FreedomPop mobile hotspot now supports Sprint's 4G LTE

The Freedom Spot MiFi 5580 hotspot is the company's first LTE device, but it plans to launch more devices and smartphones via Sprint's LTE network later this year.

Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET

FreedomPop's mobile hotspot service has finally jumped to 4G LTE.

FreedomPop hops onto Sprint's cellular network to provide its users with mobile Internet access. Until now, its service only supported Sprint's WiMax network. But the new $149 Freedom Spot MiFi 5580 hotspot kicks in support for the carrier's 4G LTE network.

The new mobile hotspot provides average speeds of 6 to 8 Mbps and peak speeds as fast as 15 Mbps, according to FreedomPop. Equipped with an OLED display, the 5580 can handle up to 10 wireless devices and run for 10 hours on a single battery charge.

Mobile users can choose from among three plans. Available free, the Basic plan offers 500MB of data per month and is 4G only. Regularly $3.99 a month, the Pro plan also provides 500MB of monthly data but supports both 4G and 3G. And normally, $19.99 a month, the Premium plan ups your allotment to 2GB per month. These plans are the same across all FreedomPop hotspot devices with the exception of the Home Broadband Burst device.

Both the Pro and Premium plans are currently being served up for free for the first month only. After that, users must choose to continue at the full price or get downgraded to the Basic plan. The free offers will run for a limited time only to celebrate the launch of the LTE hotspot but are available across all FreedomPop devices.

"With LTE network coverage reaching critical mass, we are now able to offer our customers the fastest 4G service for free," FreedomPop CEO Stephen Stokols said in a statement. "We're taking our free Internet model to the next level, giving customers unprecedented access to the best mobile network performance available."

Naturally, overage fees kick if you chew up more than your monthly quota. FreedomPop can send you text alerts before you exceed your capacity, but that service will run you $1.99 per month. For $3.99 a month, you can also roll over your unused data to the next month.

FreedomPop plans to launch more smartphones and other devices via Sprint's LTE network later this year.

Update, 10:23 a.m. PT: Adds details on promotion offering free Pro and Premium plans.

About the author

Journalist, software trainer, and Web developer Lance Whitney writes columns and reviews for CNET, Computer Shopper, Microsoft TechNet, and other technology sites. His first book, "Windows 8 Five Minutes at a Time," was published by Wiley & Sons in November 2012.

 

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