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Hello MiFi v2

So you might have seen recently that I was trialling the MiFi from Three to see how I got on. My general response was that I liked the idea of it, but the design of the item was a bit meh. I don’t like buttons that I have to jab in a certain order, I like to turn something on and for it to Just Work.

An hour after that post published, Michelle at ThreeMobileBuzz got back in contact with me to offer me a trial of the next version of the MiFi.

Its a lot nicer looking – white plastic only looks good on Apple products (thats why I didn’t go for a white Dell netbook – it just looked wrong!) and gives much more information on the screen.

I’ll be giving this little MiFi a workout to see just how good it is, and will report back (of course. You lucky lucky people)

Goodbye MiFi

So my two (and a bit) week trial of the MiFi unit from Three is over. I’m going to miss it actually. Its been so handy to have it in my bag and to just turn on when I wanted to get online (hello job applications at lunch – things are just so much easier on your own computer!) and it seems as fast as the wifi at home.

Well, when its in a good signal area.

And theres the main problem with the MiFi device that I trialed.

Heres the device with all the lights happily lit up (forgive the slight wobblyness – I was on a train!)

But after a few seconds, they all go off. Which is a bit useless really, because if (for example) you’re on a train, then theres bound to be little patches of areas that you will just get no signal. But you wont know this until the browser (or whatever you’re doing) times out. Pretty annoying really.

The other thing that I wasn’t so keen on with the MiFi was that you turn the device on, wait for it to stuff and then you have to press the connect button. Why? If I’m turning on the device, then I want to use it!

I’m told that these problems have been addressed with the arrival of the new MiFi unit, which is making it a bit more tempting towards purchasing one.

However. I was lent this device by Michelle at ThreeMobileBuzz which meant that everything was all set up for me. Three unfortunately does not have the best customer service, something which Alex found a month or so ago when he bought his iPad and after switching it the next day for the 3G one, he chose to go with Three as he has been an active customer for quite a long time. He had such trouble just trying to get them to put the iPad SIM account onto his old account!

I love the idea of the MiFi, and the signal/service was pretty decent wherever I used it (O2 always crapped out on me between Reading and London, but Three held up reasonably well with little black spots) but its a shame that other networks with better customer service don’t offer this device!

WiFiMiFi

I took a day off recently, and thought that (after packing and admin stuff) the best way to spend the day would be to camp out in a café and get some of this blogging done.

Fellow bloggers (blogees?), I’m sure you’ll understand the frustration of having so many ideas that you can’t get anything out – well, this was my problem. I thought a change of scenery would do me good.

Unfortunatly, I needed to get online to blog. And for some reason, my netbook wasn’t playing happily with the free wifi at Boston Tea Party (not for the first time!) Annoying. I have an O2 PAYG dongle, but that’s about a third of the size of my netbook! It’s clumsy, and I keep feeling like I’ll knock it out and break something. Not ideal.

So when 3mobilebuzz contacted me to ask if I’d like to trial one of their new MiFi devices, I said yes!

A MiFi is basically the same sort of thing as a dongle, but instead of plugging it in via USB, it’s a mini wifi hotspot. No wires, no crappy software, and nothing that I feel like I’m going to break off if I knock my netbook against something. And it’s oddly satisfying to say. Myyyyy Fiiiiiiii. Or Mifi.

(I couldn’t resist posting a picture of the giant gold Miffy I took in Utrecht a few years ago. Now that was a holiday where I needed a dongle or a MiFi – the only way I could get on the hotel wifi in my room was by sitting in the bath!)

So the MiFi (on the left) arrived at my office on Thursday (which was excellent timing, as I had picked up an iPhone4 before work and wanted to activate it so I could play with it! (Sadly Vodafone are seeing how much they can annoy me with porting my number from O2. Really not impressed with them yet!)

I’ll be probably tweeting and blogging about how we get on over the next few weeks.

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