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Monday, March 19, 2007

Blackberry 8800 - Internet Speed Tests - Cingular EDGE

Impressive. That is the word that I am using to describe the Blackberry 8800’s performance on the Cingular GPRS / EDGE network when used with the Microsoft Standard Modem with Bluetooth link. I did some additional testing today on the connection after some questions I received about quality and speed of the connection.

The basics questions were what kind of speeds was I getting on the connection, dial-up like speeds, or if it was competitive to the speeds that you get on the Sierra Wireless Aircards or other competitive products. I did not have the exact answer, and although it felt like broadband access, I wanted to find out.

So, once again I setup my Blackberry 8800 phone via Bluetooth (guide here) to test out the Internet connection speed via the GSM / GPRS / EDGE network with Cingular wireless. In order to do a broad comparison, I ran tests with CNET’s Bandwidth Meter, SpeakEasy (Los Angeles), and with

All the tests were run from the area around my home, which traditionally has not had the greatest reception. However, in this case the EDGE signal measured 5/5 of five. So, I will let you be the judge on whether or not the speed is up to par.

Here are the impressive results:

1. CNET's Bandwith Meter measure the performance at 174kbps, basically 3x as fast as the 56k modem connection and half of what you might expect on Cable/DSL

2. SpeakEasy's Speed Test measured the downstream and upstream performances separately. The measured speed was 210kbps downstream and 84kbps upstream.

3.'s Internet Performance and Speed Test measure the throughput at 131k just slightly over 50% of what their measured DSL speed of 229k comes to.

Hard to tell which is really the most accurate, however the SpeakEasy measurements seem to resonate with what I was seeing on my machine. I have the NetPerSec tool (outdated, I know) sitting in my taskbar and it seemed to clock in the mid 20k's pretty consistently and even peaked above 35k or so transiently. In any case, a pretty decent measure.

As you can see from the tests, Cingular's GPRS / EDGE high speed wireless broadband on Media.Net performs relatively well through the Blackberry 8800 series handheld device. This will definitely serve as my airport and hotel internet connection replacement on future travel!

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RMSko said...

I'm trying to set this up, but have a few questions.

First, my laptop did not come with Bluetooth, but I have a ZOOM Bluetooth PCMCIA Modem. As a result, in the first step there was no option for a Bluetooth modem. I added "PCMCIA Modem" to the list of modems and ran the setup that way. I'm running Vista so the setup was a bit different, but I was able to add everything in the instructions. Does anyone know if using this "PCMCIA Modem" is correct?

Second, my company has disabled discovery of my Blackberry. I'm going to try to get it enabled, but is there any way to set this up if dicovery is disabled (I can pair my laptop to the BB through the BB, but I don't think this will work).

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

rip said...

did anybody know how many datachannels the bb 8800 have for edge ?