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How can I get online when I'm not at home?

Just because you're on the road, you shouldn't have to go without the Internet. There a five major ways to get online when your out and about.

The first way to get mobile is with WiFi. More business than ever are offering free or low cost WiFi access to allow you to go online. Starbucks and Panera Bread restaurants are two popular choices.

Another way to get online when away from home is via a free dial-up service. Companies like Netzero offer some limited free options for getting online. In addition, many DSL services offer dial-up service as part of your Internet package. Free dial-up service also makes a good back-up for those times when your broadband connection is down.

Many hotels are offering broadband-enabled rooms where you can get online. This comes in handy for video conferences with the home office while traveling. Be aware that you may not be as secure on these connections. Be careful what personal business you do on these networks.

The online options also include smart phone technologies. Mobile phone companies offer many options for getting your Internet enabled phone online. Those same companies also often offer equipment and service to get your laptop computer online. Be aware that these options tend to be quite slow. In addition, the small screens on smart phones make browsing to many sites difficult. However, newer network technologies are improving a great on these. In the case of Sprint and Verizon, these connections often exceed dial-up and approach broadband.

A final option for getting online (especially if you don't have a mobile computer or smart phone) is the library. Many libraries offer computers that can get you online. Keep in mind these systems limit the type of browsing you can actually do. In additon, you don't get as much privacy.

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