Its been raining high speed internet in India. Tata, Reliance and BSNL have started offering 3G USB Data Cards which offer high speed internet. Tata and Reliance claim 3.1 MBps speeds while BSNL claims 7.2 Mbps.

I have tested both Tata Indicom Photon+ and Reliance NetConnect Broadband+ on Ubuntu 8.10. I didn’t get much time to test everything but this is my initial feedback.

They claim to offer 3 Mbps but in reality I got 300-700Kbps download speeds. Which is still not bad.

Note: Even if you take the unlimited plan, you are still limited to 10GB of download per month as there is a fine print of fair use policy. This is an  irritant for people who do lots of downloads.

Tata Indicom Photon+ offer Huawei

Reliance Netconnect Broadband+ offers a choice of  Huawei and ZTE.

Reliance Huawei was the only one that works out of the box on Ubuntu and gets detected as  /dev/ttyUSB0.

After that you can edit /etc/wvdial.conf and put the following lines.

[Dialer Defaults]
Modem = /dev/ttyUSB0
Username = yournumber
Phone = #777
Password = yournumber
New PPPD = yes
Stupid mode = yes

Replace yournumber with your number (provided at the back of the box).

ZTE didn’t even get detected,  and strangely enough there was no message on dmesg either.

lsusb shows: Bus 005 Device 002: ID 19d2:fff6

Tata Indicom Photon+ (Huawei based) also didn’t get detected.

lsusb shows:

Bus 005 Device 009: ID 12d1:140b Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd.

Moz has tried this and has got this working using the following steps.

$ sudo modprobe usbserial vendor=0x12d1 product=0x140b
$ sudo mknod /dev/ttyUSB0 c 188 0
$ sudo mknod /dev/ttyUSB1 c 188 1

Add the following lines to the /etc/wvdial.conf, customise phone number, username and password as per advise of TataIndicomm.

[Dialer Defaults]
Modem = /dev/ttyUSB0
Init1 = ATZ
Phone = #777
Username = cdma
Password = cdma
New PPPD = yes
Stupid Mode = 1

Try connecting with sudo wvdial

If you want a graphical dialer, install gnome-ppp

Go into setup, select your modem as /dev/ttyUSB0

Put your login/password depending on the service provider. Put the number as #777 and you are ready to connect.

Links to tariffs/plans:


Tata Indicom