Gaming has emerged as the biggest entertainment industry in the digital era. Passionate gamers spend countless hours on their electronic devices each day driven by a missionary zeal to win digital glory!
As social and mobile have become the biggest tech trends, gaming is no longer a solo pursuit. MMOGs often have hundreds of thousands of gamers playing together at one time. Gamers now want to game on the go — in the bus, on the airport, in the bars, on the beach!
In a hurry? Here’s our top pick when it comes to the best mobile hotspot for gaming in 2023!
Mobile hotspots allow gamers to follow their passion on a truly “anytime, anywhere“ basis. These sleek devices provide fast speeds and long battery lives. Most are designed in convenient form factors that fit into your back pocket. Plus, they are also robust when it comes to security supporting VPN, Port forwarding, IP filtering, and manual DNS. Just about perfect for gaming on the move!
But you might be wondering, do they really work? Can I just not tether my phone and set up a hotspot on my phone for gaming on the go?
Let’s find out!
How Good are Mobile Hotspots When It Comes to Gaming?
1. PERFECT SPEED AND LATENCY TO SUPPORT EVEN HEAVY-DUTY GAMES
The major worry for gamers is always speed!
Xbox, PlayStation, PC, and Nintendo Switch list a minimum throughput speed for optimum gaming of about 3 Mbps for downloads and 500 Kbps for uploads.
Most Mobile Hotspots support speeds way above that. 4g LTE hotspots easily give speeds above 12mbps. And the later 4g and 5g hotspots are even better.
With gaming, latency holds the key to a smooth experience. Especially with real-time games like first-person shooters, pings in excess of 100ms make gameplay impossible.
Almost all Mobile Hotspots have ping rates under 70ms.
So, Mobile Hotspots provide the perfect gaming experience for you.
Gaming is not as data-heavy as some other multimedia tasks. Streaming videos consumes almost four times as much data as gaming does.
With Mobile Hotspots, you can easily play games without burning a hole in your pockets on data. Most games would eat less than 300MB of data per hour.
3. LONG BATTERY LIVES THAT NEVER SEEM TO END
All of your daily tasks on your phone are a huge battery guzzler. Mobile hotspots are packed with powerful batteries (even up to an incredible 10000mAh) that let you play your games for as long as you wish! Even better, some of these huge batteries double up as a power bank.
4. SUPPORT MULTIPLE DEVICES
With Mobile Hotspots, you can connect as many devices as you want (even up to 20). Maybe you want to set up that garden mobile LAN gaming hour. Mobile Hotspots let you do that! (Well, maybe not technically a LAN gaming session, but the idea is the same.)
5. SECURITY ALL THE WAY
Cyber threats are the biggest tech pain point now. Mobile Hotspot devices come with security features found in standard wi-fi routers, including VPN and port forwarding.
6. DATA SAVING FOR THE GLOBE-TROTTING GAMER
If you are a world traveler and also an avid gamer, you already know the horrors of roaming charges. Mobile Hotspots come with plans that do not charge for roaming. The ExCom MiFi Hotspot provides unlimited data in almost 200 countries!
7. EXTEND RANGE WITH EXTERNAL ANTENNA
Most Mobile Hotspot support ports to connect external antennas and improve range and connectivity and range. TS9 external antenna ports are almost standard across all mobile hotspots.
Well, we bring you an analysis of some of the best buying devices in the Mobile Hotspot space. As with all technologies, there are lots of trade-offs involved. Each device is the best at one aspect while cutting down on some other feature.
1. NETGEAR NIGHTHAWK M1 – Best Mobile Hotspot Device (Overall)
The Nightgear Nighthawk is the Big Daddy of Mobile Hotspot devices! It is simply the most power-packed feature-rich offering on the market!
What makes the Nightgear Nighthawk M1 the best Mobile Hotspot for Gaming in 2023?
In one sentence – Its Lightning-Fast Blazing Speed!
The NightGear Nighthawk comes with a promise of an unbelievable speed of 1gbps! Which is pretty much unheard of in the hotspot space. The device can connect up to 20 different devices. Again, the highest figure for that feature in the market. Another massive feature of this device is its powerful 5040 mAh battery that can be used continuously for 24 hours with an awesome standby time of 500 hours.
The Nightgear Nighthawk comes pre-unlocked to support any network carrier. It has a USB port to support external storage for sharing data.
