Published on : 08 July 20206 min reading time
4G hotspots, also known as pocket boxes, dominoes or Pocket Wi-Fi, provide Wi-Fi Internet access thanks to a simple SIM card that can be slipped into a mini 4G router. They are practical devices for holidaymakers in need of Internet, for travellers abroad, or simply for people who do not have the Fibre at home. There is something for everyone; we have selected the best 4G hotspots and routers just for you! You can check more details about mobile Wi-Fi router here https://www.my-webspot.com.
Tablet, connected speaker, Chromecast… Smartphones excluded, the majority of these devices cannot access the Internet on their own. So how can you enjoy it on weekends, holidays, business trips or abroad? Simply by taking a miniature box with you!
You can get what is more commonly known as a mobile hotspot or 4G router. It is a device that integrates a 4G modem to connect to the Internet and a Wi-Fi access point to share the connection with several devices with a simple 4G SIM card. Basically, it is a kind of handheld router that has the advantage of being simple and easy to use. And among the many models on the market, we have selected six reference products for all uses and budgets.
If you wish to go further, you can opt for a 4G router to replace the Internet connection in your home with a 4G Box.
Netgear Nighthawk M1
The Netgear Nighthawk M1 (MR1100) is simply the best 4G router. Indeed, the device is compatible with 4G LTE categories 16, one of the highest to date, capable in this case of aggregating 4 frequency bands with its 4×4 MIMO antennas. It can reach a speed of 1000 Mbit/s in download and 150 Mbit/s in upload, if the network allows it. Thanks to its Ethernet port – or USB port – it also offers a much more stable wired connection than Wi-Fi, which is perfect for connecting a laptop or PC to the Internet.
Although it is not touch-sensitive, its 2.4-inch LCD display shows a lot of information for the user, including the network signal, the number of connected devices, data consumption, battery level and different types of activated Wi-Fi networks. It can also support nearly 20 devices.
Finally, it enjoys a much appreciated autonomy thanks to its removable 5040 mAh battery which allows it to easily last for 24 hours. In short, it is now the most complete solution on the market. It is certainly expensive, but you will not find any better. We even managed to stream with it!
The tactile alternative to the MR 1100: Netgear AirCard 790
The Netgear AirCard 790 is a good 4G router. It is compatible with 4G LTE category 6 and can reach a download speed of 300 Mbit/s. This 4G router is therefore slower than the previous model, but still offers a very satisfactory connection. If you are looking for a more stable connection, you can connect directly to it via a USB port, which will load the modem at the same time.
It can hold up to 11 hours with a single charge and accommodate up to 15 devices at the same time. The AirCard 790 also has the advantage of being directly configurable from its LCD touch screen. You will find on the latter various information, such as the data you are consuming. Note that it is also possible to access the settings using mobile applications or the web server.
Finally, please note that the power of this device can be amplified using two remote 4G antennas or the AirCard Smart Craddle holder, which transforms the Air Card 790 into a fixed router.
TP-Link M7350: the affordable 4G pocket
The TP-Link M7350 is a very small case that fits in a pocket. This 4G router can reach 150 Mb/s in download and 50 Mb/s in upload, which is more than enough to watch good quality videos on YouTube and Netflix, for example.
You can use it for 8 hours until the next charge and connect up to 10 devices. And even though it’s small, TP-Link has found a way to embed a 1.4-inch OLED screen in it to get information about its connection.
Tips and tricks
Where to buy your mobile hotspot?
First, it is by purchasing a router and a SIM card separately. Some mobile phone packages entitle you to a “Multi-SIM” to be inserted in a mobile router. Then you are free to buy the router that suits you. Some fixed prices with commitment entitle you to a subsidized router. The most efficient routers are more accessible, but the majority of conventional mobile plans that can be used with a router are now more cost-effective than data plans. Finally, some Internet access offers include a mobile hotspot.
To find out about the best 4G packages without any commitment at the moment, visit our comparator!
What are the formats of the SIM card and USB port?
While most smartphones now use a nano-SIM card, most mobile hotspots still work with micro-SIMs. Be sure to order the correct SIM card format if your operators do not yet provide a triple cut card. However, these cases should be rare, so check if in doubt.
Also be wary of the USB ports on your box. More and more smartphones are equipped with a USB-C port, but most mobile hotspots are still equipped with older micro-USB ports. So don’t forget to bring the right charger with you.
How to place your 4G router correctly?
If you spend your holidays in a poorly covered area, such as in the countryside or by the sea, there are tips to apply to improve its 4G reception. First, you can consult a map of the relays in order to locate them, and to position yourself next to the nearest ones. Some mobile hotspots can receive external antennas to make your life easier.
The same Wi-Fi as at home
If you use a mobile hotspot and also have a Box, we suggest that you configure the SSID to match the Wi-Fi connection you have at home. This way, your Wi-Fi-connected devices will immediately recognize your hotspot, so you won’t have to set everything up again when you’re on the move.
Wi-Fi and internet when travelling