Over the past couple of months, I was asking around and doing my research on portable wifi devices because I envied those who were more productive on the go.
Sure, my iPhone has an unlimited 3G dataplan, and I’m grateful to be able to reply to emails and such while sitting on a public bus, but having a wifi hotspot to connect my MacBook Air and iPad mini to was something that was long overdue. I mentally justified that purchasing a monthly data plan would be “worth it” to me.
Ironically, the topic of wifi hotspots came up in a casual conversation with my friend Ben, and he told me something that was music to my ears – with FreedomPop, you can get a monthly allowance of wifi for FREE. Yup, no contracts, monthly fees, or any of that. All you have to do is purchase the device from them (between $39-$90). I immediately asked him for an invite so I could get started (by him inviting me, both of us were able to get an additional 50MB of data added to his account. Plus, we’d be able to transfer data between our accounts).
When I signed up, I was given the option to select my plan. I went ahead and registered for the Basic 500MB monthly plan. In the two months I’ve been using it so far, I found that 500MB has been enough. I generally use wifi for basic internet functions such as blogging, responding to emails, and
wasting away on browsing social media sites. I rarely stream videos or initiate large downloads.
The next step of the registration process was to choose my device. Devices range from the wifi USB stick to hotspots that can accomodate up to 8 devices at once. I chose the Freedom Spot – Photon because it’s small, compact, and not bulky. It literally sits in the palm of my hand (and I have tiny hands). It now resides permanently and comfortably in a small compartment of my purse.
The 4G speed is extremely fast in certain areas where coverage is strong (NYC is one of those areas), and it’s honestly faster than my home internet provider. To test how far I could stretch the data, I used it heavily for 12 hours a day for two days while working on location in NYC, and I still didn’t exceed my 550 MB limit. Another cool perk is that you could earn more data by transferring unused data between linked friends or participate in “partner offers”. Not a bad gig!
So there it is – FreedomPop. The best thing I’ve added to my purse so far (of course not counting a new rewards credit card). I rave about it to everyone I come in contact with – friends, family, coworkers, and even some Walmart employees recently (I had a mini crowd at one point).
You might even consider using this in place of purchasing expensive hotel wifi if you don’t have status. It has come in handy for me in places like Atlantic City and Las Vegas, where hotel wifi is ridiculously overpriced.
If you’re interested in giving it ago, allow me to pass along my invite. You and I will each receive an additional 50MB of data and we’ll have a chance to link accounts to swap unused data. Feel free to add your own link to the comments as well too.
For those of you who already use it – how awesome is it?!