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Thread: I need a backup hotspot for CCU plan- questions

  1. #1
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    I need a backup hotspot for CCU plan- questions

    Have the Connected Car Unlimited plan since 2017. I got a Netgear Unite Explore 815s and swapped my sim card before the dreaded Mobley firmware update. Now I would like to buy a backup to the 815s. I still have the Mobley packed away and would like to never have to put the sim in it again. So the price of used 815s on eBay has doubled since I got mine to $120 and more. Going back through the thread it seems another popular swap for the Mobley sim was the ZTE Velocity MF923 which is available for around $50.

    Is the Velocity still a good viable hotspot for the Connected Car plan? Or is there another I should look at? I’ve searched and don’t recall much more discussion of alternate hotspots other than some recent talk about the Nighthawk and it’s more $ than the Explore.

    I’m okay with spending the money to buy another Explore for a backup but if a Velocity will work as well it would be great to save $70 or $75.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Martin28 View Post
    Have the Connected Car Unlimited plan since 2017. I got a Netgear Unite Explore 815s and swapped my sim card before the dreaded Mobley firmware update. Now I would like to buy a backup to the 815s. I still have the Mobley packed away and would like to never have to put the sim in it again. So the price of used 815s on eBay has doubled since I got mine to $120 and more. Going back through the thread it seems another popular swap for the Mobley sim was the ZTE Velocity MF923 which is available for around $50.

    Is the Velocity still a good viable hotspot for the Connected Car plan? Or is there another I should look at? I’ve searched and don’t recall much more discussion of alternate hotspots other than some recent talk about the Nighthawk and it’s more $ than the Explore.

    I’m okay with spending the money to buy another Explore for a backup but if a Velocity will work as well it would be great to save $70 or $75.
    I have a Velocity that I picked up as an unlocked refurb for about $30 a couple of years ago. It works well enough for me. I was not interested then or now in paying$100+, and apparently a lot more now, for this function. The max speed I have seen on it was ~30 Mbps, but I may have not been in a location that offered more. It does 2x carrier aggregation. That is not as good as the newer, more expensive hotspots, but better than no CA on the Mobley. There is no way to tell if it is doing CA or what band it is on.

    I am not using it for 24/7 home Internet. The few Mbps I get out of it at home is adequate for power and cable outages. In hotels and on the road it has worked fine. We use it annually to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade while driving to the fambly gathering.

    It does have a mechanical design flaw. The SIM slot is spring loaded and the cover has a teenie tiny plastic latch. It did not take much SIM swapping to wear out that latch and the spring ejects the SIM from being functional. I put a velcro strap around it and it has been fine. A cable tie would work better so as not to obstruct the power button and screen, but I did not have one long enough.

    I would consider the Velocity as more than adequate as a backup for the price. Just plan on strapping the SIM slot cover shut.

    I think it will act as a battery pack and USB tether to a notebook or router, but have never tried those.

  3. #3
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    Is price your most important factor in these purchases? The MIRC made a very detailed video about using newer technology in hotspot devices.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxsEEDsgM3c&t=468s

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the replies. I ended up getting a nice refurb Unite Explore for only about $10 more than the best price I could find on a Velocity.

    Orlimar, Thanks for the tip about MIRCs video. I may consider one of their upgrades in the future, but for now my immediate need for a backup is covered with the Explore.

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