BlackBerry as modem under OS X: is Pulse the best connection utility?
July 30, 2007 8:15 AM   Subscribe

BlackBerry as modem under OS X . Specifically, T-Mobile 8700g as modem under 10.4. Pulse seems like the best choice but also the priciest choice ($50) for the connection utility. Does anybody here use Pulse? Am I missing any free or cheap alternatives that match Pulse's performance?

I'm a nomad on a budget, so cellphone-as-modem has been my primary day to day internet connection ever since the first-gen Sprint network 6+ years ago (when you were lucky to get a 14K connection). In other words, I can deal with tinkering and fiddly dialup procedures.

But from what I've read, Pulse is quite solid, with fast (for EDGE) connections assuming good reception -- and assuming you can get your BB firmware to the right (old) version as shown in the chart.

I know there's an inventive-but-kludgy free solution involving Parallels, but I want to do this natively in OS X. The performance hit of always leaving Parallels running just to have a data connection is not worth saving $50, in the long run.
posted by allterrainbrain to Technology (4 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

I'm not exactly sure if this helps, but I remembered a recent blog post on a blog I visit and thought I'd post it just in case it does... DUN for Blackberry
posted by sharkfu at 12:11 PM on July 30, 2007

I use pulse, and if you're reasonably geeky, and can setup your own server, it's really incredible. fast and stable. I regularly get upwards of 100kbps, though the latency is what you would expect.

Though, if I had to pay monthly for it, I doubt I'd use it. But then again, I'm cheap.
posted by Freen at 1:58 PM on July 30, 2007

Thans for the report. I'll definitely be running my own proxy server too. This question was just to make sure I wasn't missing lower-cost alternatives to Pulse. So it looks like Pulse is my choice.
posted by allterrainbrain at 5:39 AM on July 31, 2007

Update for people landing here in the future:

Pulse is the right choice ONLY for the 8700 and earlier models.

For the Pearl and later models, check out Grant Goodale and his admirably free modem script (not to mention his tireless volunteer support in every thread and forum in which he's announced it). Many people have had success with it. I got this script working on my 8700, but it was extremely inconsistent, with frequent random disconnects that often require a hard (removing-the-battery) restart of the bb. (I've learned these issues made Grant himself give up.)

Using Pulse, with my 8700 running OS 4.2 (you must update to 4.2 to escape a Bluetooth speed limitation in 4.1; now that 4.2 exists you don't have to downgrade as I mentioned in my original post), I'm averaging 170 down, 60 up, with c. 400ms pings -- perfectly usable as a day-to-day connection.

My connections are lasting only about an hour at most (so far; I'm troubleshooting and may post another update re. that issue). But reconnecting takes only about 20 seconds.
posted by allterrainbrain at 11:43 AM on October 11, 2007

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