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!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Garmin Fenix 5 fitness tracker smartwatch review
- 2 LG 2017 OLED TV range full review: W7 Signature Wallpaper, G7, E7 and C7 UHD TVs
- 3 Tag Heuer Connected Smartwatch and Android Wear 2 review
- 4 Subaru XV 2017 review
- 5 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Telstra says some of its NBN customers paid for unachievable speeds
- Australian broadband speed ranking drops again despite NBN rollout
- Rowland says govt supressing unflattering NBN information
- nbn grows customer base, but suffers EBITDA loss
- [Updated] Labor has ruled out a Royal Commission into the NBN
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Garmin Fenix 5 fitness tracker smartwatch review
- MSI GE72 7RE Apache Pro gaming laptop review
- LG 2017 OLED TV range full review: W7 Signature Wallpaper, G7, E7 and C7 UHD TVs
- 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
- FTSocial Media Executive / Specialist (Facebook) - online gamblingNSW
- TPBusiness AnalystQLD
- TPSenior Web DeveloperQLD
- FTProject Support OfficerQLD
- FTChange ManagerQLD
- CCJunior to Mid-level Project Manager- TelcoVIC
- FTSenior SharePoint Administrator. Location -ACTACT
- CCOrganisational Change ManagerQLD
- FTIntegration SpecialistQLD
- CCSenior Solution Analyst /Technical Business AnalystVIC
- FTData Analyst / Reporting SpecialistNSW
- FTPeopleSoft Campus Solution ConsultantNSW
- FTBusiness Development Manager IT Software & Primary HealthcareQLD
- TPImplementation Planner | P90 |$1300/dayQLD
- FTEnterprise Architect - Technology and StrategyQLD
- FTSenior Analyst Programmer - Equities or DerivativesNSW
- CCMaster SchedulerACT
- TPBusiness AnalystNSW
- FTSolution Architect - NetworksWA
- CCSolution Architect with Magento experience wantedVIC
- TPSenior Project ManagerVIC
- FTSenior SQL Database SpecialistACT
- FTTechnical WriterACT
- FTHCM Project Manager & Service Implementation Manager - SAP HRNSW
- FTStorage EngineerSA