While a beast at performance, the Netgear Nighthawk has a sleek and functional modern design that is perfect to fit among a gamer’s gadget collection.
It has a large 2–4-inch mobile display making it easy for you to track critical parameters like data consumption, network strength, and battery life. We would have also loved if the display had been touchscreen, but sadly it is not so. You will have to scroll it down with a button.
It is very easy to set up the Netgear Nighthawk. Just power it on, navigate to the web interface setup, and you are good to go. There is also an app (both Android / iOS) to help you control and manage the device easily from your mobile phone.
With so much functionality packed into it, the Netgear Nighthawk is pricy, which is one of the drawbacks of the device. Otherwise, it is a robust solution for extreme gaming enthusiasts to enjoy hours of on-the-go fast gaming!
- Fastest Mobile Hotspot in the market
- Long battery life that doubles up as a power bank
- Sleek modern design
- Supports the largest number of devices to be connected
- Easy to set up with the ability to control from the app
- Large display to monitor parameters
- Large Size and Bit Bulky
- Steep Price Point
- Ethernet Port is only Input – Cannot connect laptops for faster speed through a wired connection
- Never reaches the claimed 1 Gbps speed – though still is blazing fast, much ahead of the competition
2. ROAMWIFI R10 PORTABLE WIFI DEVICE 4G – Best Runner-Up
The RoamWifi R10 Mobile Hotspot smartly sits in an enviable second spot behind the Netgear Nighthawk. This device packs in a solid punch in terms of features and performances. It is best suited for international gamers as it levies no roaming charges on data and is supported in over 160 countries.
It provides high speeds with download speeds of 50 Mbps to support heavy-duty gaming. It has a massive 5000mAh battery that can last for 18 hours of continuous use. The device lets you connect to 5 other devices for sharing data.
It is a compelling offering that is suitable for all kinds of on-the-go gamers.
- No Roaming Charges
- High speeds for heavy-duty gaming
- A huge battery that can serve as a power bank
- Connectivity is weak in some zones
- User interface demands a little more
3. ALCATEL LINKZONE 4G LTE ROUTER MW 41TM – Budget Pick
If you are looking for something simple that just gets the job done well without packing in a bunch of crazy functionalities, then look no further than the Alcatel Linkzone 4G LTE mobile hotspot.
It is our Budget Pick for Mobile Hotspot devices. It gets done what a hotspot is supposed to get done without burning a hole in your pocket.
The Alcatel Linkzone provides speeds of up to 150 Mbps. It has a decent battery of 1800 mAh that provides up to 6 hours of continuous usage and an impressive 300hours of standby time.
The device comes unlocked to enable you to connect to the carrier of your choice. It has a USB-C port to enable it to connect to other devices as an external modem. Plus, the USB-A port lets other devices charge themselves with its enormous power bank.
The Alcatel LinkZone is impressive when it comes to the security of the network. It supports all modern network security features like MAC, IP Filtering, Port Forwarding, and Manual DNS.
One of the most significant drawbacks of it is the lack of any screen. One needs to connect to a web interface to even know what is going inside my device. Another weird thing is it either supports a 5Ghz network or a 2.4 GHz network at one time, but not both together.
Barring these minor glitches, the Alcatel Linkzone is all-in-all a decent buy that can get the job done for the casual gamer or even intense gamers that prefer light games such as puzzles. If you do not need heavy-duty functionality from your mobile hotspot, then the Alcatel Linkzone is the perfect buy for you!
- Easy on the pocket – costs almost half of the other devices on this list
- Decent Product for people who are not looking for too many fancy features
- Good battery life that can act as a power bank
- Robust Security
- Performs very well for its price point
- No screen – Interaction with the device is painful
- Low speeds – but okay for its price point
- No guest networks
- It only lets you connect to either 2.4Ghz or 5Ghz at a time
4. GLOCALME G4 PRO – BEST MOBILE HOTSPOT FOR TRAVELLERS
If you are an avid gamer that also happened to be smitten with the wanderlust bug, then the Glocalme G4 Pro is the mobile hotspot for you. The device has been designed with one focus in mind – to cater to the traveling gamer.
How does the Glocalme G4 Pro achieve this? By providing internet access in any part of the world without tying you to a particular network service provider.
