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Sierra Wireless Overdrive4G Mobile Hotspot - Sprint

3.0 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews

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Product Features

  • Size (LWH): 0 inches, 0 inches, 0 inches
  • Weight: 1 pounds
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Product Description

The Overdrive 3G/4G Mobile Hotspot delivers a truly wireless experience - this compact device requires no cables or software installation. Easily connect up to eight Wi-Fi enabled devices--including tablets, eReaders, laptops or gaming consoles--to the Internet at speeds up to 10 times faster than 3G where available on the Sprint network.

Product Information

Product Dimensions 5.6 x 5.5 x 2.2 inches
Item Weight 1 pounds
Shipping Weight 1 pounds
Item model number SWW8013G4G
Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars
Best Sellers Rank #1,734 in Computers & Accessories > Routers

Warranty & Support

Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here


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Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

(Updated 02/13/10)
In a nutshell : This product & Sprint's 4G network are not ready for prime time yet. If you are looking to replace your DSL/Cable connection with Overdrive & Sprint 4G network, you'll be disappointed. For occasional internet access, you might be able to get by. -- I recommend against purchasing this product from Amazon. If you do, and decide to cancel the service, Amazon will charge you $250!

The advantage of Sprint Overdrive over typical 3G/4G modem is that you don't have to install any extra software on your computer. Any wi-fi enabled devices can connect to this mobile hotspot and take advantage of 2G/3G/4G connection right away.

I use Overdrive in Chicago. Mostly in edgewater area. At 60% 4G signal, I regularly get 1.5-2.5mbps average. I was able to get 7-8mbps download once, but that was at 4 am. However, 4G towers here in Chicago are down very often. Downtime averages about 4-5 hours. In my book, Sprint 4G network here is not reliable or robust enough for regular use.

As for the "Overdrive" unit itself, it runs pretty hot. I left it on a glass table close to the window running it 24 hours a day. (Ambient temperature is about 65F) It will either 1)randomly crashes & reboot, 2)crashes when download large amount of data, or 3)freeze (remove battery/power to reboot) about 3-4 times a day. I suspect that the problem came from excessive heat buildup in the unit. If I leave it off for a few hours, and turn it back on, no aforementioned problem at all.

Even though the unit automatically fallback to 3G when 4G network is not available, and reverts to 4G when it can, I notice that it tends to linger on 3G network longer than it should. It takes at least 5-10 minutes to revert to 4G. If you don't want to wait, you have to restart it.
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Verified Purchase
I received the Overdrive yesterday. The device is compact & the LCD is very useful. Here's a summary of my other thoughts:

1. Setup is similar to setting up your home wifi router. However, some of the individual changes require the device to disconnect, reboot & then reconnect. It would be helpful if you can change all settings & then reboot a single time when complete.

2. I live in the Seattle area and am having 4g issues as stated in the other review. There are 2 issues causing this. Issue #1 is that my plan was only activated for the 3g connection plan. I had to call Sprint to have it switched over to the 3g/4g connection plan. Phone support was very helpful & had no trouble understanding my concern. Issue #2 is that there is an outage with 10 of the 4g towers in the Seattle area. It started about 15 hours ago so it appears to be a major event. Even through I'm on the correct plan now, I don't have a 4g signal until they resolve the issue.

3. The micro SD card is a useful feature.

I'm giving it 3 stars because of its current drawbacks (which appears to be network related) & future potential. The setup may have been a pain, but how many times will I be making changes? Once the 4g service is restored & I've had a chance to use it, I'll update my review.
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I've had this device for 2 weeks, I swapped it out yesterday for another one because I could not connect via wifi to the devices. I live in chicago and the 4G network is still new, but the overdrive has a problem when I try to use it as a wifi router. However, directly connecting it to my laptop with the usb cable, and I'm able to get the 4G connection. It goes between 1-3 Mbs, not bad since my dsl is limited to 1.5 Mbs. I expect the network to get better, but they need to pull this defective product off the market.
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I adore this product. I live in Austin (good 4g coverage) and spend weekends on a boat in Houston (good 3g coverage). Before buying this product I could not get reliable internet on the boat. Now I have extremely reliable, high-speed, internet in Austin and a much slower, but serviceable, connection on the boat (and the drive between). I have been using this for about a month and have had no issues with the hardware or the software. Config was a breeze and I have always had a connection.

That said, there are a few things to be aware of. The 4g on this device is from Clear. They are a Texas company, so have much better coverage in Texas than elsewhere. If you do not live in a location with good 4g coverage, this device is close to useless. The 3g connection is not really fast enough for high-quality streaming video in my experience. Pandora and Skype (voice) work well on the 3g network, but Skype video and Netflix Watch Now do not really work. With the 5 gig 3g data cap, they would be too expensive anyway. On the 4g network everything works fine and the connection seems as fast as the cable modem I replaced with this device. The cost is about $20 a month more than the cable modem was.

March 9, 2010 Update: I am now getting a 4G signal in Houston.
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I'm on my second unit and 25 days of ownership.

Fast connection at times
Small size and aesthetically pleasing
Browser interface is good

4G connection drops every 15 - 20 minutes
The unit crashes and needs to be reset every hour or so
The unit gets very hot when plugged in
4G speed is very inconsistent (I'm in Baltimore)
Battery life is pretty poor

4G has been here in Baltimore for over a year and I have the latest firmware installed on this thing. I should not be having this many problems with the unit. When I took the first unit back to exchange it at the Sprint store they told me people were returning them in droves. I've spent quite a bit of time on the phone with customer service and the only thing they could tell me was a) return it or b) reset it. Also, one last nugget, I rated this device on Sprint's site - poorly as you can see. They never put the review up.

The product has great potential but I fear that Sprint's 4G network is very poor and this device is poorly designed and supported. The fact that Sprint has done nothing to address the clear issues with this product is frightening (or at least should be to its shareholders).
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