Huawei E5, to buy or not to buy?

The Huawei E5 (E5836) MiFi is a portable pocket router where you can share your mobile broadband connection wirelessly anywhere you go, as long as there is a signal that is. You can use it to share internet up to 5 devices like an iPad or an iPod Touch, a mobile phone with WiFi capability and you can even hook your wireless printer to its WiFi network.

Huawei E5

I’ve been using it for quite some time now allowing my colleagues to access blocked websites in the office using their iPod Touch and iPad on a fast 3G connection. Hehehe.

Here’s a review of the Huawei E5 MiFi router in case you’re thinking of getting one yourself.

Design

The Huawei E5 is very pocketable just like the MiFis being offered by Globe and Smart except this router is unlocked so depending on the signal quality in your location, you’re free to use different sim cards. I always carry it in my jeans pocket broadcasting my network wherever I go. I just hope it won’t prevent me from having children in the future.

Huawei E5

Anyway, on the right side are three buttons that you need to press and hold to activate or deactivate. There’s the power button, the WiFi button if you wish to turn off your wireless network then the connect button for you to switch your internet connection or and off.

Huawei E5

On the left side a microSD slot (the latch on mine is already loose) so you can share files to other devices in the network. I’ve used the microSD feature to share some videos and music files to different Android phones.

Huawei E5

On the top is the latch to take off the back panel then at the bottom is the miniUSB port to connect to the PC or to charge the router via USB. Like most mobile phones, just pop the back panel to insert your sim card. You can also see the stickered default SSID which also serves as its default password beside the sim card holder.

Huawei E5

Unlike the old pocket routers, the Huawei E5 displays more info on its LCD. From left to right there’s the signal strength, the type of connection, wireless network indicator, internet connection indicator, messages on the sim card and the battery indicator. The M you see at the bottom left means that I set the E5 to connect to the internet manually by clicking a button.

Ease of Use

The Huawei E5 is pretty easy to use once you’re done setting it up which you can easily follow from the instruction manual. Since I didn’t bring the miniUSB cable with me, I used my iPod Touch to connect to the admin page ((http://e5.home or http://192.168.1.) using mobile Safari. The page loaded its mobile version although you can use the full view as well.

Huawei E5 admin page mobile version

You can verify if you’re connected by checking the Status page. Here’s a tip, bookmark the admin page on the browsers of your wireless device for easy access.

That’s it. Afterwards, using the Huawei E5 is as easy as pressing the Power button then the Connect button if you’re like me who set it to manual since I’m on prepaid.

Performance

A lot of people are asking me about the speed and I would always say that it will still depend on the location or the signal at the time of use. There’s no one type of sim to rule them all and a MiFi capable of accepting at least two sim cards at the same time sounds really appealing.  Sometimes I would get a 2G signal and sometimes a 3G one on the same spot. On a good signal (which happens a lot on my place by the way), I can enjoy a download rate equivalent of a 1.5 Mbps connection.

WiFi signal strength is ok but not as great as a basic wireless router. Here’s a nifty trick I did with the router. There’s no signal inside my cousin’s house so what I did was place the MiFi outside their porch by the window so we can enjoy internet from inside. Now can a broadband stick do that?

Battery Life

Just like old MiFi routers, the Huawei E5 lasts for about 4 hours. That’s pretty short especially if you’re always on a 3G network and have an unlimited broadband connection. So better plug it to a laptop, a PC or your car charger whenever you can.

Pricing and Availability

The Huawei E5 is priced at Php5,995 and is rarely available at Electroworld stores. It’s either they’re always sold out or there’s not enough units delivered. What you can do is call Gcomm (659-0072) who’s the official distributor of Huawei products here in the Philippines and see if they can deliver it to you. Or you can visit them in their office at Suite 907 Cityland 10 Tower 1 6815 Ayala Avenue, Makati.

Conclusion

For gadget freaks or mobile workers or those who just can’t bother to subscribe to a DSL connection and get a wireless router, the Huawei E5 is the next best option. Even with its hefty price tag, it offers a lot of use especially those who own a lot of devices capable of accessing the net via WiFi. There’s also the option to use your smartphone to share its internet but if it were me, I’d rather save its battery for calls and messaging. If at the end of this review you’re still contemplating on getting one, I’d say go ahead!

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  • Harley Son

    the sad part is it is included in the capped which the telcos are offering, thus, if there is alot who connects to the E5, then the allocated MB will not be enough!

    peace!

