With devices getting smaller and more internet ready, internet access on the go has been an issue here in the Cayman. Thankfully, Mobile ISP providers Digicel and LIME have heard the call and have both addressed the issue. Their answer was MiFi. MiFi (A clever acronym for Mobile Wifi) offers internet connectivity over the air for up to 5 wifi enabled devices at a time. So you can have your iPad, iPhone, Netbook, Kindle, iPod and soon to own PSVita all connected to the internet wirelessly via your very own wifi hotspot.
Both companies have broth two different Mifi devices to the table, Digicel with the WiMAX Pocket Modem MF250 and the Huawei E5830s from LIME. Both are utraportable and provide internet via the companies separate yet similarly named 4G network.
|Features||WiMAX Pocket Modem MF250||Huawei E5830s|
|Battery Life||4 Hours||5 Hours|
|Rechargeable||Yes (USB)||Yes (USB)|
|WiFi||802.11b / 802.11g||802.11b / 802.11g|
|Encryption||– AES-CCMP (Advanced Encryption Standard)- WPA (WiFi Protected Access)- WEP 64-bit and 128-bitencryption||WEP / WPA / WPA2|
|OS Support||Windows / Mac OSX / Linux||Windows XP / Windows 2000 / Vista / Mac OS 10.4 / Mac OS 10.5|
|Band||NA||HSUPA/HSDPA/UMTS 2100MHz; GSM/GPRS/EDGE 850/900/1800/1900MHz|
|Storage||No||Yes (external up to 32gb)|
So the most important question for most people will be how fast is the internet? Well that all depends on the speed provided through the internet service provider. Currently both companies offer 4G mobile speeds of up to roughly 3MBs but your actual speed will be determined by the device connecting, distance between device and Mifi device and how congested your area is. The Mifi devices however offers you the opportunity to keep tethered to the internet whether you’re sipping margaritas on the beach with a Netbook in lap or you’re in the car and looking for directions via Google Maps on your iPod for that new restaurant you’ve been wanting to check out.
Security is pretty standard with both devices offering the same WPA and WEP protection as your bulky Linksys router sitting on your computer desk. You can enable password protection or MAC Address filtering and only allow your most worthy friends or neighbors access.
So how much will this thing cost? Assuming that they will launch similar Mifi Packages across Digicel and LIME countries, prepaid and postpaid options will be available. Nothing to break the bank but I am sure all you internet junkies will pay whatever sum they charge for this new found mobility and freedom.
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