With real-time wireless access, you are connected to the Internet wirelessly , live. That is, if you compose an email on the device you're using and send it, it goes, immediately. New emails pop into your Inbox all the time. When you check the baseball scores, they are up-to-date.
Synchronized connectivity is what many people do with their handheld PDAs. Palm devices, Handspring Visors, and Pocket PCs all allow this type of connecting. Using a provider such as AvantGo (a free service), you determine which sites you want to check in on when you connect. Then, when you synchronize your PDA with your computer, it will pull down the latest data from the Internet and load it into the PDA.
Then, you can check that data (including email) at a later time. If you reply to emails or compose new ones, they won't be sent until you synchronize again. Web sites aren't updated until you synchronize again.
It's a great way to use wireless without having to spend anything for a real-time connection. If your needs don't include having all-the-time access to the Internet, this might be the way for you to go. AvantGo (see Figure 16.1) has a directory of Web sites you can choose to have the service update. Depending on the type of device you have, you either get a scaled-down version of the site, or the full site.
Figure 16.1. AvantGo allows you to synchronize with the Internet.