    • yeah… the supersurf has that 800MB. if you’re going to be using a lot of bandwidth better stick with the 5 pesos per 10 minutes para walang cap.

      • Harley Son

        okies! thanks!

        • ren

          lam niyo poh ba kung panu lagyan ng password yung pocket wifi???

      • JL

        Just a quick question… How can u subscribe to supersurf using this device like txting keywords to , for example globe, to activate let say supersurf 50 for a day?

        • access mo yung web address nya. connect to its wifi network.. tapos sa web browser ng phone or laptop mo, go to http://e5.home, may SMS menu dun that allows you to send messages.

          or lipat mo muna yung sim card mo sa phone then dun ka mag-subscribe.

        • Vino Kid

          There’s an SMS inside this gadget. Just don’t Auto connect the device cause it will eat up your load without registering first to a promo… Before you do Pasaload, configure the device connection to MANUAL… after you register to promo then connect to internet…

          The price of this unit is PHP3895 openline and sealed by Huawei…

  • chavsraul

    no need to buy. check this out.

    http://www.connectify.me/

    Share, Save, Simplify

    Connectify is an easy to use software router for Windows 7 computers. After downloading and installing the lightweight application, Connectify utilizes your computers’ built in Wi-Fi card to wirelessly share any available Internet connection: a cable modem, a cellular card, or even another Wi-Fi network. Other Wi-Fi enabled devices including laptops, smart phones, music players, and gaming systems can see and join your Connectify hotspot just like any other Wi-Fi access point and are kept safe and secure by password-protected WPA2 Encryption.

    • uhhmm…. sure but can you put your laptop in your pocket?

    • james

      I can do that without using any software

      • true. windows has a built-in ICS.

  • edwin-pinoy

    no need to buy. just install joikuspot to your nokia fon, and youre good to go. you save one pocket that you can use to carry another gadget.

  • I like it. It’s just like the smart pocket wifi,but is it available in market?

    • Vino Kid

      available

  • It’s so unique in design. Huawei E5 is so cute. I’m gonna save money to buy one.

  • cheewah

    Do you have scripts to send from another computer using the dos command line?

    Thank you.

    Regards, Chee Wah

  • Tom

    Hi Calvin,

    I have some question for you. Can I use this mifi router and usb charge at same time? And have this device power adapter?

    Thanks a lot:
    Tom

    • yup, you can share your wifi/internet and charge it at the same time. What do you mean by device power adapter? the unit charges via USB.

      • chichi

        Can I use apple usb power adapter to charge globe mifi? in case, there’s no laptop or pc available. thanks.

        • Vino Kid

          This unit does not include power adapter, sold separately.

          You can use USB charger of any device, if you have one…

  • francis

    Great post! I just bought one online and now I’m waiting for it.. I’m excited

    • nontech

      hi, where to buy the gadget? open line please.. i made the wrong decision of getting the old usb broadband.. now im on a 2yr contract and cant shift to myfi..

    • joel

      San ko to pwd bilhin? nasira na kasi same unit ko. (under telco subcription)
      thanks

  • Charles

    Can the user make this thing use the WCDMA/3G/3.5G bands exclusively? No device with WiFi connectivity needs a 2G connection anyway.

    • yup. just like your globe tattoo, you can choose to have it strictly use 3G. although i set it to 3G preferred just in case there’s no 3G available but there’s 2G.

      • Letty

        How do you set the huawei to 3g only because I keep getting 2g. Thanks.

        • visit the admin page, on your browser type in http://e5.home it’s somewhere in the connection settings there. sorry can’t be more specific. i forgot na eh.

    • tami dela cruz

      Hello Sir Calvin! Good Pm!
      i’m thinking about getting an E5 so that i can connect my PS3 system on the internet.
      do you think it has enough speed for me to connect to PSN and download some 20 to 60mb game patches/updates? and update my trophy collection?
      and sometimes play some online multiplayer in call of duty and 2K11. please help me decide. TIA and More Power Sir!

      • hi tami, speed is dependent on the carrier in your area. i have good speed using my Globe sim on the E5 at home. Way better than my pldt DSL and it’s enough to download your psn games without waiting for a long time. so know first which network works best in your area for mobile broadband then use that on the E5. make sure na plugged ang E5 since baka maubusan ng battery while you’re playing your ps3.

