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Cellphones Portables Wireless Networking

Mobile Wi-Fi Hot Spot 202

bsharma writes to let us know about a little goodie that we will be able to buy starting May 17: a battery-powered, rechargeable, cellular, Wi-Fi hot spot that you can put in your pocket. "What if you had a personal Wi-Fi bubble, a private hot spot, that followed you everywhere you go? Incredibly, there is such a thing. It's the Novatel MiFi 2200, available from Verizon starting in mid-May ($100 with two-year contract, after rebate). It's a little wisp of a thing, like a triple-thick credit card. It has one power button, one status light and a swappable battery that looks like the one in a cellphone. When you turn on your MiFi and wait 30 seconds, it provides a personal, portable, powerful, password-protected wireless hot spot. ... If you just want to do e-mail and the Web, you pay $40 a month for the service (250 megabytes of data transfer, 10 cents a megabyte above that). If you watch videos and shuttle a lot of big files, opt for the $60 plan (5 gigabytes). And if you don't travel incessantly, the best deal may be the one-day pass: $15 for 24 hours, only when you need it. In that case, the MiFi itself costs $270." The device has its Wi-Fi password printed on the bottom, so you can invite someone to join your network simply by showing it to them.
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Mobile Wi-Fi Hot Spot

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  • by rwwyatt ( 963545 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:12PM (#27899917)

    One Advantage of the MiFi unit is that the performance is better than that of a standard datacard. Laptop Noise is an issue with usb sticks especially in low coverage areas.

    Disclaimer: I work for the Manufacturer.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Celeste R ( 1002377 )

      Units like this are nothing new.

      The inherent problem with these isn't the fact that they're celluar; it's the fact that they're WIFI.

      Driving around with this isn't nearly so great when you're getting interference from APs on the same channel (and there's no way to avoid it).

      This means stuttered speeds while there's interference; and until this problem is solved with either a new WIFI spec or limiting the AP to an uncommon spec (who uses A these days?) that its utility is limited.

      And when utility is

      • According to the article it has a web interface (like all home wifi routers) that allows you to change the settings. If the manufacturer put any thought into the design of this product they would allow you to change the wifi channel.

      • by socsoc ( 1116769 )

        One reason I love dd-wrt is that I can choose a channel that isn't approved in the states by the FCC, so I know there is going to be less interference from all my neighbors in the complex.

        Open this hardware up to support every wifi channel and those who are tech-savvy won't have that problem.

      • Sounds like this type of device needs a "pick another channel" button. (Along with a touch of intelligence, so that the channel it picks isn't also suffering from interference.)

        Surfing to the web-admin page just to find yourself a clean channel sounds like it would get old fast.

    • Wouldn't a USB extension cable eliminate laptop noise? You can get those for about $3 off Newegg. Though this is a less bulky solution, I'll admit.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Jeff DeMaagd ( 2015 )

      For me, the biggest hinderance is the cost of service. I don't travel a lot, but $15/day is exactly what I had to pay for my last hotel's internet service, and cellular internet is generally not as good as hotel WiFi, so I don't see the point in this device. Find some way that I can get device rental + service for $10/day or less, then maybe I'm interested.

  • by Ant P. ( 974313 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:13PM (#27899919) Homepage

    And what do you do when you no longer want to let them have access?

    • by macraig ( 621737 ) <> on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:22PM (#27899975)

      I guess you get up and leave! Or yank the battery.

    • by James Skarzinskas ( 518966 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:22PM (#27899979)
      Kick them in the nethers and run away?
    • by davester666 ( 731373 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:26PM (#27900023) Journal

      You smash their computer, of course. And you'll have get them in a headlock that cuts the blood flow from their head, to try to wipe their short-term memory (of the password and you smashing their computer).

      And you'll have to kill the witnesses, as this is all in public.

    • by Hillview ( 1113491 ) * on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:30PM (#27900069)
      Theoretically, you could "type into your Web browser's address bar -- a trick well known to network gurus -- the MiFi's settings pages magically appear. Now you can do geeky, tweaky tasks like changing the password or the wireless network name, limiting access to specific computers, turning on port forwarding (don't ask)." Of course, you could also read the article.. Theoretically.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:38PM (#27900133)

      And what do you do when you no longer want to let them have access?

      Gee, I dunno Einstein, maybe stop showing them the password?

    • by BitZtream ( 692029 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:43PM (#27900171)

      Same thing you do with every other wifi router, you change the password. In this case using their web interface which much like every other little consumer WAP/Router on planet.

