Wireless Broadband Rental - Why Would You Want Such A Thing?
would you want to consider wireless broadband rental services?
I first discovered that these types of data card rental
services existed, it got me thinking about how useful it could
for certain people. The first thing that comes to mind is
broadband card rental doesn't require that you invest any money in
purchasing the equipment (i.e. PC Card, USB Modem, or Hotspot).
customers can purchase broadband modems relatively inexpensively if
sign a long term contract, and even get equipment for free.
you don't have to sign a
contract, and monthly pricing has become very reasonable with
lot of options now available.
However, prepaid customers do still have to purchase the
broadband modem, which is rarely less than $100.
on the provider, that cost
be considered a lot of money for a service that you may not need long
term, or aren't sure that you'll even get adequate cellular coverage in
places where you plan to use it most. If you're planning on
using it long term, and the company actually offers a money back
guarantee, then you're golden! If you don't like the way it
functions, you can return it at minimal or no cost to you.
Unfortunately, that approach doesn't always meet people's
those people who only want to use wireless broadband service on
occasion, or who don't wish to invest in purchasing equipment,
considering a wireless broadband rental service may be an option worth
investigating. Also note that unlike purchasing equipment,
time if you do use the service sporadically (ex. twice a year for a
week or two), you won't have to worry about your broadband modem being
outdated, for the rental providers will generally keep up with newer
equipment on a more regular basis than most of us would.
major consideration, though, not to be overlooked, is that going the
rental route will cost you a premium on the daily, weekly, or monthly
charges. There's absolutely no doubt that
rental will cost you three or four times (or more) the cost of postpaid
. But for that, you don't have
purchase any equipment, and you can even pay by the day if you want
(though some services have a minimum number of days).
benefit not to be overlooked, is that some wireless broadband rental
providers offer products that support international roaming.
if you have your own broadband card, you may have a short term need to
go abroad where either your wireless modem won't work (because it's not
compatible), or your carrier will charge you a small fortune for
roaming. So for that one or two week vacation in Europe, or
four day business trip, a rental service may be a life (and money!)
considering wireless broadband rental options, you'll want to keep the
following things in mind:
the cost worthwhile, or would you be better off buying a
broadband service, holding onto the card and purchasing usage as you
- Do you have a
(i.e. CDMA, GSM, LTE)? Most of these companies offer products
carriers (i.e. they act as MVNOs
and don't own their own networks), so you'll get to
choose from services like AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, etc.
know one of these networks performs better in the areas where you plan
on using it, you'll want to keep that in mind when
choosing a modem.
rental providers charge more than others, so keep your eye out for the
Some providers offer damage or theft insurance.
insurance, if the equipment is damaged, lost, or stolen, the general
rule of thumb is that you're on the hook for the replacement cost of
the device. As these products are generally very sturdy, I
think the cost of insurance is usually worthwhile, but for peace of
mind some people will find this option invaluable. If you
get insurance, be sure to understand how much you'll have to pay in
case you do lose or damage the device; that's the type of cost
(potentially in the hundreds of dollars) that you
don't want to take you by surprise! And definitely keep your
coffee away from the modem!
the modem compatiblewith
your computer? Most services will help walk you through a
compatibility check, and mobile WiFi hotspots (i.e. MiFi devices) don't
require any installation, which is why I always recommend them when
So, all in all,
when considering your needs, wireless broadband rental services may be
a great option for you.
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