In today’s article, we shall be acquainting ourselves with the knowledge of the best medium to connect our devices such as; phones, game consoles, computers to the internet. The question we are technically going to answer in this post today boils down to reasons to use a WiFI Hotspot instead of Mobile data. In today’s world, the internet is indispensable although the amount of time an average internet user spends online varies. It is a standard to want to use your mobile phone’s cellular network to connect to the internet. After all, this is the purpose it serves.
However, in the real sense, your mobile phone will be worse off if all you do is always surf the internet with your phone’s cellular data network/mobile network. You are not better off in spite of the network mode(be it 3G, 4G, or 5G) you select. In the subsequent sections, I will be giving reasons to use a WiFI Hotspot instead of mobile data/cellular data.
- wifi hotspot, differences and types
- [Hands-on review]Huawei E8372h-608 4G LTE + Wifi hotspot USB modem
What is a Hotspot?
A hotspot is a physical location where people may obtain Internet access, typically using Wi-Fi technology, via a wireless local area network (WLAN) using a router connected to an internet service provider. In a layman’s language, a hotspot gives you internet access. The hotspot gets its internet source either from a sim card, modem, or WLAN.
What then is Mobile data/cellular data?
Mobile data is Internet content delivered to mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets over a wireless cellular connection.
Cellular providers globally, have offered mobile data through a number of different technologies including GSM (in 1G, 2G, 3G UMTS, and 4G LTE Advanced), CDMA, and TDMA. Mobile data plans offer varying amounts of data transfer per month for a range of rates. The most expensive plans typically offer unlimited data; the low end may provide less than a gigabyte (GB).
What is a Wifi Router?
A wireless router is an electronic device that works as a router — meaning it sends data from the internet cable to a device — and as a wireless access point so this data can be shared through radio signals instead of another cable
WHAT TO LOOK OUT FOR WHEN BUYING A MIFI / WIFI ROUTER
- If you are the type that is always on the go, you need to buy an unlocked router as against buying a locked one from your internet service provider.
- You may also opt for a router that uses a sim card directly instead of using one that connects by using a 3g / 4g modem
- You should also endeavor to buy one with an inbuilt battery that lasts a minimum of 4 hours.
- If you are in Nigeria, buy a 4g LTE router as against a 3g router even if your area is not yet covered by the 4g network. 4g network will cover most areas very soon and you wouldn’t want to be at a disadvantage.
- However, if you think you can stick to a particular network provider indefinitely, then you can buy your MiFi from that particular provider.
- 4g routers are more expensive than their 3g counterpart
- A router that has power bank capabilities is more expensive than one without it.
What are the differences between a MiFi and a WiFi?
- Simply put, the main difference between WiFi and MiFi is that MiFi is actually an internet device that has WiFi built into it. On the other hand, WiFi is a wireless networking standard. A MiFi device can be connected to a cellular network and provide internet access for up to ten devices. You can call a MiFi a modem or even a router, as it has both components, but it really is a brand name mobile hotspot.
- Another point of call is that most dedicated wifi routers depend on an external source of power supply.
- Also, Most high-end wifi routers are not portable.
- In addition, the best wifi router is by far faster than the best MiFi routers.
- Furthermore, Wi-Fi routers are more suited for industrial or official use while mobile broadband or MiFi are best suited for individuals and small business use.
- Finally, most modern MiFi can work alone for hours without connecting it to an external power source.
Why Buy A MiFi/WiFi Router when I can use my Phone for the Internet?
First off, are you always frustrated when your phone dies prematurely especially while playing online games?. What about a situation whereby your battery depletes faster while streaming videos online(Even IPTV)?.
Now, this is rare but some have actually had swollen batteries. Some mobile phone users have been compelled to switch off your data or switch to 2g just to conserve battery?.
Using your Mobile Phone as a Wi-Fi Hotspot vs using a WiFi Router
Another valid question is if it’s advisable to use one of your phones as a dedicated Wi-Fi hotspot instead of buying a WiFi router. The answer to this is relative. I would say, if you already have a spare phone with the fastest network in your location, you can give this a shot.
Secondly, if you can get a pre-owned/used phone that is cheaper than any good Wi-Fi router, you can buy and use this as a hotspot.
However, there are some constraints to using your phone as a Wi-Fi hotspot. The disadvantages are as follows:
- Using your phone as a Wi-Fi hotspot causes your phone to overheat which may, in turn, swell up the battery or even cause it to explode. Occasionally, the swollen battery can damage your phone’s screen
- Generally, the cost of purchasing a phone is higher than the amount you will spend on buying a dedicated WiFi hotspot.
