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Remote Connectivity Solution

by on Jun.08, 2015, under Concepts, Inventions

I have recently been thinking about purchasing a device that I can use to remain connected while in remote areas.

There are many options available today to solve this particular problem, from smart phones to tablets, and from 3G dongles to wifi antennas. However, I was surprised at how difficult it is to make such a system truly portable for long periods of time, while still remaining connected to the internet.

Firstly, I could not find a single phone, tablet, or laptop with a built-in jack for an external antenna. When using a device in a remote area, this is essential. The only option would be to replace the built in 3G/4G or Wifi card with a dongle, and then connect an external antenna to the dongle. This is inefficient and adds needless bulk to a system designed for portability. It canĀ also difficult to findĀ even dongles with antenna jacks, many don’t have them.

The second issue is power. There are several types of solar panels and external batteries available for mobile devices, however, for a larger tablet, or small netbook, it is difficult to know if these would be sufficient. A small tablet may not be powerful enough to perform adequately over a longer period of time, especially for an individual who demands a lot from their computer.

Another problem that needs to be solved for a device like this is which operating system to get. Most small tablets use Android or iOS, and these mobile operating systems work fine for general tasks, but for individuals who require more from their device, or who want to integrate more easily with other computers, programs, or file formats, a desktop operating system (Such as Windows 8.1) may be required. However it is rare to find a Windows 8.1 device under the 10″ screen size mark, which makes them big and power-hungry.

The ideal system solution, for my purposes at least, would have:

Screen size between 7.x” and 9.x”. This should be big enough to be usable, while still being small and power-efficient.
Feature a desktop-operating system. (Windows 8.1 is usually the only option, but I have seen some flavours of linux installed in these machines too).
Feature extensive power-saving features and long battery life
Have support for an external 3G antenna. (This is likely not possible without an external dongle)

I am currently researching various options in this area, and am torn mainly between getting a small tablet, and learning to conform to Android as my primary operating system, and buying the smallest Windows 8 tablet that I can find, and hoping it’s not too big or power hungry.

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