Smart’s latest pocket router, the Rocket WiFi Plus, is based on the Huawei E587 mobile WiFi. A mobile WiFi is a small battery-powered device that is capable of sharing mobile internet access to multiple devices wirelessly. In the case of Smart’s Rocket WiFi Plus, you can have up to 5 devices connected.
Talking to reps from Huawei, this mobile WiFi is exclusive to Smart and gives you high-speed packet access to take advantage of Smart’s HSPA+ network.
One obvious thing about Smart’s Rocket WiFi Plus is that it’s bigger than your usual pocket WiFi’s. It’s now also simplified with only a couple of buttons present, one for Power and another one for WPS, which you probably won’t use if you manually setup your WiFi security.
Having a bulkier body makes room for a bigger battery which I really need on a pocket WiFi. It is also charged via microUSB so I can use the same charger I use for my smartphone. The microSD slot can be accessed from the inside so it’s not hot-swappable.
The display on the Smart Rocket WiFi Plus is quite detailed. It shows the signal strength, the type of signal acquired, WiFi availability, internet availability, unread messages on the SIM, and the battery life. It also shows the bandwidth consumed and duration it is connected to a data plan. Very detailed as compared to old mobile WiFi’s in the market.
First thing you would like to do here is set up the WiFi name and security. It’s quite easy to do so with the web admin page. Turn on the device and connect to its WiFi with your laptop or mobile device.
Login to the web admin page by going to 192.168.1.1 on your web browser using “˜smartbro’ as both username and password.
You will be brought to the main screen where you can see details and the status of your mobile WiFi. Click Settings to set up your WiFi security.
In the WLAN Basic Settings, you can change the Name of your WiFi and set up authentication and password for it.
That’s it! The next time you connect to your Smart Rocket Plus WiFi, just input the password you created.
How to put load on your Smart Rocket WiFi Plus
So if you have a prepaid SIM, how do you put load in it? Believe it or not, your mobile WiFi has an SMS feature where it can send and receive text messages. No need to remove the SIM and put it into a phone just to send messages.
All you need to do is connect to its wireless network, access the web admin page (192.168.1.1) via your web browser and then head to the SMS tab to send and read SMS messages.
With Smart’s HSPA+ network, I’m getting really good speeds most of the time. I’m saying most of the time because there are still areas where 3G gets congested easily. But in places where I frequent, Smart’s HSPA+ is quite fast and reliable.
Here are different Speedtest results I made.
Theoretically, this Smart Rocket WiFi Plus can reach up to 43.2Mbps downstream when connected to a DC-HSPA+ network which is still limited to around 77 sites. Regular HSPA+ networks (1,400+ sites) can give you up to 21.6Mbps.
Remember that with a bigger body comes a bigger battery life? I own the old pocket WiFi which can only give me 3 to 4 hours worth of internet. But with the Smart Rocket WiFi Plus, I’m getting up to 5 hours with heavy downloading. With the usual mobile surfing, Facebook, mail, Twitter, etc., battery life here can stretch up to 7 hours which is quite impressive.
Do note that like other mobile WiFi’s out there, the device gets alarmingly hot overtime. That’s the nature of such small device and it’s actually normal.
Pricing and Availability
The Smart Rocket WiFi Plus is available in Smart Wireless centers for Php6,495. Another option would be to order it online through Smart’s Online Store.
Here’s a list of plans and packages to help you find that perfect pairing to your Smart Rocket WiFi Plus.
Smart Bro Prepaid Lifestyle Packages
Prepaid Lifestyle 450 ““ 35 hours of internet time for Php 450. Valid for 25 days
Prepaid Lifestyle 350 ““ 25 hours of internet time for Php 350. Valid for 18 days
Prepaid Lifestyle 250 ““ 15 hours of internet time for Php 250. Valid for 12 days
Smart Bro Per Minute Packages
P150 Smart Bro Per Minute Package ““ 7.5 hours (equivalent to 450 minutes) valid for 7 days
P100 Smart Bro Per Minute Package ““ 5 hours (equivalent to 300 minutes) valid for 4 days
P60 Smart Bro Per Minute Package ““ 3 hours (equivalent to 180 minutes) valid for 2 days
Smart Bro UnliSurf Packages
P100 Smart Bro Unli Surf Package with unlimited internet browsing valid for 2 days
P200 Smart Bro Unli Surf Package with unlimited internet browsing valid for 5 days
P50 Smart Bro Unli Surf Package with unlimited internet browsing valid for 1 day
*To continue enjoying these services, please maintain P1 load balance at all times.
Smart Bro Volume Data Packages
ALWAYS ON 995 (with 2000 MB)
ALWAYS ON 750 (with 1000 MB)
ALWAYS ON 500 (with 500 MB)
ALWAYS ON 300 (with 250 MB)
ALWAYS ON 200 (with 180 MB)
ALWAYS ON 30 (with 50 MB)
ALWAYS ON 20 (with 25 MB)
ALWAYS ON 10 (with 5 MB)
The Smart Rocket WiFi Plus is an updated version of their first Pocket WiFi with better display and HSPA+ support. It’s also the only Huawei mobile WiFi that is capable of DC-HSPA+ connection. Although you may not be able to fully utilize the maximum speeds such connections can offer, it’s still better to know that your mobile WiFi can connect to the best HSPA+ network currently out there.
It’s really good for families out there who needs internet while on the road. I use this to power Google Maps on the iPad while my wife happily checks in at every traffic light in Foursquare. Of course, the improved battery life is also a huge deal for users who are always on the go. I don’t mind the added bulk for the better features it offers.