I was excited to be a guest columnist in the new and improved version of Thinking Bigger Business Magazine, a full color version of the magazine starting with the April 2011 edition. I was asked by David Day who is the Executive Editor and Director of Product Development for Thinking Bigger Media to contribute this column after he found our blog post on the Sprint Overdrive. Another success story showing the power of social media at work!
Here is a link to the article on the iThinkBigger.com web site, and what follows is the article text. The bottom line is that it makes sense for every small business to have some kind of mobile internet access for convenience, flexibility or in case of emergency. We use the Sprint Overdrive and appreciate the freedom it provides as we go to companies all over Kansas City. We don’t have to rely on their internet access because we have what we need right there with us!
One of the biggest technology trends is the migration of business systems to the Internet (aka “the cloud”) rather than running on local servers.
With more being done in the cloud, a reliable Internet connection is even more important today than it has been in the past. And, how businesses connect to the Internet is changing, from being tied by cables to the freedom and flexibility of wireless.
A wireless broadband solution for your business can provide a number of advantages, such as flexibility for mobile workers or providing a backup to your Internet connection at the office in case your primary Internet service stops working.
Wireless broadband solutions are available from all major carriers, including Sprint, AT&T, Verizon and Clear. On average, the programs cost $60 per month with a two-year commitment. You can avoid the long-term commitment by purchasing the device outright for roughly $350. But if you are going to use the device, you might as well let the carrier pay for the equipment.
Wireless broadband devices come in many different shapes and sizes:
Internal // Built right into a new laptop.
Pros: Ultimate convenience
Cons: If you need to buy a new computer, you will need to buy another broadband access card. Also, you can’t share your Internet connection.
USB Dongle // A small USB device about as the size of a pack of gum that plugs into your computer.
Pros: Able to physically share between different computers as long as they have a USB port. Small size. No need for an extra power cable because it gets power from the USB port.
Cons: Can’t share your Internet connection at the same time, because it only works with the currently connected computer.
Wireless Hotspot // These flexible devices, such as the Sprint Overdrive, are about the size of a hockey puck.
Pros: Allows up to five devices to connect at the same time, just like the wireless Internet connection in your home. Some of the devices have access to the 4G networks for even faster download speeds.
Cons: Requires an external power source if you plan on using it longer than three hours.
Moving your business systems to the cloud environment allows you to access the software and information you need anytime/anywhere. So, doesn’t it make sense to have Internet connectivity that also provides access anytime/anywhere? A mobile, high-speed, wireless Internet device for $60 per month is an investment in productivity that most small businesses can afford.