I'm not a fan of touch screens and touch pads. I much prefer a real keyboard and a mouse. So when I'm on the road what can I use to connect a laptop to the internet?
IF your cell phone company allows it, you can either get an app to make it a hotspot, or if your phone is "modern" enough, there will be a setting already on it. But of course it has to be a smartphone. I don't think any flip phones are capable of that at all.
I have a somewhat older cell phone with an antenna on it. It runs on gas but the pilot light keeps going out and if this happens during a call it goes dead. What am I overlooking?
John, the twentieth century?
I use Net10 for my cell phone. They also offer a hotspot to plug into your computer. The device itself is available in a 50 or 80 dollar version depending on whether you want a display.
I like these guys; they use AT&T as their provider and they're low cost.
Steve, I use an older Verizon wireless device that plugs into my laptop usb port, it costs me $85 per month for unlimited usage. It has worked everywhere I have tried it, rest stops. Chickasha, my home (because I have no wifi within ten miles of my house) and other places I would call remote. I would suggest you check a Verizon store near you.
I use this from verizon
if you already have a verizon account this is added as a second line
G.R.- I also have the Verizon Jetpack and it has come in handy many times on both my laptop (mapping while in the boonies), at motels while on a tour (privacy), and at home during power outages. Once purchased, Verizon charges me only $10/mo for connectivity.
We have been using the Verizon Jet-Pak for years for our internet service and up until recently, have been happy with it. A couple of months ago, it started using WAY more data than we have ever used before. Almost like someone is stealing it from us, although I'm not sure how that can happen unless someone sits on our porch. Its range is something like 100 feet with no obstruction and 30 feet through walls. No neighbors anywhere near that close. At any rate, we can add up the data usage on our two computers and it comes nowhere close to what the Jet-Pak says we have used. Verizon is supposed to be looking into this for us, and has been for the last 3-4 weeks, but to date, no resolution. There are a lot of folks on the internet that believe Verizon is doing it on purpose to make you increase your plan. I can't say that is true, but the longer this goes on, the more I wonder. We used to use less than 12Gb/mo for YEARS. Now, we are using more than that in two weeks. We have done nothing different. We don't stream video. we don't have any "Smart" appliances. Nothing has changed except Verizon's version of how much data we use. I can no longer recommend Verizon's Jet-Pak to anyone and strongly advise you not to go that route. We are currently looking into fixed wireless. Cable and DSL are not available in our area and I've heard too much bad stuff about satellite, but I might consider that as well.
MY cell phone is bolted to the side of a gas station. Just kidding. Dave in Bellingham,WA
A lot of laptops have a slot for the wireless card, maybe 2 x 1 inches in size which flips in place and is protected by a plastic cover on the bottom of the laptop with two screws. Inside the cover and next to it is another slot for a cell phone card. The wireless card gives you access for connecting up to a LAN (local area network), whereas the cell card gives you WAN (wide area network). Each laptop is different and the cell card would require a subscription or a plan with a cell phone company. There are also external USB devices, but they are exposed to damage and theft.
Sorry Steve but keyboards and mice do not connect you to the Internet... modems do.
I use my cell phone as a wifi hot spot to all my Ipads and
Laptop computers at home and on the road.
John...gave me a good laugh tonite!
I just learned they loan out mobile hotspots at our local library. http://dearbornlibrary.org/wordpress/new-mobile-hotspots/ You may want to check in your area.
Most McDonalds and coffee shops also offer free wifi. This assumes your laptop is wifi capable.
Hal, I had a Samsung phone that had been hacked when I downloaded some info off line and I experienced the same increased data usage. After taking it in Verizon determined it had been hacked. I would see if you could have some check your cpu to make sure it's not infected. I am not a computer guy just repeating what I was told. After the repairs I went back to using 8gb monthly. Jmho
Hal, another thing might be your phone. A while back, I noticed that my internet connection was very slow. I wasn't worried about usage as mine is unlimited. I called the ISP and they determined it was my phone. I called Verizon several times and finally determined that my phone was backing up my phone pictures to the cloud every morning. It wasn't just updating new pictures, it was recopying all of them.......a bunch of data. I shut off automatic updates to the cloud and it stopped.
