Sunday, February 5, 2012

Three Web Cube hopes to free us from the tyranny of BT

Amid all the snow chaos, here's something that has caught my eyes. And once again it is a new product by Three UK.

When I reviewed the new MiFi v3 (Huawei E586), I wondered if Three's decision to include a cradle with the MiFi was a precursor to something greater - a statement of intent to enter the home broadband market. Well they did - the recently announced Web Cube looks like a great alternative to those without broadband, or those wishing to gain home broadband without the commitment to a telephone line contract by British Telecom. At least for those in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Leeds, where Three is conducting trials.

The HSPA+ certified Web Cube is basically a MiFi all dressed up for home comfort. The sleek case not only looks great, but houses a SIM card to enable instant broadband wherever you are - that is as long as you have a wall socket nearby. While not nearly as flexible as a MiFi, it is sold with a reasonable data plan. I was informed that it would be available for £15 a month on a rolling contract which gets you 10GB worth of data or £15.99 a month on a 24 month contract, which will net you 15GB a month data.

10GB or 15GB a month won't cut it for serial downloaders, and it certainty won't convert me to ditch my fixed line broadband yet. But there is a market for university students who move around a lot. When I was a student, I switched accommodation at least once a year, and because of that, was never able to afford a home broadband package. 10-15GB might not be a lot, but it is plenty for students who will no doubt abuse the internet network at their libraries.

But if Three UK introduce a AYCE plan with this, an has the infrastructure to support such heavy downloads - then I can see this is a suitable replacement to fixed line broadband. ;)

So what do you think? Would the Web Cube be enough to ditch BT?

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