October 10th 2012 8:45 am

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Does the world need a mobile hotspot with a touchscreen?

79

As far as its core functions go, the MiFi Liberate delivers on its promise. It really is a solid mobile hotspot with decent LTE speeds and excellent battery life. The ability to connect up to 10 devices is great, and it has a fair price of $50 after a two-year agreement with AT&T. Still, it's not without faults. Though the touchscreen did provide quick access to valuable connection information, we wonder if it was overkill -- a simple LCD like the one on the Elevate would probably have sufficed. The touchscreen itself was also unpleasant to use due to poor responsiveness. Features like messaging, media streaming and GPS are alright, we suppose -- there's no harm in having them -- but they do seem unnecessary. In the end, the MiFi Liberate is a decent purchase if you need a mobile hotspot. And if you want a hotspot that's also a touchscreen device with extra fancy features, you're better off using your smartphone instead.

Critic reviews

8.4
7 reviews
  • Ease of use
    8.5
  • Speed / throughput
    8.5
  • Configurability / networking features
    8.4
  • Reliability
    8.0
  • Range
    8.0
  • Durability

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User reviews

9.3
3 reviews
9.0
Engadget Nov 19, 2012

As far as its core functions go, the MiFi Liberate delivers on its promise. It really is a solid mobile hotspot with decent LTE speeds and excellent battery life... if you want a hotspot that's also a touchscreen device with extra fancy features, you're better off using your smartphone instead.

Read the full review →
9.0
PC Mag Nov 16, 2012

The MiFi Liberate hotspot for AT&T gets you fast 4G LTE data speeds, long battery life, lots of features, and—something that no other hotspot has—a touch screen.

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8.0
Gizmodo Dec 3, 2012

If you need broadband to go, then yes, this is probably the best product out there. As with other mobile hotspots, the biggest hangup is price—this one runs $50 to start, with a two-year contract, and you'll have to tack the requisite data plan onto your existing wireless burden.

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8.0
Ars Technica Jan 23, 2013

The Liberate will cost about fifty bucks with a new contract at AT&T—a pretty fair price for a device that delivers this much bang.

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8.0
Wired May 28, 2014

It’s not cheap, but if you travel a lot and need to bring Wi-Fi wherever you go, we haven’t tested anything better then the Liberate.

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9.0
SlashGear Jan 2, 2013

While it’s difficult in general to get too excited about an internet delivery machine, I wouldn’t hesitate to say that the MiFi Liberate is easily the most awesome mobile hotspot I’ve had the pleasure of using. If you’re looking for the top mobile hotspot on AT&T’s network for 4G LTE,...

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8.0
TechHive Apr 18, 2013

The Novatel MiFi Liberate from AT&T may be the fastest and most functional mobile hotspot in the market today, despite some touchscreen sluggishness and unnecessary features.

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First Looks

product preview
PC Mag Oct 5, 2012

It often did not register touches or required exaggerated gestures to respond. It was, however, adequate for navigating the simple interface, which featured large colorful icons that made it easy to scroll through features and menus.

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10
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I had the 3g version before. This unit surpasses that by leaps and bounds. This is close to my broadband speeds at home. The unit is very reliable. I use it all day while working and usually have 3 separate units running at the same time, all day long. Great battery life, plenty of juice left at...

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9.0
mlmjr mlmjr

Previously, I've owned the Verizon Novatel Jetpack 4620L before I owned the Liberate. This won't be a comparison review of the two devices, but I only mention it for the purpose of revealing a little of my background with personal hotspots. Size and Weight The Liberate weighs a little less...

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How it stacks up

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