Monday, August 31, 2009

Enter to Win a FREE MBR1000 + MP3450i!

In partnership with Tekkeon and Cradlepoint, 3Gstore is giving away an ultimate portable solution to one lucky mobile broadband user: a Cradlepoint MBR1000 3G router and Tekkeon MP3450i battery pack!
Cradlepoint MBR1000 and Tekkeon MP3450i
The MP350i can power an MBR1000 for up to 12 hours!

Who: Any mobile broadband user over 18 living within the US is eligible to enter and win, with the exception of 3Gstore, Cradlepoint, and Tekkeon employees.

What: One winner will be selected by 3Gstore to receive a free MBR1000 and MP3450i.

Where: Email your submission to contest@3gstore (multiple submissions will NOT increase your chance of winning and may result in disqualification). The email must explain why YOU want these products and what you would do with them, your full name, address, email address, and phone number (your personal information will be kept confidential).

When: The contest begins NOW and will end at midnight CST on September 18, 2009. The winner will be announced by September 25.

Why: Because these are excellent products that allow mobile broadband users to get the most out of their service!

More details: Visit http://3gstore.com/contest for full details. If you have any questions about the contest, call 3Gstore at 866-3GSTORE or email us at contest@3gstore.com.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Tethering AT&T Phones - As Fast as an Aircard?

We have been asked for several years if using a phone for tethering (aka "phone as modem") is as fast as using an aircard. In the case of Sprint and Verizon phones, the answer is pretty easy - if the phone is "EVDO Rev-A" capable, it can provide comparable performance as a USB/ExpressCard/PCMCIA modem (Sprint/Verizon EVDO Rev-0 phones won't be able to connect at the highest possible speeds, however).

Now that 3Gstore has recently started offering AT&T phones, many of which are tether-capable, this question has come up again. AT&T uses a different technology for their 3G network, so the "Rev-A vs Rev-0" factor that makes picking a Sprint/Verizon phone for tethering so easy is not applicable.

AT&T refers to their mobile broadband network simply as "3G", but not all AT&T devices that are labeled "3G" are capable of the same speeds! Let's take a look at a few definitions of terms associated with AT&T 3G that will help us better understand why some devices will be better choices than others:
  • EDGE: This is AT&T's 2G network (like Verizon/Sprint's "National Access"). AT&T has very widespread EDGE coverage, nearly as good as their voice coverage, but it is NOT 3G - upload and download speeds on the EDGE network average about 50Kbps - 100Kbps, just slightly faster than a standard 56K dial-up connection. If your AT&T phone is ONLY capable of connecting to the EDGE network, your tethering connection will be very, very slow (even if you are in an area where AT&T does have true 3G coverage, your phone won't be able to connect to it).
  • HSPA: HSPA is the technology used by AT&T for their 3G network. HSPA users theoretically can see average download speeds of 700-1700kbps and 500-1200kbps upload.... but there are two distinct types of HSPA:
    • HSDPA: The "D" stands for "download" and indicates that high-speed DOWNLOADS are possible, but UPLOAD speeds will be more like what you'd see on EDGE - even in a 3G area. If your device is HSDPA, you will never be able to take advantage of high-speed uploads.
    • HSUPA: The "U" stands for "upload" and indicates that high-speed uploads are possible. The best AT&T 3G devices are HSDPA/HSUPA, meaning they are capable of high-speed downloads AND uploads.
Obviously, to take advantage of the highest possible speeds from AT&T, users will want an "HSDPA/HSUPA" device. Unfortunately, AT&T doesn't make it easy to find a device with these capabilities - just because the 3G logo appears with a device on AT&T's site doesn't mean all 3G devices are created equal, and AT&T doesn't consistently label which technology each phone or aircard uses! In order to determine what your phone or aircard is capable of, you may have to do some digging (the manufacturer's website is a good place to start).

