Since we originally posted our Travel Gear, we have added a few gadgets and want to provide an update:
We didn’t have time to find SIM cards until Beijing. Once in Beijing, we were able to purchase a 300MB China Unicom card for about $16. The Huawei MiFi recognizes the card, but it doesn’t seem to push any data through (hmmm). Our guide tried the card in her phone and it worked fine. Maybe the MiFi is not a compatible device on the China Unicom network. We’ll look for a China Mobile and see if that works next. So far, we’ve been surviving on hotel Wi-Fi with reasonable success.
We added a DeLorme InReach SE, a two-way satellite tracker and messaging device. It allows us to send (and receive!) short (160 character) messages from anywhere in the world. It uses the Iridium satellites which have global coverage. The InReach also pairs with a cell phone which can store maps and send messages. You can track our progress here or by clicking the Track Us link at the top.
We also added an 11″ MacBook Air by accident. Two days before departing, a trusty 2008 MacBook Pro suddenly died, so it was a good excuse to upgrade. At 2.4lbs, it’s very light, thin, and nice to have a real keyboard.