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10 Best Mobile Hotspots You Need To Know

10 Best Mobile Hotspots You Need To Know

There’s always a way to stay connected and online these days. The technology is always changing and improving, and mobile hotspots are as commonplace as Wi-Fi was a few years ago (not so long ago, come to think of it). There’s a trade off to technology that’s constantly being upgraded, though: consumer electronics are practically obsolete in a matter of months, so you have to choose well.

To be sure, smartphones may be used as hotspots for other devices, but the portability and efficiency of a separate device is often more appealing. Besides, you need your smartphone for essential functions like making calls and receiving text messages and emails. Afterall, a smartphone’s battery can only last so long.

Carriers offer mobile hotspot devices optimized for their service, which is why your carrier will factor into your choices. You have to find the best value in your choices, especially if they involve subscriptions with regular dues. That being said, mobile hotspot routers and services are conveniences with costs and upkeep to consider. It pays to find the device that best suits your needs and comforts. Here are my top 10 recommendations for mobile hotspots:

1. MiFi Liberate

MiFi Liberate

    If you’re with AT&T, you should consider the MiFi Liberate your first choice. The battery delivers you up to 10 hours of service for starters, enough for a road trip or a day at the beach (as long as your carrier covers the area, that is). You can take advantage of 4G LTE technology without skipping a beat, and the touchscreen interface offers convenient navigation.

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    2. Netgear Zing Mobile Hotspot

    Netgear Zing Mobile Hotspot

      With its limited Wi-Fi range considered, Sprint’s Netgear Zing Mobile Hotspot compensates with plenty of features. The display allows for easy navigation, with a 2500mAh battery to back up the display. It’s a race to come up with the best LTE service nowadays, and although the carrier’s yet to take the lead, Netgear’s antenna ports and tri-band support makes up for the shortcoming.

      3. Sonic 4G Mobile Hotspot

      Sonic 4G Mobile Hotspot

        T-Mobile’s Sonic 4G Mobile Hotspot is a bit lopsided when it comes to features versus performance, but it still merits a spot as the carrier’s best offering. Apart from HSPA 42+ capability, it also allows users to share data stored in Micro SD over the Wi-Fi network. A serviceable OLED screen displays basic information on usage. The downside to these features is in the battery life, which is a deal-breaker in many ways. The signal also deteriorates beyond a limited range, so it’s best used in close quarters.

        4. Jetpack 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot MHS291L

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        Jetpack 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot MHS291L

          Battery life is a priority for many users, given that the device performs well in speed tests and reliability. This is where Verizon’s Jetpack 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot MHS291L shines, though a bit lackluster other than that. The battery lasts for almost 15 hours of use, and the data displayed on the OLED screen gives you a good grip of the status of your usage. LTE works well within a 50-foot range, but you’ll have to moderate your consumption with the carrier’s data rates. The Jetpack falls short of expectations in terms of portability, but is still the carrier’s best bet in mobile routers.

          5. Freedom Spot Photon

          Freedom Spot Photon

            The Freedom Spot Photon from FreedomPop is serviceable at the very least, and it’s offered almost free with your carrier’s subscription (an $89, refundable deposit). The free plan is also a sweet deal, with up to 500MB of monthly free data. You’ll have to pay $0.02 for every megabyte consumed afterwards, which is a fair deal if you only use mobile Wi-Fi on occasion. You’ll have upgrade to an LTE-compatible device once the service is available for the carrier, though.

            6. Global International MiFi Hotspot

            Global International MiFi Hotspot

              XCom’s Global International MiFi Hotspot is the best choice for international travel, offering an affordable alternative to the roaming charges that come with a mobile phone. You can use it in 44 countries, so there’s no need to switch carriers if you plan to stay indefinitely wherever you’re traveling. The connection isn’t as reliable, though, and it feels like you’re on dial up at times. Your usage is also limited with an eight-hour battery life, tops.

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              7. Tep Wireless Pocket Wifi

              Tep Wireless Pocket Wifi

                Tep’s Wireless Pocket Wifi is useful in selected countries (covered by the carrier), and it offers affordable access at $5 a day in the US. The rates will vary widely in different countries, and it gets confusing when you have to cover for charges you weren’t prepared for. It’s still an option if you’re traveling to countries with pricey mobile carrier rates, and you can use Skype or other VOIP service (with the hotspot) as alternative to calls and text messaging.

