough to keep vehicle navigation constantly updated, at least in my experience.
    The difference is Public is throttled 4G instead of real 3G. 3G is totally not usable for today's apps. Especially if you are hotspoting off your device.

    The problem is that there are 4G plans from the Big 3 that has the same feature and same price if you catch them are the right time. My friend's family is on some unicorn 5GB plan from Fido for $40/month. And some how they STILL get device subsidization and just got S10/XR for $240 up front for staying on that cheap contract for 2 more years. Render them to be $20/month 4G 5GB plans.
    Last edited by Xtrema; 12-16-2019 at 11:48 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mitsu3000gt View Post
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    IMHO 3G speeds are worse than what is being describe here - there is a pretty huge difference. Depends on your expectations/usage though. I personally find 3G boarderline unusable, and when my pocketwifi dips to 3G speed while traveling abroad, it pretty well slows to a standstill and we have to walk around searching for 'real' WiFi. 2Mbps is 0.25MB/s which barely meets the recommended speed for 480P YouTube videos or the minimum for 720P, just as one example. It's also not enough to keep vehicle navigation constantly updated, at least in my experience.
    Again, it's not 3g network. It's still LTE and they just throttle it to 3g. Which means you almost always keep your 2mbps (or more), I posted that on the low end of what people do speed tests on the public mobile forums.

    Edit: This thread says public mobile is actually a 3mbps cap on the LTE network. So enough for 720p streams

    https://productioncommunity.publicmo...ng/td-p/229034
    Nolan

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xtrema View Post
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    The difference is Public is throttled 4G instead of real 3G. 3G is totally not usable for today's apps. Especially if you are hotspoting off your device.
    I didn't say otherwise - the problem is with the the "up to" 2.5Mbps which is a best case scenario, not with how they get there.

    Typical real-world 4G/LTE speeds are around 60Mbps in Canada (still much lower than the theoretical maximum), or ~24 times faster than what Public Mobile is offering as a best case scenario.

    I also said it depends on your expectations and usage, but I don't think everyone understands just how slow that is which is why I commented.

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    Clearly there was a need for this thread. The trade-off is real, but for many of us, no big deal.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tik-Tok View Post
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    I'd be lying if I said I didn't disagree.

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    Considering there's no term contract and it's BYOD, I'd recommend anyone try it at least. Worse case is you just use it until a good deal shows up with the bigger networks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mitsu3000gt View Post
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    I didn't say otherwise - the problem is with the the "up to" 2.5Mbps which is a best case scenario, not with how they get there.

    Typical real-world 4G/LTE speeds are around 60Mbps in Canada (still much lower than the theoretical maximum), or ~24 times faster than what Public Mobile is offering as a best case scenario.

    I also said it depends on your expectations and usage, but I don't think everyone understands just how slow that is which is why I commented.
    It's not that bad. In laws are on it, and it's good enough for quick web searches, iMessages, Google Maps, etc. It's perfect for retirees.
    Originally posted by SEANBANERJEE
    I have gone above and beyond what I should rightfully have to do to protect my good name

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    Just switched over today, getting 13'ish Mbps speeds.

    Not sure why @ExtraSlow , but I couldn't get my account to activate with your referral code. No dollar from me. I tried a few times and it kept saying "Sim Invalid" until I deleted your code, then it worked fine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tik-Tok View Post
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    Just switched over today, getting 13'ish Mbps speeds.

    Not sure why @ExtraSlow , but I couldn't get my account to activate with your referral code. No dollar from me. I tried a few times and it kept saying "Sim Invalid" until I deleted your code, then it worked fine.
    I'll check it out. Sorry for any confusion or inconvenience.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tik-Tok View Post
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    I'd be lying if I said I didn't disagree.

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