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Choosing a USB Modem/Dongle for Broadband

Manoj Solanki, Monday December 22, 2008 - 6:41 PM

Some providers offer various models of USB dongles to choose from for use with their 3G mobile broadband service. This can be a task when you’re ready to sign-up!

Here we list the important differences between them and how to choose one.

Whatís the difference?

  • Size†† Some of the newer models have an even slimmer and compact design.
  • Speeds†† Some models have different maximum download and upload speeds.† This refers to the capability of the modem, not the speed offered by the network.† For example, some modems are capable of 7.2Mbps download speeds, but the maximum current headline speed offered by the network could be 4.5Mbps.† The idea is that the modem is more future proof as it can handle potentially higher download and upload speeds.
  • Price† †Some will charge upfront for newer USB dongles†on low end packages.
  • Style†† Different colours and looks.

So which one do I choose?

All of the modems offered by providers are perfectly adequate for most peopleís usage.† The main thing to look out for is the speed capability of the modem if youíre interested in something that can take advantage of higher speeds once the networks offer it.† Some modems may still only be capable of up to 3.6Mbps download speeds.† Also take note of the possible upload speeds, as this is useful for customers who want to upload large files.

As stated, low end packages may charge for the newest modems so if your concerned about that then you could always choose one that’s included for free (if itís available).† On most mid to high-end packages it will probably be included for free.

Further information

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Article keywords:   3g, Choosing, Data Card, Dongle, Mobile Broadband, Modem, Usb