Novatel MiFi Portable 3G-to-WiFi Router Available from Verizon This Month

YouTube video courtesy of notebooks

The New York Times’ David Pogue got an early look at the soon-to-be-released Novaltel MiFi 3G-to-WiFi personal router with Verizon Wireless service…

Wi-Fi to Go, No Cafe Needed

You can see a Novatel rep displaying and describing its features in the video from embedded above. The beauty of the MiFi is that it eliminates the usual hassles associated with tethering, USB dongles, cards and even integrated 3G radios in notebooks. It even lets you share the 3G wireless connection with up to 5 WiFi devices. And, as you can see in the video, the device is small enough to easily carry around.

The MiFi will be available for $100 (retail is $200) subsidized from Verizon Wireless. There are three plans available:

1. $40/month for 250 megabytes of data. Let’s call this what it is: A useless option that nobody will bother with
2. $60/month for 5GB of data. This monthly cost is consistent with other 3G data service from Verizon and other carriers
3. $15 24-hour day-pass. The price of the MiFi goes up to $270 if you opt for this plan. This plan doesn’t make much sense either

I’ve been kicking around the idea of buying a USB 3G modem and service from one of the carrier to use with my MacBook and netbooks. But, given that the MiFi data plan costs the same as the USB 3G modem data plan and that the MiFi appears to be a far more convenient and flexible tool, it makes a lot more sense to consider it as the primary candidate unless showstopper problems appear.