- Finally, you may have the need to constantly replace your phone’s battery as it would die faster than when not used as a hotspot.
Reasons to use a WiFI Hotspot Instead of Mobile Data Network
In this segment, I will be listing 9 reasons why you should consider using a Wi-Fi router(the portable one) instead of your phone’s mobile/cellular network.
In Order to Avoid Rapid Battery Drain, You Need a WiFi Router
If you are on tourist or a traveler, or you live in one of the developing countries of the world where we have an erratic power supply, you need two devices as a matter of necessity; 1. power bank and 2. a MiFi router. If you use a wifi connection, your phone’s battery will last longer on a charge.
Some Updates only Allow you to Use a Wi-FI Hotspot instead of Your Mobile Data
Software Updates on some phones will not allow you to use your cellular data to connect to the internet and download updates. Similarly, some hardware only allows you to use either a LAN internet or a Wi-Fi connection. For example, your game consoles such as PSP, PS Vita, Nintendo Switch, PS3, PS4, and so on.
- Use Wi-FI Hotspot instead of data to reduce money wasted on data plans
Case in point 1: You are a Family man and your wife, children and siblings need the internet. Once you have a Mi-Fi(it can connect a minimum of 5 users at once) you can simply buy one huge data and everyone is happy at home. Case in point 2: if you go to a hotel or any other place where there is free Wi-Fi. Switch off your data and connect to the Wi-Fi instantly. However, only connect to secure Wi-Fi networks.
Good Wi-Fi Routers Have Security and privacy Privacy Protection Features
By using a portable Wi-Fi router, you can protect yourself from some of the risks that are possible when you enter passwords and banking information over a free public Wi-Fi network.
This layer of security is achieved by activating the firewall and using password protection to control who has access to your Wi-Fi connection. Most portable Wi-Fi routers are also equipped with WPA (Wireless Protected Access) and WPA-2 encryption which enhances security when accessing the Internet.
Secondly, You can prevent unauthorized access to your phone if you have a mobile router. For example, if you are the absent-minded type like me and you are being looked up to for internet access in your residence, you will end up giving out your phone every once in a while to friends for internet use. I have at least one friend every two weeks who will run to me for internet access.
Luckily, ever since I started using hotspots, I simply get them connected to my hotspot and once we are done, I block the connection(so that they won’t use up my data plan without my permission). Furthermore, it is extremely difficult for hackers to trace and attack your phone if your router security and firewall is well configures
No speed throttling when you Use a Wi-FI Hotspot instead of data
Most modern MiFi manages connectivity issues better than phones. Your speed will not fluctuate except your internet service provider is responsible for lowering your speed. I notice the differences in speed whenever I use a MiFi/WiFi as against my phone. Secondly, it is easier to get the best out of a VPN service that is connected to WiFi compared to one that is used on your phone with your mobile data.
Mobility and Portability
By using a portable wireless router, you can ensure that you will always have internet access everywhere you go. The MiFi I am currently using is mine is smaller than any phone that I have ever owned past and present. it fits easily into my pocket and it stays at least 5 hours on a charge. I could have bought one that stays longer than 5 hours on a charge but I didn’t due to financial constraints
Avoid fire hazard, burns, and discomfort associated with using the mobile data of your phone continuously
With a MiFi router, you can easily save yourself from some health hazards or accidents that can be caused by phone heating up. One of the fastest ways to make your phone very hot is for you to operate it endlessly on a weak 3g or 4g. To cap this, start playing an HD game or stream videos using an unstable 3g or 4g network. All these can be avoided with a router
To avoid replacing your Phones, battery too often, Use a Wi-FI Hotspot instead of data
If you are an extensive internet user and you do not want to buy another battery(or in extreme cases another phone) pretty soon, please buy a MiFi now or get a phone to be dedicated to hotspot tasks only. Extensive use can cause overheating in phones. Overheating will most likely cause a phone’s battery to get swollen and damaged. In some cases, overheating can also damage your phone altogether. Imagine you use a galaxy note 7 as a hotspot?
Using a Wi-fI Hotspot instead of your cellular data network can also prevent distractions
If you do not want to be distracted or interrupted by calls or messages when using the internet, then your pick should be a router against your mobile data.
- Using a Wi-Fi hotspot increases your consciousness and allows you to monitor your data usage better. When you use a mobile hotspot that requires a great effort to check the data balance, you develop a habit of fair usage and data management.
