What is the best option for Mobile Internet in Europe
Thread poster: Tsogt Gombosuren

Tsogt Gombosuren  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 12:32
Member (2004)
English to Mongolian
+ ...
Sep 15, 2010

Hello fellow Prozians,

I need your advice and information on options for mobile internet in Europe before I travel there for 2 weeks. While I am there, I want to keep getting jobs from my clients.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Tsogt


 

Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 21:32
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Want to work also? Sep 15, 2010

Do you think you will actually work on jobs or just answer incoming mail? In the first case you need to take your laptop or at least a mini-laptop. Mine has inbuilt 3G, so it can connect anywhere. Otherwise you have to stay on hot-spots with wlan. But using your Mongolian provider's services might get mighty expensive, so you should buy locally pre-paid services.
Smart-phones are an option if you only want to answer your mail, but also here the cost of data-connections should be considered carefully.
In most places you can use public connections in libraries. Internet cafés are on the decline though, everybody carries smart phones nowadays.
Regards
Heinrich


 

Krzysztof Kajetanowicz (X)  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 20:32
English to Polish
+ ...
what countries? Sep 15, 2010

What countries will you be visiting? It's not like there's a single provider for the whole Europe. The costs of international data transfer (i.e. provider is from one country, you are in another) may be prohibitive.

 

Ana Malovrh  Identity Verified
Slovenia
Local time: 20:32
Member (2010)
German to Slovenian
+ ...
WorkSnug might help Sep 15, 2010

Hello,

This website includes working spaces (I believe mostly internet cafes) all over the world:

WorkSnug

It's still in Beta version, but since you didn't say, where you are traveling, it might be useful for you.




[Edited at 2010-09-15 06:27 GMT]


 

Tsogt Gombosuren  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 12:32
Member (2004)
English to Mongolian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I'll take my own laptop to Europe Sep 15, 2010

Thank you for your answers.
I will be visiting Germany, Belgium, France, Italy, Austria and Switzerland.
I'll be doing jobs, so probably need a mobile internet modem (stick?) for rent.
Do you know of any such modem which would work throughout these countries?
I'll start and end my journey in Berlin, so would need to get such modem from Berlin.


 

Kaspars Melkis  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:32
Member (2005)
English to Latvian
+ ...
the best option is to buy SIM card in each country Sep 15, 2010

It is worth to check this page http://paygsimwithdata.wikia.com/wiki/Pay_as_you_go_sim_with_data_Wiki

As for the USB modem, you just need to get one that is not locked to any particular network or operator.


 

Noni Gilbert  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:32
Spanish to English
+ ...
Worksnug Sep 15, 2010

GerSi wrote:

Hello,

This website includes working spaces (I believe mostly internet cafes) all over the world:

WorkSnug

It's still in Beta version, but since you didn't say, where you are traveling, it might be useful for you.




[Edited at 2010-09-15 06:27 GMT]


What a great idea - thank you for providing the link GerSi: I would encourage all Prozians to contribute with their knowledge of hotspots - at the moment the site hasn't actually got a huge amount of information, but as it grows it will get more and more useful.


 

Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 21:32
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
You can also use your phone as modem Sep 15, 2010

Actually I noticed that in some locations my phone (Nokia 5230) connects to the net via 3G or even 3.5G, when my laptop only finds GPRS. Both use the same operator. Seems Nokia antenna technology is better than that of my 3G-mini-laptop.
So you need only one SIM-card. The phone can connect to the laptop via usb or bluetooth.
If you buy one in Germany the roaming costs in neighboring countries should be reasonable, but you never know. There will be a common charge limit for the EU, but it is not in place yet.

Regards
Heinrich


 

madak  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:32
Swedish to English
+ ...
Are you staying in hotels? Sep 15, 2010

If so, using the hotel's wifi might be the most cost effictive option.

As mentioned above, there is no one network covering all/most of Europe - they are all country-specific (even multinational suppliers such as Vodafone). Using your hotel's broadband free or for a fee might work out more cost effective. As long as the hotel is at least 3*, it's likely to have a wifi or wired broadband service.

This summer I stayed in three Italian 3* hotels and one Swedish 4* and they all offered broadband. The hotel in Stockholm offered a fast and free wifi connection (not surprising considering the room rate). In the first Italian hotel, Rome, the connection was fast and free (worked in some rooms only though, if your room was some distance from the reception, you had to go there to be able to connect). In the second Italian one, Florence, the connection was very fast but ridiculously priced - EUR4 per hour - so I went to a nearby bar and enjoyed a drink as well as free internet. The final hotel in Italy, Lido di Jesolo, offered pretty bad speed, although free. Usable, but if I'd needed to download any files I would have relocated to a nice bar with free wifi connection (not hard to find).


 

Sebastian Witte  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:32
Member (2004)
German to English
+ ...
AFAIk only some phones function as a modem and some only have 3G = slower speed - check the specs! Sep 15, 2010

What you need in order to surf properly is 3.5G speed (HSPA, 1.7 Mbps to 7.2 mbps at present). So-called UMTS (3G) is not fast enough at 384 kbps max, really. I agree with Heinrich that the antennas of cell phones are generally considerably better than those in USB type modem sticks and maybe also better than those included in PCMCIA modem cards for laptops.

No-netlock / no-cardlock USB type modem sticks are available from EUR 30, with most being EUR 40 to 55. Make sure you get one that supports Windows 7, quite a few of them don't.

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

Actually I noticed that in some locations my phone (Nokia 5230) connects to the net via 3G or even 3.5G, when my laptop only finds GPRS. Both use the same operator. Seems Nokia antenna technology is better than that of my 3G-mini-laptop.
So you need only one SIM-card. The phone can connect to the laptop via usb or bluetooth.
If you buy one in Germany the roaming costs in neighboring countries should be reasonable, but you never know. There will be a common charge limit for the EU, but it is not in place yet.

Regards
Heinrich


[Edited at 2010-09-15 13:05 GMT]

[Edited at 2010-09-15 13:08 GMT]


 

Sebastian Witte  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:32
Member (2004)
German to English
+ ...
There is only one company I know specializing in int'l affordable data roaming services Sep 15, 2010

It is data connection-only service, hence no phone calls available with this provider.

See http://www.datamobile.ag/tarife.html for rates by country visited (also available in English), for example Germany, the States and China are EUR 0.83 per MB plus EUR 1.99 as a basic fee as per one month of subscribing to the service. I think (I am not sure!) you need to subscribe for 12 months so that would be a basic fee of some 24 euros prior to using them - a factor that is not to be underestimated ...

The company is Liechtenstein-based. Important notice: the trick is to make sure their partner networks outside Liechtenstein are used when you are roaming, otherwise it will become a costly affair.

I haven't used their services so I cannot comment on service quality or dependability or whether at all they are legitimate. I can just say their services were announced on teltarif.de, the leading telecoms portal for German-speaking countries.


 

Kaspars Melkis  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:32
Member (2005)
English to Latvian
+ ...
beware of cheap 3G sticks Sep 15, 2010

I have one Huawei USB modem but it works unreliably with my laptop with frequent disconnects. It works fine with the desktop computer, so it seems that it is due to laptop USB ports providing weaker current. As I need mobile internet connection on the move it is useless to me and I use tethering to my mobile phone instead.

Free Wi-Fi are the best but it is never guaranteed that you will be able to get one when you need it. My cell phone plan provides 500 MB/month for €5 and I can use it practically everywhere, on bus or train, in the car. Also no need to worry if my home internet connection goes down and I have a deadline in one hour.

I can only hope for cheap one-rate EU-wide service in the future.


 


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