Originally Posted by goldwing daddy can you then hook up a desktop computer instead of a laptop using a usb wireless card and save the money on the price differnece laptop/desktop?
Reading these posts have got me thinking about paying for DSL at home, wireless/broadband (eventually) for the laptop on the road (for spouse & myself when I go) and maybe going with Sprint for both and get a package deal (hopefully) to make it less expensive. What do you think?
I have a friend who runs Sprint so what I know from his may help answer some questions.
The info I am giving is also the plan I intend to run myself.
I am a current sprint voice customer. Their data package comes with a card, cost between $10 and $300, depending on specials and which card you want/need. Much like a choice of what phone you want in this regard. You plug the card into the side of your computer. There are various styles of cards out now, USB is pretty much universal so if you arent sure what you need maybe that will work best. Plug the card in and boot up your system and you are on line. Now the set up can be a bit tricky. Usually it requires a call to tech-support to "activate" the card. But because they are tech support they have to ask you 10 thousand un-ne cessary questions that have no bearing whatsoever on your current needs. Once you do that you are set. Main thing to remember is when you shut down your system always remove the card and store it in a safe place. Those things can get pricey and hard to replace out there on the road. I think the cost for an existing voice customer is $44.99 and service without a voice plan was around $59.99.
Most cell companies now carry similar set ups. The thing to remember is know what you are buying. Verizon has decent service I hear. But overall Sprint seems to have the best coast to coast coverage. A friend of mine runs it and has good connections usually other than Virginia mountian areas.
Overall before he went to Sprint he was using a couple diff truck stop network 'hot spots'. He was paying I think about $40 a month for limited access that way and now pays abotu $60 for almost true non stop nationwide access. Being a trainer he spent time online while rolling down the road and it always worked fine.
This is actually an area where I can contribute. Using your laptop for internet use can be done several different ways. The USB way you are referring to is based off your NIC card and goes through a router (usually known as a hot spot) I currently have this at home because I have a desktop connected directly and a wireless laptop.
If you want a internet connection in more than just a hot spot you will need to purchase a simm card. These are in all of your cell phones. Basically you will have access to the internet whereever you get cell coverage. I currently activate these for AT&T and Verizon. The costs associated with this would be comparable to a cell phone plan.