I have an unlocked Hauwei E585 MIFI that I use around europe, avoiding roaming charges for my UK mobile contract. I buy a local pay as you go SIM for the appropriate country and off I go.

I thought I would try the same here in the USA, where I am for the MVP Summit. I bought a T-Mobile data SIM, but it did not work so well.

Basically the issue is one of aerials it seems. The E585 does not have the aerials it needs to connect for data in the USA, best it can do is a 2G connection, and even this seems to have issues, as mentioned in this post, that you need a phone SIM and not a data SIM. The bottom line seems to be the E585 is 2100MHz/900MHz UMTS only, AT&T are 850Mhz UMTS, T-Mobile will work on EDGE (2G) only. Verizon is CDMA. So it just just not going to work.

So next we tried it in other devices

  • In a LG E900 Windows Phone 7 it worked fine as a MIFI, but again only 2G/Edge so a bit sloooow, OK for email, but that was all.
  • Next it was a Samsung Windows 8 table form the Build conference, this was better, seemed to be 3G speeds (the icons did not mention the network type), but could not share its network connection

So the top tip? I think I need a US Mifi