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How to Connect to the Web from Anywhere with Mobile Connectivity

written by: wearmanyhats•edited by: John Garger•updated: 6/28/2011
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Think of how wonderful it would be to connect your laptop to the internet anywhere. Here is how it can happen today. Learn about three ways to connect to the web with a cell phone and subscription-based services.

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    Make Your Phone a Hotspot

    Mobile connectivity is currently offered by several large wireless phone companies. You can sign up for them by calling those wireless providers or visiting a large retailer such as Best Buy. One of the first ways to become more mobile is by turning your cell phone into a wi-fi hot spot. A cable links your cell phone to your laptop, then the cell phone links up to your subscription service. Viola! Internet access!

    There are two major disadvantages to this. One is that the service is said to be a little slower than the other types of connectivity options. The second is if you get a cell phone call, either the cell phone goes straight to voicemail or it breaks the link to the internet. Of all the options for connectivity, this one is the most likely to either be discontinued, or be altered in some way to make it more feasible to get phone calls and still stay on the web.

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    Built In Connectivity

    The biggest change in computers is the built in connectivity. Here the actual connective chip is put right into new computers and then a subscription service is available for the same price as a mobile device. It is likely that future laptops and workstations will have this option.

    The major advantage is that there are no serial port plug in devices that can get lost, or take up serial port space. The biggest disadvantage is that you can only subscribe one machine to the mobility subscription. There is never an option to use more than one computer for the subscription.

    Realistically, it is the best interest of both the suscription services and the computer companies. After all, if the subscriptions can't be changed at will, then more subscriptions need to be sold.

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    The Most Flexible Option

    The final way of mobile connectivity is to buy the subscription and get a special device that you can plug into your serial port. Now you can have broadband anywhere with no cell phone required. You can plug it into your home computer, then pop it into your pocket and use it with your laptop when on the road.

    Another huge advantage is that you can plug the device into mobile broadband router and the all of the computers in the house are connected. This has made connectivity so easy that more people are leaving behind their land lines to go completely wireless. A Best Buy salesperson reported that in the past, he was selling 4-6 subscriptions a month for this service. That has shot up to 40- 60 sales a month now, and growing.

    The are disadvantages to any style of subscription service. A hefty solar storm could knock out satellite communications for some time, and with it, web access. Spotty wireless service will give poor internet connections. And data security is always a concern

    However, the idea of being able to connect anytime, anywhere is exciting. It will be interesting to see what the future holds for mobile connectivity.