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Don’t a Let a Hotspot Become a Notspot!

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May 10, 2016

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You might have control of your smartphone data usage, but if you’re not careful, your mobile hotspot could easily add Benjamins to your bill. As NBC 5 in Dallas recently reported, some consumers are learning the hard way that hotspots can quickly run up a wireless bill.

The key is this: mobile hotspots don’t function like smartphones. So when you hit your data allotment, instead of throttling down to dial-up speeds or sending you a message, overage fees start accumulating. The customer profiled in the NBC 5 story saw her bill jump up nearly $200 as a result of mobile hotspot data overage charges.

Don’t let your mobile Hotspot become a money hungry Notspot! Take these steps:

  1. Monitor the apps running on your connected devices and cloud backup settings. Some cloud services, like DropBox, Carbonite, and Google Drive, will attempt to automatically upload photos and other media as soon as the host device connects to the Internet. Left unchecked, this can wreck havoc on your bill!
  2. Create a secure password on your mobile hotspot. These devices often ship with a default password, or worse, no password at all. That means your neighbor or that weird dude at the coffee shop could easily be eating your mobile data for free.
  3. Monitor the devices attached to your mobile hotspot. If you don’t recognize a device, cut it off! Better yet, you can usually setup a whitelist of devices that can connect to your mobile hotspot, which effectively prevents unrecognized devices from connecting.
  4. Use a data usage utility to monitor the mobile hotspot. These are available from the carrier, or the device manufacturer. You should be able to set alerts to ensure you go over your data allotment.
  5. READ THE FINE PRINT! Make sure you understand how and when you are subject to overage charges with a mobile hotspot from your carrier.

If you’ve have had a similar experience, and your mobile hotspot is hurting your wallet, let us know on our Facebook page, or email the Wireless ButlerWe’re always here to help you get the best deal on wireless service!

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