I often meet clients and prospects outside of my office.  Usually at Panera Bread, Blake’s Café & Cupcakery, and Bob Evans because they offer free WiFi.  However, there are times when we need to meet in other locations that don’t offer WiFi.  This means I have to spend an additional $20-$30 more a month for a wireless card I only need occasionally.  It doesn’t make financial sense to me for occasional use; daily use, yes.

Since I’m already paying for data service on my cell phone, I was pleased to find out how to save some money by using my cell phone as a modem for my laptop.  The June Fabrics PDA Technology Group created the PdaNet application for all types of smart phones.  You can use PdaNet for free, but once the 14-day trial expires, it will start blocking secure websites.   Each type of smart phone has a different set of installation instructions as well as pricing.  The example below is for Android phones.

I recommend purchasing the full version, it’s only $23.95 for a single license.  However, they are currently offering a limited time special for $15.95.  This is a one time fee.

It’s a very simple process.

  1. Go to www.junefabrics.com
  2. Select PdaNet for Android
  3. Select download and follow the instructions.

I use physical tethering with the USB cable that came with my phone.  They also offer the ability to use Bluetooth DUN, but I haven’t been able to get this to work.
Please visit www.junefabrics.com for the instructions specific to your smart phone.

Things to know:

  • Can't be directly downloaded from the VZW app store onto your phone.
  • Text messages or calls disrupt the data transfer.
  • Check your data plan, if it’s not unlimited, it may cause usage overage charges.
  • Is this legal?  Check your plans terms of service.  The whole idea behind PDAnet is to connect for occasional use and not have to pay that extra money.  If you are constantly on the road with a laptop and need access wherever you go, it’s best to invest in a wireless card or Mobile Hot Spot.