cellular modem

(redirected from 3G card)

cellular modem

A device that adds wireless 3G or 4G (LTE) connectivity to a laptop or desktop computer. Typically available as an external USB module, the modem may also be on a PCI or PCI Express (PCIe) card that plugs into an empty slot on the motherboard. For older laptops, modems may be available for ExpressCard or PC Card/CardBus slots.

Known By Many Names
A cellular modem via USB is a "USB modem." On a card, it can be an "air card," "data card" or "broadband card." Generic terms are "broadband adapter," "broadband modem," "cellular adapter," "3G modem" and "4G modem."

Alternatives: Smartphones and Routers
While the cellular modem plugs directly into the computer, smartphones and stand-alone broadband routers convert cellular signals into a Wi-Fi hotspot for nearby devices. See cellular hotspot and mobile broadband router.

An Internet "Stick"
Connecting via USB, this Verizon modem adds 3G CDMA cellular data service to a computer or tablet. (Image courtesy of Verizon Wireless.)

A Hotspot and Tethering
This Android Galaxy Note 3 smartphone provides cellular data service by becoming a hotspot or by cabling directly to a computer via USB (see tethering). Older cellphones were occasionally used as dial-up modems for a computer.
References in periodicals archive ?
No one has ever met me at the airport with anything before, let alone a 3G card, and I doubt it will happen again.
It features a new ergonomic, user-friendly design and embedded intelligent technologies such as a wireless 3G card to simplify remote diagnosis without going through the customer network, predictive maintenance, and more.
A laptop and a 3g card (because then you can avoid asking what the WiFi password is).
According to Areeba Syria, the high-speed Internet service will provide speeds of up to 340kb/s, accessible via a mobile handset, a PC or laptop connected to a 3G phone or a 3G card with a 3G line.
Gemplus was first to market with a 3G card and supplies a product range compliant with new and emerging transmission standards - 2.
OmniAccess 3500 Nonstop Laptop Guardian (NLG) is a security system on a CDMA or HSDPA 3G card that is developed to remotely secure, monitor, manage and locate a mobile computer and to protect its data if it is lost or stolen.
Users that order a Wi-Fi/3G combo plan will be sent a pre-configured 3G card that will plug-and-play in their laptop.
In the early 3G card market, tech-savvy business users with sufficient need and ability to pay are finding complete freedom from location and the gratification of instant-connections to be addictive.
Combining a 3G card, manufactured by Sierra Wireless, and software to take advantage of a laptop's built-in Wi-Fi, the Helio Hybrid allows users to switch between a nationwide 3G network, private and free Wi-Fi signals and a worldwide network of Wi-Fi hot spots.
Laptop 3G Card and Wi-Fi Hot Spot Package Gives Flexible Access on the Go
The recent case of a UK-based Orange user who received a bill of over GBP 750 for using his 3G card overseas highlighted the problem facing customers.