Saturday, March 18, 2006

Sprint PCS Vision Offers Wireless Broadband Connections

Sprint's broadband cellular network makes it easy to have high speed Internet service available on your laptop computer without having to troll for Wi-Fi hotspots. Unlike Wi-Fi access points which have a service radius of about 300 feet at best, the "PowerVision" broadband cellular network gives you coverage in an entire major city, such as Chicago, Milwaukee, Los Angeles, San Diego, Boston, or even smaller cities such as Rockford, Illinois or Madison, Wisconsin. It's not quite nationwide coverage yet, but is available in over 200 major markets.

Sprint PCS Vision or Power Vision Mobile Broadband is Sprint's name for its EV-DO technology. EV-DO or EVolution Data Only is a technology that uses cellular radio channels to provide always-on broadband Internet service. It is capable of data download burst speeds up to 2.4 Mbps with 400 to 700 Kbps being more typical. The evolution is from a older technology called 1xRTT that provides speeds similar to dial-up Internet service at 40 to 70 Kbps. In fact, if you happen to roam outside of the EV-DO coverage area but are still able to connect to the nationwide Sprint network, you'll be able to surf and send email at the lower bandwidth.

Sprint has been upgrading it's nationwide PCS cell phone network over the last few years so that cell towers in major population areas support EV-DO. You may not be aware of this, as it is transparent to cellular phone users. However, with specially equipped cell phones like the Samsung A900 Multimedia Phone or a PC connection card you'll be able to access the broadband network. You'll also need to order the optional Power Vision service for your cell phone or the Sprint PCS Vision for PCS connection cards.

On a cell phone, Sprint Power Vision Ultimate is an add-on package to your Sprint voice service that gives you unlimited web and data access, streaming live news channels, streaming music channels, and Sprint TV for news, weather and sports. It's a little like having satellite TV or satellite radio on your cell phone.

For the mobile professional who needs Internet access on a notebook or laptop computer, Sprint has a couple of plans available. These are strictly Internet access only, and do not include any cell phone voice ability. For occasional users, who mostly operate in an office or at Wi-Fi access points, you can get a 40 MB PCS vision data package for $40 a month. For heavier users who want to be able to use their computers like they would in the office but without being tied to their desk, $80 gets you unlimited data access.

These services may also be of interest to those in areas that have solid cellular signals but don't have DSL or Cable Internet available. You'll need to check the coverage maps for your location to see if you are in the broadband or lower speed coverage area for Sprint.

What are the hottest cell phone deals available right now, including free cell phones? Use the Cell Phone Plan Finder to check out the top phones and associated wireless service plans.

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