By Scott Westerman
I’ve written elsewhere about how much I love my T-Mobile Dash and it’s ability feed the Internet to my laptop. As a radio amateur, I’m a fan of High Speed Multimedia (HSMM) and its ability to provide point to point and infrastructure broadband connectivity “when all else fails.
Make no mistake: In most instances the speed and convenience you get from a cable modem is the best way to go from a price / value standpoint. Yup, I’m a Comcaster with a quarter century of bias in that direction, but even if I weren’t the statement is still true.
In those rare instances where you can’t be tethered to a cable modem, Internet connectivity outside of the wired world offers several alternatives.
Satellite Internet is the most pricey and has many inconveniences. You’re given a maximum number of bytes per month and pay a premium for anything extra. The latency issue of sending your packets can play havoc with voip and some streaming applications. The upside is that no matter where you are, as long as you have power, you can surf.
If you want to cruise the information highway on the road, the cell companies have been enhancing their networks to facilitate Internet applications. It’s RF, so propagation can be a problem and for those of us used to 8 megs of download bandwidth, there’s a lot of waiting for more robust content to render. But with toys like the Cradlepoint EVDO Router and Autonet Mobile, it’s possible to take your laptop beyond the wired world and to have a plan “B” if something extraordinary takes out your regular infrastructure.