August 3, 2015
August 14, 2015 Update: We are currently investigating more details about this company and the KickStarter campaign. At this time we would not recommend backing the GlocalMe G2.
If you’ve ever traveled internationally, you know what a pain it can be to take your smartphone with you and have data available. Roaming charges are extensive, international packages are not great, hotels often still charge for WIFI, and finding a local cafe for some temporary WIFI relief is hard to do without data in the first place. GlocalMe is looking to solve this problem the new G2, a 4G Wifi hotspot that’s connected globally, and it’s launched on KickStarter.
In a single day the Dallas, TX based GlocalMe team surpassed their fundraising goal of $20K, more than doubled it to just under $50K in a week, and still have five more weeks on KickStarter. Prior to crowdfunding, they launched their initial 3G connected global device on various other platforms like Amazon, and had consistent positive ratings, with the exception of a few complaints of not being able to connect in some countries.
The G2 will feature a new design, the ability to use existing sim cards, use virtual sim cards, pay-as-you-use it data or data packages, a smartphone battery charger, and connects up to five devices at a time. For those familiar with US based FreedomPop (just raised another $10M) or Karma, GlocalMe follows a similar approach. Rather than using a wireless carrier under a contract or tracking down a local sim card, their WIFI device allows you to connect to a 3G or 4G connection in more than 100 countries and regions around the world.
Among the global access, pricing is one of the most appealing perks for globe trotters. According to GlocalMe’s KickStarter page, the cost per MB across their service as compared to cents versus dollars. If paying by the MB, it’s $0.056 for GlocalMe’s service $19.97 for AT&T and $20.48 for Verizon. For international data packages, GlocalMe has a standard 1GB set for $33, and Verizon, T-Mobile, AT&T, Sprint range from 40MB-800MB with a cost of $15-$120.
According to their KickStarter page, pricing will only get lower. “GlocalMe guarantees that the price ($33) for 1GB worldwide data package will only get lower. Our vision is that once the telecom market opens up, customers no longer have to pay whatever the major operators demand to when it comes to international network services, and the data price eventually will go down.”
One of the benefits of this campaign is the reduced risks and wait time. Because the G2 is the second version of the mobile hotspot, the team already has a manufacturing process in place that should reduce the amount of time the gadget takes to get in the hands of backers. Over the period of the campaign the team will be conducting further testing, and producing enough of the devices to meet back demand.
Backer rewards for the KickStarter campaign range from cheaper G2 units through a G2 unit with unlimited global data for an entire year. There are also several stretch goals listed, with the most appealing being a call feature from the device if the campaign achieves $200K or more.
The GlocalMe G2 is estimated to reach backers in September 2015.
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