Novatel Wireless is looking to advance the sharing of 3G signals with the new MiFi mobile router, a slender unit that doesn't need to be connected to a laptop or even plugged in to allow multiple devices to connect to the Internet wirelessly via a 3G cellular network.
The battery-powered MiFi can deliver four hours of use before needing to be recharged, making it well-suited for environments like a car, where passengers could do work over the Web as they roll along. While consumers can definitely find value in the MiFi, the mobile hotspot has such business-friendly features as VPN functionality, e-mail syncing, and remote management capabilities. In fact, Novatel Wireless has created a platform that third-party applications can tap into for an optimized mobile experience, though the company has not announced any details on partner apps.
Novatel Wireless has announced that the MiFi router will be available from carriers and retailers in the first half of 2009. Hopefully, specifics on those partners, as well as pricing, will emerge during CES 2009 next month in Vegas.