John, I know that. The point is that I want to use a laptop, which has those but doesn't establish an internet connection by itself, and I don't want a smart phone, which does connect but is infested by those features.
Peter, I use McDonalds wi-fi all the time. But I want to connect out in the boonies where there are no coffee shops or burger joints.
I use a prepaid hotspot (Internet on the Go) I bought at Walmart a couple of years ago. It works great for traveling.
I don't know if they still sell them, you might have to buy them online. I don't stream videos, just check email and websites for things to see and do while on vacation.
Steve, the cell phone card I mentioned could be supplied by the vendor of your laptop but only works if you are in range of a cell phone tower. However, in the boonies, sticks, ocean, and desert you would need satellite reception.
I will look into that, but you can add up all the data our devices say they have used and it comes nowhere close to the data that MIFI Jet-Pak says it has used. We have been keeping a record of its readings and with all computers turned off (Not sleep mode.....OFF!), it has used a gig overnight, just sitting there. Verizon says it looks like something is streaming. We don't stream. Heck, we seldom even watch a single short Youtube video.
Vern's right. If you're "Way out west" you're going to need satellite. And Brother it ain't cheap!
Hal do you also turn off the jet-pac at night? and have you restricted the number of devices that can log in at once? I have mine limited to 3 2 laptops and a printer. One more thought if your printer is wireless and does automatic updates it can get stuck in a loop with a bad download and won't try to stop until it is turned off
Another interesting tidbit about phones and the internet.
I'm on my second Verizon smartphone. Before that it was flip phones since 2001. About a year ago, my contacts included ones that I had deleted years (5) before. Some were duplicates sorted by first name instead of the last name. Where did they come from and why did they appear on my phone suddenly.
Google, Verizon said. They save everything, but had no explanation how they got back on my contacts list. I think someone somewhere was fooling with my account. Not a hacker, Verizon and/or Google.
It seems the younger generation doesn't worry about all this tracking and such, but I'll bet most of ole geezers on this board don't much like it. I know I don't, but I guess there isn't much you can do about it.
Lately? Yes, but we never had to before. And we shouldn't HAVE to now. It has used data when it was off, but it wasn't as much as when we leave it on. My wife has been the one contacting Verizon. We have a case number and all that, but we cannot directly reach the guy who is supposedly working our case. You can e-mail, but he doesn't respond until he's good and ready and that takes days. She calls and gets a different person every time and each one of them has a different story. One even told her that the Jet-Pak wasn't intended to be for regular internet usage and that is was only intended to be used when traveling and such. Funny, this is the second one we've had and they've been our only source of internet for probably the last 5, 6, 7 years? He also asked her if she was using a laptop. She said yes, and he said "Oh that's probably it. Laptops use a lot more data than a regular computer." WHAT?!!!! I may have been born at night but it weren't LAST night!
We do have a WIFI printer, but we've been turning it off since this started and it hasn't helped. We have not set a limit on the number of connected devices. Didn't know you could do that, but we have been periodically checking and recording the number of connected devices. It has never shown anything connected that should not have been.
They told me the same thing about the jetpak not being intended for primary internet connection but I have been using it as such for 6 or 7 years now. During hurricane Irma My cosmos 3 phone got soaked and died when I got a new phone I had to get a smart phone (Ugggghhhh) I hate it with all of the ads for this or that app and if it raises my data usage I will be leaving verizon behind! hope that doesn't happen because I have been happy with their service so far.
Hal, you might go to a Verizon store and ask about their current plans. We had an old plan that limited our data usage with the jet pack. We started out with 3g bumped the plan to 5g then finally 10g. Now we have an unlimited plan and it is ......less money!
When we first started with Verizon it wasn't called a Jetpack is was called a MiFi and one December I opened the bill and it was $1200.00!
I had been hacked and didn't know it but Verizon took care of it! So I feel a bit beholden to them but I sure was frustrated trying to get that billing issue resolved!
For what it's worth.....
It is my one and only means of connecting both our laptops to the internet and has been for years
When this first happened, my wife did switch to unlimited. What they don't tell you (Unless maybe it's in the fine print), is that if you go over 10 gigs they slow you down to something like 750 Kb/sec. Well that's about like not having internet. So we went back to a regular plan but bumped it up to 16 gigs. Something is definitely going on with it. Hacking or something. They are supposedly looking into it, but......