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My TotalPlay optical fiber Internet installed in Ajijic! FASTER than Telmex and ILOX. 40, 100, 200 or 500 megabit/sec


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TotalPlay is an existing ISP from elsewhere but finally arrived in Ajijic in May 2021 -- TotalPlay is known as Mexico's fastest ISP.  FTTH -- optical fiber to the home.  Symmetric options available!

I did my research and it looked pretty good:
Netflix Speed Rankings -- TotalPlay is fastest
Statistica -- TotalPlay is fastest

So I was convinced to order it.  

Here in Ajijic near Six Corners, 5 minute walk of Centro, where Telmex fiber does not exist.
I got the cheapest symmetric plan for now, but can be instantly upgraded to 500 megabits in minutes.

Initially 40/4Mbps download/upload, I WhatsApped them and they instantly upgraded my upstream to symmetric 40/40 -- so clearly they have the capability of instant remote-controlled speed upgrades!

EDIT: I decided to test-drive 500 megabit for a month, here's my current speed (500 megabit download, 500 megabit upload).

D56DCB0C-D240-4596-B9E4-E3317E8B1B06.png.3699eec1fde6fdf365d50641cd42cf92.png

TotalPlay installed my optical fiber line yesterday to Ajijic near Six Corners (where Telmex fiber is not available)

There was a phone number on the TotalPlay brochure delivered to my address.  I took a chance to WhatsApp that number, since it's easier for me to use translator on WhatsApp.  

Got a very fast response for my request of Ajijic fiber option.

Then, I had some questions answered for TotalPlay Ajijic, which I will relay.

  • Current install time is relatively fast this month
    About one week in June 2021, as demand is picking up. 
    Some people got same-day installs, others needed a few days, TotalPlay told me there is an uptick in demand from Ajijic.
  • No contract
    100% fiber optic (fiber to the home).
    Service is targetted to work-from-home people.  (Both ILox and TotalPlay seem to use business angle to get around Telmex resdiential monopoly?)
  • Prices for each download/upload speed:
    559 pesos/month for 40/4 megabit fiber
    779 pesos/month for 100/10 megabit fiber
    1049 pesos/month for 200/20 megabit fiber
    1799 pesos/month for 500/50 megabit fiber
  • Includes Telephone Lines
    Unlimited Canada/US long distance to both landlines and cellphones
  • Add¬†TV for 170 pesos extra
    +Add 170 pesos to get TV and telephone included
  • Symmetrical speed upgrade option (upload = download)
    By default, upload speed is set to 10% of download speed. There is a symmetrical boost option where you can make uploads as fast as download:
    +250 pesos for 40/40 symmetrical
    +500 pesos for 100/100, 200/200 or 500/500 symmetrical
    Example: 1799 + 500 = fastest half gigabit symmetrical fiber
  • Temporarily boost upload speed on demand
    You can temporarily boost upload speed for only 2 day, 7 day or 1 month
    +25 pesos for temporary 2-day symmetrical 40/40
    +50 pesos for temporary 2-day symmetrical 100/100, 200/200 or 500/500
    +80 pesos for temporary 7-day symmetrical 40/40
    +165 pesos for temporary 7-day symmetrical 100/100, 200/200 or 500/500
    This can be good when you know you want to make big upload surge where you would like to upload 10x faster. (e.g. send gigabytes faster to Dropbox, OneDrive, YouTube, iCloud, Google Drive, etc)
  • Microsoft Office and Cloud storage included on 200 megabit and up
    The 200 megabit and up options include a bunch of business options including Google Workspace, Microsoft Office 365 (including 1 terabyte OneDrive).  Good if you want to store lots of photos too.
  • Speed upgrades are instantaneous.¬† They just press a button on their end.
    They can instantly upgrade your connection over the phone or via WhatsApp (via Google Translate)
    I was able to upgrade instantly via WhatsApp (see below)

I was offered a promotion where I could get double download speed (80/8) but I preferred symmetric speed (40/40) so I got that instead.

Speed changes are instantaneous (at least easier than Telmex), though you have to wait 3 months between download speed changes.  This is fine for snowbirds, you can pay 559/mo when away from your Mexico residence, and then throttle the speed back up when coming back.  No speed change fee.

