Chinese manufacturer Huawei unveiled two new products for hooking up your gear on the go. The E583C, a mouthful if there ever was one, is a portable hotspot much like the popular MiFi built by Novatel. It features the ability to connect up to 5 device to WiFi and a 6th via the built in USB port. It’s got a 1 inch screen OLED screen to tell you what’s going on, and as for speed, it can go up to 7.2 Mbps down and 5.76 Mbps up. Nice, but there are already HSPA+ networks rolling out in Europe and Asia that hit 21 Mbps. T-Mobile USA is also in the process of upgrading their entire 3G network to the 21 Mbps HSPA+ standard.
It also weighs 90 grams so it shouldn’t be too much of a hassle to carry around with you at all times. There’s also the E173u, a USB modem the size of a keychain that offers the same speed and ease of use as the E583C, but instead comes in a form factor suitable to those who want to only connect a laptop.
Both devices will start shipping this month. The E583C will cost $1,380 Hong Kong Dollars, which comes out to $180 (ouch), while the E173u (pictured above) will retail for a much more reasonable $498 Hong Kong Dollars or $65.
As someone who recently suffered from an internet outage, I can’t tell you how nice it was to have the Google Nexus One running Android 2.2 acting as my hotspot. I couldn’t even tell that my connection was wireless, except for the small detail that my Bit Torrent application wasn’t running. If you’re a road warrior, or someone who lives in a part of the world with spotty land line broadband and you don’t have an expensive smartphone running the latest version of Google’s Android operating system, then I’ve got to suggest you go out and pick up one of these two devices or devices similar to them. I even have a friend here in Finland who exclusively uses a Huawei USB stick as his main internet connection and he’s got no complaints.