I recently picked one one of these up for about £13 on amazon.co.uk and quite simply has enabled me to teach an old dog new tricks. Or to clarify, an old laptop that has been gathering dust. The laptop in question, an HP Pavillion series has up until buying this adapter required a hardwired connection i.e. physically running a wire. Given that laptop was located quite a distance from the nearest socket, it ceased to be useful, being only able to operate in close proximity to the modem and therefore becoming a desktop by proxy and I have one of those.
Weighing less than 100g and measuring no more than 2 inches in length, once connected to your wireless network it will give you speeds of up to 54Mps. It may only be compatible with Windows 98 and XP but when you consider that if you are running a newer OS, then the likelihood is that you have no need for a wireless adapter as yours is already built in.
Installation is easy and lives up to the plug and go philosophy that the USB port is designed for. Speeds will fluctuate a little, but that will be more dependant on your position. Reliability is second to none so far. Encased in a toughened black plastic, it will stand up to minor bumps but as with all USB connections don't go throwing them round or they will be damaged. The end cap does its best to avoid that eventuality.
When you consider that you can spend £13 and making an old laptop wireless and connecting to the internet without the need for metres of wiring, you begin to appreciate how clever this little lump of plastic is. It does no more than what it promises and for that you will be grateful.
I got fed up with running miles of cable around the house because we had a telephone socket in the hall and wanted a computer somewhere else etc. So I looked on Amazon and bought this so that I could make a wireless set-up. At the time, it was probably one of the cheapest of the lot at under £10, so I thought might be suspect for the quality. However, it did have over 100 reviews averaging 4 stars out of 5, so I took the plunge and bought it.
What do you get? Well, a nice little box and a cd with the drivers on it. Connected everything up to my computer, loaded the drivers, rebooted and crossed my fingers. To be honest, I wasn't expecting much. The router was at one end of the house with the computer at the other. So I thought I might get about a half strength signal. But surprisingly not. The little green light on the Sweex flickered as the computer booted up, quickly picked up the router signal and bang, gave me full strength with an excellent connection.
Now been using this for about 2 years and so far it has never failed me. Never lost a signal and always connects up first time. So an excellent buy at an excellent price.