Netgear has now attained a permanent place among the manufacturers of mobile LTE hotspots after purchasing the terminal division of Sierra Wireless. Currently there are three MiFi routers from American manufacturers: the models AirCard 785s, 790S and 810S. The three devices have different good performance and are available now different network providers worldwide. At the MWC 2016 in Barcelona, there was the possibility of all three units together to compare.
The mobile LTE hotspots of Netgear all have an integrated multimode cellular modem, so they allow the use of all current mobile technologies. In 3G UMTS, the DC-HSPA+ technology is available for up to 42.2 Mbit/s in the downlink and up to 5.76 Mbit/s in the uplink. There are differences between the three devices at the maximum speed for LTE.
The Netgear AirCard 785s Hotspot supports LTE category 4 with up to 150 Mbit/s in the downlink and use up to 50 Mbit/s in the uplink, making it the slowest of the three routers. With LTE Cat6 up to 300 MBit/s in downlink, the supported download speed of Netgear AC790S is twice as fast on the go , but it must be with the appropriate tariff and a suitably equipped network. In the uplink, the AirCard 790S also provides up to 50 Mbit/s. The fastest in the three devices is the Netgear AC810S. It can support LTE-Advanced Cat11 up to 600 Mbit/s in the downlink and up to 150 Mbit/s is available in the uplink.
The Netgear AC785S is optionally operated via a web interface or an app. There is also on the front a color screen, displaying all important information such as reception, battery status and data usage clearly. In the newer models AirCard 790S and AirCard 810S, even a large touch screen was installed, which allows operation without any computer or smartphone app. All functions and settings can be carried out directly on the device, the operation is very easy.
All three MiFi routers have two connections for an external LTE antenna. The external antenna connectors provide possibility to improve the network signal for stable and better surfing experience with areas of weak signal. If you would like to buy the antenna for the three device, you could refer below the indoor and outdoor antenna for the Netgear 4G mobile hotspots:
Netgear Aircard 4G Indoor External Antenna:
Netgear Aircard 4G Outdoor External Antenna:
All three devices feature a removable battery. The Netgear AC810S and the Netgear AC790S even allow you to charge other devices such as smartphones via the microUSB connector of hotspots ( "Jump Boost").
Differences are in the WLAN: The Netgear AC785S supports WLAN 802.11a/b/g/n on 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz, the two expensive equipment AC790S and AC810S support even significantly faster WLAN 802.11ac. In each of the three routers, maximum of 15 devices such as laptops, tablets and smartphones can be connected simultaneously via WLAN. Also, a device can use the Internet connection via USB.
The three NETGEAR mobile LTE hotspots can be expanded with the Netgear DC112A docking station to a stationary LTE router. The router is connected to the dock and the wireless signal is significantly improved. The DC112A also features four Gigabit LAN ports, one WAN port and connectors for external antennas.