                8. Samsung LTE Mobile HotSpot Pro

                Samsung LTE Mobile HotSpot Pro

                  You can’t beat a hotspot that packs a nice battery pack, with enough juice to serve as a power bank for other devices. Samsung’s LTE Mobile HotSpot Pro offers exceptional 4G LTE connection with reliable battery life to boot. The device comes with a $169 price tag, but it is well worth the investment if you don’t want to compromise on performance.

                  9. Clear Spot 4G – Apollo

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                  clear Spot 4G – Apollo

                    With several trade offs considered, Clear’s Spot 4G – Apollo compensates with unlimited data plans that are affordable and reliable. The device can service up to eight clients simultaneously, and you can’t complain about the battery life. The Apollo isn’t 3G or Wireless-N capable, and it’s without text messaging features. Still worth the investment if you’re subscribed to the carrier’s service.

                    10. Clear Spot Voyager

                    clear Spot Voyager

                      Clear’s Spot Voyager offers similar features to the Apollo, but it’s relatively compact and affordable. It has the same limitations, and there’s no sleep mode feature to conserve battery life. It’s still a serviceable hotspot for areas covered by the carrier.

                      This short list isn’t exhaustive and may not cover your carrier, but the variety should give you a good idea on the features that are both available and affordable. Consumer electronics are upgraded every few months, so it’s worth your trouble to consider the best devices you’re willing to pay for.

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                      Last Updated on November 5, 2019

                      5 Best Language Learning Apps to Master a New Language

                      5 Best Language Learning Apps to Master a New Language

                      Learning a new language is no easy feat. While a language instructor is irreplaceable, language learning apps have come to revolutionize a lot of things and it has made language learning much easier. Compared to language learning websites, apps offer a more interactive experience to learn a new language.

                      The following language learning apps are the top recommended apps for your language learning needs:

                      1. Duolingo

                        Duolingo is a very successful app that merged gamification and language learning. According to Expanded Ramblings, the app now counts with 300 million users.

                        Duolingo offers a unique concept, an easy-to-use app and is a great app to accompany your language acquisition journey. The courses are created by native speakers, so this is not data or algorithm-based.

                        The app is free and has the upgrade options with Duolingo Plus for $9.99, which are add free lessons. The mobile app offers 25 languages and is popular for English-speaking learners learning other languages.

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                        Download the app

                        2. HelloTalk

                          HelloTalk aims to facilitate speaking practice and eliminate the stresses of a real-time and life conversation. The app allows users to connect to native speakers and has a WhatsApp like chat that imitates its interface.

                          There is a perk to this app. The same native speakers available also want to make an even exchange and learn your target language, so engagement is the name of the game.

                          What’s more, the app has integrated translation function that bypasses the difficulties of sending a message with a missing word and instead fills in the gap.

                          Download the app

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                          3. Mindsnacks

                            Remember that Duolingo has integrated gamification in language learning? Well, Mindsnacks takes the concept to another level. There is an extensive list of languages available within the app comes with eight to nine games designed to learn grammar, vocabulary listening.

                            You will also be able to visualize your progress since the app integrates monitoring capabilities. The layout and interface is nothing short of enjoyable, cheerful and charming.

                            Download the app

                            4. Busuu

                              Bussu is a social language learning app. It is available on the web, Android, and iOS. It currently supports 12 languages and is free.

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                              The functionality allows users to learn words, simple dialogues and questions related to the conversations. In addition, the dialogues are recorded by native speakers, which brings you close to the language learning experience.

                              When you upgrade, you unlock important features including course materials. The subscription is $17 a month.

                              Download the app

                              5. Babbel

                                Babbel is a subscription-based service founded in 2008. According to LinguaLift, it is a paid cousing of Duolingo. The free version comes with 40 classes, and does not require you to invest any money.

                                Each of the classes starts with with a sequential teaching of vocabulary with the help of pictures. The courses are tailor made and adapted to the students’ level, allowing the learning to be adjusted accordingly.

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                                If you started learning a language and stopped, Babbel will help you pick up where you started.

                                Download the app

                                Takeaways

                                All the apps recommended are tailored for different needs, whether you’re beginning to learn a language or trying to pick back up one. All of them are designed by real-life native speakers and so provide you with a more concrete learning experience.

                                Since these apps are designed to adapt to different kinds of learning styles, do check out which one is the most suitable for you.

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                                Featured photo credit: Yura Fresh via unsplash.com

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