I finally ditched Clear as my on-the-go mobile hot-spot. I picked up a Karma which ironically enough runs off the same Clear network which is actually Sprint. The biggest difference is that it's a pay as you go, no monthly contract required, and most interesting to me, 'social bandwidth' device. The device itself is actually the same device I was using with Clear, simply rebranded with the Karma logo.
The biggest reason for switching was that I was over paying and Clear had some of the worst tech support ever. For almost $60 a month, I better be getting some decent support when I need it! They've been worse then useless though when it comes to that. Karma first caught my attention through a story on Digg.com and after looking at what they offered I knew switching would be the best thing. No contract, pay as you go and earn more bandwidth for free by sharing with friends? Sounds like a no brainer to me! Let's just quickly mention that even though you can "earn" bandwidth by sharing your hot spot with anyone, you can also buy bandwidth at $14 for 1GB. It's a bit pricy but it never expires and you can purchase more when you need it.
The ability to earn more bandwidth simply by sharing your WiFi connection with anyone is what really sold me though. I can simply turn on my little device and anyone (up-to 8 people) can connect to it for free. Anyone who connects will be prompted to create or login to an existing Karma account and will be given 100MBs of free bandwidth. That should be enough for anyone who needs to make a Facebook post, or a tweet, or send a few emails. In return for me sharing my hot spot, each new person that connects will give me 100MBs of free bandwidth! It seems like a win-win for everyone.
The hot-spot itself is $79.99 and they give you 1GB free bandwidth, plus the 100MBs for signing up for a Karma account. The Karma or rather Clear network is relatively decent. I usually get between 3-8MBits down and about 1Mbit up. I have seen speeds up to 10Mbits which is nice. I tend to only use the device for low-key things like surfing the web, Twitter, sending emails, maybe watching a YouTube video or two. Overly, I am much more happy with my little Karma. I like being able to share the WiFi-love and get a little reward in return.
The only reason I wouldn't recommend a Karma over something from Sprint, or AT&T or Clear themselves, is if you're a heavier bandwidth user. I used to go through about 15-20GBs of data a month, and at that point the Clear unlimited data plan was a much better choice. Since I don't have Netflix anymore and I try to only use the computer when at work or home, I don't rely on the mobile hot-spot as much. I definitely highly recommend this little gadget. It's fun!