I checked reviews, Totalplay has fairly good reviews in the Guadalajara region. The fiber line of Totalplay comes from Guadalajara.

You will need an RFC number handy (temporal resident, Mexico Resident, etc).  But even if you are not yet a temporal, you can have a friend who often stays with you take the bill name for now even if it's your own VISA card of your name.   

Much better than both TelMex and ILOX!

 

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This is How I Ordered It As an English Speaking Snowbird

Since I trailblazed for y'all via Google Translate over the last few days --

If you are a new snowbird that hasn't fully learned Spanish yet.... I'll help make things simpler for those who have difficulty speaking spanish on the telephone.

1. Get TotalPlay Installed First

Order the install by calling or WhatsApp-ing the local "33" number on your TotalPlay flyer that you got (I hope you kept it!). 

But if you threw away the flyer already, you can try ordering online at www.totalplay.com.mx/landings/gdl ... If you get a spanish message on your voicemail afterwards, try replying via WhatsApp + translator.

Book your appointment. Should be installed within (approximately) a week. One got a same-day installation because they were installing for someone else on the same block, others got installs within 24-48 hours, though mine took a bit longer since they had to wire optical fiber several blocks -- still less than week!

AFTER you get your 10-digit account number, go to the next step:

2. Register to View Your Bills Online & Setup Debit/Credit Card Payments

1. Go to https://mitotalplay.com.mx preferably in Chrome so you can Translate the page.
2. Click the register link at bottom
image.png.da76726b745b96c7aa1fe862e1eee232.png
3. Provide your account number that the installer gave you. 
Make sure to zero-pad the account number to make sure it's a 10-digit account number, since my account number was only 9 digits, so I added a "0" to beginning.
4. Fill in your name and the email address you registered under (you probably already received an email from TotalPlay when you ordered an installation).
5. You will get a temporary password emailed to you.
6. Use the temporary password to log into TotalPlay to view your account & bills.
7. Now you can fill in your preferred card to pay your TotalPlay bills

3. How To Get Human TotalPlay Tech Support via WhatsApp

Once you have TotalPlay installed, you can get human tech support via WhatsApp, for things like speed changes.

Purpose

Although not officially documented, I was able to confirm I can do the following via the WhatsApp humans (I asked questions on what I could do via WhatsApp):

  • Report problem / outage
  • Fix wrong speed / missing promotion
  • Fix incorrect information on bill (wrong phone number, wrong email)
  • Order speed upgrade

Make sure WhatsApp is installed
You can use your Android phone with its built-in translator feature.  (Not as easy on iPhone but possible if you copy-and-paste back and fourth, or use Google GBoard keyboard)

Or use WhatsApp for Windows/Mac (www.whatsapp.com/download) on your computer, while pasting back and fourth into https://translate.google.com in an adjacent window. 

Before using PC WhatsApp -- you still need WhatsApp installed on your phone first before you install WhatsApp for Windows/Mac

First Time Only:
Initiate first WhatsApp conversation with the tech support robot

1. Go to https://www.totalplay.com.mx/ayuda
2. Scroll down and click the WhatsApp icon at the very bottom (next to social media icons)
image.png.6c364adb2d8bf04487966f00b024769d.png
3. You will start aconversation by hitting Enter on a "Hola" message, creating a chat history in your WhatsApp that you can go back to anytime in the future.
4. Your first conversation will have a prompt for a 10 digit account number (spanish "10 digitos")
5. Type a reply with just ten numbers and no words.
6. You gain access to the tech support robot.
This is just one-time steps; you don't need to repeat the above steps once you've done this already.

Every Time:
Talk to the WhatsApp tech support robot to get a human chatting to you

Say "Hola" to the TotalPlay chat in your WhatsApp to wake up the tech support robot which will prompt you with some menus.

Go through menu item 3,4,1,1,2 to get a human.

