I have just recently taken delivery of the latest MiFi unit from Everything Everywhere — or EE as they’re now known. The team there kindly sent me one out to test as I’ve recently joined their advocate programme (see below). The MiFi unit is Huawei’s E589 and is much larger than the ones I’m accustomed to carrying from the likes of 3.
In perhaps a first for the mobile world, I’m pleased it’s bigger.
I’m pleased because it feels beefier. It feels like it can cope with proper speed. It feels like it’s got a decent battery inside.
Feeling is one thing. Real world usage is another — and I’m delighted to report that I’m pretty impressed with it.
The battery has yet to shed a single bar and I’ve done about an hour’s worth of continual usage. Yes please.
Let me tell you about the speed.
I’d used 100mb in about 5 minutes. On the train. On the FLIPPING train! Absolutely excellent.
I took a rather shakey video of my first 4G experience on the train on the way into Waterloo — I’m going to post that shortly. Let me know what you think. In terms of real world tests, it’s thoroughly exciting.
There was a little bit of an outcry when EE came to market with a 500mb 4G plan. I can see why, given I blew that very quickly. However for the sake of balance, I was *trying* to blow it. I was willing the device to show me what the network could do. I specifically downloaded a 50mb teaser video from iTunes and watched the megabytes chomp away like a pacman game. The download counter went from 5mb, 8mb, 10mb as quickly as you’re reading this text. I estimate perhaps 2-3mb a second in ‘real world’ usage. On the train.
It’s even quicker when you’re in one spot.
Browsing on the mobile is an absolute pleasure.
So if you’re a high user of data, you might want to check out EE’s recently updated data plans. For instance, if you’re after a new MiFi unit, EE will give you the model I’ve been testing for free, on the basis of an 18-month contract, at £20.99 for 5GM of monthly data, or £25.99 for a whopping 8GB. (More details on this page).
I recognise that this isn’t the cheapest option out there. I’m not that interested in cheap, though. I’m more focused on the value proposition.
If you are constantly demonstrating mobile applications or services to customers, you might seriously evaluate getting one of these Huawei MiFi units and the 8GB deal. Yes 4G is only available in selected cities at the moment but if you’re regularly in and around London (for example), I think it might pay off handsomely.
The speed is simply ridiculously cool.
The blazing fast uploads are certain to be impacted somewhat as more and more people are migrated over to EE’s 4G service — right now I wonder if I’m one of the only people using the network and giving it a decent work out.
I found the experience with the Huawei and EE’s 4G network rather liberating. I was so enchanted that I actually stuck all of my iPhones (2 Voda, one 3) on to the unit. In London’s central Soho area today the speed was rocking, even deep inside buildings.
Out in the sticks, well, 3G is to be expected. However I do feel that the Huawei’s connection seems a lot more reliable than individual mobile phones. It feels like the EE 3G experience is enhanced by this particular device.
I’ll be writing more and I’ll do some more demonstration videos shortly.
(A brief note on the EE advocate programme: They’ve sent me the MiFi device with a SIM card at no cost to test out — on the basis that I’ll occasionally write about the experience. I’m free to write whatever I wish.)