So mobile operators are becoming broadband providers.
But operators/carriers don’t want to be ISPs! :)
For example all the mobile operators in the UK AFAIK use different business models for HSPDA data, discriminating on device.
If you use your SIM card on your laptop (via a USB dongle) you pay one price. If you use your SIM card on your phone for data access, you pay a cheaper price. Operators assume that you’ll use far less data from your phone. Which is true today.
Sidenote: Many operators have sold “unlimited” Internet, to then come along and say, no “you have 1G of data”. Sorry, 1G of “fair usage” is not unlimited.
You could dial in via a bluetooth 3G phone from your laptop and operators will get pissed and send stupid threats and you won’t like your mobile’s battery life.
I don’t think you can simply remove the SIM card from your mobile and put it into a Huawei E272 dongle. People keep telling me this is not possible, but I can’t confirm this. I assume that operators probably blacklist devices like USB dongles, to enforce their fragmented (24/18/12 month contact etc.) “plans” on mobile broadband.
So Vodafone wants to sell me one SIM card for data and one for voice. Stupid and fragmented.