Tuesday, March 02, 2010

PHS300 for $99.99 Too Good to Be True - Don't Be Fooled!

Cradlepoint's battery-powered PHS300 router is one of the most popular routers for 3G and 4G users, but did you know that Cradlepoint has two versions for the PHS300 - and only one of them is 4G-compatible?

Lately we've noticed several online retailers advertising the PHS300 router for super-low prices, as low as $99.99. For a router with an MSRP of $179.99, that certainly sounds like a great deal... until you realize that these $99.99 PHS300's are the old 3G-only version!

The "Hardware Version 1" PHS300, which has been available since late 2007, is the original version and is only capable of working with 3g devices - even with firmware updates, a PHS300 with Version 1 hardware is not capable of supporting a 4G WiMAX connection and never will be. Version 2 has new hardware that allows it to support the new 4g WiMAX modems. 3gstore has been exclusively selling/shipping the Version 2 PHS300 since it became available last year, but other retailers are still selling the PHS300 with Version 1 hardware, which means it can't be used with the new 4g modems like the U300, U301 and CLEAR USB modems.
phs300 version 1 and 2
Left: PHS300 w/ Hardware Version 1; Right: PHS300 w/ Hardware Version 2

We urge customers to be wary of any deal that seems too good to be true... it probably is! Make sure you know exactly what you're buying - look closely at the specs, not just the price.

Already have a PHS300 and aren't sure if it's the 3G or 3G/4G version? Check out this article for info on how to tell!

***It is worth noting here that the current "buy an MBR1200, get a free PHS300" promotion currently offered by Cradlepoint/3Gstore is for the "version 1.0" PHS300 - all of the PHS300's that we sell are version 2.0 for 4G compatibility, but the free PHS300 Cradlepoint is sending as a part of that promotion is the older model. We know it's not ideal (and we wouldn't have made that choice ourselves!) but it's a Cradlepoint promotion... and hey, free is free!