Wireless AirCards: Kiss Cybercafes Goodbye

29 August 2007

Personally, I don’t mind travelling without internet access. Scouring the streets for a cybercafe is half the fun of getting to know a new city. Not to mention that magnetic feeling you get when you’re walking by and you see a sign that says “Internet”…when you rely on cybercafes, suddenly every email you get is a treasured morsel of communication. On the other hand, internet cafes can also be in odd locations–like sketchy side streets or around dark corners. The hours can be erratic, the staff can be surly, the patrons irritating and the cost can be more than a traveler can afford.

For people who don’t find skeezy cybercafes charming, the Sierra Wireles AirCard allows you to have internet access no matter where you are. (So they say. I would like to take it to Novosibirsk or a tiny village in Tibet and see if it works there.) If you’re someone whose job requires you to be connected all the time, or someone whose family requires you to be connected all the time, or you’re just plain addicted to the internet (and who isn’t?) this may be something for you to look into. But if you can live without email for a day or two, or actually like not having access to the internet (What better excuse for not reading someone’s invite to a lame party you don’t want to go to than “sorry I didn’t get your email–I was in a remote village in the Andes?) you may want to skip this one. Starting at $100 apiece, the AirCard is a lot more expensive than hitting a cybercafe now and then. And if you’re traveling on a shoe string, doesn’t it sort of defeat the purpose if you can connect from anywhere? Maybe that’s just me…



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Posted by Mirela Gluck at 02:54 PM

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