In between the heavy advertising rolls of Tata Photon plus and Reliance Net Connect one may not even be aware that there are other alternate USB modems out in the market. Now this one is about Airtel USB modem, a device manufactured by Micromax (MMX 200G). It’s cheap at Rs.2000 per device and works in a GPRS/EDGE network.
Why should you use Airtel USB modem?
If you already have a wired broadband in your home and want a wireless Internet accessing device for occasional travels, this could be the thing to look for. Mind you that Tata Photon now also is available in Prepaid mode, which is best suited for Occasional travellers. Since MMX 200G works on a GPRS/EDGE network (Tata photon uses UMTS/HSDPA network to provide high speed internet), speed may not be sensational, but it does the work well.
What’s even better is that, if you already have Mobile Office installed in your phone, you needn’t even go for a special recharge to get connected. Just insert your Mobile Office enabled Airtel sim card, and it works right out of the box.
If you didn’t know, Airtel has brought back the RC 98 Unlimited GPRS pack (up to 2GB) with 1 month validity. Just recharge your mobile with Rs.98 and go on your tour with MMX 200G.
I happened to test this device on Windows 7 (yes it does support Win7 besides, Windows Vista and XP) and found the speed to be varying between 10 and 110kbps (See the screen shots below). Don’t confuse between kb/s and kB/s (1 byte is 8bits).
This speed is no where near my Home broadband of 512kbps, but keeping updated on the things is all I need when I go out of my state, not the speed.
If you have keenly seen the image, you might have noticed a Mail icon. That’s not a mail but a messaging icon. MMX200G supports SMS messages from your PC. Which means you will receive sms messages on your PC while you are using your sim card via this modem for Internet.
Update: This USB modem is now phased out by Micromax. It now has various 3G modems (which also support 2G data, in case you don’t have 3G in your area).