In preparation for CES 2011 and the limited wifi access in Las Vegas (that does not cost and arm & leg), I decided to pick up a mobile broadband USB modem. What better choice than the recently released Verizon 4G LTE compatible Pantech UML290. More on its performance and details after the break.
Package contents for the Pantech UML290 are essentially the USB modem, theextension cord (if you cannot plus the USB modem directly into your laptop), a CD for Windows install, and some additional documention. One key thing to note is that the UML290 does not have current support for Mac OS X. After some careful Googling I found some documentation for getting your device to work with Mac OS X, you can find the instructions here.
The Pantech USB modem is simple to physically operate as all you need is to flip open the Verizon logo cover and the USB dongle pops right out. Its physical size is slightly larger than I would expect but hopefully as the technology matures they can continue to minaturize the USB modems.
Once plugged into my Macbook Air and configured, the device worked just as it should providing me with instant access to the internet but what about the speeds you ask? Well I was ok with the speeds that I saw. After doing several tests in my house I obtained speeds ranging from 10 Mbps to 12 Mbps. The upload speeds however were a little disappointing, only receiving 0.4 Mbps to 0.5 Mbps. Now what I want to emphasize is speeds will not be consistent from location to location (as Verizonimproves and expands their coverage), but in Arizona it was less than spectacular with regards to the upload speed.
All in all the device worked as expected however the speeds could have been better (especially in the upload department). My expectation is that in Las Vegas coverage may be better and the speeds will improve. Leave me any questions you may have in the comments and I will catch you guys later with another product review. Peace.