Option GlobeSurfer III review

Great idea, but does a mobile broadband router provide good value for money?

Option GlobeSurfer III
The Option GlobeSurfer III is a great idea, but you will need to have a specific use for it

TechRadar Verdict

While the idea appeals, we can't see beyond the price. And the GlobeSurfer III is too dear


  • +

    Good access for multiple machines

  • +

    Set-up is fairly easy

  • +

    Fast 3G support


  • -

    You'll need the right data tariff

  • -

    Extremely expensive

  • -

    Needs a specific use in mind

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The GlobeSurfer III turns a mobile broadband-enabled SIM card into a shared internet connection that can be accessed by numerous devices, from laptops to iPhones.

But like many expensive, niche devices, you'll need to have a specific use in mind for it. With the proliferation of WiFi and mobile broadband dongles, the GlobeSurfer III will only really be of use where you need to connect up devices that wouldn't have access to the internet via other means.

You'll also need to be able to get hold of a SIM card with the right kind of tariff; offering plenty of data bandwidth. The GlobeSurfer III's use isn't rooted in the consumer world; and it's much more likely to appeal to those who absolutely need several remote machines to have data access.

For example, this will avoid you turning up to that crucial website presentation relying on your hosts to have the ability to hook your machines up to their corporate network.

Simple set-up

Set-up is reasonably simple – insert the SIM into the body of the device and stand it up using the flip-out stand, then configure the access point using a browser-based interface; an easy set-up wizard helps.

The initial configuration is performed using a wired connection (there's Gigabit Ethernet, should you have a newer Mac). And, with a good 3G connection, we found working with the device seamless (once you choose to connect) and connectivity problem-free across the 802.11g wireless. You can also send and receive text messages via the interface.

But as with the Option 401, the main problem is price. £300 is expensive, and cheaper equivalents are available. And even if you have a use in mind, you'll probably find it's cheaper to use individual connections or share an internet connection through other means.


Dan (Twitter, Google+) is TechRadar's Former Deputy Editor and is now in charge at our sister site T3.com. Covering all things computing, internet and mobile he's a seasoned regular at major tech shows such as CES, IFA and Mobile World Congress. Dan has also been a tech expert for many outlets including BBC Radio 4, 5Live and the World Service, The Sun and ITV News.