What are the Drawbacks to Cellular Internet Plans?

When you’re out in public, you have two options usually if you want to connect to the internet on your mobile device. The first is cellular data. The second is finding a Wi-Fi network and connecting to it. Which is better? What are the pros and cons of each? This post will talk about which is better.

What is Cellular Internet?

Over 92% of US citizens own at least one smartphone, so you use cellular data in some way. Cellular internet uses a cell tower to connect to the World Wide Web, which most areas have some access to. This is unlike Wi-Fi networks, where you must be near the signal to receive internet access.

While many people will have cellular internet on their mobile devices, some people will use a mobile network as their primary connection. This connection can be ideal if you’re in an area with unreliable internet providers. However, a cellular network can be as inconsistent as a home internet source.

How Does Cellular Data Work?

Cellular data is made possible through radio waves, specifically large networks broken into smaller ones. These small networks are known as cells, with each of them broadcasting their signal using a different frequency while still being part of the same network. Because cellular networks are divided, they can be faster, cover a large area, and have larger capacities without network congestion.

Another benefit is that the devices do not need to have large antennas and don’t need to use much power to receive fast internet speeds. You don’t need to have a large antenna on your phone to connect to the internet, which is quite convenient.

When Should You Use Cellular Data?

If you’re on your phone and are near a Wi-Fi connection, should you use the Wi-Fi network or your cellular data? Here are some reasons why you should use cellular data instead and when you should not.

You Should Use Wi-Fi if You Have a Data Limit

Different providers have different data plans. Some of them have limited data they will give you on a monthly basis. If you go past these data caps, the provider may throttle your speeds or charge you extra fees. Using Wi-Fi networks means that you won’t be using your data.

You Should Use Wi-Fi if You’re Uploading or Downloading Large Files

While cellular data can be fast, the lack of consistency means that you may experience delays if you’re downloading a large file or uploading one. In fact, if you reach a dead zone, you may have to download the file all over again. Using Wi-Fi networks means that you will have a fast, consistent connection, provided the signal strength is good.

You Should Use Cellular Data if the Wi-Fi Signal or Speed is Weak

Sometimes, a place may have a Wi-Fi signal, but it’s slow or congested. In this case, it may be beneficial to use your cellular data instead.

You Should Use Cellular Data if You Can’t Find a Hotspot and You Need to Do Something Immediately

Depending on where you are, there may be no Wi-Fi networks available, or at least none available to the public. For example, many businesses may offer Wi-Fi, but only to paying customers. Alternatively, many internet service providers have Wi-Fi networks in public, but only for people who are subscribers.

You Should Use Cellular Data if You’re Doing Something Sensitive and the Only Option is Public Wi-Fi Networks

Public Wi-Fi can be unsafe, with hackers who can easily see what you are doing. When there are only public connections available, you may not want to take that risk if you are doing something sensitive on your mobile phone. If you have to use public Wi-Fi networks, consider using a VPN to protect yourself.

What are Some of the Drawbacks to Cellular Internet Plans?

While cellular data has many benefits, there are several drawbacks as well. Let’s look at some of them.

1. Limited Mobile Data Plans

While standard internet service providers may have data caps as well, cellular networks do it a lot more and have smaller data caps. If you exceed the data cap, you may experience slower internet speeds, which can be frustrating, or you may incur additional charges. These charges can add up, increasing your phone bill by quite a lot.

One way to avoid this is, if you plan on using your phone a lot, to make sure that there is an unlimited data option. Unlimited data can cost more but can prevent additional costs and speed throttles.

2. Potential for Slow Speeds

Cellular networks have become a lot faster in the past decade, but they may experience slower and more inconsistent speeds. Here are some reasons why you may experience slower speeds.

You’re in a Crowded Area

If you are in a crowded place, you may have trouble getting connected. This is due to network congestion, where more people are using a single tower than what the tower can handle. When you’re trying to get a hold of someone or use GPS, it can be a frustrating experience.

You’re in a Dead Zone

Dead zones are when you have limited to no connection due to you being too far from a cell tower or the tower’s signal being obstructed by something. If you’re deep underground, for instance, you may not receive any signal. Also, if you’re out in the middle of nowhere, there may be fewer towers.

In An Area That Hasn’t Upgraded to 5G

Not every area has upgraded to 5G. If you’re traveling, you may be in an area with 4G. As a result, your speeds will not be as fast.

3. Security Concerns

This downside ultimately depends on what types of connections you have. If your only Wi-Fi options are public, then you may be more vulnerable to attacks. Cellular networks have much more encryption protocols in place. However, if you’re using private Wi-Fi with the latest technologies, you may be safer using that.

However, no matter what connection you have, you may still be vulnerable to attackers. As a result, it’s vital that, if you’re doing something sensitive on the internet, you take precautions. Use a VPN, be sure you’re connecting to a legitimate connection, and consider doing some activities at home.

Is Wi-Fi or Cellular Internet Better?

There is no straight answer to this, as it depends on the circumstance.

Wi-Fi is better when you need a more consistent connection that can usually download or upload files faster. Another reason a Wi-Fi network can be better is if you have a data limit.

On the other hand, cellular data is more secure if your only Wi-Fi option is a public network. Also, cellular data is much more accessible.

No matter which internet connection you choose, be safe and be sure to encrypt your connection if you’re doing anything sensitive.

What are Cellular Networks?

A cellular network is a connection obtained through 4G or 5G radio towers. Many people rely on cellular data networks for their daily lives. Because cellular networks are in most places and are usually secure, they are how many connect to the internet when outside.

Alternative Internet Options for a Reliable Internet Connection

If you need a reliable Wi-Fi connection, many types of internet service providers can help you. Let’s look at some of them.

Fixed Wireless

Fixed wireless relies on a radio tower and a home receiver. This type of internet connection has become popular in rural areas, where having broadband connection speeds is more difficult due to the lack of people or because of how the land is designed. As long as the recipient is within a 10-mile radius of the tower with no obstructions, they can have fast, reliable speeds.

Cable Internet

Cable internet uses coaxial cables, which cable TV also uses. Cable internet is available in many areas, with fast broadband speeds. Cable internet can slow down during peak usage times, but it’s still quick and reliable.

Why Choose Broadlinc ISP for High-Speed Cellular Internet Plans?

Broadlinc’s services have allowed more rural Kentuckians to get high-speed internet access than ever before, with fast speeds whether at home or outside. Our fixed wireless and cable internet lets you experience everything the internet can offer with speeds up to 200 MBPS. Plus, we are an internet service provider that comes from rural Kentucky itself.

Benefits of Choosing Broadlinc ISP Internet Services

When you choose our internet services, they come with many benefits, including:

Fast Speeds

We have fixed wireless and cable internet connections up to 200 MBPS. With our connection speeds, you can stream 4K movies, enjoy online gaming with no delay, and have a family full of people using multiple devices without any slowdown.

More Coverage

We’re expanding to more rural counties in Kentucky. Places that had limited to no fast internet options can now enjoy everything the internet has to offer.


Whether or not you should use your cellular data or a Wi-Fi network depends on the circumstances. If the Wi-Fi connection is distant or it’s public, you may be better off using cellular data. However, if you want to download and upload files at consistent speeds or if you want to conserve data, you should choose a Wi-Fi network.

While cellular networks do have their benefits, using them as home internet is ultimately unreliable. Because of this, you can rely on Broadlinc to deliver you fast, reliable internet. Please reach out to us today and see what we can do for you.