It used to be that mobile internet access was limited to business executives with fancy Blackberry phones. The rest of us were limited to the leash of the blue internet cable, or if we were lucky, within the range of a Wi-Fi wireless router.
Times have changed.
Now there are so many ways to get online and go completely cord free. Mobile hotspots and cafes are still a popular way to stay connected especially if you’re travelling overseas. Meanwhile, more and more mobile phones now have built-in internet and email access thanks to the popularity of the iPhone, Android and now the Windows mobile platform. And of course, people are getting online via their laptops, netbooks and tablet devices.
How will you choose to carry your data with you?
Wireless internet access
If you’re looking for mobile broadband to connect your device, you’ll find that most devices will cater to these access options.
– Micro-SIM – many devices such as tablets accept a micro-SIM. This is similar to your mobile phone plan where you receive a Sim card that is linked to your account (micro-SIMs are just smaller). To start using data, you just plug the micro-SIM into your device. Most plans will allow you to monitor your account and you’ll have the option to add more credit if you’ve opted for a prepaid mobile broadband plan.
– USB dongle – for devices like notebooks and netbooks that don’t have built in micro-SIM support, you can usually access mobile wireless broadband via a separate USB device that will allow you to insert your micro-SIM card from your mobile broadband provider. Your USB dongle will usually come with service or you can use your own if you prefer. Generally, there are “no locks” on your USB device (unlike mobile phones that may be restricted to a certain network).
– Mobile Wi-Fi – many providers now also offer mobile Wi-Fi. These devices serve as mobile routers and allow for multiple devices to connect via Wi-Fi. This means you can create an instant Wi-Fi “hotspot” and have your phone, laptop and tablet all connected to the one usage account.
Meanwhile, some mobile broadband providers allow you to finance your device with your service plan so you can get the laptop, notebook, netbook or tablet of your choice with your mobile broadband making it easy for you to get online and take your data anywhere.
How will you choose to connect?