      And this would be a good example of how reading the article can save you from asking a stupid question.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        It's not a stupid question, more of a snide remark. The password is printed on the device. This "feature" supposedly enables the user to share the password with other people "simply by showing it to them". If you change the password, you break that feature. So really, that can't be the point of printing the password onto the device. Some marketing guy dreamed up another bullet point. In reality it's just a way of making sure that the default password doesn't get lost, without making it the same for all devi

        • by mlts ( 1038732 ) *

          It would add significant cost, but perhaps a small e-paper display could have been put on the bottom or covered by a lid that would have a password, and another button on the unit to change the PW instantly. This way, one could be using their wireless connection at one location, then at some other place, push the button, configure their laptop to switch as well.

          Another idea would be adding a rudimintary RADIUS server onto the card and just use the enterprise-level authentication, and not worry about WPA pa

        • The password is printed on the device. This "feature" supposedly enables the user to share the password with other people "simply by showing it to them". If you change the password, you break that feature.

          Works perfectly for average users.

          If you're advanced enough to reconfigure the device and change the password, you're advanced enough to update the sticker on the back.

          If marketing disabled the password change to keep the feature - then you can complain.

        • Then don't show it to them in the first place! the thing is you you don't have to visibly deploy it. You can just put on the button, leave it in your pocket or purse and net away.
    • And what do you do when you no longer want to let them have access?

      Either hit the power button on it or surf to and change the SSID and password.

      Did you read the article?

  • by strredwolf ( 532 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:16PM (#27899943) Homepage Journal

    Someone forgot about the battery powered Cradelpoint systems. They're at [] and aren't tied to one system or another: You provide a USB dongle for it. It provides everything else. The PRS300 or the CTR350 has been around for years now.

    • This is really cool and it's only $180.00, nice find PHS300 []

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by greenThing ( 111378 )

      I've been using a PHS300 from Cradlepoint with my Sprint USB broadband dongle for almost a year. I commute by train 50 mins each way daily. I turn it on, toss it in my backpack, and I'm online for the train ride with no problems & nothing hanging off my laptop.

    • by kindbud ( 90044 )

      Yep, they're great. I am posting using a PHS300 right now from my boat which is moored at Isthmus Cove on Catalina Island. 4 bars and 2.5mbit/s downloads here (670kbit/s up). That's better than the Wifi offered for boaters here at Two Harbors. I have a grandfathered unlimited Verizon 3G account with the UM175 dongle.

      When I'm commuting to work, I listen to Pandora on the bus with my iPod touch.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:17PM (#27899951)

    Just what I've always wanted, a mobile wi-fi hotspot sitting in my pants pocket microwaving my genitals all day long.

  • by haner ( 1551705 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:18PM (#27899959)
    I don't see the big deal in this. For those of us who run Symbian based phones, Joikuspot has a free version which allows you to use your phone as a personal wifi hotspot with encryption. I use my E71 on ATT for an instant 3G hotspot wherever a 3G connection exists.
    • by ouimetch ( 1433125 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:22PM (#27899985)
      "it provides a personal, portable, powerful, password-protected wireless hot spot."

      Clearly anything that can be described with this level of alliteration is a big deal.
    • by Gible ( 526142 )

      Hell, I can use my Nokia 6234 to get net access via bluetooth. Tho I can't speak for the speed or quality, I only did it to see if I could and then disconnected - I can't afford 1992 data rates anymore.

      I suppose there might be some sort of emergency where I might use it, but it hasn't happened yet.

    • I don't see the big deal in this.

      I see two points:

      1. Some people don't want voice service, or they're happy with prepaid voice service that costs $10 for 60 minutes a month because they only use voice to arrange an occasional ride.
      2. Under some plans, tethering is a TOS violation. Under this plan, it's the entire point.
    • I use my E71 on ATT for an instant 3G hotspot wherever a 3G connection exists.

      ...Which isn't very many places unless you live in a major city.

      • by socsoc ( 1116769 )
        That's not true in northern California, I get great 3G reception in boondocks areas (talking 100+ miles), better than I get in some of the major cities.
  • by SighKoPath ( 956085 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:21PM (#27899971)
    I've been doing this for months. []
    • []

      Which works like a charm. Main uses I have for it is to get my iTouch online when there's no wifi about, or when a few of us are stuck in a ransom office somewhere with no/firewalled net access.

