3 Mobile Broadband Internet Key E1756
A simple and reasonably effective mobile broadband modem that suffers from erratic network performance
- Plug and play, easy to set up and use, microSD card slot, decent speeds, can roam on Telstra's Next G network
- Wide design can block other ports, speeds varied inexplicably
3's Mobile Broadband Internet Key E1756 certainly offers impressive value, but performance is a mixed bag.
Price$ 79.00 (AUD)
3 Mobile's latest Broadband Internet Key is the E1756, a straightforward device that’s easy to set up and use. Plug-and-play installation, a microSD card memory slot and access to Telstra's Next G network when roaming are some of the notable features of this mobile broadband modem.
Like all USB modems, the 3 Mobile Broadband Internet Key E1756 is a very straightforward device. It's relatively thin, but it's wide enough to sometimes block access to other USB ports — we couldn't access the second USB port on our MacBook Pro with the E1756 plugged in, and it also hindered access to the eSATA/USB port on a Toshiba Satellite M500. A microSD slot is hidden nicely underneath the SIM card slot and is accessible via a slide-off plastic panel, while a status LED indicates whether the modem has a 2G, 3G or HSDPA connection.
The software required to use the mobile broadband service is installed on the USB device itself, so the E1756 is plug and play. It's easy to use and is compatible with both Windows and Mac OS X. The My3 menu is a convenient way to manage your monthly usage, view invoices or change account details. You can quickly view information on the current session in the Statistics menu, including duration of connection, the volume of data sent and received, and the current signal strength.
The 3 Mobile Broadband Internet Key E1756 delivers a theoretical maximum download speed of 7.2 megabits per second and upload speed of up to 2Mbps. The actual speed achieved will vary depending on a number of factors such as device capabilities, your location and equipment, as well as network usage at the time. Typical speeds should range from 600 kilobits per second (Kbps) to 1.5Mbps. Keep in mind that the E1756 is one of 3's "Mega 3G" modems, meaning it will roam onto Telstra's Next G network when out of a 3 coverage zone. This is charged at a rate of 50 cents per megabyte.
During testing, the 3 Mobile Broadband Internet Key E1756 performed reasonably well in our North Sydney offices, receiving a standard HSDPA signal. While downloading files in a standard HSDPA coverage area we were able to achieve speeds of up to 190 kilobytes per second, although speed frequently fluctuated between 100KBps and 170KBps. Using PC World's own SpeedTest, the E1756 recorded an average download speed of 1.3Mbps. In our real world test, we managed to download a 93MB iTunes file in 10min 47sec, at an average transfer rate of around 134KBps. We did note that speeds often varied inexplicably — even when the software displayed a full HSDPA signal the download speed would sometimes drop below 80KBps.
3's mobile broadband plans for the Broadband Internet Jet E1756 start at $15 per month for 1GB of data and range up to $29 (3GB), $39 (6GB) and $49 (7GB) plans over 24 months. All plans charge an additional 10 cents per megabyte for any usage beyond your monthly quota. The E1756 is also available on prepaid — $149 with an included 12GB of data, or $79 without any data included.
Stay up to date with the latest reviews. Sign up to GoodGearGuide’s Gear Daily newsletters
Follow GoodGearGuide on Twitter: @Goodgearguide
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Gadgets & Things
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
- 2 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 3 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 4 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
Latest News Articles
- Why TPG left Optus for Vodafone
- Sky Muster takes the nbn into space (+27 photos)
- Foxtel more than doubles broadband data allowances
- Optus discounts unlimited Internet bundles, available from $95 a month
- Families can pool data with Optus' aggressively priced smartphone plans
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- The top 10 best and worst tech gadgets and products of 2016
- Best phone of the year 2016
- TV of the year award 2016
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTBrand Marketing Manager - Premium Entertainment BrandNSW
- TPLearning/Instructional DesignerQLD
- FTSalesforce Technical Business Analyst (Brisbane based)NSW
- TPTest ManagerQLD
- TPSoftware EngineerWA
- FTTechnical Consultant/Systems AnalystQLD
- CCeLearning Support Officer - Moodle/Google appsACT
- FTJunior-Mid Level Implementation CoordinatorQLD
- FTLife/400 Testers - Permanent - North Ryde areaNSW
- CCJunior BI / Data Analytics Analyst - contract - SydneyNSW
- FTSenior Front End Web DeveloperNSW
- FTTechnology Testing Co-ordinatorVIC
- FTTest Analyst - HealthcareVIC
- TPProject Services OpportunitiesSA
- CCAccessability TesterACT
- CCProject ManagerNSW
- CCSenior Java DeveloperNSW
- FTSOE Team LeaderWA
- FTMicrosoft Dynamics AX Finance ConsultantNSW
- TPIT Procurement OfficerQLD
- CCBusiness and Change Deployment LeadVIC
- CCProject DirectorVIC
- CCBig Data Developer - Government - 12 Month Contract - SydneyNSW
- FTApplication Developer - FileNetNSW
- FTSecurity IPS Engineer - Permanent - IT Services - SydneyNSW