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Majesti-Fi Smart and Premium, First Take: Mobile wi-fi hotspots for business travellers

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Written by Cliff Joseph on
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Majesti-Fi Smart and Premium

Mobile wi-fi hotspots are a popular option with many business travellers, allowing them to use a mobile network to provide a secure wi-fi connection away from the office, rather than relying on unprotected public wi-fi.

Most of these devices are designed for personal use, often provided by mobile networks with a SIM and a contract along with the user's smartphone. In contrast, the modestly named Majesti-Fi hotspot devices are very much aimed at business users and, following their launch in South Africa, are now available in the UK as well.

The developer, Majestic Ventures, currently offers two hotspot devices. The Majesti-Fi Premium is a slimline device that can easily be slipped into a jacket pocket, while the larger Majesti-Fi Smart has a screen that makes it easier to monitor data usage and network performance. The current version of the Majesti-Fi Smart also functions as a rechargeable battery pack, although that function will be dropped from the new model that's planned for release in coming weeks, in order to reduce the size of the device.

Both Majesti-Fi devices provide 4G LTE Pro Plus mobile connectivity with 256-bit encryption, and allow you to use either a standard SIM card or the company's own 'virtual SIM' software. Those features are fairly standard for mobile hotspot devices, but it's the network service they provide that sets them apart from their more consumer-oriented rivals.

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Majesti-Fi Smart

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Majesti-Fi Premium

LCD screen

4-inch

no

Battery capacity

6,000mAh

3,500mAh

Battery life

15 hours

13 hours

SIMs

2 x Nano SIM

2 x Nano SIM

Max. download data rate

150Mbps

150Mbps

Max. upload data rate

50Mbps

50Mbps

Weight

240g

151g

Business customers can take out a contract with Majestic Ventures itself, rather than a standard contract with a single existing mobile network. However, Majestic has negotiated deals with more than 300 networks in 140 countries, allowing it to provide a reliable roaming service all around the world. Upon arrival in a new country, the Majesti-Fi device will automatically connect to whichever network provides the strongest signal, but can also switch to other networks as you roam, in order to continually select the best signal it can find.

SEE: Sensor'd enterprise: IoT, ML, and big data (ZDNet special report) | Download the report as a PDF (TechRepublic)

There are a number of pricing and data plans available for the Majesti-Fi devices. For light use, or for a device that's shared by several members of staff, you can buy a single Majesti-Fi hotspot device for £129 (ex. VAT; £154.80 inc. VAT). This option allows you to choose several PAYG payment plans, such as a 7-day plan with 1GB of data for £14 ex. VAT; £16.80 inc. VAT). You can spread that 1GB over a month for £42 ex. VAT; £50.40 inc. VAT), going up to £155 ex. VAT; £186 inc. VAT) for 5GB per month.

Corporate customers who buy multiple devices get a better deal, with the Majesti-Fi devices discounted to £120 ex. VAT; £144 inc. VAT) each. Regular travellers who are prepared to commit to a 12-month contract get a better deal as well, with 1GB per month costing £35 ex. VAT; £42 inc. VAT). If you need more than 1GB data per month, then the cost simply rises on a flat rate of £35 (ex. VAT) per gigabyte.

The only minor oddity is that there's no mobile app to control features, such as providing temporary 'guest' access to a new user or device while you're travelling. It is possible to configure network settings such as this via a web browser interface, although that won't be very intuitive for non-technical users, and Majestic does assume that each device will be set up and configured by the in-house IT department before you leave the office.

Even so, the worldwide coverage and secure, reliable connectivity that the Majesti-Fi devices offer could prove a very worthwhile investment for frequent travellers who need to use a lot of data on the road.

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