updated 08:15 am EDT, Mon March 19, 2012
NetZero 4G Mobile Broadband goes live
NetZero took a different direction Monday by starting up its own 4G service. Its Clearwire-sourced WiMAX is contract-free and has the unique choice of picking either a basic (1Mbps/384Kbps) or full-speed (10Mbps/1.5Mbps) access plan, even having the option to switch over the web. The service also lives up to the company's once historic practice of offering service: those who buy a modem can get 200MB of data each month for free for a year, with the device price already covering the cost.
Higher tiers are also lower-priced than most such services. A $10 Basic tier provides 500MB of data at the 1Mbps tier. Plus at $20 offers 1GB a month with the option of faster speeds, where Pro at $35 offers 2GB and a peak Platinum plan offers 4GB a month for $50.
The two devices are rebranded versions of existing Clearwire hardware. A NetZero 4G Stick at $50 provides one computer a USB modem. Those who want to share access with more devices can get the $100 4G Hotspot, a take on the Clear Spot Apollo with a status LCD.
About 80 cities have access to start. NetZero hasn't said if any of its plans will change with Clearwire's transition to LTE.