What is Mobile Broadband?
EE has announced adjustments to its new 4G mobile broadband packages.
New data allowances give you more room for manoeuvre on EE’s three mobile broadband plans.
For your money you now get 3GB for £15.99/month, 5GB for £20.99/month and 8GB for £25.99/month.
Previously for the same money you’d get just 2GB, 3GB and 5GB respectively. The same prices apply whether or now you’re buying a Huawei E589 wireless dongle or a Huawei E392 plug ‘n play USB dongle.
One off device costs across the EE mobile broadband packages are also the same, £49.99, £29.99 or Free respectively, and all contracts are subject to a minimum 18 months obligation.
As well as updating its existing mobile broadband products, EE is introducing a new 30-day rolling monthly plan, giving you 1GB of data for £12.99/month or 5GB of data for £15.99/month. Eager punters who sign up before December 23 will also get the first month free.
Use of BT Wi-fi hotspots is included in plans and signing up for EE 4G mobile broadband gets 2 for 1 cinema tickets on Wednesdays.
EE’s 4G coverage continues to roll out across the UK, with 98 per cent of the country expected to be served by the end of 2014.
November 28, 2012
Previous news stories about Mobile Broadband
What is Mobile Broadband?
Mobile broadband is a broadband service that uses data connections in mobile phone networks – EDGE, GPRS, 3G and now 4G – to provide broadband-quality services on laptops, tablets, and mobile phones.
The main advantage of mobile broadband is that it gives you the freedom to work wherever you can get decent mobile reception, freeing you up from working in the office, the university IT suite or the local cafe.
In a pinch it mobile broadband also be used as a stand in for domestic fixed-line broadband if you’re waiting for a phone line or cable ot be installed or you’ve lost your connection due to a fault.
How can I get Mobile Broadband?
Typically mobile broadband works by connecting your laptop, tablet or phone via WiFi to a wireless dongle, sometimes called a ‘MiFi’. These are small battery powered devices with a SIM card inside which acts as a portable wireless hotspot.
As well as wireless MiFi’s, there are USB dongles. These connect straight in to the USB ports of laptops providing a direct connection to the mobile broadband network.
The main advantage of wireless MiFi dongles is that multiple devices can use them at once; most USB dongles only work with one device. An advantage of a USB dongle is that it can be charged using the laptop’s battery meaning it’ll last for as long as the laptop does.
Wireless MiFi’s have no direct power source, unless of course you run a micro USB to USB cable between it and a laptop, or plug the charger in.
How fast is Mobile Broadband?
With mobile broadband the top download speed you’ll get greatly depends on your location, local signal strength and the number of people accessing mobile data in your immediate proximity.
If you’re in an area where there are lots of people accessing 3G and 4G services on their phones then your mobile broadband connection won’t be as strong as it would be in a less congested area.
Different networks offer faster services than others, and some networks are more generous with their data offerings.
How much web use and data can I get with Mobile Broadband?
Unlike regular fixed-line broadband it’s not common to see mobile broadband packages offering unlimited data. It’s more likely that data will be sold in bundles of say 1GB, 3GB and 5GB.
Mobile broadband is typically offered on monthly contracts, on a 30-day rolling plan or on a pay-as-you-go basis.
Monthly contracts are better suited to those in long-term employment or students who will want the freedom mobile broadband offers over a long period of time. Others who won’t necessarily be needing mobile broadband as frequently might be better off with a more flexible option that doesn’t obligate them to pay every month.
Remember that your data limit isn’t just for streaming YouTube videos and music downloads; general web browsing and checking emails will eat into your data plan. So if you’re getting mobile broadband just for work its wise to use it sparingly, or choose a deal with data that gives you adequate coverage.