International Unlimited aXcess Plan
Company: XCOM GLOBAL
Price: $17.95 / day
So there you are, you have secured a sweet fare for your flight to Europe. You have planned out your trip. You know how your are traveling and where you are traveling, and then it hits you like a ton of bricks as you hang up your call with AT&T, “they are going to hose me for data…” For the international traveler or potential international traveler, data usage is not a luxury today, it is a necessity. Read on and find out if XCOM GLOBAL is the solution data needs abroad.
XCOM GLOBAL has designed its international data service around the successful MiFi Hotspot hardware which has become so popular here in North America.
The system is designed around carrier agreements which XCOM has secured with carriers throughout Europe, insuring that their customers from North America will have continuous coverage wherever they find themselves within Europe. When one considers that AT&T charges an arm and a leg for a minimal amount of data usage while abroad, having unlimited access through a company like XCOM becomes a rather attractive solution. For a more detailed description of the service and rates, jump to the XCOM product page.
Data Service: The billing cycle for your service agreement begins the day you leave for your trip. You will receive your package from XCOM the day before. The package includes all the hardware and a return prepaid envelope to return the hardware upon your return. XCOM has distilled the whole system down to the minimal hardware required to charge and use the MiFI in the countries you have listed on your itinerary. High marks for determining everything one would need and sending everything you need and nothing you don’t.
I found the coverage to be great in and around London proper, but soon after I was out of the London area, the coverage dropped down to Edge and stayed there until I returned to London. Edge is fine for the occasional surfing or email, but I had hoped to put the service through a few beefier tests of the bandwidth. Still, having any coverage when you are half way around the world is a good thing and I was thankful for the lifeline link.
Hardware: Everything needed to charge and connect to the various local carriers, is included in the XCOM package. A nice travel bag is included to keep the hardware in one conveniently accessed place. As with all MiFi units, simply press the on button and the unit logs into the local carrier network and then you are ready to log your WiFi enabled devices onto the network. All very easy and convenient.
MAKING A GREAT PRODUCT EVEN BETTER
Everything worked well with the service. I had at least Edge coverage in most regions I traveled within. However, if I was depending upon the data service to make Skype calls back home in the states or for activities that required a more robust data connection, it would have been better to have known the level of coverage within the various regions of my travel route, beforehand.
MyMac.com Review Rating:
XCOM GLOBAL provides a great service and for a better value than the US carriers. If you need higher bandwidths throughout your travels abroad, make sure their coverage can supply your bandwidth needs in the regions you will be traveling within. I am awarding this fine service an 8 of 10 in our MyMac.com rating system.