Wiwander international portable hotspot review
Much cheaper than most roaming charges, but can't beat having a local SIM for value.
- Preconfigured to work in multiple countries
- Cheaper than most roaming fees
- Slow 3G speeds in some 4G areas
- More expensive than some local SIMs
If you're going to a single country then a local SIM can be cheaper and faster. However, this provides internet access without local shopping and is cheaper than roaming fees.
Price$ 5.00 (AUD)
The Wiwander is a portable mobile hotspot that comes preconfigured to work across various countries. You connect to it via WiFi and it provides internet access over the local mobile phone network.
We tested it on a trip to Taiwan. We turned it on when we landed at Hong Kong and sure enough, we had 3G internet speeds. In Taiwan, again, it worked on landing and when we were out and about at a conference - with 3G speeds.
However, the 3G speeds can feel a bit slow these days. Furthermore, on landing at Taipei’s airport we popped into the telco shop which is right by the Arrivals gate and bought an 4G SIM with unlimited data that lasted a full week for just $500NT – that’s just over $20 Australian.
Data on the WiWander isn’t unlimited – you’ll get shaped (slowed down) if you break the (rather stingy) Fair Use policy (which is described as approximate in each case): Unlimited for Singapore; 1GB per day for China, Japan, Malaysia, South Korea and Taiwan; 500MB per day for Europe, Hong Kong, USA, Thailand.
Prices can be seen here and vary between $5 per day and $25 per day depending on where you go. You order the device at least five days before travel with delivery costing a not-insignificant $14 to $28 depending on where in Australia you live.
Wiwander does list that 4G speeds are available but it’s not clear where. We were stuck with 3G throughout our travels and subsequently relied upon our separately-purchased 4G SIM card’s data.
The device itself is quite bulky at 145 x 83 x 16mm and it weighs 200g – it’s basically like a very chunky mobile phone without the screen. Much of the weight comes from the battery which is rated to six hours – less if multiple devices are attached.
Ultimately, it’s a far better bet buying a local SIM card when you land (or use services like Vodafone’s $5-a-day roaming) – for most people. However, some travelers, especially those passing through multiple countries, won’t easily be able to do that. Furthermore, if you (or your employees) usually just turn on their Australian phone, on landing, and get stung with massive roaming charges, this will make things feel a whole lot cheaper.
If it consistently used 4G speeds and had better data allowances it would be a better bet for most people, but as it is, it’s a pricey, convenient way to quickly hook up to a foreign network without too much hassle.Read more: Review: HTC One X9 and OPPO R9 - mid-range Android phones
- Alcatel Idol 4S review: King of the mid-range?
- Roving Rachel's best crowd-funded travel products that are online right now
- Incase City Backpack
- Cosmic Watch app review
- Moto 360 2nd gen. smart watch review
- Samsung Galaxy Note 7 review
- One reason why you should wait before buying the new Samsung Galaxy Note 7
- Linksys Max-Stream AC1900+ WiFi Range Extender RE7000 review
- Linksys AC600 MU-MIMO WiFi USB adapter review
- AC5300 Router reviews: Linksys EA9500 vs. Netgear Nighthawk X8 vs. D-Link DIR-895L
- Which is the best travel SIM for Japan?
- New, colourful LaCie Rugged Thunderbolt USB-C was designed by Neil Poulton
Join the newsletter!
WD MY PASSPORT™ X Gaming Storage
Apple iPhone X
Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 14
Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44
WD MY PASSPORT™ Gaming Storage
Nespresso Creatista Coffee Machine
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-55EZ950U
Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer Fuchsia/Iron
SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™
cloudandco Smart Cane
Toys for Boys
Bose SoundLink Micro
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera
LaCie Rugged USB-C Portable Hard Drive
Ubiquiti Network’s Front Row Camera
Lego Mindstorms EV3
Onyx Smart Walkie Talkie
Propel Star Wars T-65 X-Wing Drone
UBTech First Order Stormtrooper Robot
Google Daydream View VR Headset
WD MY CLOUD™ HOME Personal Cloud Storage
Dearear Endear In-ear Wireless Earphones
Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K
Panasonic Hi-Fi - SC-UA7GS-K
Xbox One X
Nest Protect Smart Smoke Alarm
Amazon Echo Bluetooth Speaker
Toffee Bags Commuter Satchel
Belkin Pocket Power 10,000mAh
iRobot Roomba 980 Vaccum Cleaning Robot
PETKIG Go Smart Dog Leash
3SIXT 3-in-1 Smartphone Lens Kit
Fallout Geeki Tikis
Raspberry Pi Starter Kit
Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
Panasonic Portable Splashproof Fun - RF-D20U
Ikea NORDMÄRKE Wireless Charging Pad
Urbanworx Full HD Action Camera
Kogan Bluetooth Soundbar
Lexon Flip Alarm Clock
Tile Pro Bluetooth Tracker
Logitech Doodle Collection Wireless Mouse
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 LG 65E7T Ultra HD OLED TV review: The South Korean thoroughbred is still first past the post
- 2 Hisense takes the fight to home entertainment heavyweights with flagship Series 8 and 9 ULED TVs
- 3 Sony's latest Ultra HD OLED debuts in Australia
- 4 Panasonic Ultra HD OLED TV Review
- 5 D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD DSH-C310 review
Latest News Articles
- Amazon Alexa and Echo set for Febuary launch
- Businesses jump on Amazon’s Alexa after Australian launch date revealed
- Aussie brands jump on voice-interaction bandwagon following Amazon Alexa's local launch
- Two Lenovo ThinkPad X1 tablets are available for an all-time low price
- Is your PC vulnerable to Meltdown and Spectre CPU exploits? InSpectre tells you
PCW Evaluation Team
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
- CES 2018: Belkin go big on wearables accessories and wireless charging
- OPPO Load Up A73 Smartphone With Flagship Features
- CES 2018
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTCyber Security EngineerOther
- FTPre-Sales Solution Architect - Global Cloud OrganisationVIC
- FTSystems Co-ordinatorOther
- FTSenior .NET Developer - Back EndOther
- CCNetwork Engineer (Juniper)VIC
- CCApplication DeveloperNSW
- FTJAVA DevelopersACT
- FTVarious DevelopersACT
- CCBusiness Project ManagerNSW
- CCThe job "Automation Test Analyst Guidewire " is now ExpiredQLD
- TPBusiness Analyst - Data & Information ModellingQLD
- TPSenior Business AnalystNSW
- CCSAP Fiori + UI5 ArchitectNSW
- FTNetwork Technical Specialist L3 x 2 ? Large Telco ? 6 month contract initiallyNSW
- CCMining Planning System EngineerQLD
- CCLean Six Sigma Process Improvement SpecialistNSW
- FTSecurity Specialist (SIEM)Other
- FTLead Business AnalystOther
- FTBackend Java DevelopersNSW
- FTUX DesignerOther
- TPIntermediate Solution Architect - DataQLD
- FTStorage & Data Protection Team LeadACT
- TPJava DeveloperACT
- FTSenior Insights AnalystNSW
- CCSecurity Business AnalystVIC