Posts Tagged NetZero
A need for data connection is on the go is an ever growing desire by many. Whether it be for a Chromebook, a tablet or even a Galaxy Zoom, connection is important. While many pay the added fees per month to do so through their current device and carrier, others only need it on a short term or monthly basis. NetZero is stepping into the game to offer a monthly no-contract mobile broadband device that can help keep you connected in a pinch.
NetZero offers a USB stick for $49.95 and a mobile hotspot device for $99.95. It piggy backs over Sprint‘s 3G network to deliver data to your devices when you need it. As for plans, you have quite a few options. There is a FREE plan that is good for one year and gives you 200 MBs worth of data. Step it up to $9.95 for 500 MBs, $19.95 for 1Gb, $34.95 for 2GBs and $49.95 for 4GBs. The good news is you are disconnected from the connection if you hit the limit you buy. The bad news, it only is 3G, for now. 4G is scheduled for around the 3rd quarter of this year.
Since it does pull of Sprint for the coverage, you might want to check and see if where you are living or going to be traveling has decent Sprint coverage before you think about buying anything.
We like the idea of NetZero’s budget-friendly mobile broadband — just not its use of Clearwire’s small, aging WiMAX network. The provider should soon take care of that problem through new MVNO agreements with Sprint and Verizon. The five-year Sprint pact gives NetZero both LTE and EV-DO; the Verizon deal serves more as a safety net, supplying EV-DO alone for three years. Both agreements only take effect in the second quarter of 2014, but they should finally give the NetZero broad coverage and higher peak speeds that it needs to compete with more expensive rivals.
Remember NetZero? Today the company announced that it’s launching NetZero 4G Mobile Broadband, a wireless service rolling out in 80 US cities and offering value-priced monthly data plans without activation fees, contracts, commitments or overage charges. Customers can chose between two levels of service — Lightspeed (up to 1Mbps down / 384Kbps up) to conserve data and Warpspeed (up to 10Mbps down / 1.5Mbps up) for maximum performance — and can switch back and forth by simply logging into NetZero’s website (this can take up to 15 minutes). Five monthly data plans are available:
- Free, $0, 200MB (limited to Lighspeed and limited to one year)
- Basic, $9.95, 500MB (limited to Lighspeed)
- Plus, $19.95, 1GB
- Pro, $34.95, 2GB
- Platinum, $49.95, 4GB
Two devices are offered — the NetZero 4G Stick ($49.95 + shipping) is a Windows and OS X-compatible USB modem and the NetZero 4G Hotspot ($99.95 + shipping) is an eight device-capable WiFi hotspot with an LCD and a 2200mAh battery.
So far, so good — NetZero is becoming an MVNO. Yet strangely, there’s no mention in any of the PR as to which network the company is using. We test drove NetZero’s new wireless service over the weekend using the WiFi hotspot and figured out that it’s using Clearwire‘s WiMAX network. In fact NetZero’s 4G Stick is identical to the Clear 4G Mobile USB modem (manufactured by Ubee), and its 4G Hotspot is the same as the Clear Spot Apollo (a rather bulky unit made by Gemtek)– see the FCC links below and read on for our impressions after the break.
Gallery: NetZero 4G Hotspot hands-on
NetZero launches ’4G’ wireless service, we go hands-on originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 19 Mar 2012 07:05:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.