Glocalme – Portable Wifi Device Review

Do you travel to multiple countries a year and are you tired of researching for the best “Overseas Data Sim” or “Portable Wifi Device”?

Well, I’m pretty glad to learn that there’s actually a Portable Wifi Device which allows you to connect to the internet in more than 100 countries worldwide.

I was pretty thrilled to be given the opportunity to try and test out this device. The idea of using one single device in multiple countries (without the need of changing Sim Cards) was really refreshing to me and they first appeared as a Kickstarter project back in June 2015!

They have since moved on from their original G2 version to the U2 version which I used in my recent Taiwan trip.

The U2 version was funded on Indiegogo since Dec 2016 and it has exceeded their goal by 667%! You can watch the video below to understand more about their technology and main features of the device. So basically, it uses Cloud Sim Technology to get data and it can connect up to 5 devices at any one time. The speed is up to 150mbps (downloading) and 50mbps (uploading) which is quite impressive!

My experience

I received the device via Fedex delivery and there was a little power issue when the device arrived but I eventually managed to charge it and power it on.

In order to use the device, you will have to download their GlocalMe app (iTunes or Play Store).

After downloading the app, you will have to create an account and later on scan the QR code at the back of your device to kind of activate it.

The name of your device and the password can be found on a sticker pasted at the back of the device.

From the account, you can top up credits and purchase data packages, which will be country specific.

I bought packages for both Singapore (to try it out before I fly) and Taiwan.

Note: Unlike the original G2 device, the U2 device does not have any screen at all. Everything has to be configured via the app on your own phone.

One cool thing about this device is that it is able to track your location/country without having to do any network selection.

The moment my flight landed in Taipei, I switched the device on and I had internet connection almost immediately! I didn’t even have to rely on airport wifi~

Similarly, when I returned to Singapore (I kind of forgot to turn off the device while in the plane), the device automatically detected my location when the flight landed and I was connected to wifi even before the seatbelt sign was turned off. I guess this Cloud Sim technology is pretty cool and I’m kind of impressed!

Disclaimer: The device was shared between 2 people, of which 1 is a super heavy user (well, obviously me). For our 6 FULL DAYS in Taiwan, we used a total of 2.7Gb and this includes frequent IG Story update, Whatsapp (to send videos and photos), frequent SNS checking and super heavy use on Instagram (for inspirations on where to visit) and Google Maps for suggestions and directions.

Battery Usage

What I am most impressed with for the device (apart from the technology and lightweight – 151g) was that the battery life is simply amazing! I only need to charge it to full battery every night and I can leave the device on throughout the day for my use. I never had to charge my GlocalMe device with my Powerbank while I’m out. This is a huge breakthrough (for me) as the other wifi devices I have used in the past usually cannot withstand my heavy usage and I’ll have to waste my Powerbank battery. I guess U2 was designed without a screen in order to maximise the battery life.

Pricing

The device (U2)$139.99 USD from Amazon 

For now, the only way to purchase the device is via Amazon. The price includes FREE SHIPPING so you don’t have to worry about extra charges PLUS you will get 1GB FREE GLOBAL WIFI data with every purchase (not sure if it is limited time only).

Data Packages

For Taiwan (and perhaps most Asian countries), 1Gb of data will cost u $5 Euros (SGD 7.86).

For my trip, I bought 1Gb x 3 times = $15 Euros, as I was unsure how much data I will be needing. However, if you’re pretty confident that you will exceed 2Gb, you can purchase 3Gb at only cost $12 Euros.

To be honest, if you are super kiasu and calculative, this may not be the best option as you can purchase a 7-day Taiwan Data Sim Card from Klook at $22.

However, SIM Card may not be an option available to as not everyone owns an ‘UNLOCKED PHONE’ (Especially if you are from USA/Canada), and using an overseas SIM Card might not be possible. Furthermore, if you use a Data SIM Card, it may be draining your phone’s battery life, assuming that you have to turn on Hot Spot often in order to share the connection. So I guess, depending on your preferences, you can decide whether Portable Wifi or Data Sim Card is a better option.

Beyond Asia, and especially if you go for a multi-destination trip, their pricing is pretty attractive! 

In fact, after analysing the price plans, I concluded that this device is more attractive to business travellers who fly to multi destinations each month or for travellers going on a super long holiday to many different countries! I can envision that this device would be super useful for those backpackers travelling around the world!

If only this device existed back in 2012 where I did my 30-day grad trip around Europe.. life would have been much easier~

 


For more information on the GlocalMe U2 visit www.glocalme.com

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