3. "Ayuda t√©cnica ūüĎ®‚Äć" = get technical support
4. "Otro tipo de ayuda¬†ūüĎ®‚Äć" = other problem
1. "Si" = are you home / ¬Ņdomicilo?
1. "Si" = do you have a failure / ¬Ņfalla?
2. "No" = Problem solved by resetting modem? / ¬ŅProblema resuelto reiniciando el m√≥dem?

image.thumb.png.f9755034793f374b5126b4791e42409d.png

Occasionally, it skips some steps (doing only step 1 and 5).

OPTIONAL: Faster Automatic Translations To English

Also, if you want to automatically translate the WhatsApp instructions without as much copy+paste into Google Translate, see Instructions Thread for Automatically Translating WhatsApp

You are chatting to a human

And now you have a human to chat to after a small hold (hold time 2 minutes to 15 minutes).

If you want an upload speed increase (symmetric) -- you will need to ask to purchase for symmetric speed.  You will be transferred to another rep.  Then ask for either 2 day, 7 day or 30 day.  2 days as cheap as 80 pesos, and 30 day for 250 pesos (if you're on the 40 megabit plan).  The 30 day is automatic renewing like a "subscription ehancement" but can be cancelled anytime with no penalty.

Security Confirmation: For account changes like these you will be asked to confirm the account number, the name of account (which may be your Mexico friend or temporal resident who stays with you sometimes), address of installation, and the email address on record.

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  • GDouglas changed the title to My TotalPlay optical fiber Internet installed in Ajijic! FASTER than Telmex and ILOX. 40, 100, 200 or 500 megabit/sec

Early today, I was able to instantly upgrade 40/4 to 40/40 via WhatsApp

Before / After

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The upgrade was instant.  My optical modem (the included TotalPlay WiFi router with built-in optical network terminal) disconnected for about 15 seconds, and reconnected at a new speed 40/40 instead of 40/4.

Update on my ongoing attempt to "temporarily" upgrade to 500 megabit/sec:

I'm gonna try 500/500 symmetric for 1 billing month -- I was told I can have it for just 1 month (perfect timing for my June return).  Might as well pamper my Internet connection for 1 month before I return to Canada.

My plan is to downgrade 500/500 back to 40/4 after mid-June.  I was told there is no fee for downgrade.

I'm in the midst of attempting a instant upgrade via WhatsApp -- let's see if instant speed upgrade works.

EDIT -- UPDATE: My temporary upgrade to 500/500 megabit is on hold for now -- sounded like there was a firmware issue in the system preventing an instant 500 upgrade at my location (not sure if it's the fiber distribution boxes or the modem).  I'm going to try the 500 upgrade again on Thursday -- I might be the first person to have attempted 500 Mbps in Ajijic.  (Anyone else with 500 megabits?)  For now, happy with 40/40.

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Probably not. As an example, Ifibra would not string lines in to Lomas De Santa Maria in Chapala where I live on the basis that they were not allowed to go from building to building or over a small stream. (They eventually agreed to give me a line). Then came total play and I have lost count of the number of lines they have installed to date. (I installed a special anchor point¬†¬†on my building to help Total Play as well as to prevent them from covering my roof¬†with fiber optic as I plan some day to make a roof top patio).¬†‚ėļÔłŹ

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Finally!  My 500 megabit upgrade is now activated. 

Here's my speedtest of 500/50 from my iPad Mini WiFi

I am testing via a TPLink Archer C7 router connected via Ethernet cable to the TotalPlay router (the one with the fiber modem). 

I turned off the WiFi on the TotalPlay router as it's only a two-antenna WiFi router that doesn't have as good a signal as a mid-range or higher-end separate WiFi router, the ones with more bigger antennas.  500 megabit speeds are usually best via direct Ethernet to a computer though -- I'll do some tests with Ethernet.

From iPad (in same room as Archer C7)

image.png.1852359db75d1578960803b77c319702.png

From laptop (same room too)

11481924462.png

I'm going to WhatsApp to activate the symmetric soon!

 

 

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I did a real-world test downloading a game on Steam (over WiFi to a computer in same room)

The bandwidth is genuine and representative of the 500 megabit speed.  

 image.thumb.png.1cc1b417ab44faa7ef3ce9b916f4811b.png

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Symmetric activated!

