What is a mobile broadband dongle?

A mobile broadband dongle is a device that resembles a USB stick. Simply plug it into a computer or other compatible device with a USB port and you can get online wherever you are using the SIM card in the dongle.

What are the advantages of a mobile broadband dongle?

Dongles allows you to get devices online when you’re away from a Wi-Fi network, such as when travelling. That for example could mean you can work on the train or stream Netflix in a hotel.

Unlike most mobile Wi-Fi devices, a dongle needs to be plugged into a USB port. That limits what you can use it with (and means you can only get one device online with it at once) but it also means it’s much smaller, so you can just chuck it in a pocket.

And as it draws power from the device it’s connected to it doesn’t have its own battery to worry about. Plus, dongles are usually simple plug-and-play devices with no complicated setup required.

What other alternatives are there?

If you need to get more than one device online at a time or have a device without a USB port which needs mobile internet, then consider a larger mobile Wi-Fi device which can broadcast a signal wirelessly to multiple devices.

Or you could use your phone to tether and get devices online that way, but be aware that this could quickly eat up your smartphone’s data allowance.

What is the difference between a 3G and 4G dongle?

The difference is simply how fast the internet connection is. Although Three offers 4G at no extra cost, some dongles only support 3G, which is typically around five times slower.

It should still be absolutely fine for web browsing, social media, checking email and the like, but if you’re planning to stream video for example you might find there’s more noticeable buffering or the content is streamed in lower resolution.

Why choose Three?

Three offers great prices on the latest mobile broadband dongles, so you can be sure you’re getting a good deal, and there are lots of other reasons to choose a mobile broadband dongle, and specifically to choose one on Three, as highlighted below.

  • Feel At Home - Use your Three mobile broadband dongle abroad in dozens of destinations at no extra cost
  • Go Binge -stream content from Netflix, TVPlayer, Apple Music, Deezer, Lifetime, Snapchat and SoundCloud without it coming out of your data allowance on plans with 15GB or more
  • 4G at no extra cost - On all plans

Can I get a dongle with unlimited data?

No. Although you can get unlimited data on smartphone SIM cards, the network tops out at 20GB per month on plans with a mobile broadband dongle.


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