I’ll be travelling shortly and I wanted to stay connected to the web without tethering my phone to my laptop and getting charged for mobile data. So I searched online “how to get wireless internet anywhere for free or at a fair price.” I found a couple of services offering free wireless internet on the go but out of the bunch I found one offering their services for zero dollars a month or cheap monthly cost (depending on what you want).
Whether you’re travelling or just looking to save money on your internet service bill having an option to obtain free wireless internet anywhere is important. Now of days staying connected online is vital when it comes to business, social and personal matters. With the latest smartphones and apps you can do quite a bit on your phone but using your laptop is still a necessity. So whether or not you have access to WiFi internet on your smartphone having access to the web on your computer is usually what most people want.
Difference between Wireless Internet and DSL & Cable Technology.
DSL and Cable technology relies on a physical wire connection for you to get access to the internet. This services is usually provide by your local ISP (internet service provider) such as Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, Time Warner Cable or Rogers and Bell if you reside in Canada.
The cable connection is connected to modem which is then connected to a router which enables a WiFi single. This is how you are most likely connected to your laptop, tablet or smartphone at home.
Wireless Internet is a bit different. It does not need a physical wire connection to gain access to the internet but instead is connected through 3G, 4G, WiMAX or LTE signal allowing you access to the internet from anywhere at anytime, just like on your smartphone.
Tethering is one way to stay connected but you may constantly be dealing with poor 3G, 4G or LTE signals which will slow down your web browsing, emailing and instant messaging needs. Also, if you don’t have an unlimited data plan for your phone you will most likely see a hefty overage charge on your bill.
So what other options are there for someone who would like to get free WiFi Internet? To get free wireless internet anywhere you will have a few services to choose from. I’ve listed one of them below.
FreedomPop provides multiple free solutions for mobile phones, portable (on the go) internet and home Internet. FreedomPop is a telecom company that launched in 2011. The company is backed by many high-end investors like Atomico and DCM. They announced the first free phone service in America in 2013 and continues to provide reliable free wireless internet services. Their mission is to deliver free and fast mobile services across America.
How does FreedomPop work?
Essentially, you will have to buy a hotspot device from FreedomPop that can connect to all your devices (laptop,tablet,phone) via Wi-Fi or Ethernet cable. Then depending on the plan you have chosen you can use the internet for free from anywhere at anytime till you hit your cap. You are billed month-to-month and there are no contracts. The service uses Sprints 3G and 4G WiMAX coverage.
With FreedomPop you can gain access to their services in 6 steps or less.
- See if FreedomPop services are available in your location by entering your zipcode and street address. (Coverage)
- At this point select the type of service you want to obtain (Phone, on-the-go wireless internet or Home Internet)
- Select a plan that meets your needs for the specific service. (All services come with a free plan option.)
- Once you have selected a plan you will have the options to purchase some add-ons. These add-ons will help you manage your data and will also notify you when you are close to your GB/MB cap or if you have gone over your data usage.
- Choose the preferred hotspot device for the services. When selecting a device you must know what you’re interested in buying. All the hotspot devices provide wireless internet but at different speeds. Some have 3G, 4G and LTE speeds. Some of the devices have a longer battery life, connect to more devices (phones, tablets, laptops) and have a LCD screen to read signal and usage. Also, there is no installation required for the equipment. Just simply plug-and-play.
- Pay for the hotspot device, first month subscription cost (if you didn’t select the Free plan) shipping cost and taxes.
- Have the items shipped to your location.
* Please keep in mind that some plans require you to purchase compatible equipment. The prices of the hotspot equipment will vary depending on the plan you have selected.
The great aspect of FreedomPop is that all of their services come with a “free” plan option. This allows you to get free wireless internet anywhere, however you will have to pay a one-time-fee for the hotspot device.
With their mobile phone services you can select a phone from their list, pick a plan that meets your requirements and have the phone shipped to your location so you can activate it. I won’t get into the specifics of the service but if you would like to save money on your monthly phone bill I would highly recommend you check it out.
On the Go Internet
This service is specifically catered to people who are travelling, hopping from one city to the next. There are few plans to select from. The Basic plan is also the free plan which gives you access to wireless internet with 4G speeds. However, when it comes to amount of gigabyte or megabyte allowance, it isn’t the greatest. If you select the Basic plan you will be capped at 500 MB for the month. After you have used up your monthly data allowance you will be charged $0.02 for every megabyte that is used. The free plan would be ideal for a person who likes to do some light browsing and emailing.
There are two other plans that available for this service but will cost you a monthly fee: Causal and Premiere. Causal plan will get you up to 2 GB of data for $17.99 a month but it also comes with a free month offer. You will be able to use the Causal plan free of charge for one month once you received the hotspot device. For every megabyte you use after the 2 GB cap will cost you $0.01. This is the perfect plan for a user that is active on Facebook, browses the net, emails and shares photos.
The Premiere plan gives you 4 GB of data to be used at the cost of $28.99. There will be a charge of $0.01 for every megabyte that is used passed the cap. This plan is catered to users that like to view videos on YouTube and browse Facebook.
This service from FreedomPop provides broadband internet access for your home or office. The devices that are compatible for this service are also portable. There are no physical wires connected to the device besides the power cord.
There are 4 plans that are available for Home Internet: 1GB, Basic, Faster and Fastest.
1GB plan will get you exactly that. 1GB. For every megabyte you use after the total monthly allowance will cost you 1 cent. I wouldn’t recommend this plan if you use the internet more than 10 minutes a day. However, this plan is FREE. No monthly cost unless you go over you 1GB of data.
- Basic Plan – 5GB of data at speeds of 1.5 Mbps for $9.99 a month.
- Faster Plan – 10 GB of data at speeds of 3Mbps for $14.99 a month.
- Fastest Plan – 10 GB of data at speeds of 12 Mbps for $18.99 a month.
Your first month on the Fastest Plan is absolutely free. FreedomPop is offering new users 1 month of free WiFi service which is ideal for gaming, video streaming and photo sharing.
Pros and Cons
So now that you know more about FreedomPop and the options they provide you have to weigh out the pros and the cons the service.
Pros: The service is easy to setup and to understand. Installation for the hotspot device can be easily completed by simply plugging it in. There is an option for getting the service for free. You can connect up to 8 Wi-Fi enabled gadgets. There is no contracts, hidden fees and no commitments.
Cons: You must pay for the hotspot device which can cost up to $89.99. Shipping for the equipment is not free. The free plan is very limited. All the plans don’t have enough data for users to comfortably browse the net as though you were connected to DSL or Cable internet.
So if you’re looking to find a solution to get wireless internet anywhere you may want to check out the company and its services.