Folks using older notebooks surely have integrated WiFi, but it’s likely that the wireless support is for 802.11b or g flavors. These days, there are plenty of 802.11n routers that typically offer higher transfer speeds and a wider coverage range, but you won’t see the benefit on your 802.11b/g computer. It’s likely you could crack open that notebook and insert a newer WiFi card, but it’s far easier to go the USB route.
Crave took a look-see at the new GW-USMicronN 802.11n USB adapter from Planex and found that it worked just as well as devices with integrated 802.11n. For around $30, this is a relatively inexpensive upgrade that doesn’t require opening your notebook and peforming surgery. What’s even more amazing to me is how small the actual adapter is: it’s among the smallest USB adapters I’ve ever seen. The comparable D-Link adapter in the picture looks as big as my 3G card, but there isn’t even room on the GW-USMicronN for the product name!