Using Zevvle for a laptop data dongle

Apologies for what’s probably a pretty silly basic beginners’ question, but I’ve never really used a 4G / 5G data dongle with a laptop much before…

For reasons I won’t bore you with, I’m at present having to work from my Mum’s house, where the current internet connection is pretty slow (ca. 11 Mb/s down and 0.9 Mb/s up) - and I’m not in a position to upgrade that. This is causing me a lot of problems with things like Teams / Zoom calls, and the like.

I’m wondering whether a 4G / 5G dongle, linked to my Zevvle account, might help me here. What I’m wondering is…

  • Would it be faster than the existing ‘broadband’ as above?
  • Would it use a massive amount of data (would be connected usually about 6 hours per day, with on average 2 hours of Teams meetings or similar per day, ideally using camera as well as mic)
  • Could / should it be linked to my existing Zevvle account and (single) SIM which I use on my mobile, or would it be better to have a separate SIM?
  • What would the likely costs be?
  • I’m very short of USB connections on my work laptop - the two standard USBs are both used by my external mouse and keyboard, so all I have spare to connect to are the ethernet cable and a USB-C connector. Presumably I could get a dongle that would go into one of these?

I’d be really grateful for any advice anybody cleverer than me (= anybody!) could offer. Thanks very much!

PS (Sorry!) If the answer to the above is that it potentially is quite a good idea, presumably I need to buy myself a dongle independently and then fit my Zevvle SIM into it. If that’s right, any recommendations for a good dongle would be appreciated.


Hey Mick,
I’ll try help until the cleverer people arrive.
I have a laptop with SIM Card slot and have configured it to give me internet access rather than connecting to wifi spots when I am out and about. So using the internet via your Zevvle SIM is doable :+1:t4:.

Depends on the network/service/reception you have in the area. If it’s 5g probably, if it’s 4g probably given the connection details you provided above.

Probably a good amount of data, a specific amount is as good as ‘how long is a piece of string?’ especially as you may be intending to use just Teams and Zoom, but your laptop might have other ideas …
If it’s a Windows 10/11 laptop i am 100% sure inthe settings you can set the network to a metered network which may help.

1 SIM per connection, so if you have 1 SIM right now, and you use it for calls text and data, you decide to put it into a dongle… you won’t be receiving calls anymore (some mifi hotspots receive sms’)
You are more than likely going to need to order another SIM, which comes with it’s own number, own tariff, own charges, but shared data.

As long as that aforementioned string, but the pricing thingy on the website should be able to help you budget on buying a data pack.

If you buy a dongle that plugs in via USB… not all dongles are equal, or you can get a mifi device… this device is a mini router with a sim card in it to provide internet.

You’ll need to buy it yourself - you also benefit from it being unlocked so if Zevvle doesn’t provide what you need you can use other sim cards.

Hope this helps somehow.


Another option is to use the tethering on your phone. It’s something that I do regularly. This saves having to have a separate SIM and the additional cost of that. It’s possible to have your phone on the window sill for example to get a better signal.

Several ways to do the same thing.

It’ll use more data than you use currently, but not massively more. Video calling apps try to use as little data as possible by sending low resolution images.

With the tethering you can try it for a few days and see how much you use them multiply it up to get a monthly figure for setting the following months data bundle amount. One of the downsides is if you suddenly need a lot of data it can be costly until the turn of the month when you can change it. It’s one of the things I’d like to see improved - larger out of month bundles for this situation.

Thanks a lot for these really helpful replies. Yes, ‘testing the water’ by tethering my phone sounds a good plan, not least to check that I do get faster connections before investing in a dongle and second SIM. Now I think of it, that’s something I’ve tried before actually when I was stuck in the middle of nowhere… Seem to recall it worked over Bluetooth, so my shortage of USB ports shouldn’t be an issue.

Thanks again!

Tethering can be done over WiFi, Bluetooth, or USB. I’ve generally found tethering to be good enough that I don’t need to have a separate dongle any more.

Thanks! Yesterday I worked with my laptop tethered by Bluetooth to my phone, and it was indeed far better, with Teams meetings working beautifully, including on camera. Interesting that my phone got quite warm, and the battery drained quite quickly (not a problem as I could charge it).

But… it used 3-4GB of data just yesterday, so that’s quite a lot in a month…

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That is expected to be honest…

Indeed, that side of it doesn’t bother me - it’s more that I’m rather frightened at the volume of data!

Just wondering if anybody has any more ideas for a reasonably “data-efficient” / cost-effective way around this. I don’t mind paying more, so long as it’s within reason!

To be honest I’m struggling to do my job at present.


How long do you anticipate needing this for?

It will probably be more cost effective to buy a SIM which offers a large amount of data, which networks are good where you are?

This is probably the cheapest l, high data,.no contract bundle on EE afaik.

If you are using windows turn on metered connection in settings, that will save some data.

Is it a work owned laptop? You may be able to tweak teams video quality to save data but your admin should know how to do this from the teams admin page.

It also depends on what you call cost effective, you can buy a good plug in 4G router for ~£70-80 refurbished from Amazon etc, and they are often handy to have for outages and I find I end up lending mine out for friends and family for various reasons.
This will stop your phone battery drain and should be more stable and faster especially with the external antennas and positioned near the best wall.

Have a look for Huawei B535 or B525, you might have to dig around on Amazon to find the refurbished ones.

I would probably avoid the cheaper ones as they don’t have 4G+ ( you want 4g/lte cat 6 or higher) you may in fact not need 4G+ but unless you can check yourself before buying I would spend the extra £30.


Thanks very much for all of the above - much appreciated!

In the event, as of yesterday, I’ve finally been able to get a response out of my work IT department, and they say they are going to supply me with something - which to be honest was a pleasant surprise.

Nonetheless your advice is really useful and I’m most grateful to you.