I have a Jetpack 8800L on a prepaid unlimited plan. I live in a somewhat rural area (McMinnville, OR) without many options for broadband, so purchased it for a few hours a day of basic home internet stuff. I have a Verizon phone (on contract) that gets good service/speed at the house, so seemed like a good option, but, I rarely get over 0.2 Mbps when using the hotspot. It will sometimes get higher speeds, mainly late at night/early in the morning, but that's not always the case and it's overall unreliable.
This has happened since day 1, so I don't think I'm over any usage caps, and I consistently get high speed elsewhere (eg. in Portland it's always around 10 Mbps, so the device seems fine). Is traffic from prepaid devices deprioritized? My phone will be fine when the jetpack is slow. Is it an issue with the area? I'd like to know if this issue can be resolved before I pay for another month, and since my options are limited in terms of broadband, hoping the jetpack is a viable solution.
If you can bring the Jetpack to another service area and it performs normally then its not the hardware. Its also not likely the prioritization program since priority only kicks on on busy towers during peak hours, you would have seen regular service on your Jetpack sooner or later.
What is more likely the case is that you are in a poor geographic area to receive a full VZW signal, Try to capture some diagnostics and perform what is known as a Site Survey to learn more about this area. The Jetpack has a diagnostics area that can expose more information.
More information on Site Surveys:
After you take a better picture of the natural service in your area you can decide to invest in a solution to improve or or look at alternatives for internet access. VZW isn't always the best option for everyone.