4 February 2014

REVIEW: TP-Link Wireless N Mini Pocket Router

The router of all goodness.

It is more than obvious that here at The Test Pit we love a multi-functional gadget. If one bit of tech can perform several useful tasks then it's okay by us and will get a welcome review in these pages. That is why we're really happy to talk about the N Mini Pocket Router from TP-Link – and not just because it includes the words Mini and Pocket in its name.

The N Mini Pocket Router is just that, a wireless router that is small enough to fit in your pocket. It is largely marketed by TP-Link toward travellers and students, and rightly so; weighing in at less than your average smartphone this will be infinitely useful for those limited on bag and case space. Yet the N Mini also has lots of uses around the the home, and it was for the practicality of these uses that we fell in love with it.

Small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, the N Mini Pocket Router is not just about broadcasting wifi internet throughout a building. As TP-Link are keen to point out, the router has lots of other uses as well as being a traveller's best friend. Taken from the TP-Link UK website, here are said uses:

Wireless Router Mode
Creates an instant private wireless network and share Internet to multiple Wi-Fi devices, which is suitable for most hotel and home network.

Repeater Mode
Extend existing Wi-Fi, improving signal strength and maximizing coverage.

Access Point Mode
Creates a wireless network for Wi-Fi devices.

Client Mode (TV/Game Console)
Gives wired-only devices access to an existing Wi-Fi networks.

WISP Client Router Mode
Simultaneous Wireless ISP access and sharing.

Multifunctional USB Port for File Sharing and Charging
Equipped with a multifunctional USB 2.0 port, you can share files and media within local network among your different devices such as PCs, smart phones and tablets. Also, the USB port can provide power supply (up to 5V/1A) to mobile devices like smart phones or tablets, so that you can avoid the trouble of carrying several chargers while travelling.

So as you can see, lots of uses. Here at Test Pit Towers we discovered that by far the most useful application of the N Mini was its ability to extend an existing wifi network, while also acting as a media hub. With a 1TB hard drive attached to the built-in USB port we were able to upload and download content via the router, without having to worry about cloud subscriptions. The TP-Link N Mini Pocket Router had therefore – by just plugging it into the wall socket – strengthened our network and allowed us to use it in a fun way.

In terms of connection strength, when used as both an extender and a stand alone router, we were impressed. We didn't think that a router that size would be able to broadcast a wifi network of such good quality speed and strength. Although we would never use it to replace our existing router, the N Mini would be perfect for hotel rooms or student accommodation that might only offer wired internet.

At the end of the day, this is well-built piece of tech that has several very well applied uses. For that we tip our hats to it.


Available from www.amazon.co.uk

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