 I’ll enjoy this for a month. Will downgrade my speed (no speed change fee) when I return to Canada before coming back next falll.

6BF92994-0005-4F9D-A6B9-29473123A5BF.png

All upgrades were done 100% on WhatsApp, no phone calls or visits.

Ok, I’m all done for now!   Hope my journey helps other snowbirds obtain TotalPlay more easily!

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UPDATE: Speed Upgrades Occasionally May Not be Instant (may take a few minutes)

One warning, if you WhatsApp them to change the speed of your connection, it takes about 10-20 minutes for speedtests to "stabilize".  I kept getting lots of 300/300 tests and 300/30 tests before it stabilized to 500/500 -- depending on the modem.

If you have lower speeds like 40 megabit or 100 megabit, it will briefly "boost" to far beyond, e.g. 200-300 megabits per second for the first second, before bouncing backwards to the 40.   

It appears to be a software-based speed cap where the fiber is a fast bucket (500+ megabit native) and the plan you're paying for caps the speed of the fiber.   The "boost" speed is useful for speeding up web page clicks though -- web pages seem to load roughly equally as fast between 100, 200, and 500 megabit.  But sustained download speeds will require paying for the speed.

I had to WhatsApp TotalPlay again when it lost symmetric feature (upload speeds went back to slower non-symmetric) but after some WhatApp attempts, it worked fine!   During a longer-than-usual speed change -- make sure your WhatsApp is on an alternate Internet connection, just to be safe -- switch to WhatsApp on your phone with LTE=ON and WiFi=OFF if your desktop Internet disconnects (WhatsApp is very good for device switching).  Then when TotalPlay reconnects, switch back to your desktop/laptop WhatsApp.

But during initialization, especially if the Internet is offline for a few minutes (PON light blinking) while they upgarde your speed -- speedtest will be VERY wonky -- 500 megabits per second then declining to 10 megabits per second then bouncing back up to 100 megabits per second.  But waiting about 20 minutes later, the modem configuration finished propagating and it normalized to symmetric speeds.   

Give the system time to transmit the new modem-speed configuration -- sometimes it takes a few minutes and you may have to say goodbye on WhatsApp to see how the modem speed normalizes after the call.  I was able to get them to hold for 5 minutes while I repeated a few speed tests.   Some of the less experienced tech support wasn't aware how long the speed-changes sometimes takes to propagate the system.

If this happens, tell them the speedtests are strange (after the "instant" speed upgrade) and that you need 5 minutes to see the system stabilize.   The speedtest will be random/confusing for the first few minutes after a speed shift.

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  • 2 weeks later...

We just got TotalPlay here between San Juan Cosala and El Chante and it is twice the speed they advertised for their lowest tier package. Really loving it! Works great with my Norton VPN too. Lots of streaming will be going on here in the next few days! My wifi works in the back yard too and everywhere in the house. The answer to my wifi needs!

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10 minutes ago, Susy Wilson said:

We just got TotalPlay here between San Juan Cosala and El Chante and it is twice the speed they advertised for their lowest tier package. Really loving it! Works great with my Norton VPN too. Lots of streaming will be going on here in the next few days! My wifi works in the back yard too and everywhere in the house. The answer to my wifi needs!

They are giving 3 months of double your speed as a bonus.

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On 6/8/2021 at 12:19 PM, Bisbee Gal said:

Can you pay with US credit card?

Easier to do bill payment at any OXXO convenience store.  Easy peasy.

OXXO also works with my domestic credit card and VISA debit, or you can use cash.

They also let you pay online shopping invoices too, there at the convenience store another way how you pay for Mexico’s Amazon (Mercado Libre).

Once you get the hang of it, OXXO is easier than paying bills at a bank in your home country.

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I've used OXXO in past for Mercado Libre payments, but most ML vendors now also use BBVA and that's more convenient for me and no fees either. 

We will be traveling a lot this year and don't want to worry about a monthly bill while we're away.  With ILOX we pay a year in advance on our US credit card at their Ajijic office.  Once and done. 

And as I've said before, Mexico is the only country I've been to where the retailer cares where your credit card was issued.  When I charge something in Paris, Lisbon or Heidelberg, no one ever says, "Sorry, we only accept French/Portuguese/German issued credit cards."  