      Main issue isn't getting a wifi available over a 3G backhaul (however you want to do it), but rather the quite horrific cost of doing so.
    • by bughunter ( 10093 ) <> on Sunday May 10, 2009 @07:04PM (#27900293) Journal
      Agreed. If I already have a device whose main function is to connect me to a network, why do I need to have *another* one because I want to send a different kind of data? It's the same network, same protocol, same everything, except for the opportunity to sell me something I already have. So explain to me again why I need a MiFi in addition to a 3G cellphone?
      • by tepples ( 727027 )

        So explain to me again why I need a MiFi in addition to a 3G cellphone?

        Because you probably live in North America, home of mobile fleecing, and you didn't pay extra for a tethering clause in your contract.

    • by dwater ( 72834 )

      and there are several solutions to this on Symbian too, that have been available for years.

  • great again (Score:3, Interesting)

    by u4ya ( 1248548 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:23PM (#27900001) Homepage
    With the story yesterday about the car-centric mobile network, and now this today... it's great to see.

    As most of you know, the Internet is at risk of being restricted. Imagine a free, global Internet mesh, where the likes of RIAA and Big Brother couldn't reach. It would be a great boon to freedom of the Internet and to humankind.

    Of course, naysayers would probably say they will always find a way to strip our freedoms... but we can all dream, can't we?
  • Enable VOIP! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Gible ( 526142 )
    So wait... The telco's won't allow my iPhone/G1/Crackbery/etc to use VOIP over their network unless I buy one of these first?
  • Any Symbian S60 phone will do this with Joikuspot (a $20 software add-on).

    It's occasionally useful; most of the time, Bluetooth or a USB cable are better, because they drain the battery less.

    • by dwater ( 72834 )

      > Any Symbian S60 phone will do this with Joikuspot (a $20 software add-on).

      Not quite. The phone has to have wifi h/w, which reduces the range quite a bit. Still, IINM, that new E71X on AT&T is available for $99 and that has wifi.

      I think $99 is pretty cheap, though I guess you might end up paying more depending on what data plan you pick and that sort of thing. Also, IINM, JoikuSpot is only free for web access (the 'Light' version?) - anything else and you have to buy the 'premium' version, which see

  • by BitZtream ( 692029 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:35PM (#27900107)

    Its rechargable, does 802.11a/b/g, does GPRS and edge and lets me make voice calls without using some POS VoIP app that sounds like shit regardless of how much bandwidth you give it (looking at you skype).

    Hate to sound like an iPhone fan boy, but really this isn't impressive unless they pay me to buy it and cut the monthly cell data charges down to $40/month for unlimited usage like I get with my iPhone. Otherwise its just dumb to waste your money on it if the iPhone is an option.

    • So, how well does your iPhone share out that connection to a real computer (you know, what the whole point of this little device is)? Oh wait, Apple doesn't allow tethering apps? Hmm, sorry, I think you don't quite get it. There are LOTS of Internet-capable handheld devices out there (some much more-so than the iPhone, thanks to having Flash and the option to install your own browser/mail client/whatever). The iPhone is a neat device, but until you can link it with a PC and share the wide-area connection (without jailbreaking, that is), it won't do what people buy these things for.

      • No but wait, his Iphone lets him make phone calls (and apparently supports 802.11a), so it's as good or better than any other product on the market, no mater what that device does.

        • by Selanit ( 192811 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @07:30PM (#27900433)

          No but wait, his Iphone lets him make phone calls (and apparently supports 802.11a), so it's as good or better than any other product on the market, no mater what that device does.

          That's right! The iPhone really IS better than any other product on the market, regardless of function! No matter what task comes to hand, the iPhone will see me through.

          Why, I use my iPhone to puree tomatoes all the time. And it's SOOO handy when I want to brush my teeth. And just ask my girlfriend what she thinks of its penis enlargement capabilities. Truly, the iPhone is the pinnacle of technological development!

          • Yes! The iPhone slices, dices and makes hundreds of julienne fries in seconds! It's also a pocket fishing rod, a hair-cutting attachment for your vacuum cleaner and will cut a penny in half!

            But wait, there's more! Order now and we'll throw in the amazing Ginzu Knife for Free! Call now! Operators are standing by!

            Seriously--I have an iPhone and I think it's an amazing bit of technology but comparing it to the topic of TFA is comparing, uh, Apples to oranges. I suspect that the post was a troll.

      • The iPhone is a neat device, but until you can link it with a PC and share the wide-area connection (without jailbreaking, that is), it won't do what people buy these things for.

        Good point - and I too "have one and it's called an iPhone".

