Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Globally Roaming

It seems as if humanity is getting close to that ideal of travelling without disassociating oneself from society. I’m referring, of course, to the concept of global roaming.
Travelling overseas is a great mind opener, no doubt about it, but unless your last name is Rockefeller or unless you’re willing to dedicate a lot of your travel time to locating a local SIM then you will have to accept that international travel means no phone and no internet. At least not whenever you want it to be there; the occasional free wifi is nice (do use VPN to protect yourself!), but forget about relying on your map app if you find yourself spontaneously lost.
But those assumptions proved to no longer hold us in their death grip. For the first time, I have experienced travel as it should be. To use more spectacular language, our family felt like it's had its own Star Trek Communicator experience.
When the rest of the family recently paid a visit to the UK and France, I stuck a Globalgig SIM card in the wife’s phone. That SIM was my first glimpse into a future not as encumbered by greedy-bastard companies: my wife was able to seamlessly use her phone in Australia, both before and after departure, as well as in the UK and in France. There was nothing to it; she reported changing to Orange and back upon crossing in and out of France, but as far as services are concerned she enjoyed Internet connectivity on her phone throughout.
As she, and everyone else for that matter, should.

23/4/2015 update: I will note that a couple of days after this post, Google had announced its Project Fi. Said project, currently in prototype stage, allows users to seamlessly roam between 120 countries (and unlike Globalgig, that list includes Israel!). As we say in Australia, noice!

P.S. My son can now confirm Netflix UK works in the UK exactly the way it works at home.

Image by NASA HQ PHOTO, Creative Commons (CC BY-NC 2.0) licence

1 comment:

wile.e.coyote said...

Here, for 99 NIS a month you can get a package of unlimited Israeli use (up to 20GB) with unlimited international use (up to 6GB) for 55 countries.