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Old 06-04-2008, 10:11 AM   #1
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Wireless Internet Cards

I did a search and most of the information I came up with seemed outdated, so my apologies in advance if this is a repeat of an often discussed topic.
We hope to be spending extensive time on the road and since I still am the owner of my company, want to stay in touch with what's going on. I know there are some who do the work/travel thing and have internet access.
I am interested in a wireless internet access card for my MacBook with the most extensive coverage area. What service are you using, which card and are you using and how is it working for you?
I have been asked where we will be traveling and my answer is..I hope all over the country.
Any help is certainly much appreciated!
Bob
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:15 AM   #2
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Bob,
I have the same question as you, so I'll be watching this thread closely.
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:17 AM   #3
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Verizon and Sprint have cards and/or usb dongles that give you access to their respective EVDO services. The last time I checked, it was about $50/mo from Verizon.
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:21 AM   #4
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I don't own one personally, but some Mac friends of mine swear by the "Laptop Connect" cards AT&T offers, as well as the USBConnnect 881 dongle by Sierra Wireless. Nothing but good things I've heard from them.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blevi View Post
I did a search and most of the information I came up with seemed outdated, so my apologies in advance if this is a repeat of an often discussed topic.
We hope to be spending extensive time on the road and since I still am the owner of my company, want to stay in touch with what's going on. I know there are some who do the work/travel thing and have internet access.
I am interested in a wireless internet access card for my MacBook with the most extensive coverage area. What service are you using, which card and are you using and how is it working for you?
I have been asked where we will be traveling and my answer is..I hope all over the country.
Any help is certainly much appreciated!
Bob
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:27 AM   #5
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Hi Bob!

I've been crisscrossing the US for a number of years.
Previously dissatisfied with Sprint coverage, in January 06 I switched to a Verizon air card. I need reliable service for my work and play.

I have been very satisfied with coverage AND customer service.

Now I spend TOO much time on the net.

I also use a external antenna and Willison amplifier, but seldom need it.

Michael
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:30 AM   #6
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I have a Verizon card (I'm using it now as a matter of fact) that I have had just over a year now. So long as you are in a normal coverage area it works well. It is fast enough for most things (I don't watch a lot of video clips). I have a signal booster which helps with reception also. Now, there are times when you are in what they call the "extended network" when you will get voice service but not internet.

If it wasn't for the fact I like to be out in the boonies so much I would be very satisfied with the service, however because I do like the boonies, and need net access for my work I will be looking into satellite internet for next summer. It is supper expensive, but it works everywhere.

For most people, cellular internet will provide adequate coverage I think, it just depends on where you are planning on being.
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:36 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blevi View Post
I did a search and most of the information I came up with seemed outdated, so my apologies in advance if this is a repeat of an often discussed topic.
We hope to be spending extensive time on the road and since I still am the owner of my company, want to stay in touch with what's going on. I know there are some who do the work/travel thing and have internet access.
I am interested in a wireless internet access card for my MacBook with the most extensive coverage area. What service are you using, which card and are you using and how is it working for you?
I have been asked where we will be traveling and my answer is..I hope all over the country.
Any help is certainly much appreciated!
Bob
Bob,
I have been using a Verizon card for the past two years. all over the US. Works well. Spped varies depending on signal strength.
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:46 AM   #8
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I have att, it is supposed to have the most extesive area, that is why got this one. In the East it works fine, out west it is spotty around mountain area's. I'm on a 5 month CC trip right now, not much cell service in most of the NP's out here, i mean any cell service. In the cities it works fine, try looking at the coverage maps for the services you want to check out. My step mom and my wifes mother has verison, i certainly wouldn't get that one, they live in Mass and Florida. They always are losing signal where they live, not sure why they keep it. Hope this helps.
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:48 AM   #9
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Bought a Mac notebook 1.5 yrs ago, have been exclusively on an AT&T Sierra Wireless AirCard 875U since then. No problems in the areas (Texas, metro) we have been in. Easily as fast as the so-so cable connection we used to have in Dallas on a PC.

BSQUARE+and+Sierra+Wireless+Collaborate+to+Reduce+ Development+Time+and+Cost+for+OEMs+Adding+3G+Cellu lar+Capability+to+Embedded+Devices%3c%2fbr%3e

The plug-in unit is not the sturdiest (we have replaced one), nor is it well attached; but once the notebook is set in one place and not moved = zero problems. If we move around (as in the trailer) it may take a few moments to connect. I just kept it at the table I normally used it at.

I have a WILSON Cellular Antenna I used in OTR trucks (and mine); I need to get an adaptor for the AirCard, this should increase range and connect-ivity.

Cell Phone Antennas and Cell Phone Boosters at Wilson Electronics

Cell Phone Antennas and Cell Phone Boosters at Wilson Electronics

I have not tried this while on the move (a RAM notebook mount is in my trucks future); I'd like to use the notebook for a moving map/weather/etc device. If anyone has done similar, I am all ears as to how well it works.

RAM Vehicle Laptop Mounts

Recommended, with reservations.
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:48 AM   #10
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On satellite service:
Don't believe all the hype. It doesn't work at all when you are under trees. (ax me how I know) And if bad weather such as a thunderstorm comes along, you are SOL until it passes.
And Hughesnet has a Fair Access Policy which will shut you down if you exceed a certain amount of bandwidth, such as viewing a long vid. It will restrict you for a 24-hour period.
regards
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:52 AM   #11
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If Verison is working for Michelle then it can't be that bad. I'm not sure there is anyone on this site that has done as much traveling as her.
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:53 AM   #12
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Thanks for quick responses so far! I love these forums! I actually checked with Verizon first as they are our vendor at my office for our cell phones. My IT Director has used Sprint as well as Verizon and speaks highly of both....depending on where we're traveling.
I get the feeling from the responses so far that the Verizon users seem to be satisfied. For those of you using Verizon (and maybe it doesn't matter which service vendor) are you using the USB port or a PCMCIA Card? Verizon is recommending the USB UM150 with the 3G (faster downloads).
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Old 06-04-2008, 11:15 AM   #13
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i see verizon now offers two plans, is offering a free usb um150 with a 2yr contract.

a i only need it for 4 months i'd like a "no contract" deal.

t-mobile allows bluetooth data transfer from laptops (or so i was told) not fast but will fill most of my needs. i'd have to break a verizon contract or overlap for 5 months.

i met someone that was using ATT via their phone. i think it was similar to t-mobile & cheaper than verizon.
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Old 06-04-2008, 11:21 AM   #14
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Am I correct in thinking that the Verizon plan runs around $50/month?
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