While most PCs now come with Wireless connectivity built-in, old models don't have the same luck and so to get online without the need for wires you need a USB adapter.

In steps ZyZEL's Wi-Fi Finder and USB adapter a nifty little device that not only lets you find the networks around you but then allows you to connect to them.

The premise and design is simple. The small USB stick that is slightly larger than a lighter comes with a three line mono screen on it that displays all the relevant information.

Jam packed on to the screen is everything form the network name, signal strength, whether or not its free, the connectivity speed and what number it is out of the ones found.

A quick test at Pocket-lint Towers found four in the nearby area and their signal strength ranged from excellent (that will be ours then) to almost non-existent.

In practice the hotspot finder is very easy to use and it's a case of just pressing the seek button when you want to find a network and then next to scan through the choices. Furthermore a really nice feature included is the free mode whereby the scanner will only find hotspots that aren't locked or encrypted, we can't wait to use this at the next show we have to cover.

Once you've found your network, you simply plug the device into a spare USB slot and then let the accompanying software apt to the rest.

For those really interested you can get speed data, server information, and even add the profile for future use when you're next connected as well as accessing all the same data on the unit's screen.

Verdict

The ZyXEL AG-225H Wi-Fi finder and USB adapter is simple to use and more importantly works without and fuss. The only annoyance we had was that when you connect it to a PC it automatically starts charging and therefore wipes the screen of any information aside from a large picture of a charging battery.

If you've got an old laptop and you want to go Wi-Fi this is the way to do it.