MBA Battery - 3G USB vs Wifi(MiFi)

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Pinksteady, Mar 8, 2011.

  1. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 19, 2008
    Does anyone know what is the preferred method of getting online in order to maximise battery life - USB 3G or MiFi (e.g. WiFi)? Which uses more battery?
  2. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 18, 2005
    I think WiFi would use less battery because it only transmits at 100mW max while 3G uses 1/2W max depending on the band used.

    But of course it depends on the actual model USB stick used, etc...

    Of course with a MiFi you have to carry another thing around, and worry about its battery being charged. With a USB modem I always worry about it breaking off because it sticks out so far (or breaking the USB port when I hit it on a table edge or something).

    There's no perfect solution unfortunately unless Apple introduces built-in 3G. I for one hope they will!
  3. macrumors regular

    Nov 27, 2009
    My USB 3G (a Sprint card) uses a LOT of battery. You're much better off with a MiFi, as long as you don't mind charging it separately.
  4. thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Aug 19, 2008
    Thanks, I don't mind charging the MiFi separately, as I'm assuming its battery life if fairly decent.
  5. macrumors 6502

    Jul 13, 2007
    My 3g usb modem, fried my old macbook airs motherboard!!!! So I would be very wary, and get the mifi, or use your iphone (personal hotspot)
  6. macrumors 6502a


    Sep 28, 2008
    I have a MIFI, keep in mind, the Mifi can be plugged into the computer as well if battery life gets low, a bit cumbersome setup, but if you browse greater than 3.5-4 hours, then this is an option for charging back....

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