What's so different about 4G?
4G stands for fourth generation of standard for mobile communications. It is obviously the successor to 3G, and is many times faster than 3G itself. The 4G technology will provide ultra-fast broadband internet with improved data transfer rates and efficiency. 4G is often known as LTE, which stands for Long Term Evolution.
Airtel 4G Experience
Airtel has equipped themselves with a super fast 4G network that can give you speeds up to 45Mbps. We even got 55Mbps once during the trial period, but that could have more to do with the less number of users immediately after the launch. With that kind of speeds, you can download a 1GB file within 3-5 minutes with your mobile device on the go. And by the way, 'buffering' is a word you will soon forget after getting onto the 4G internet. You can now watch high definition streaming videos without ever having to see that irritating 'buffering animation'.
Now, talking about the network quality, we used Airtel 4G on a Samsung Galaxy A5 and the experience was really impressive. The download speed was consistently 25-30Mbps and never faced any downtime. The upload speed however, is only around 6Mbps which is not that bad either. YouTube works like a charm and HD videos play like they were saved on your device and not being fetched from the internet. Browsing the web has never been this fast as the pages load without any delay. The switching from 2G/3G to 4G network might sometimes take a while, but that's a rare case and shouldn't be a problem at all.
How to upgrade your Airtel SIM to 4G?
If you're all excited about 4G and want to switch right now, the process is pretty simple. Airtel has set up a dedicated webpage where you can just enter your mobile number and check if it is eligible for the 4G upgrade. And if you are, you can request a free 4G SIM right away. Airtel will deliver your new 4G enabled SIM at your doorstep. All you need now is a 4G capable device and a 4G data pack enabled on your number to experience the amazing speeds of 4G.
Plans and pricing
The pricing of 4G data plans will be the same or very similar to that of 3G plans. Considering the speed of 4G being 5 times faster than 3G, this is all the more reason to switch to 4G right away. You can go here for the detailed plans and pricing: airtel.in/4g/index .
Huawei E5573 4G Mobile Wi-Fi Router
This device actually makes the Airtel 4G experience smoother and seamless on your wi-fi enabled devices. Huawei E5573 is a 4G-ready mobile WiFi device that can give you speeds up to 150Mbps on download and 50Mbps on upload. When acting as a Wi-Fi Hotspot, it will let you connect up to 10 Wi-Fi enabled devices to the internet.
The device is powered by a 1500mAH battery, which will last for a good 7 hours on normal usage. It has a minimalistic design with just the power button and two indicator lights for signal strength and battery. No separate charger is provided, but you can charge it using your laptop, desktop or smartphone charger with the cable that comes along.
It is also backward compatible, which means you can use 3G or even 2G network on it without any hassle. The best thing about the gadget is, you don't have to spend money on a new 4G smartphone when you can just use any WiFi enabled device to latch on to the Airtel 4G using this.
Airtel has done a great job with 4G by providing the ultra-fast internet they have promised. Since the prices are exactly the same as 3G, existing 3G users don't have any reason for not switching to the high speed 4G. Being the forerunner gives them its advantages and the way the competition will evolve would be interesting to watch.
About the Author:
Jacob is a tech blogger who loves gadgets, technology and everything related to them. Aesthetically a minimalist, when he is not meddling with something interesting, he'd probably be asleep. You can connect him on twtter @jacobpkoshy