        • tami dela cruz

          Sir Thanks for taking time na magreply 🙂
          sir i have a Globe tattoo and Sun Wireless Broadband Usb modems here at my place.
          and yung apartment ko ay nasa 2nd floor at maganda ang signal. sa Globe tattoo i get up to 2mbps download speed sir. while sa sun naman up to 1.7mbps.

          madali lang ba i setup yung E5 sir. coconnect kaya kagad yung PS3 ko? and siguro naman po sir di naman sya mag lag kung up to 1-1.5mbps ang connection po hano sir?

          palagay mo po sir it’s worth investing on an E5? and oh, i’ve read the above comments, yung capping sa globe yeah nakakainis yun. b4 sarap magdownload. then came october last year bigla nalang capped sa 1gb/dl. now 800mb nalang. Good thing ang Sun wala. and almost sing bilis din ng globe. plus may Php100/3-days pang unlimited internet.

          sir sorry for the long comment. ginawa kong message board eh. Thank you sir! i’m a fan on facebook sir! Godbless!

          • no problem. it would be a good investment if you own a lot of wireless devices that you take with you all the time. or if you don’t want to get a wireless router.

            as for setting up the e5, madali lang sya and madaling maka-connect ang PS3 or any other device sa kanya. madedetect sya ng PS3 and key in your password na lang if you choose to use a password for your wireless network.

          • tami dela cruz

            Again Thank you very much sir.
            nice kasi i got an iPod touch 4th Gen and a bb fone. i’ll be a walking wifi hotspot din pala aside from using the E5 for my ps3. hehe.

            em gonna get one come sunday. then i’ll head off to mega to take a glimpse at the new SE Xperia Arc!

            Thank You sir! hope it’s alright posting ur articles on my fb wall. Godbless!

  • Lauren

    Hi!
    When you said you connected to the admin page via your safari on you ipod touch, do you have load already or not? How did your ipod touch connect to the huawei if ever there is no load yet?

    • you don’t need an internet connection to connect to huawei via wifi. you can broadcast huawei’s wifi even without load and connect to it (to access admin page, or to send messages, or to access the microSD card). wala nga lang internet connection.

  • John

    Hi! Does the sim needs load? malaki ba ang kuha ng load?
    😀

    • pareho lang po yung load requirements from prepaid broadband like globe tattoo or paggamit mo CP mo.

  • Van

    Can you used this to call?

    • nope… there’s no mic nor a speaker. 😛

  • Bea

    Sir, I also have an e5. I am using Smart Buddy’s Unlisurf. It should be good for 7 days. After 5 days of using the E5, it is not connecting to the internet anymore. There is this celphone graphic appearing in the E5. The graphic is not in the user manual. What should I do, please help?

    • i don’t know what the graphic is. or maybe you consumed your bandwidth limit? in globe if you reach 800MB in one day you won’t be able to connect until the following day even if it says it’s unlimited.

  • nina

    can i use huawei mifi on online rpg games like ragnarok or Mu online..?

    thanks..

  • dm

    Can I use this with my current subscription of Sun Broadband wireless (ie. I’ll just remove the sim from the dongle and place it inside E5?) Thanks

  • dm

    (I did not see my comment posted, so just sending it again to be sure)

    Is this applicable with Sun broadband wireless (ie. I just need to take out the sim from the dongle and place it in the E5?) Thanks.

    • yup! it’s unlocked.

  • ken

    can i use two different sims at the same time? but on the picture there is only a single place for a sim… so where does the other placed?

    • nope you can’t. one sim at a time.

    • maijee

      sir, is Huawei E5 the same with the Globe Tattoo Myfi? I am planning to subscribe on their P999 plan po..

      • may ibang model din yung myfi eh so better ask na lang sa pagbibilhan mo pero same function lang naman yung dalawa.

  • good afternon.ask ko lang sana kung panu mkakapag register yun sim na nka insert jan sa wireless modem ? pde ba gamitan yan ng VPN ? para khit walang load yun sim na nsa modem . eh makakapaginternet ng free ? thanks ! sure buyer here ! just reply to my question !! need it ASAP !

    • panong register ng sim? may sim registration na ba? basta saksak mo lang sim gagana na. kung loloadan mo pwede rin. gamitin mo yung web interface para maka pagtext ka using the E5. as for free internet di ako marunong nun. 🙂

      • ok sir . magknu po ba last price ? just text me . 09174607227 . thanks

        • di po ako nagbebenta. try niyo sa electroworld.

