The best 4G and WiFi boosters that mean you can work from your yacht
Updated: Nov 25, 2021
(Article originally published by yachtingworld.com)
Rupert Holmes looks at effective options for onboard internet from 4G to WiFi boosters
After the COVID-19 pandemic has made remote working so widely accepted, could working from your yacht be part of the future? It’s no longer an expensive option: in the past couple of years the price of mobile data has plummeted, with unlimited plans now less than £25 per month.
In the UK, 4G reception around much of the coast is dire and often requires better equipment than in some far-flung parts of the world, but sensibly priced equipment can significantly boost a wifi or 3G/4G mobile signal. Look for products with fully waterproof omni-directional external antennas.
Connecting to marina wifi from a laptop is invariably hit-and-miss. Signals often struggle to get through the forest of masts and many marina WiFi systems suffer from low bandwidth at popular times.
WiFi boosters can therefore be a big help. I’ve regularly used an inexpensive model over a 400m distance with success. A higher specification unit, such as MailaSail’s WiFi Bat, has potential to communicate over a few miles in optimal conditions, yet the antenna is only 59cm tall and weighs less than 700g.
Digital Yacht’s WL510 WiFi Access System has a larger antenna and can either be plugged directly to a laptop’s ethernet port, or used with a router to produce an onboard wifi network for multiple users.