Technology Tales

Adventures & experiences in contemporary technology

Do we need dongles anymore?

12th March 2012

Recent exposure to both the HTC Wildfire S and the HTC Desire S has me wondering if we need mobile broadband dongles anymore. The reason for my asking this is that both Android devices can act as mobile wi-fi hubs and they work very well as these too. Even the dedicated T-Mobile mobile wi-fi hub that I picked up in the closing months of 2011 now looks a little obsolete though it retains a cost advantage in its favour.

In the case of both HTC phones, it thankfully is possible to use high security encryption and a pass key too. However, it is best to change the default key before any activation of wi-fi signal, if only to ensure that you don’t end up with a very nasty bill. The Wi-Fi Hotspot App has all the settings that you need and up to five connections can be supported at a time, just like that T-Mobile hub that I mentioned earlier.

That replaced a defunct dongle from the same company; the USB connection appeared to have failed and was ailing for a while. Now, it might be that the more transparent use of an actual mobile phone might be usurping that as well, especially when I have been wondering why it has been doing so well with internet connectivity while using it on the move. This voyage into the world of what smartphones and similar devices can do is throwing up its share of surprises as I go along.

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