  • Reymart Alfonso

    I just want to ask if the huawei e5 needs load for the sim to have an Internet?

    • yes it does.

      • Reymart Alfonso

        Para lang siyang mga smart bro , globe tattoo , etc. ?

        • yup pero di na kelangan isaksak sa usb para gamitin so kahit ipad makakainternet.

      • Reymart Alfonso

        Kailangan pa pala ng load para lang magkaroon ng Internet akala ko basta lagyan ng sim meron ng Internet !

        • there’s no such thing as personal free internet. kung meron man di ko pa alam or maraming limitations.

  • Hunter69

    Calvin i just bought a new huawei e585. I inserted both smart n sun broadband my ipad and iphone got d signal but when i started to surf its says safari cannot open the pagecoz its not connected. Itried to open d site that u said e5 home but d website is close

    • not sure how the e585 display looks like but search for a globe icon. that tells you it’s connected to the internet. you ipad may be connected to the huawei via wifi but if the huawei is not connected to the net, it’s useless. may load ba yung sim? look for the connect button on the side. baka naka manual connect sya.

  • James Ryan

    Question. Talaga bang puro numbers lang yung passkey ng wifi sa Huawei E5? Anung dapat gawin para pwede yung letters as passkey? First time user here. I subscribed to globe’s P999 Myfi. Nice topic by the way. Thanks.

    • pwedeng palitan. look for the security options dun sa admin page. connect ka sa wifi network nya and visit mo sa browser using http://e5.home

  • Ryan Josh

    Question! using the sun broadband USB type modem takes me 3 sec to load Facebook home page. The E5 takes me a freaking 10mins and still not finish loading.. how do you solve that?
    I follow all the requirements, and settings

    2nd.. if i unplug the usb cable connecting to E5, i cannot connect to the wifi that E5 offers even its on. so do i need to connect the usb cable (like old fashion broadband) so i can connect to its wifi?
    (my point of asking is.. i cant connect to net even connected via wifi just using E5..)

    3rd.. im a hardcore gamer/abuser of net.. will the battery on my E5 be degraded if its plugged at my laptop like 48hrs a day? continuous download, non stop internet, and its usb plugged with battery on it??

    • 1. i don’t know.. are you using the same sun sim on the usb modem into the e5? is it connected to a 3G network?
      2. maybe there’s a password needed? or is Wifi on (WiFi icon)? what does it say when you cant connect to the wifi? you can’t find the wireless network from your wifi device? connecting to the wifi network is different to connecting to the internet ok?
      3. yes it might. in fact i don’t recommend using it continuously for a very long duration because it heats up.

  • angchuongco

    HI, I just read your post, its a great help. I called Gcomm and was recommended to buy from SILICON VALLEY which are almost always available in stock. I asked how much this one cost retail (Silicon Valley), it’s sold at a price of P/4,800.00 for credit card and P/4,600.00 if your willing to pay cash. For card, they offer 3 months deferred payment, which is not so helpful, I was hoping for a 6 months deferred as not to be too heavy on the pocket (financial side). Anyways, I am still looking for a cheaper option like the EDUP Brand and if you have anything new, please email me. I’d be happy to hear from you.

    • ok sure. thanks for updating us with the new price.

  • rcariaso

    Hi There,

    I just bought the E-5 in Rosales, Pangasinan as I’m on vacation here for three weeks. I brought it home and set it up but I can’t get a signal. I got a message that says, it may take 24 hours for it to work. Is this the reason why I can’t get a signal ?

    Thanks

    • James Ryan

      @rcariaso, ganyan din saken nung nakuha ko yung E-5 from globe. Sabi ng globe it takes maximum of 3 days para ma-activate yung sim and yung E-5 pero yung saken wala pang 24hrs activated na. Nasa location din siguro kung gaano katagal bago ma-activate yung unit and sim.

    • make sure that the sim you loaded it on is strong in your area

  • Deckard

    Need your help Guyz!

    Forgot my Admin password..is there anyway to reset it?

    Thanks in advance….

  • Rachelle

    Paano po mag block ng website para pag may kumonek sa E5 ko eh di nila ma oopen ang isang website.?

    • wala yata ganung feature ang admin site ng e5 eh. di ganun ka-advance.

      • Rachelle

        Ok po. Salamat po. 🙂

    • naru

      anyone po interested to buy this modem, available po sya sa company namen as we do wholesale and retail orders…just post lang po thanx

    • tyroneous

      kahit ba kumaha ka ng postpaid plan sa globe, may capping pa rin?