By contrast, because you easily dial a code on your phone you can get so carried away until you receive an SMS from your internet provider that your data has been exhausted.
- The Interface of a wifi router makes it easy to manage an internet connection and it has many features like a firewall, password.
- You get better network reception on a router
- Furthermore, you can get the highest speed receivable. some wifi routers a tri-band with up to 2000mbps speed. We also have 4g LTE on most routers long before it debuted on any phone. But the fastest phone in terms of internet speed with the fastest router and the router will score a huge win over the phone.
- In addition, you can connect multiple wifi devices to your router simultaneously without sacrificing its performance. A minimum of 5 devices can be connected simultaneously and the speed will still be stable enough
- Flexibility and convenience: mobile broadband, due to its portable nature can be placed anywhere to boost the signal especially when you are in an area where the network fluctuates.
Popular Wifi Routers and Mobile Broadbands(MiFis)
Some of the companies that manufacture the best wifi include but not limited to; Linksys, TP-Link, Dlink, Huawei, ZTE, Asus.
Types of Mobile Hotspot/MiFi/mobile Broadband Devices
Unlike in the case of wifi routers, Huawei is the undisputed manufacturer of the most reliable Mifis out there. My personal router is also a Huawei 4g MiFi.
HUAWEI 5G Mobile WiFi Pro
To a lot of internet-enthusiasts, the name Huawei rings a resounding bell. Consequently, I am happy to tell you that Huawei is the first company to do a proper 5G mobile Wi-Fi hotspot. Below are the features of the Huawei 5G mobile WiFi Pro device
Features of Huawei 5G Mobile WiFi Pro
- Supports both NSA and SA networking modes, and mainstream 5G frequency bands. SA networking mode depends on the network and software version. Data from HUAWEI laboratories, the actual peak download speed may vary depending on network conditions and distance. USB 3.0 Type-C data cable needs to be purchased to experience the peak download speed.
Specific Network Features
- Communication Standard: 3GPP Release 15
- Applicable Network: 5G / 4G
- 5G Network Mode: NSA / SA,SA capabilities depend on the available network and software version
- 5G Transmission Rate: 1.65Gbps / 250Mbps (Theoretical value. The actual rate depends on the operator)
- 4G Transmission Rate: 300Mbps / 75Mbps (Theoretical value. The actual rate depends on the operator)
- Antenna Type: 5G / 4G main and diversity antennas
- The actual peak download speed of a 5 GHz Wi-Fi connection may vary depending on network conditions and distance.
- 8000mAh is the typical value, the rated value is 7800 mAh. Battery life may vary depending on usage.
- Devices need to support wireless reverse charging. The output power of reverse charging may vary depending on the device. The 22.5w and 15w reverse charging are only applicable to HUAWEI phones.
- Data from HUAWEI laboratories, the actual speed may vary depending on network conditions and distance.
- Need to use HUAWEI AI Life APP or phone camera to scan QR code.
Novatel MiFi 7000 Wireless 4G (GSM Unlocked) Mobile Hotspot Portable WiFi Router
You can get Novatel 4G MiFi Hotspot devices on Amazon or eBay.
Basically, It is the first MiFi branded mobile hotspot to include a 2.4-inch color touchscreen. They also have real simultaneous dual-band Wi-Fi and hacking prevention.
Other features include QuickCharge technology and MiFi Share. With a more powerful battery supporting up to 24 hours of use on a single charge, the MiFi 7000 securely connects up to 15 devices on the most advanced LTE networks as well as falls back to HSPA+/UMTS and GPRS/EDGE networks. The MiFi 7000 also offers a built-in universal charging feature for external devices such as smartphones and tablets needing a battery boost, without compromising performance and connectivity.
Huawei 3G Mobile Hotspots
4G Mobile HotSpots and MiFis
We have a lot of 4G routers around especially now that the 5G network is gaining popularity. The picture below depicts the image of my Huawei 4B portable USB mobile broadband. Another 4g mobile broadband that is more convenient to use is novaltel 4G mifi. Currently, I am considering buying a 5G mobile Wifi. However, I will do that only when there is a 5G network in my region.
If you are an average or a heavy internet user, or a traveler, you need a mobile wifi router. When I say mobile wifi routers, I mean the ones that can stay for hours on a single charge. We have some routers that also serve as power banks and can last up to 24 hours on a single charge. Save your phone! save your money! Prevent the hazard. Get a mifi/3g or 4g mobile broadband today.