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Mobile Wi-Fi Arrives on Vodafone


Mobile Wi-Fi Arrives on Vodafone

Vodafone has launched its own branded MiFi device, the second UK network to do so after 3, calling it simply Mobile Wi-Fi.

3 launched its device over a year ago, giving it a head start in the mobile Wi-Fi hotspot market. You can also buy MiFi’s without a contract from online retailers, though it will cost you around £180.

The Mi-Fi is a small battery powered router containing a mobile SIM that enables you to connect multiple devices to it via a local Wi-Fi hotspot, making for an affordable, and simple way to get devices online. It’s a popular choice to combine with an iPad online, without having fork out extra for a 3G enabled version and buying another data plan that you might rarely use - especially as you can use it to get other devices online as well at the same time.

As with Three, the device is manufactured by Huawei. It supports a potential 7.2Mbps HSDPA, and 5.76Mbps HSUPA – though on our congested overloaded mobile networks, those will be very much be theoretical maximums.

It weighs a mere 90g, and claims a battery life of four hours with five users connected, and a standby time of 100 hours. You can of course leave it plugged in, with it charging via USB.

Shelling out £25 a month will garner you one for free on an 18-month plan with a 5GB data cap, or for £15 a month you’ll get a 3GB data cap – but will have to pay £49 for the MiFi. Finally, £20 a month gives a 4GB data allowance at a cost of £29.

The Vodafone Mobile Wi-Fi is available now.

Link: Vodafone Mobile Wi-Fi.


August 16, 2010, 8:32 pm

Just terrible value. Three's MiFi is £39 on a 1-month contract @ £15/month for 5GB!

I used to be a big fan of Vodafone's data network, but these days not only is Three's coverage vastly better for 3G (targeting a massive 98% by year end) but its network seems to offer lower latency and higher throughput every time I do a shootout.

Now, say what you will, but I still can't bring myself to use Three for my mobile phone. But mobile broadband? If coverage in your area grants you the choice then it has to be Three all the way.


August 16, 2010, 8:33 pm

Alternatively, WinMo and Andriod phones have "apps for that"...


August 16, 2010, 9:17 pm

@Ben I'm actually leaving orange after 10 years for 3. Just waiting on my code thingy so I can keep my number. The Rolling contract you can get for £15 sounds great and I have been hearing their reception is pretty solid now.

As for this MiFi device, seems much to expensive.


August 16, 2010, 9:24 pm

@Ryan: ...if you don't mind potentially violating your contract terms or rooting your Android phone.

What really annoys me is that no pricing structure exists for occasional use. Perhaps a cheap daily rate with a low cap or a PAYG top-up that doesn't expire would work, but it doesn't exist. Hence I use aNetShare on my rooted Hero...


August 16, 2010, 9:44 pm

@Chris: not sure about android but 3 mobile on the iphone allow you to use your data for tethering for free (it just comes out of the data you have already paid for)

which IMO is the only way tethering should work, (because a webpage uses the exact same data on a PC as on a phone I think it's criminal for a network to force you to pay more just to use the same data in another way)


August 16, 2010, 9:56 pm

@Chris... I'm pretty sure FoYo has native wi-fi tethering support.


August 16, 2010, 10:16 pm

Have had 3 dongle for last 18 months, have just upgraded to the 3 Mi-Fi and get 15GB a month for £17 though it is again an 18 month contract.

Coverage at work (on the dongle) is excellent. It was a bit flaky at home but has improved over the last couple of months and is supposedly going to get better.


August 16, 2010, 11:17 pm

@japester: Yeah, Froyo does have native support, not all of us are so blessed though :)

@Jay: Completely agree, just wish all the networks were so progressive.


August 17, 2010, 9:58 am

Vodafone announced this was coming yonks ago, and after much anticipation the package they've finally came out with isn't very attractive at all. No PAYG option, what IS there is too expensive, and like Three it's still with Huawei who insist in making their MiFis horrifically ugly (the last point's not a problem if it's being hidden away anyway). When are we gonna get those cool sleek silver and black ones that Sprint and Verizon use? Whatever - Three is still you're best bet for a MiFi.


August 17, 2010, 7:25 pm

Has anyone ordered from 3 online and ever had their order fulfilled?

My own fault; I should have learnt my lesson from my previous experiences and bought the Wi-Fi dongle & phone in-store.


August 17, 2010, 9:46 pm

I've ordered online from Three before, no problems. :)

As for Huawei, I've had quite a lot of dongles and datacards in my time but none have worked better or had better signal than Huawei. Their stuff is often a bit ugly and can feel a bit cheap, but every piece of kit I've owned has worked brilliantly.

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