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Sadly, they are limited in where they service. I just spoke with a guy installing it at a local hotel in Chapala and it's not available our way (Chapala Haciendas)...hopefully, one days these companies will wake up and realize there is a large number of folks in this area who would sign up in a NY minute if it ever became available.

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1 hour ago, Bisbee Gal said:

I've used OXXO in past for Mercado Libre payments, but most ML vendors now also use BBVA and that's more convenient for me and no fees either. 

We will be traveling a lot this year and don't want to worry about a monthly bill while we're away.  With ILOX we pay a year in advance on our US credit card at their Ajijic office.  Once and done. 

And as I've said before, Mexico is the only country I've been to where the retailer cares where your credit card was issued.  When I charge something in Paris, Lisbon or Heidelberg, no one ever says, "Sorry, we only accept French/Portuguese/German issued credit cards."  

Pyaing with a credit card online is actually safer than handing it to a person.

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47 minutes ago, BeanRoy said:

Pyaing with a credit card online is actually safer than handing it to a person.

That's not my issue.....the issue is that Total Play only accepts MXN issued cc's.  And with the chip technology, handing it to someone while you watch them process it in the chip reader is as safe as it gets. 

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We're talking about paying iLox, not TotalPlay. As I pointed out in this thread already, TotalPlay only accepts Mexican cards. I thought you might want to  save yourself a trip to the iLox office by paying online. Beyond that, I'm just offering anyone reading this reassurance about how safe it actually is to pay online.

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On 6/11/2021 at 6:17 PM, BeanRoy said:

TotalPlay only accepts Mexican cards.

 

On 6/11/2021 at 5:07 PM, Bisbee Gal said:

That's not my issue.....the issue is that Total Play only accepts MXN issued cc's.  And with the chip technology, handing it to someone while you watch them process it in the chip reader is as safe as it gets. 

Not exactly true. 

There's a roundabout way: You can use PayPal to pay via your foreigner credit card or debit card.

TotalPlay also supports PayPal. 

image.png.7379f3e052ba079b0699342279d7069f.png

I had no problem paying with my foreign credit card that way.

Here's the payment methods in Chrome's Google-Translated English:

image.thumb.png.19c6952c48be7bf907eb1d1612b95ff9.png
 

Also, here's the flexibility of non-PayPal payment methods, for those wondering:

image.thumb.png.43eba9b27758f39b40d63e8c04600325.png

 

Also my Canadian VISA Debit card works fine at all OXXO's, as an alternative to PayPal.

image.thumb.png.95473df70ff0aaa4de4b4b25c8fca0c6.png

There's so many ways to pay for TotalPlay.

Things might be more inflexible at the Walmart booth. I ordered my installation appointment by WhatsApp (+ Google Translate) instead and paid cash to the installer in person for the first month. I never went to Walmart which might be demanding a MXN credit card for first month. There's other ways to order Total Play instead of Walmart.

No Mexican credit card needed for Total Play!

Instead of the walmart booth, try WhatsApp-ing the phone number on your Total Play flyer that you got. Or apply online at https://totalplay.com.mx/paquetes which probably will offer a choice of the same payment methods.

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Good to know about PayPal. You don't pay at WalMart, though, but you can sign up. You don't pay until the installation. You don't get an actual online account until the installation, either, so you can't try to pay online until that happens. You pay the installer either cash, CC, or DC, but the latter two can only be Mexican. After that initial payment, you cannot pay cash again, since they have no office here. I haven't had it for a month, so I haven't received a bill yet. Once I do, I will figure out how/where to pay.

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If TotalPlay sends out bills, that would be a huge improvement over iLox. iLox not only doesn't send out bills, they simply cut your service if you don't pay on time. iLox is NOT customer friendly in any way. imho.

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4 minutes ago, Ferret said:

If TotalPlay sends out bills, that would be a huge improvement over iLox. iLox not only doesn't send out bills, they simply cut your service if you don't pay on time. iLox is NOT customer friendly in any way. imho.

We get monthly bills via email from Ilox.  

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