REVIEW: Uros Goodspeed Mobile Wi-Fi Hotspot

The Goodspeed is a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot that delivers affordable Internet access on the go. In other words, it can connect a laptop, smartphone, tablet, e-book reader and games console to the Internet without any cost surprises. As long as the Goodspeed can receive a 2G/3G signal, it can provide fast and reliable worldwide Web access for up to five devices simultaneously – a dream come true for business travellers and gadget-reliant families on holiday.

10 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE GOODSPEED

  1. People visiting countries inside and outside of the EU need to be more and more vigilant with how their laptop, smartphone or tablet connects to a mobile network. Unseen data activity, particularly those carried out by apps, means those travelling abroad need to take more control of their Internet connection status and requirements to avoid the dreaded bill shock.
  2. This is where the Goodspeed is worth its weight in gold. The device lets you create your own private WLAN network and share a mobile broadband connection with up to five Wi-Fi (802.11b/g/n) enabled devices in up to nine countries at any one time. Business travellers can connect a small team securely (WPA/WPA2) in a hotel room, for instance, or families can enjoy their gadgets in a holiday location that doesn’t provide wireless broadband. The experience is liberating.
  3. The Goodspeed is a highly portable device that measures 123x63x13mm and weighs just 127g, making it compact enough to throw in your laptop bag, handbag or suitcase without even knowing it’s there. It’s a shame there’s no protective carrying sleeve provided, however, as the plastic screen could easily get damaged.
  4. The device costs £198 (ex. VAT) for the unit itself, on top of which you then need to choose a monthly subscription package. There’s a choice of three options, ranging a no-subscription “Lite” package to a “Business” package for small teams. Individual users who don’t travel frequently will have to work out costs compared to their regular network supplier, as it might be cheaper to tether your phone if your data needs are minimal.
  5. All subscription packages provide up to 1GB of data transfer per day and data transfer speeds of 21.1/5.76Mbps (download/upload), so you can make Skype conference calls and download large e-mail attachments without worrying you’re over your data limit. When you reach the maximum data limit, the connection slows down significantly. The range of countries supported does not change with packages, either, so you don’t have to keep changing plans depending on travel location.
  6. Extreme users may balk at the lack of 4G/LTE support. Goodspeed currently doesn’t support this faster data rate, possibly because a faster connection lures you to consume more data – about two times more than what 3G users typically use. An increase in pricing could reduce the attractiveness and potential cost effectiveness of the device. Having said that, 4G is more than likely on the product roadmap.
  7. The mobile Wi-Fi hotspot features 10 SIM card slots – so you don’t have to keep swapping cards when hopping between countries – and you can enjoy low-cost data roaming in 60 destinations across the world. You can populate the device with your own SIMs, or international cards purchased for your account from Uros. You can also add your own personal SIM to use Goodspeed mobile hotspot when at home, if it’s a compatible size.
  8. Operating the Goodspeed couldn’t be simpler. After registering the device online and entering your credentials on the unit itself, the 1-inch monochrome LCD display (128×64 pixels) provides status feedback and the non-detachable 2,550-mAh battery is good for up to 8 hours of continuous use. A full charge takes approximately 4 hours using the supplied USB wall charger (100-240V, EU).
  9. Further settings, account statements and selection of destination countries can be viewed from the Web interface, which is basic but functional.
  10. It’s been over two months since the roaming charges were reduced again for EU travellers. The maximum data price for anyone from a member state travelling within the EU is now €0.20 per MB. Sadly, roaming issues are far from being solved and you only have to read recent horror stories to convince you to turn off data roaming when you go abroad. If you don’t want to settle for occasional connectivity, the Goodspeed is ideal.
SUMMARY
  • Holds 10 SIMs simultaneously
  • Fast, reliable connection
  • WPA/WPA2 encryption
  • Mini USB port for charging
  • Transparent costs
  • Cheap build quality
  • 4G/LTE not supported
  • SIM cover hard to remove
  • 2-pin European plug supplied
  • No carrying case included
  • UPDATE: To help small businesses and frequent flyers predict and manage data roaming costs, Uros has introduced a new hotspot payment option under the Pro plan. New Pro subscribers have a possibility to get the Goodspeed hotspot together with the monthly service for £16.99 a month on a 2-year contract (i.e. no upfront costs for the device). As previously with the Pro plan, the day passes start from £4.90 providing access to up to 1GB of data a day when travelling.