Mobile Hotspot Device/Plan for Infrequent but heavy use?
This hotspot will be used for my work purposes when I travel, so I don't need anything like unlimited Music/Video streaming. Most of what I do for work is office/dev applications through VPN. Probably the most intensive thing I do is screen sharing/VoIP calls.
As far as requirements go:
Data Allotment: At least 5GB per month
Speed: I see no reason why I should go any less than LTE now.
Cost: Around $50/mo
Terms: Prefer no contract, long expiration, and basically top it up as needed (without having to reactivate)
Connectivity: I'll mostly be in major metro areas so I don't think I am too worried about coverage maps, but network saturation might factor in.
I've checked each of the wireless carriers right now and here is what I'm finding:
Verizon: Purportedly the best speeds, but piss poor value in terms of Data/$. I've used them before through an old job and wasn't really amazed at speeds.
T-Mobile: My *ideal* choice since they have 10GB/$50 + $60 device, but the wording is unclear on their terms. It seems like they offer up to 120 days between each "month of data" to refill the account but the wording is ambiguous.
AT&T: I'm trying to avoid AT&T since my personal smartphone is through one of their MVNOs so I want a separate network for the hotspot in case of saturation purposes. In the event that my hotspot doesn't work, I can always default to my phone temporarily on tether mode until things resolve.
Sprint: Poor value for their data-only plans.
Boost Mobile: They have a 10GB/$50 plan (with a $50 device) that lets you go 60 days between refills. They're on the Sprint network, as well, but they just seem sketchy and I would imagine customer service would be just terrible.
Are there any companies I missed?