        What I think this really means is that Apple can do what it's done repeatedly this decade: Create something versatile and potentially disruptive, but hold off on the disruption as long as is profitable.

        F'rinstance: Everyone else sold MP3-based music players with no DRM. Apple made an iPod that could play DRM-free music - but, instead, they turned around and partnered with every major music label to provide a locked-down but fully-stocked catalog. Gah! Where's my free music?

        In retrospect, it was pretty damned smart. Guess what they could do just as soon as "pent-up consumer demand profit" became greater than "become best buds with the RIAA profit"? Remove all the DRM.

        They did it again with the iPhone App store. Every other smartphone allowed independent development, but Apple told us we'd get nothing but WebKit-based apps, and we'd like it. Meanwhile, that let them ship the first iPhone without worrying about the public API - and create visible, vocal demand from the development community. By the following year, programmers everywhere were screaming: "Please! Let us write programs for your platform!" And what do you know... the App Store appeared, and Apple gets a cut.

        I don't know if it was truly planned this way, but it does seem to be a pattern, doesn't it? Most companies either court the rebellious-hacker base with an open API (early TiVo, some Google, Twitter), hoping to Be The Platform, or build a fortress (late TiVo, Facebook), hoping to Be The Gatekeeper. Apple seems to have a knack for being the gatekeeper as long as it possibly can - and then amazing us with the new power of the platform.

        The jailbroken apps, as well as the 3.0 betas, prove that Apple could offer iPhone tethering next week - or next year. But they'd have to annoy AT&T to do it, and probably renegotiate. Why do that before they have to?

        My hope: The MeFi will be a huge success, and there will be clamoring for Apple to offer something nearly as good. And then, one day, they'll send out a firmware update... and behold: the iPhone tethers. "It's amazing. I'm really proud of this capability, which is the first in a capacitive-touchscreen smartphone." etc.

        • by jra ( 5600 )

          I would love to mod this as insightful, but everyone else already did.

          Is there a "most insightful comment on /. this year" mod?

      • Pretty well thanks (Score:3, Informative)

        by SuperKendall ( 25149 )

        So, how well does your iPhone share out that connection to a real computer (you know, what the whole point of this little device is)?

        Quite well actually []

        Yes it's jailbreaking but since you only have to download an app and run it even my mom could do so. Of course, my mom would have no use in doing so, it would be only technically sophisticated people wanting to do this... kind of like the group of people that jailbreak. Huh!

        And of course it's rumored (well, beyond rumor but not in place yet) that AT&T

        • I'm sorry, but you've made some assumptions that just aren't true.

          First and foremost (since you seem to think it matters for some reason) my username is actually a fairly standard short form of my real, legal birth name. Personally, I think it's an awesome name for the industry I'm in, but that's purely coincidence. The only time that it bothers me is when some idiot online thinks I'll teach him to crack bank websites (or, more often, Facebook profiles) or some such shit because my name has "Hacking" in it.

      • by ceoyoyo ( 59147 )

        My iPhone shares over bluetooth or USB. I hear the rest of yours will do the same sometime in Juneish. :P

        Or you could just jailbreak the thing, which is pretty easy, and have all the functionality of this thing.

        Seriously, I think the idea is reasonably good, but the price is insane. $40 a month for half a gig? $270 for the device? Seriously?

    • by kalpaha ( 667921 )
      What? You don't have 3G, can't share the connection with computers and pay $40? I can do that with my Nokia E75 and JoikuSpot for less than $14 (10 EUR) / month.
    • The market for this device is those who want to

          a) Use their laptop rather than their tiny phone

          b) Share their cellular data plan with multiple laptops/users

      I don't believe your iPhone lets you do either (sans hack), but I could be mistaken.

      But you're right, this is hardly something most people would care about.

    • by cthrall ( 19889 )

      I have an iPhone. I used to have a Treo on VZN. I really miss the ability to tether my phone to my laptop, and I really miss the great speed and coverage of VZN. It cost the same as the data plan for the iPhone, too.

      The iPhone is cool, but there's no Rhapsody client, actually doing anything in ssh with the iPhone kbd is impossible, as is remote desktop over VPN.

    • by mgblst ( 80109 )

      Fuck off, you are making us iPhone users look like a bunch of wankers (come on guys, not all of us are).

      This is a device to allow sharing to a whole bunch of computers.

