Hands On: Sprint 'Overdrive' the home broadband killer?

Yesterday, Neowin covered the Sprint press event where Sprint unveiled their 'Overdrive' mobile hotspot that boasts 3G and 4G connectivity. The device is being marketed as a home broadband replacement as well as a mobile hotspot. Overdrive connects to Sprint's 4G (WiMax) service and produces a mobile hotspot for up to 5 devices.

The Overdrive which we received this morning does exactly what you would expect. It provides a very simple setup and allows you to easily connect any Wi-Fi enabled device seamlessly and use it as you would any other hot spot. The device does provide a layer of security to block unwanted individuals from connecting to your 'Overdrive'; when you connect to the 'Overdrive' you are required to input a password that is displayed on the screen of the device.

The 4G experience is truly as good as the advertising makes it appear. When using the 'Overdrive' it feels as if you are using a wired connection, we have had very little issues with the service dropping (only happened while riding in the shuttle from the convention center to the hotel) and it is allowing us to report news from any location as finding an open Wi-fi connection has proved to be troublesome.

The 'Overdrive' is capable of doing VOIP calls, connecting to Xbox Live (with no lag while playing COD MW2), uploading large videos to YouTube, and not crawling to a halt when 5 people are on the connection all using bandwidth intensive applications. The video posted below shows a VOIP call that demonstrates the low latency of the 4G network.

One of the less talked about features, but something we have found to be a great idea, is that there is a micro SD slot on the device. You can insert up to a 16GB card and use it as a network storage device.

While we have only had the product for about 12 hours it is already proving to be invaluable whilst reporting at CES. The reliability of the network, the ease of setup and use, makes this a great product and a pleasure to use. Stay with Neowin as we will provide a full in-depth review once we have had more time to dig into all the feature that the 'Overdrive' offers.

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