Friday, January 04, 2008

EVDO Router Manufacturers Get a Report Card from 3GStore

Being that it's a new year, we here at figured we'd give the router manufacturers a report card. We've taken a look at a number of factors and assigned a grade to each router manufacturer. Here's how they fared:

Cradlepoint - A+
We have given them such a high grade for a whole host of reasons. They have shown truly impressive responsiveness to our suggestions and requests. We have asked them to write firmware to support new devices, and they've done it. We recommended that the ethernet port on the CTR-350 works as LAN, and they made it happen.

Cradlepoint is creating excellent products. Their routers are compact and very travel friendly, but they still have a robust set of features. They have released innovative products (ie: first battery-powered EVDO router), and we're anxious to see what else they have in store for the EVDO consumer. And top of it all, they offer competitive prices on these quality products.

Kyocera - B
The KR1 has been out for quite some time now, but it's still an effective piece of equipment. We have plenty of customers who swear by this router, and we still have new KR1 customers every day. The problem with the KR1 at this point is that it's on it's last leg. The KR2 is supposed to be released early 2008, and the lack of firmware released to support new cards on the KR1 has been disappointing. There is currently only 1 device sold on Verizon that works properly in the KR1.

Linksys - D
The Linksys router has always had a limited amount of cards supported. It is intended for use with the Sprint network, so there are only a couple of Verizon cards that have ever worked with the WRT54G3G-ST. But as considerably more USB and ExpressCard devices are released, this limitation is becoming even more apparent. The Linksys works only with PCMCIA cards, and as we've stated before, PCMCIA is on it's way out. So a router that has no capability of working with a USB device or an ExpressCard is going to become as obsolete as the PCMCIA cards it supports.

TopGlobal - F
The manufacturer support from TopGlobal has been atrocious. We have plenty of stories to tell about customers who had to wait 5 weeks for replacements, who were told they couldn't get replacements, or who received replacements that were used/damaged. And those are the people who are actually given replacements - many times TopGlobal will not stand behind their "supoposed" 1 year warranty and will refuse to replace a customer's defective product.

TopGlobal routers are the only routers that personally tests before sending out the door because we've had so many arrive to our customers DOA. TopGlobal also contracts out their support to a US company who is not knowledgable about the products and gives customers incorrect information, and they eventually come back to us to get real tech support. The bottom line is that they do not stand behind their product, which is unacceptable as far as we're concerned. Why should we continue to sell a product that has a reputation for being of poor quality when we know it will be nothing but a hassle to get a defective unit replaced?

Effective Immediately, 3Gstore Drops Top Global