  • by nilbog ( 732352 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:35PM (#27900109) Homepage Journal

    This isn't that revolutionary. I have an AT&T Tilt that can share its 3G connection via WiFi using a program called WMWifiRouter. Since my data plan is "unlimited" and only $15/mo, it's a way better deal than this "new" tech.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Lumpy ( 12016 )

      Just wait until they figure out you are tethering.

      your "plan" will jump to $99.00 a month.

      Yes they are aggressively looking to find who is tethering, and charging them big fees.

  • WMWifiRouter (Score:2, Interesting)

    by doronbc ( 1434117 )
    I use this on my winmo htc titan. Cricket in Colorado 60/month unlimited everything, ftw.
    • Exactly (Score:3, Interesting)

      by meehawl ( 73285 )

      I read this and thought the same thing. Have been enjoying WMWiFiRouter for a couple of years now. Binds your Windows Phone's 3G signal to the WiFi and re-broadcasts it for association by clients over WiFi or Bluetooth []. Interestingly, attached clients score a higher bandwidth (~130%) of the phone's browser running a similar speed test (~1 Mbps). Obviously CPU limited. It amused me in the days before there was a 3G iPhone to let my 2G iPhone friends associate to a Windows Mobile phone using WiFi to accelerat

  • Firstly, these aren't new... they've been around for 2 years at least, and are becoming relatively cheap now.

    Secondly.. 2 year contract? $40 a month for 250MB? WTF?

    I pay $7 per month for 1GB, and that isn't limited. On a 12 month contract. I could go to $14 a month for 5GB, but haven't needed to.

    I know things are more expensive in the US, but that is an *insane* difference.

    • The US makes up for* the fact that our land-lines are flat-rate unlimited** by charging you through the nose for mobile data. It's annoying***, but there it is.

      * I have no idea if these are actually connected, but they could well be.
      ** Unlimited until you go over some secret limit and get cut off entirely... but up to that limit the cost never changes.
      *** The US Internet infrastructure is starting to look positively backward. We're behind other developed countries on wired bandwidth penetration, and the thi

  • Full disclosure: I work for Clearwire, and I am also not authorized to speak for the company. []

    Beats hauling around a bulky CPE device and WiFi router everywhere.

    The only downside is that WiMax coverage isn't in many markets yet.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      Beats hauling around a bulky CPE device and WiFi router everywhere.

      Did you RTFA? The article says it's similar to a triple-thick credit card. Or are you comparing the device your company makes to some heretofore unmentioned piece of hardware?

      The only downside is that WiMax coverage isn't in many markets yet.

      That's no small downside. The article you linked to says, "One big constraint, of course, is that WiMax from Sprint/Clearwire is currently limited to Baltimore and Portland, OR, but is growing this yea

    • Nifty, do you know what the thing runs on the inside? I spent a few days around christmas time trying to hack ndis wrappers around the windows drivers for the mobile device so I could get the mobile device working in linux.

      My CPE was just stolen a few days ago, so maybe I will look into getting one of those things. I am also curious if I can charge the device with USB, and if I can run a patch cable to it for quicker speeds etc.

  • by SirJorgelOfBorgel ( 897488 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @07:22PM (#27900387)
    "What if you had a personal Wi-Fi bubble, a private hot spot, that followed you everywhere you go? Incredibly, there is such a thing."

    Yeah, it's called a phone!

    If you have a Windows Mobile phone with an internet plan, you could use WMWifiRouter [](the most advanced of the pack), which has been available since 2007, and was the very first app to do this.

    If you have a Symbian phone, you could use JoikuSpot [], which has been available since 2008.

    To continue, for iPhone you could use PDANet. For Android there are also several programs available as well!

    Why would you use something like this and get another data subscription when all you need is already in your pocket? Aside from the internet plan which you are likely to have already, all of these software are available for a small one-time fee - likely lower than one month of the data package itself.

    Funny thing, none of those apps ever made it out of the firehose when I posted them. What makes this (very expensive and limited) product so special?
  • Hmmmm (Score:2, Insightful)

    by untg ( 1551725 )
    Sounds like paid (or unpaid?) dvertising to me. -1, it's probably not as good as it's it sounds. For $60 a month I can get 80 GB with my ISP and this is, what, 5GB?? -2 to that...
  • Joikuspot (Score:4, Informative)

    by wintermute000 ( 928348 ) <(bender) (at) (> on Sunday May 10, 2009 @07:49PM (#27900553)

    One word: Joikuspot

    Turns your mobile into a wifi hotspot.

    I've only tried with Nokia models but it works great (N82, 5800). The free version only allows port 80 and gives you a nagware screen the first website you go to but thats it. The paid version allows all ports/protocols with no nag screen.