      • James Ryan

        @tyroneous wala siyang cap unlimited surfing kase.

  • Carlo

    Hey! tanong ko lang kung paano mo maa-accessed yung shared file mo? also is it possible to transfer a file wirelessly sa nakainsert na Micro SD na memory?

    • gamitin mo yung web client, access mo using your web browser. meron dun menu for SD. pwede ka magupload/download.

  • red

    Pano po I-lock ang wifi para di maaccess ng iba?

  • Aya

    Question though, my myfi is reflecting an “X” on the display everytime i turn on the connection. Checked my sim card, my location etc everything works naman except sa myfi. What do you think is the problem here? Thanks

    • Liberty

      Just had the same problem today. It’d seem that the SIM I used was an old prepaid one, not capable of the Tattoo’s internet features.

      I bought a new one and everything went smoothly.

      Hope this helps!

  • Mohammad ameen

    That one i use ready i need new one Long Distance using one.

  • DNZ

    Hi, Calvin.

    Any pros and cons when comparing the e5 vs the ZTE MF60 HSPA+?

    Thanks in advance.

    • major pros on the mf60 is the hspa+ support so i would choose that over the e5. or get the huawei e586 or better yet, e587 which is bulkier but lasts longer.

  • Redblue0115

    Question: Can I charged my E5 to my laptop and use it at the same time? I just bought an E5 @ globe yesterday. I tried to charge it while surfing at the sametime, but it didnt charge. I was only able to charge it when I turned the E5 off…

    • i don’t think that’s the E5 but an earlier version of the pocket mifi. the one with different colored LED displays.

      • Redblue0115

        Well, when i open the unit, E5 yun makalagay. Plus, when there is no multi color led display…
        Anyway, is it normall to turn off first the unit before it can be charged? Or do I need to address this problem to globe? Thanks for the advice…

        • nope, you should be able to charge it while it’s running.

  • panu ma reset ung password?…thanks a lot…

    • hanapin mo yung maliit na butas at tusukin mo ng pin.

      • katie

        hi calvin how can i reset my password? i can’t see any pin hole po sa unit please help thanks!

  • Qi

    Hi, i would like to ask what’s the difference of pocket wifi models and what does HSPA stand for? which is better Huawei E853C or ZTE MF60? Thanks!

    • I buy the router in here ,it got huawei new 4g router .it was excellent .

  • rachel

    hi poh, my wifi device ako na ZTE mf91, tapos bumili ako ng globe tattoo sim card na may 30 days unlimited internet for 1,015.00 pesos, may na detect nmn na signal un device pero bakit ganun di ako makaconnect sa internet? anu poh ba possible na problema bakit di ako makaconnect sa internet? thanks poh..

  • hervin

    international modem po bah yn? ung po bah pede ko mgamit kht saang bansa? tulad ng e5832.

  • ola

    How can I reset my admin password?

  • Craig Hartlove

    I live in the United States, and a friend recently bought an Asus VivoBook V551LB. He wanted to get a broadband for Internet connectivity, but they did not have it in stock. Please help me understand the specifics. I could buy a broadband Via Amazon and have it sent to him. Are there any specifics that I need to review? Is this even possible. For example I was considering, Option GlobeSurfer III+ GSM/HSPA Router – 3G+ Wireless Gateway for Voice, Broadband Data, and Wi-Fi – White,Quad band 3G (850/900/1900/2100 Mhz):
    •High Speed wireless Internet connectivity: download up to 14.4 Mbps, upload up to 5.76 Mbps
    •Fixed DSL line backup: Automatic switch to 3G network in case of DSL line failure
    •Simple 2-button control tell me what I need to think about?

  • Why viewers still use to read news papers when in this technological globe tҺе wɦole thinÇ¥ is availablе
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    • jason nodalo

      This was a horrible device. I tried to use it and it never worked I live in Burauen Leyte Philippines. I struggled and struggled with it, I sought support assistance from my ISP and directly from the company as well each one blame the other one and nothing happened.
      I bought a new pocket Wi-Fi LTE globe tattoo and I am very very happy. It’s not perfect. But it works much much better.

  • rusty

    Hi admin.ask qlang.bkt lage po wrong password ang lumabas dun sa wireless gateway log in?admin ang user name at password db?bkt po ayaw nya?tnx po

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    how can i configure the virtual server of the device
    thanks

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