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The easiest way to expand Evolution-Data Optimized/Evolution-Data Only (EVDO) coverage is to choose the carrier with the largest service area. There typically are maps available to help you analyze which carrier offers the best coverage. In addition, a number of online sites allow you to compare coverage service across a country. Ongoing EVDO coverage expansion plans also should be considered as existing carriers continue to expand and new carriers are adding EVDO coverage worldwide. Worldwide EVDO coverage maps can show you what countries have coverage or are introducing or expanding coverage.
If you are often outside of your service area, then you might want to compare roaming plans in terms of both coverage and cost. The cost to roam off of a network is typically high, and is dependent upon where you are traveling and what services you are using. EVDO coverage is expanding, but unlike Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM), it is not available in all areas, such as Western Europe. GSM coverage, by comparison, is available worldwide.
International mobile wireless services may provide cheaper roaming fees than your local carrier. Many offer prepaid options that enable you to commit only for the time you are traveling. These services are only of use to the EVDO user, however, if he or she is traveling in a country that provides EVDO coverage. Due to the wide availability of GSM coverage, the majority of international roaming services utilize GSM wireless services.
A viable option for EVDO users roaming into GSM territory is the use of a dual-mode cell phone or a multicellular network Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) card that enables access on multiple networks by using your own number and device. An International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI), which is stored on a SIM card, can provide interconnection with Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA), EVDO, and GSM networks. Mobile carriers are beginning to offer dual-mode coverage plans so you do not have to hunt around for both an EVDO and GSM service provider.
Shorter range, a number of devices can help you expand your EVDO coverage. On your home or office network, consider boosting performance with a performance modem that amplifies the wireless signal. For the mobile work team, portable EVDO routers that serve as WiFi hotspots by wirelessly connecting multiple users, such as the MiFi, are available.