The United States has always lagged in prepaid and no-contract mobile broadband plans. Especially when you compare things to Europe, where you can walk into any phone store, and walk out with a cheap USB data adapter.
As of today, we may actually be ahead – way ahead. According to an article on Phonenews.com, Fry’s Electronics has entered the mobile broadband world with a $49.95/month no-contract plan.
The plan offers 5GB of data each month, on par with all other operators. What makes this plan special is that it comes with the Verizon Wireless MiFi adapter. This mobile broadband to Wi-Fi device allows any Wi-Fi enabled device to connect to the nationwide Verizon 3G network. Best of all – the MiFI is on sale at Fry’s for just $69.95 – which is $200 cheaper than the normal no-contract price.
Access to mobile broadband at this price point is perfect for travelers, though it’ll only be interesting for those that can actually visit a Fry’s store, which rules out most of the East Coast. More information on the Fry’s MiFi can be found here, and all the information you need on the access plan is posted at Phonenews.
Interesting article in the New York Times this morning – at least if you are a geek.
The article describes the draw Silicon Valley has on tourists, and the various things you can do when visiting “the valley”.
Silicon Valley is the southern part of the San Francisco Bay Area, and unfortunately for those (foreign) tourists heading there expecting a small valley with all the big industry players huddled together, the interesting companies are spread out over a massive area.
Worst yet, when you drive around expecting to drop in and visit these companies, most of them are not interested in fans, and very few offer tours or other ways for geeks to show their love.
That said, there are still several fun things to do in the area for visitors and the article lists most of the ways visitors can spend a day at the Computer History Museum, or the Tech Museum of Innovation.
One destination not mentioned in the article is Fry’s Electronics. Sunnyvale is where Fry’s opened their first store, and while that one is long gone, they still have a large store across the road from their original location.
Check out the entire region with this map: