Mobile Broadband Plans and the 5 GB Limit

As the world rushes head long into becoming more and more mobile and as more employment becomes the virtual variety, an increasing number of people will be looking into mobile broadband plans. Mobile broadband plans when combined with a wireless data card will allow just about anyone with a laptop to plug into the internet from anywhere and cruise just like they were in front of their computer at home. The mobile broadband plans come in a number of shapes, sizes and flavors, but a common theme among them is the 5 GB (GigiByte) data limit that has been imposed.

The big question in relation to the 5 GB is “What does it mean to me? How much time on the internet is that?” Let’s face it, it’s confusing, it’s not like we have anything like an odometer on our computers telling us how much we are using and it would be pointless if we did, since home internet connections have no limit these days. So let’s dive into the numbers and see if we can clear up some of the confusion.

I’m sure it will not surprise you that mobile broadband plans come in a variety of prices for 5 Gb of data, ranging from a low of $39.00 per month to a high of $59.00. How much of a data stream is your money buying you? Below is a chart that might help, each line equals 5 GB.

  1. Email with a 3 MB attachment. (You can send 1,706 of those)
  2. Web page lookup (150k) (You can perform about 34,000)
  3. Lo-resolution photos (500k) (Over 20,000 of these)
  4. Mp3 downloads (1,280 songs)

OK so your still confused and have no idea how much of each of these you use. Then let’s really simplify it. A 5GB limit on data will last the average person for about 250 hours of browsing or up to 20 hours of streaming video¬†

Now that you know how big the basket is, let’s see just how much the basket is going to cost. Every provider has a different pricing plan and below is a breakdown of the more popular providers.

  • T-Mobile at the moment appears to be the cheapest of the providers, coming in at $39.00/month, but that is only if you have a phone with them, if not it jumps to $49.00/month. This may seem like a lot until you notice that T-Mobile doesn’t charge over usage fees if you exceed the 5 GB, they simply slow down the 3G connection to 2G speeds.
  • Verizon has pretty much the same setup, except they charge $10.00 per GB over usage fees.
  • Sprint has a 5 GB limit on their 3G networks and unlimited usage on their 4G network at a cost of $59.00/month. Thing is 4G is not that widespread yet so you will more than likely be using 3G most of the time and be tied to the 5 GB limit, also there is a 5 cent per megabyte over usage fee as well.

As you can see the data usage is just one aspect of mobile broadband plans and as usual the devil is in the details, so choose wisely. There is little worse than opening up your cell phone bill to see that the cost of your data plan doubled because of those movies you just had to download. As another word of caution, just remember that these plans can change in a heartbeat, similar to the cell phone plans. The prices and details mentioned above are just guidelines and you will want to re-verify them.

Next…

Understanding Mobile Broadband

For starters, mobile broadband is the term used for internet technology that can be accessed by the use of mobile devices.

Not to be mistaken with wireless broadband, mobile internet does not utilize wireless router. Instead, this technology allows you to access the web regardless of your location. As long as you are within the coverage area, then that should be enough to get you connected to the world wide web.

Naturally, the speed varies depending on the provider you use. This type of internet connection has seen great improvements as of recent times and majority of users nowadays confirm that they are having a better experience with it. Its flexibility is an advantage that draws a lot of users. Just imagine the convenience of checking your email and visiting your favorite websites even if you are on a travel. However, this is not recommended if you are a heavy user who loves downloading full-length films or playing online games.

A modem and a SIM card should get you started. This modem is usually called the USB dongle. In case you want several users to share the same connection, you may also check out mobile broadband routers. Contact service providers in your area and they’ll immediately offer you with numerous options. Aside from mobile phones, many modern laptops now come equipped with built-in 3G broadband modem.

If you are always on the go, this is definitely an option worth-considering. For example, business travelers will find it very satisfying to stay connected to the web even in between trips. You will be able to read email and reply to important messages at once.

Staying in touch with your family or friends through social networking sites is also possible. You may even post pictures directly on your social media account without having to wait until you’re home and are able to use a “proper” computer. Of course, the same can be said if you are on a vacation or other important trips.

These are just some of the main advantages you can enjoy if you will start using mobile internet. Again, you have to shop around to get the best deals. There are a lot of potential service providers anywhere but try doing some research first so you can find the best offers. Read reviews and feedback from other customers to determine which provider can guarantee the best performance in your area.

Mobile Broadband Vs, Fixed Line Broadband For Homes: Which Is Best For Me?

Internet at homes is not considered as a luxury or additional expense anymore. As a matter of fact, it has become a necessity due to various reasons. Let us first look at some of the main reasons why we need internet connections at homes. That will give you a very good idea about, why internet connection has become a basic necessity of today.

Some of the reasons are:

  • For making and receiving free internet calls through mobile and web apps
  • For sending and receiving unlimited text messages
  • For watching movies and music
  • For connecting with friends, family members, business associates, etc through social media websites.
  • For finding and sharing information
  • For educational purposes, or for joining online certification courses
  • To keep in touch with the breaking news
  • To check out the reviews on latest movies
  • To work from home, and for marketing your business online
  • Downloading movies and music
  • For playing multiplayer games, with opponents from across the globe
  • For learning new skills
  • For buying things from e-Commerce stores
  • Sending and receiving money through online bank transactions
  • For paying your monthly utility bills
  • For learning about new places
  • For showcasing your talents and promoting yourself
  • For checking weather forecasts
  • For trading on currencies, stocks, commodities, and checking market news etc

The list goes on and on…

Now that you understand the importance of having internet connections at homes, the next question is, which kind of connection will best suit your needs?

Basically, there are 2 ways to get your a home connected:

  1. Wired broadband connection [With the option of getting a fixed landline]
  2. Wireless connections like 3G and 4G dongles, mobile phone SIM cards, and Wi-Fi hotspots.

Wired broadband connection:

This is a time tested and a successful technology, which basically works on combination of optical fibers and copper wires. A cable will be extended to your homes, and fitted to Wi-Fi Modem. The modems will generally have the capacity to network more than 10 devices [Smartphones, tablets, laptops, desktops] wirelessly.

Wireless internet:

You can connect your home systems through wireless connection by using 4G or 3G dongles or Wi-Fi hotspots. You can also connect your devices from mobile data [With SIM cards] through portable hotspot or tethering.

Comparison:

1. Broadband connections are much stable, and are even faster than the wireless dongles and SIM cards in many places.

2. The installation and tariffs of Wired broadband connections are generally cheaper than the 3G and 4G plans.

3. Wireless options allow you to use 1 or fewer devices, and you will need to manually do the hot spot each time. One the other hand, with wired broadband, you can use 1 account to automatically provide internet to all the devices of everyone at home.

4. Wireless connections might be the only available option for rural areas, because the optic wires might not reach some remote locations. However, broadband connections cover more than 70% of the places in cities, and the networks are growing all the time.

Conclusion:

If you need internet exclusively for your home, then it makes a lot of sense to go for wired broadband with Wi-Fi modem. Not only will the tariffs be cheaper, even the connection will be more stable.