Wi-Fi hotspots allow you to access the internet no matter where you are. Most smartphones have a built-in hotspot and tethering functions; however, you can purchase a mobile hotspot device for faster speeds. It is portable, which makes it easier to carry in your bag and allows you to connect multiple devices to wireless speeds ranging from 1-1,000 Mbps.
What Is a Hotspot?
A hotspot is a wireless access point that allows internet connection to your devices, such as smartphones, laptops, and tablets when you are outside your home or office. Almost every smartphone has a built-in hotspot to connect more devices to the internet, but it can quickly drain the battery life. Therefore, you can get a dedicated mobile hotspot device to stay connected on the go.
Most hotspots have speeds between 1 Mbps and 1,000 Mbps with limited data restrictions. Hence, you can’t replace your home internet with hotspots.
How Does a Hotspot Work?
Wi-Fi hotspots use wireless data from cellular devices to a let you connect your phones, tablets, and other Wi-Fi enabled devices to the internet.
Mobile hotspots use 4G LTE wireless technology to provide speeds up to 100 Mbps. Whereas, some mobile hotspots have 5G capability which allows them to deliver speeds ranging from 50 Mbps to 1,000 Mbps.
Do Hotspots Work Without Cellular Service?
Hotspots don’t work without cellular service. They need a cellular service to transmit Wi-Fi signals. Therefore, you need to subscribe to a data plan from your cell phone company or network provider to let your hotspot work.
How Fast Are Wi-Fi Hotspots?
Wi-Fi hotspots can hit speeds up to 30-40 Mbps. However, the speeds may vary depending on the type of hotspot you have and its cellular service. 5G hotspots have faster speeds, ranging from 50 Mbps to 1,000 Mbps.
Since hotspots establish a wireless connection, their speeds may fluctuate due to signal interference. It may occur when you go far from the nearest cell tower or even if there are trees, canyons, or mountains in your area.
Types of Hotspots
Cell Phone Hotspots
The most affordable hotspot is your phone’s hotspot. Since almost every smartphone has a built-in hotspot, you can easily use it by switching it on to use data from your phone plan. It allows you to connect up to 10 devices; therefore, you cannot depend on your phone’s hotspot to run all Wi-Fi-enabled devices at home.
Mobile hotspots provide internet connection through dedicated devices. They are not as affordable as phone hotspots; however, they are best for intensive hotspot use to connect multiple devices at faster speeds. In addition, it gives access to more data than what you can have with a phone hotspot.
Since most mobile hotspots use 4G LTE wireless networks, their maximum speeds are up to 30 Mbps. Also, you can connect multiple devices at the same time without worrying about speed issues.
Mobile hotspots are a great alternative to phone hotspots; however, you can’t use them in place of your home internet plan. They come in handy while traveling, living in rural areas, working remotely in a public place, and even staying in a vacation room.
5G hotspots use 5G wireless networks to provide an internet connection to various devices. These are not easily available in the market, but they are much faster than 4G hotspots, hitting speeds up to 1,000 Mbps. With Wi-Fi 6 capability, they can connect with more devices with consistent speeds for multiple users at the same time. They are best for schools and businesses as they allow high-bandwidth activities with 5G speeds.
You can use all types of hotspots for traveling, but travel hotspots are designed specifically for traveling internationally. These devices allow access to Wi-Fi using special data plans or a local SIM card.
Travel hotspots are best for those travelers who want to use the hotspot regularly without buying new SIM cards.
Can You Get Unlimited Hotspot Data?
The only downside of using a hotspot is that you can’t have unlimited hotspot data. Since cellular providers do not allow unlimited internet, most hotspots have strict service plans. However, you can sign up for internet plans to get a small amount of data at lower monthly prices. This way, you can save your money and use your hotspot a few times only.
All in All
Hotspots work like a router for a wireless internet connection. However, you can’t replace your home Wi-Fi network with these devices. If you are relying on your hotspot to stream movies on Netflix or music on Spotify, play online games, and host meetings on Zoom, you may end up exceeding your data limit. As a result, you will get overage fees on your monthly internet bill.
For the best home network, get connected to Optimum Internet. Moreover, they offer bundles and packages for TV and phone services, which makes it the best connection for online activities at home. Call servicio al cliente de Optimum to find out the right internet plan for your home.