Rain's network speeds severely impacted by lockdown

Jamie McKane

MyBroadband Journalist
Staff member
Super Moderator
Joined
Mar 2, 2016
Messages
5,991
Rain's network speeds severely impacted by lockdown

Rain’s network has come under severe strain during the lockdown. This has resulted in many subscribers complaining about poor speeds.

MyBroadband has received numerous emails from irate Rain subscribers saying their service has been near unusable.
 

ghostbunny

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 26, 2019
Messages
184
From what I understand, the vast majority of users who can't achieve a very good connection are those stuck with towers that aren't fully equipped with both bands. If Rain were to run 2600TDD on all of their towers instead of just some, I'm pretty sure that everyone would be happy. We are kilometres away from our tower, use a high gain external antenna, force band 38, and we have consistent speeds of 40-80mbps in an area that isn't even officially covered.

The 1800 band towers are just too congested, with our set up, we can still manage to pull a decent 30-30 connection a lot of the time on the 1800 band, however, at more congested times of the day, it functions as a 10mbps down, and 20mbps up. I know that isn't that bad, however, we spent a lot of time and effort readjusting our antennas in multiple positions, altitudes, and did a lot of research on the positions of all of the nearby towers.

If anyone is able to pick up a 2600TDD signal on their router and is getting subpar speeds, shoot me a DM, and I'll do my best to help you out.

I'm not sure how things are going to go with the people trying to get CA to function on MiFi devices if those are able to support external high gain antennas, I'm keen to hear more about it. I have a phone capable of such aggregation and will run some tests myself later.

Best of luck ^^;

optimal antenna position:
5630481545.jpg
semi optimal antenna position:
Screenshot_12.png
 

cavedog

Honorary Master
Joined
Oct 19, 2007
Messages
17,817
Unlimited and no shaping. Can't expect any other outcome!
Well they have less spectrum than the other operators and they have Vodacom roaming on their network. Not surprised at all. Keen to see improvements once the temp spectrum starts to go live on their towers.
 

ghostbunny

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 26, 2019
Messages
184
Well they have less spectrum than the other operators and they have Vodacom roaming on their network. Not surprised at all. Keen to see improvements once the temp spectrum starts to go live on their towers.
Keep us updated if you get one of those MiFi gadgets and manage to achieve 4G+ with CA.
 

Fjorko

Expert Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2007
Messages
1,606
Well they have less spectrum than the other operators and they have Vodacom roaming on their network. Not surprised at all. Keen to see improvements once the temp spectrum starts to go live on their towers.
Is that assigned physically, or does it all happen electronically ?

EDIT: I mean does anyone need to visit the tower to install something - or can it be done remotely by electronic means
 

ghostbunny

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 26, 2019
Messages
184
Is that assigned physically, or does it all happen electronically ?
From what I have seen cavedog say before, they already own 2 blocks of 20mhz on their 2600 band, they just aren't using the other, or something to that effect. I am just hoping they allow that extra spectrum to fall within the realm of band 38, and not only band 41.
 

Solitude

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 23, 2008
Messages
5,378
My connection hasn't been bad. I get about half the speed I got before the lockdown but still get about 30 Mbps on Rain 5G. In the evenings it will drop every now and then. Still don't know what causes it. The signal fluctuates a lot from 4pm.

Overall I'm happy with Rain 5G though. It's much better than the Vodacom fibre that I struggled with. A Rain technician actually came to my house before the lockdown started to help me with some problems. I was never able to get someone from Vodacom to come look at my fibre.

I can't wait to get the router on my roof though! But will have to wait for the lockdown to end to do that.
 

cavedog

Honorary Master
Joined
Oct 19, 2007
Messages
17,817
Is that assigned physically, or does it all happen electronically ?

EDIT: I mean does anyone need to visit the tower to install something - or can it be done remotely by electronic means
I would think that on their own towers. The 5G antennas and equipment at the base station will support these new spectrum allocations and new hardware is likely not required. On the other Vodacom rolled out Rain towers it's a different story.
 

km2

Expert Member
Joined
Jun 9, 2007
Messages
1,177
Do Vodacom customers roaming on the Rain network feel the impact of this network congestion, or are there some kind of "slots" reserved at the radio level for Vodacom vs Rain customers?
 

PeterGates

New Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2020
Messages
9
maybe it's just me, not much of a math guy - but if you add thousands of 10mbps rate-limited users, does it not bring the average down? maybe MyBB need to get a proper math dude to apply themselves :)
 

Joseph matane

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 7, 2017
Messages
511
I would think that on their own towers. The 5G antennas and equipment at the base station will support these new spectrum allocations and new hardware is likely not required. On the other Vodacom rolled out Rain towers it's a different story.
You spoke about this in the past but my question is do rain need extra hardware to roll out band 38 to all active towers no matter which antennas are available at that tower or is not simple rain has to upgrade equipment before it can roll out band 38 to all 5000 sites
 

cavedog

Honorary Master
Joined
Oct 19, 2007
Messages
17,817
Do Vodacom customers roaming on the Rain network feel the impact of this network congestion, or are there some kind of "slots" reserved at the radio level for Vodacom vs Rain customers?
Unlikely but there is a test you can do to determine it.

Using a B618s-22d using a Huawei Band tool you can do tests to see the difference. We know Vodacom does NOT have 2600MHz spectrum. Using this knowledge you get a Rain simcard and a Vodacom simcard with some data on it. Force your B618 to Band 38 or 41.

Now insert the Rain simcard. Run some speedtest. Leaving the router at the same place. Insert the Vodacom simcard in and do some tests. The Cell ID in the router should be the same and the speeds should be the same. If not you can make some findings based on that.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Yuu

cyrus123

Active Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2013
Messages
99
How do I see if my router or tower pick up this band. Excuse me for being technologically challenged. I have 3 Huawei routers ...The E5885, B525 and B315. My speeds with Rain is non existent. Between 0.05 and 0.5 Mbps. With MTN I get 50 Mbps easily
 

Fjorko

Expert Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2007
Messages
1,606
How do I see if my router or tower pick up this band. Excuse me for being technologically challenged. I have 3 Huawei routers ...The E5885, B525 and B315. My speeds with Rain is non existent. Between 0.05 and 0.5 Mbps. With MTN I get 50 Mbps easily
Download and use LTEview from your windows machine....
 

rpm

Admin
Staff member
Joined
Jul 22, 2003
Messages
65,746
Article updated with Willem CEO Willem Roos’ comment:

Rain’s network has held up remarkably well during the lockdown period, given the more than 50% increase in traffic. The average throughput per user is only marginally down and all other performance parameters is within acceptable boundaries.

However, some users have been affected more than others. We have seen geographic traffic patterns change with so many people working from home in the suburbs. The mobile 4G network was not designed to carry such heavy traffic in those areas, and as such there are some congested towers. We see this throughout the day.

We are still working with ICASA to obtain spectrum which we can rapidly utilise. This will help but not solve all the issues.
 
Top