Best 5G Hotspots Android Central 2021
Verizon's Ultra Wideband network isn't winning any awards for coverage but if you're covered, you can get fantastic speeds and plenty of capacity for nearly any task. While many people are content to use their phone as a hotspot, the simplicity of a standalone hotspot plus the great battery life can make it an easy choice if you need to get a lot of work done away from home. The 5G MiFi M1000 from Inseego can make the most of Verizon's fast Ultra Wideband network with robust LTE support when you move out of coverage.
Best Overall: Inseego 5G MiFi M1000
Inseego brings a compact hotspot to Verizon's 5G Ultra Wideband network with the 5G MiFi M1000. Verizon's 5G network still has quite a few dead zones but with a strong LTE network backing it up, this hotspot should still provide solid speeds. Dual-band Wi-Fi 5 support should keep up with the network and provide all the speed you need in a laptop or tablet. You also have the option of getting connected with USB-C tethering or Ethernet.
The 4,400mAh battery keeps this device running throughout your workday and comes with up to 24 hours of usage times. If you forget to charge it, you can top up in a hurry thanks to Quick Charge support. If you are covered by Verizon's 5G network, this hotspot should be able to provide great speeds to your Wi-Fi devices.
- Long battery life
- Fast 5G and LTE
- Small display
- No Wi-Fi 6
T-Mobile's network has been growing and changing a lot when it comes to 5G thanks to continued investment as well as the inclusion of 2.5GHz spectrum from Sprint. These changes could be one reason why Sprint's previous hotspot is no longer available. Still, if you need the speed of 5G on your Wi-Fi devices as soon as possible and Verizon isn't an option, you will be able to create a hotspot on a 5G enabled phone right away.
If you've got solid coverage on Verizon's Ultra Wideband 5G network, then you can get connected with a standalone hotspot with support for great speeds and great battery life. The Inseego 5G MiFi M1000 is a great option for anyone with strong Verizon coverage and a plan that supports 5G.
Netgear with AT&T
Currently, AT&T doesn't have any 5G hotspots for sale even though it had an mmWave hotspot from Netgear available last year. While Netgear has announced a follow-up, the Nighthawk M5, it's not available on any carrier yet. It's listed as having a Qualcomm X55, modem which should be more than capable of connecting to all of AT&T's network with the right hardware. It also lists support for sub-6 networks which would make it a great choice for travelers.
Should you buy a 5G hotspot in 2020?
5G is a new wireless technology and has all the drawbacks of any new tech. It's not certain that a hotspot bought today will work with all of the frequencies deployed in the next few years.
Unless you live in an area that can already take advantage of 5G coverage, there is little reason to buy a hotspot right now. Holding on to your older LTE only device should serve you just as well until the signal is available. However if your area will soon get 5G coverage, 5G hotspots can get the best of 4G while you wait for 5G to come online.
Credits — The team that worked on this guide
Samuel Contreras When Samuel is not writing about networking, he spends most of his time researching computer components and obsessing over what CPU goes into the ultimate Windows 98 computer. It's the Pentium 3.
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