Before learning about WiFi hotspots providers, a little background in what WiFi hotspots are may help. Wi-Fi refers to enabled devices like personal computers, mobile phones, and video game consoles, which connect to the internet via a wireless network. A wireless network is one that does not use wires to send a signal. Instead it is built on electromagnetic waves like radio waves, which exist in the “air”. There is an invisible spectrum of scientific properties like radio waves that WiFi hotspots providers have tapped into in order to send a wireless network signal. Without getting too technical, it basically means you can find a signal where a WiFi hotspot provider sends them.
Cafes are one of the most popular places to find hotspots because cafes use antennas, modems, and routers to project the wireless network signal thus giving it strength. The signal can be projected for miles depending on the antenna and technical equipment used. The nearer a personal Wi-Fi device is to the origin of the signal the higher the connectivity strength and speed.
Hotspots or internet access points use wireless local area network or WLAN to connect to a service provider using wireless or wired technical equipment. Hotspots are generally in public areas where one might wish to sit and connect online. For example, bookstores, airports, public transportation buildings, libraries, universities, and even parks have WiFi hotspots. Visitors to these areas are able to connect to a WiFi hotspot provider that covers the area.
As a consumer you have the option of obtaining your own connection for wireless hotspots. By purchasing a mobile broadband dongle or mobile router device, you can connect to an internet access point at any of the above named locations. You will have your own pass code to ensure a safe connection, rather than letting it remain unsecure. In the United States one does not need a dongle or mobile WiFi device as long as the computer or phone has an internal wireless card; however, the signal is unsecure at the hotspots. This is why the United Kingdom tends to sell personal dongles and other WiFi devices through hotspots providers. They make sure you are secure and can log on to the network they provide.
To choose the appropriate provider and devices you need to compare WiFi hotspots providers. With a comparison you can determine the company with the best and most affordable plan, wireless device, and quality product. Hotspots providers include such companies as Three, Vodafone, T Mobile, and Orange. Most of the mobile phone providers are also hotspots providers.
There are also independent companies that offer internet signals and WiFi wireless devices, but are not mobile phone providers. In a comparison look at the speed, download limitations, cost of the equipment, and their plans. There are two types of plans: contract and pay as you go. Contract plans will place you with one company for a year or more. The longer the contract often the better pricing and in certain instances you may find the equipment has a discount. Pay as you go requires you to purchase the equipment and a certain amount of gigabytes to use. Once those gigabytes are used up you can pay for more. You have an unlimited amount of time to use the gigabytes you purchase.