If you don’t live in an area covered by Sprint/Clearwire’s 4G WiMax towers, you probably haven’t been able to enjoy the contract-less and “free” mobile Internet through FreedomPop’s current mobile hotspot lineup: the Photon Mi-Fi, the Freedom USB Stick, and the Sleeve Rocket for your iPod touch. Today, FreedomPop announced a new Mi-Fi, the Overdrive Pro, that uses both the 3G and 4G networks, which means you can get nationwide 3G service in addition to 4G with this palm-sized device.
The Overdrive Pro has a tiny display that lets you track your usage in real-time, and can connect up to eight of your Wi-Fi-enabled devices like smartphones and tablets for up to 8 Mbps download speeds. According to FreedomPop, this Mi-Fi can last up to six hours without a charge, so you can rely on it for mobile Internet for almost an entire work day.
Like with other FreedomPop devices, you simply pay a $40 deposit for the Overdrive Pro and the company will ship you the device. When you want to quit its mobile broadband service, you just have to return the device to the company to get your deposit back.
What if you already own one of the 4G-only FreedomPop hotspots like the Photon but want to upgrade to the 3G+4G Overdrive Pro? According to the FreedomPop rep we spoke to, you just need to make a request to customer service and the company will swap your existing device for the new one at no charge. If you’re exchanging a brand new $99 Photon for the $40 Overdrive Pro, you’ll get a credit of $50 for the difference. That said, if you’ve already used your existing device but want the Overdrive Pro, you won’t get any credit but will get the upgrade for free.
As Sprint continues to build out its 4G LTE network, FreedomPop will be rolingl out new LTE-compatible devices later this year. Until then, you can get 3G and 4G coverage with the Overdrive Pro, which you can order from its FreedomPop today.