    Beats this device hands down - you always have your phone with you . Of course your carrier charges may be another story...

  • $40/month for 250 megabytes and $60/month for 5 gigabytes.

    Well, that sure makes sense.

  • by It doesn't come easy ( 695416 ) * on Sunday May 10, 2009 @08:18PM (#27900705) Journal
    I have checked out every last cell phone carrier's data plan, this one is no exception. You agree that the first 5 GB of data download costs you $60. The second 5 GB of download for that month cost in excess of $1,200. Only a fool would sign a contract that has no upper limit to how much it can cost you. If you sign such a contract then don't go bitching to the carrier when you get your first multi-thousand dollar bill.
    • i'm usin pay as you go which really saves money no contract, no silly bills but the caps!

      one slight drawback to my 3g modem once i hit 10gb in 30 days i can either stop or pay 49 cents a mb (the modem cost 79 and i had to buy 30 euro of credit). and silly 3 won't let me buy another bundle to use in a 30 day period. (clause 5 page 12 i think of the pay as you go service contract)

      So for the cost of 250 meg over plan, my friend ahem, can buy a second modem and another 10gb 30 day plan.

      The better idea would b

  • I have been doing this for the past 6 months. Much easier to turn my N95 into an ap to use another's notebook then to install a bluetooth or cable connect. My data plan, unlimited 3.5g @49.000COP (about 20usd) monthly.

    what, me worry?

  • I notice the comment "If you just want to do e-mail and the Web, you pay $40 a month for the service". When I'm online, I use ssh a lot, and from the phrasing of that and other things in the article, I'm guessing that they block ssh. After all, ssh isn't email (SMTP, etc.) or web (HTTP).

    Anyone know whether this is true? Do they actively block protocols? How about VoIP? (Not that I'd use it much, but if they do block VoIP, that's an admission that this isn't internet service, it's restricted to a set of

  • Insulting (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gearloos ( 816828 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @09:00PM (#27901003)
    Doesn't anyone else find this insulting that Verizon has the nerve to charge their customers $15.00 a day? Thats typically what a hotel would charge a one time use guest. And lets look at that awesome data plan. 250 MEGABYTES for 40$ a month!! Jeeze, get a grip Verizon. You can only screw the general public so much(Of course there will probably be enough idiots opting into this service just for the cool factor to keep it alive as a business model). Theres always the $60.00 a month 5Gig plan-You gotta be kidding me, $60.00 a month for 5 GB! This whole thing must have been cooked up by the same bean counters that figured out the SMS rates.
    • The price is probably set high enough that people won't try to use this as their primary connection, but low enough that it'll work for what I suspect is their target market -- business types who can put this on their expense account. Another sixty dollars a month for your road warriors is nothing to a large corporation if they can justify it with "I'll be able to interface with the clients from a taxi, from a restaurant, from anywhere!"
  • What's much more useful is a mobile hotspot that gives cell service, connected over WiFi to a gateway to the PSTN. Because there are so many holes in cell coverage, including in my house.

    It doesn't even really need to be mobile, though that's a plus. Or WiFi - ethernet would be good. If I could just use my usual cellphone to the device, then across the broadband Net to a gateway (like Asterisk at a datacenter) to the PSTN, all would be groovy. But I've never seen any small, cheap cell transponders sold to t

    • Youv'e got to be kidding me? cell coverage is far more complete than public wifi coverage.

      And besides, if you have broadband access (and a wifi router) what on earth do you need to access a cell network for? You want to access an asterisk box, get a SPA-2000 and do it. And it would just be insane to use cell 'internet' access proxied via wifi.

      And no, since all cellular frequencies are licensed, you are never going to find any 'small, cheap cell transponders' sold to the public.

  • great... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by cyn1c77 ( 928549 ) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @11:03PM (#27901867)

    I don't know if anyone else read the article, but my favorite quote was:

    Last week, I was stuck on a runway for two hours. As I merrily worked away online, complete with YouTube videos and file downloads, I became aware that my seatmate was sneaking glances.

    I am sure he was "working" on Youtube because he is a reporter. He was probably "researching" on Wikipedia too.

    Anyway, I like how they keep emphasizing how easy it is to put that thing in your pocket. Cause I need another microwave source to irradiate my testicles...

  • Granted, this device won't quite fit in your pocket (its closer to the size of a typical home router), but you aren't locked into one particular carrier or contract, which could be a deal breaker for some. []

No problem is so large it can't be fit in somewhere.