The Good Easy installation; fast speeds; secondary dial-up access.
The Bad Expensive service; limited availability.
The Bottom Line The Novatel Wireless V620 PC Card is the fastest cellular modem we've seen so far.
|Novatel Wireless V620 Wireless WAN Card (Verizon Wireless)||Google Wifi||Asus RT-AC68U Dual-band Wireless-AC1900 Gigabit Router||Asus AC2900 dual-band Wi-Fi router (RT-AC86U)||Netgear Orbi Wi-Fi System|
|Price||—||$117 Amazon.com||$135 Amazon.com||$239 Amazon.com||$317 Amazon.com|
Novatel Wireless V620 Wireless WAN Card (Verizon Wireless)
Novatel Wireless V620 cellular modem card
Novatel Wireless and Verizon have teamed up to release the V620 Wireless PC Card, which supports Verizon's EV-DO (Evolution Data Optimized or Evolution Data Only, depending on whom you ask) network. The combination of the cellular modem card and an available EV-DO network can give you high-speed Internet access anywhere within an EV-DO coverage area. Verizon's 3G high-speed data network takes advantage of the carrier's growing EV-DO network and makes it possible to connect to the Internet on the train, in the car, or at the airport, but this kind of convenience doesn't come cheap. The card itself costs only a little more than a standard Wi-Fi card. Service, however, is a hefty $79.99 per month for unlimited access. Verizon also offers a limited plan that supplies access based on data usage at 20MB for just $39.99 per month.
The V620 card looks like a standard PC Card, though the portion that sticks out of the card slot is a bit thicker than normal, to accommodate the internal antenna. Unlike the, it lacks a folding external antenna.
Installing the Novatel Wireless V620 card was a simple task. We loaded the included CD, ran the installation wizard, and popped the card into our laptop's PC Card slot. Windows XP automatically recognized the card, and within five minutes we were off and running (the card also works with Windows 2000, 98 SE, and Me). A click on the VZAccess Manager icon gets you into this easy-to-use applet. Simply click Connect, and the software dials up the Verizon wireless network. The VZAccess Manager facilitates access to e-mail and other installed applications, such as Microsoft Office, and also tracks usage and supports text messaging.