So can an AT&T phone be as fast as an AT&T aircard? Unlike Sprint and Verizon, who both offer a variety of phones that are capable of offering the same performance as an aircard, AT&T does not currently offer ANY phones that use both HSDPA and HSUPA. They DO offer some phones that are HSDPA, meaning they are capable of high-speed downloads, but NONE of their current lineup of phones uses HSUPA. If you are in the market for a tether-capable AT&T phone, you'll want to make sure you select one that uses HSDPA (avoid the EDGE-only phones, unless dial-up speeds are good enough for you) - but do not expect it to offer identical performance as an HSDPA/HSUPA aircard like the USB Mercury.

Of course, before diving into an AT&T contract for data (either for an aircard or if you plan on tethering), make sure you check your coverage - remember that while AT&T has good nationwide voice and EDGE coverage, their 3G coverage is limited mainly to metropolitan areas.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Verizon Wireless announces Global USB AD3700 Modem

Verizon Wireless' Unique Swivel AD3700 Global USB Modem Provides
High-Speed Mobile Broadband For Access Around The World

Verizon Wireless and ZTE USA introduce the AD3700, a Mobile Broadband USB modem with global connectivity. The consumer-friendly AD3700 gives customers access to high-speed networks in more than 175 destinations including Evolution-Data Optimized (EV-DO), Global System for Mobile communications (GSM)/General Packet Radio Service (GPRS)/Enhanced Data Rates for Global Evolution (EDGE) and High Speed Packet Access (HSPA)/Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) wireless platforms.

Key features:

  • Runs on Verizon Wireless' high-speed network, which uses EV-DO Revision A (Rev. A) technology
  • Includes VZAccess Manager software for easy connection management and automatic installation
  • Swivel hinge USB
  • Windows Vista/XP/2000 Operating System compatibility
  • USB 2.0 high-speed interface
  • Weight of 1.6 ounces
  • 3.1"(H) x 1.7"(W) x 0.5"(D)

Lifestyle features:

  • Ideal for individuals and organizations to stay connected while traveling.
  • Users simply activate the global feature on their Verizon Wireless account and the AD3700 automatically detects the local network and connects to the fastest Internet speed available from almost anywhere in the world.

Buy a high gain AD3700 Booster Antenna
Discuss the AD3700 on EVDOforums.com

Monday, August 10, 2009

Sprint EVDO is Most Reliable and Fastest 3G Network


Sprint is scoring big in recent testing by some big name 3rd parties.

Last month, PC World did exhaustive testing in 13 cities with AT&T, Verizon and Sprint modems and declared that Sprint has the "most reliable" 3G network

Over this past weekend, Boy Genius Report concluded their 'Carrier Wars' series by saying Sprint has the fastest 3G network

PCWorld's reliability results for Verizon mobile broadband were pretty close, but BGR's speed test results showed Sprint was significantly faster than #2 AT&T

For those considering mobile broadband, keep in mind that carrier coverage varies and you should pick the carrier who offers "true high speed 3G" service where you need it.

For the best advice, use the mobile broadband experts at http://3GStore.com

Related content:
Get Sprint Mobile Broadband from 3Gstore.com
Discuss Sprint 3G on EVDOforums.com

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

AT&T 3G Mobile Broadband Now Available from 3Gstore.com


3Gstore.com has expanded their mobile broadband solutions to include aircards and service for AT&T DataConnect! AT&T's USBConnect Mercury, USBConnect Quicksilver, and LaptopConnect Sierra Aircard 881 PCMCIA card are now all available from 3Gstore.com at these great prices:
When you sign up for service with 3Gstore, you have access to our superior customer and technical support - FREE! ... and you'll be eligible for great discounts on accessories for your aircard, including antennas and routers!

AT&T's Mobile Broadband service costs the same as Sprint's and Verizon's: $60/month with a 5GB allowance (overage charges of $0.48/mb apply after 5GB) and 3G coverage is available in most major metropolitan cities. Make sure to check your coverage or consult with a 3Gstore expert before purchasing.

Compare Sprint/Verizon/AT&T Coverage
Sprint vs Verizon vs AT&T: Which is "Better"?