How it works
MiFi works by using a SIM card from your chosen mobile network to connect to 3G and then shares that connection through Wi-Fi; allowing you to have considerably faster internet than you would using mobile internet. A Wi-Fi hotspot is created which can then be shared with other Wi-Fi enabled devices including other people's devices. Note: Any devices connecting to your Wi-Fi hotspot will have to be in a radius of 30 feet.
Also known as 'My Wi-Fi' or 'mobile broadband', MiFi comes in the shape of a dongle or hub which is lightweight and small enough to fit into a pocket or bag. It works wirelessly so you'll need to recharge it after 4-5 hours of use with the USB/mains charger provided.
How is it different to mobile internet?
The main difference is that with MiFi you can have speeds in the UK of up to 7.2Mb (dependant on location and provider) whereas with internet on your mobile your average speed is around 1Mb. Also, not all mobile devices allow you to share your internet connection with other devices but with MiFi you can create a Wi-Fi hotspot that can be shared with up to five devices.
What are the options?
Just like a mobile phone contract you can choose to buy SIM only and pay as you go, or you can sign up to a contract of 1-18 months. Several mobile phone networks have MiFi packages including Three, Orange, Vodafone and T-Mobile. Note: Depending on how much you pay, you might be capped on how much data you can use per day or month.
Even though you'll be receiving Wi-Fi speeds, you'll still be connected to a 3G network so need to choose a network that has decent coverage in your area. Click on the links below to find out how speedy your mobile broadband will be with each provider: