Perhaps the best part of my trip to Barcelona, Spain to visit Mobile World Congress 2013 was not having to worry about wireless broadband the entire time I was there. You see I was sent a review unit of the XCom Global wireless broadband device which allowed me to stay connected the entire time I was in the country without having to worry about roaming charges, overage charges and heaven knows what other sorts of fees and taxes one deals with when leaving their home country.
The company sent me a used Novatel Wirelss MiFi 2372, instructions, an extra battery and a case of adapters for various outlets throughout the world. They gave me a SIM for Spain and I was off and running. Did it work? Yes. Was it awesome? Yes. Verizon charges $25/100MB for international access and if you are a heavy data user like I am – you will pay through the nose.
XCom Global solutions come in a variety of flavors including USB modem and hotspot
As a result of the XCom Global modem, I didn’t need to use my wireless access that often. The few times I did use it resulted from the XCom Wireless modem shutting off or disconnecting. It did this from time to time but I did make it one whole day without having this problem at all. Perhaps the used modem had a flaw. But of course this is speculation.
It’s worth pointing out the testing environment I used was brutal – the Mobile World Congress convention center. It was full of WiFi access points – probably more than the average person will ever see at once on their device.
The good news is that in four days of using the modem in this environment, it worked amazingly well. As long as I was connected I was able to communicate. Sure, sometimes it slowed down but regardless of how deep I was inside the steel and concrete I was always able to get a signal.
At nights I took the device to the gym and streamed a combination of Siris XM satellite radio, Pandora and Slacker. I never had a prblem with the music quality or buffering issues. A few times I noticed the WiFI icon on the phone disapeard meaning I was streaming over native 3G. As you can imagine, this did cause my phone data usage to increase quite a bit.
The cost for the service is $14.95/day and for this amount you get a real price in advance without hidden fees, charges or bill shock.
Would I recommend the service? Absolutely. My only concern now is traveling without it. Sure I can just pay Verizon its roaming charges but the beauty of the unlimited plan is I live my life the way I like to. I stream music if I choose to. If I want to approve a video shoot my team sends me via e-mail, I can do it while in the cab. I don’t have to wait to get to the room and use WiFi.
In short, XCom Global’s wireless broadband device makes me more productive and increases my enjoyment when traveling. I’m not sure how to put a price on that.