Buying a 4G Router? Don’t buy the “Tozed M60”
“Tozed M60” is a device that allows you to connect to the Internet like a normal router and make voice calls using VoLTE technology. But don’t buy it.
Both SLT (Sri Lanka Telecom) and Dialog provides this device to their customers.
By the end of 2017, I wanted to buy a 4G connection from SLT, so I went to their branch in Matara, and explained my need. They told me about a new device they were introducing, which encompasses both a router and a phone. Buying a SLT voice connection was also in my list of things to do, so I chose this new hybrid device as my router.
It worked well for a couple of months, and its WiFi signal began to lose strength. It got worse until I had to place the laptop right in front of the router touching it to get any kind of WiFi connectivity whatsoever. So I went back to my SLT branch and asked for a replacement device, and they were happy to give me one of the same model.
In another couple of months, the second router started losing WiFi strength as well. Soon it too reached the point of having to place the laptop right against it to get connectivity at all. I borrowed a device from a friend of mine, to which I could connect the router through a network cable, and that device creates its own WiFi network. I used that for some time, but even its network was so weak.
Finally, after a long time, I got a time to visit the SLT branch again, and I went there planning to get a regular router (Something like the one pictured below.).
In 4G routers like this, I had seen that there’s a RJ11 port, which is normally used to connect telephones. I was wondering whether it is possible to get a router like this, and connect a regular telephone to it using a RJ11 cable.
I haven’t seen a setup like that before, where someone connected a telephone to a 4G router and used VoLTE technology to make voice calls. So I posted that as a question to several social media platforms, but none got any affirmative answers.
So, on the day I planned to visit SLT, I called their customer care hotline and inquired about above. Fortunately the agent confirmed that I can indeed connect a regular telephone to the RJ11 port of a 4G router, and make voice calls using VoLTE technology, as long as I’ve subscribed to VoLTE service. I had already subscribed to that as I’ve been using the hybrid device.
When I visited the SLT branch, it took some strong words for them to agree to exchange the device to a different model. What they wanted to do was give me another device of the same model, but I let them know that this already is my second device of the same model, and if they are not willing to give me a different model, I would be willing to cancel the 4G connection I subscribed to from them.
While I was at the tech support location of the SLT branch, I had noticed a couple of huge piles of the devices of the same model! Apparently I was not the only one who wanted to get rid of the “Tozed M60” that was given to them. There were many of them, and all the ones I saw had letter “F” drawn over them with permanent markers, indicating they’re “Faulty”.
From that, and from the way the employees of the SLT branch talked with each other, I sensed that this particular device model is a huge loss for SLT. “Tozed” is not a popular brand in Sri Lanka (Unlike Huawei or ZTE.), and looks like their first device in SL failed.
I am not sure about the quality of the devices Dialog gave their customers, but I’d keep my distance from this device model if I see one, regardless of the ISP operating it.
Anyway, I got my hands on a different router model, and I immediately tested plugging in a regular telephone I had brought there from home. To my relief, I got the dial tone as soon as I plugged the telephone into the port of the router. I made several test calls to and from the telephone hooked to the 4G router, and it worked as expected.
I then bought a telephone with a display so that I could monitor the Caller Line Identification (CLI) details. When I tested this, telephone-hooked-to-4G-router setup successfully displayed the incoming and outgoing call numbers.
So, if you want to buy a 4G connection, and want to use VoLTE to make voice calls over it, don’t buy the “Tozed M60” hybrid device. Buy a dedicated router, and a separate telephone, hook them up, and you get best out of both devices: You now have a 4G router with its full WiFi strength and speed, and a telephone with all its familiarity.