The device supports a no-contract SIM card that provides coverage in more than 140 countries. Even better, the Glocalme G4 Pro provides flexible data plans – pay by GB, by day, or year, just as you prefer. With pay-as-you-go support, it is just about optimum for the globe-trotting gamer with different data uses in different countries and days.
The Glocal G4 Pro comes with an impressive touch screen display and an intuitive user interface. This makes it very easy to check data flow and signal strengths on the Glocalme G4 Pro.
The device comes with a decent 150 Mbps download, and 50 Mbps upload speed. It supports excellent security features such as traffic management and blacklist protection. You can connect up to 10 devices to avail full benefit of the wife-hotspot with the G4 Pro.
The Glocal G4 Pro is a niche device specially made for the traveling hotspot user. As such, it does the best job at meeting the needs of this specific segment. If you’re deep into traveling and consume loads of data, think no further than the Glocalme G4 Pro.
- Best for travelers
- It comes with 1.1 Gb global data and 8Gb Us data
- Flexible planning makes it easy to pay-as-you-go in over 140 countries
- Heavy on the pocket
- Limited configuration options – challenging to change default settings
- Plans can sometimes get confusing
5. NOMMI MOBILE HOTSPOT – BEST BATTERY LIFE
The Nommi 4G LTE Secured Unlocked Mobile Hotspot Device is simply the best when it comes to battery life in the mobile hotspot space.
With a mammoth 10000Mah battery that promises 48 hrs continuous usage, the Nommi Hotspot can charge all of your devices multiple times in one single go.
Another cool feature is the virtual SIM that can be used in 150 countries for seamless connectivity. It comes in with 10GB US data and supports Wi-Fi-extender to extend the range of your hotspot. It does a decent job at security with built-in VPN support.
If you are out on long trails out in the wilderness with no access to a charge point for hours, then the Nommi Mobile Hotspot device is the perfect solution for you.
- The longest battery life by far
- eSIM/SIM that works in 150 countries
- Built-in VPN
- Slow speeds – 10-25 Mbps
- Not all networks seem to connect
If you like one of the products on the list, you might be looking to buy one. Here are a few pointers to keep in mind before you make your final decision.
How to Choose the Best Mobile Hotspot for Gaming?
The exact mobile hotspot that would be perfect for you depends on your preferences. All hotspots make trade-offs to focus on some features more, and it is essential that you choose the device that supports the features you need.
You can choose the speed based on your usage, but as a minimum, please ensure that the mobile hotspot supports 5Ghz connectivity.
If you’re a hardcore gamer deep into heavy-duty games, then we recommend the Netgear Nighthawk M1 – Our Best Overall pick.
For casual gamers, something simple like the Alcatel Linkzone (Our Budget Pick) would be just fine.
This should always go high up on your criteria list. After all, mobile hotspot is all about gaming on the go, and there is no point roaming around with a dead battery.
If you are into long hikes and treks, then the Nommi Mobile Hotspot (Our Best Battery Pick) is best.
– Freedom to choose a network carrier
This is especially relevant for international travelers. The Glocal G4 Pro (Our Best for Travellers pick) is the best for such uses as it does not bind to you any specific carrier. Pay-as you-go on the carrier that suits best the country you are in.
– Easy setup and display
Finally, make sure the device is easy to set up and use. A visual display helps track parameters easily. Almost all mobile hotspots meet the bill with this, but as we saw above, some have cluttered interfaces.
Congratulations on making it through here. Hopefully, now you can make a good decision to buy the mobile hotspot of your choice for gaming on the move. We’ll end with a few helpful answers.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
Q: Is 4G good enough for mobile gaming?
A: Yes, it is. Latency is actually more important than speed for a good gaming experience. 4G mobile hotspots provide download speeds of over 20 Mbps and latency as low as 30-50ms. Gaming only requires about 3-5 Mbps and latency that’s less than 100ms. As you can see, 4G comfortably supports all kinds of mobile gaming.
Q: Which provider has the best mobile hotspot plan?
A: The exact answer depends on what you are looking for from the Mobile hotspot data plan. If you are looking to keep within budget, Visible has the best plans with unlimited data at $40. If you are concerned about good connectivity, then Verizon is your best bet. You can check out their Do More Unlimited plan. If you want loads of high-speed data and cost isn’t a factor, then AT & T is perfect for you.