This device has been discontinued or we consider it obsolete. While current owners of this device may continue to find performance to be adequate for the foreseeable tech-future, we do not recommend upgrading to or purchasing this device.
ZTE in the News: ZTE was in the news a lot in 2018 thanks to the sanctions the company was negotiating with the US government. At one point, it seemed as if ZTE would be forced out of business.
In mid-July 2018 it looked like the dust had settled and ZTE would be able to continue releasing new products and supporting older devices, so we dropped our previous warning.
In late 2018, the Trump administration again considered a ban on ZTE and Huawei via Executive Order.
In July 2020, the U.S. government banned companies that use ZTE from receiving federal contracts.
Members, get our further analysis and follow our ongoing tracking of this story in our Special Announcements forum:
It turns out that the newer model is actually just a cost-reduced version of the Z-915, with the exact same specifications and internal electronics.
The key difference is that the older and more expensive Z-915 has an LCD screen for changing settings and checking status. But on the new Falcon model there is only a series of basic status lights - and all changes must be made via a web interface.
But this is not a high-end device, and it does NOT have advanced features or support for combining multiple bands via LTE-Advanced Carrier Aggregation. It also does not support T-Mobile's newest LTE frequency, Band 71.
UPDATE (October 2016): T-Mobile has seemingly replaced the Falcon Z-917 in its lineup with the newer Alcatel LINKZONE - which has nearly identical specifications and capabilities.
- # of Connected Devices: 10 Wi-Fi / Supports USB Tethering
WiFiRanger Tethering: Tested & Confirmed
Control Panel: http://mobile.hotspot/ or http://192.168.0.1/
Default Password: "admin"
- Networks supported:
LTE Bands: 2, 4, 12 (17)
4G: HSPA+ 850/1900/2100MHz
3G / 2G: Global Roaming NOT Supported
- LTE-Advanced Carrier Aggregation: No
- LTE Performance Category: Category 4
(Max Theoretical Speed: 150Mbps Down / 50Mbps Up)
- Cellular Antenna Ports: None
- Wi-Fi Technology / Frequencies: 802.11 b/g/n - 2.4GHz Only
- Dimensions: 4.13" x 2.36" x 0.63" / 4.23 oz
- Battery Life: 6hrs
- Can run without battery? Yes
- Battery Part #: Li3720T42P3h704572
- Battery Purchase: Generic
- SIM Card Type: 3FF / Micro SIM
- Retail Price: $79.95
Review & Testing Status
In addition, we have included this unit in our several other rounds of testing. Our field testing results can be found here, for our members who want to follow along:
- Cellular Signal & Embedded Router Field Testing – IBR900 | MAX-BR1 | Drive Sleek | MIMO Antennas (1st Quarter 2018)
- Cellular Equipment Field Testing Results – Netgear Modems / USB730 (Late 2017)
Potential Alternatives to Consider:
For other popular mobile hotspots on the market - here are our featured options:
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