WLAN retrofit in the car: Huawei Carfì hotspot in Test

Huawei Carfì hotspot
Huawei Carfì hotspot

A Wi-Fi hotspot in the car – this feature is so far only available for a hefty surcharge for cars of the upper middle class and upper class. Huawei wants to change with the new Carfì hotspot for 12V cigarette lighter connector and offers a retrofit solution for just 100 euros. Up to 150 MBit / s, users can reach us via LTE over the Huawei Carfì Hotspot, of course was also a fallback to 3G and 2G thought. But the Carfì wireless router is really as good as the expensive installation solutions of premium producer? In this test, we find out.

Scope of supply and equipment

The Huawei Carfì Hotspot is conducted under the model number Huawei E8377 and comes in a stylish package for buyers. The scope of supply is scarce, is next to the hotspot itself only a Quick Start Guide, a brochure with safety instructions and an indication of the Huawei HiLink app included. The Huawei Carfì Hotspot is kept in a matt black plastic and the front is equipped with a carbon look, which is likely to look smart in almost any car. On the front there is also the power button, which simultaneously serves as an indicator of the reception strength thanks to the underlying LED. A yellow LED indicates poor UMTS / LTE receiver, a green LED indicates good reception.

Huawei Carfì hotspot
Huawei Carfì hotspot

Of course, you need a SIM card with the appropriate data plan for the operation of Huawei Carfì. The card must be present in the micro-SIM format and is inserted under the side cover in the Carfì hotspot. Under the cover you will find also a reset button and a connector for an external antenna. An integrated rechargeable battery, there are not, so you the Huawei router Carfì really can operate only in the car and can not take in between with in a meeting or on the lake.

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LTE with up to 150 Mbit / s

The maximum speed in the LTE network is 150 Mbit / s. Over LTE Cat4, according to Huawei while the frequency bands supported by 800/900/1800/2100/2600 MHz If no LTE times are available, so you can also use 3G (up to 42.2 Mbit / s) and 2G. In the test of the handover between the different network technologies work smoothly while driving. The reception is in both LTE and UMTS okay, but no better than most smartphones. Who expects a reception miracles will be disappointed by Huawei Carfì or possibly should directly connect equal to an external antenna.

The WLAN module works according to the standard 802.11 b / g / n, ie on the frequency band around 2.4 GHz. The area around 5 GHz is not supported. The signal is strong enough to power larger cars reliable.

Huawei Carfì hotspot
Huawei Carfì hotspot

Control via App

Once you have the Huawei Carfì Hotspot connect it to a cigarette lighter connector, it must be turned on manually before use each time. Before first use you should write down or take a picture of the WLAN key, because as soon as the device is plugged in, you can read these difficulties. Also, one should previously load the Huawei HiLink app to configure to be Android or iOS device, because that is the establishment and the operation of the easiest.

Connection parameters like APN or access numbers do not have to be deposited, the Huawei Carfì has automatically recognized the SIM card of E-Plus, O2, Vodafone and Telekom in the test and the data stored accordingly. Only the PIN code must be entered, if enabled. The Huawei HiLink app allows various settings, for example, you can configure the name and password of the WLAN network. A wireless guest network with a separate name and password can be set up, ideal for guests in the car or for taxi drivers.

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Connection information such as data consumption, connected wireless devices and the online time are displayed graphically in the app. The firmware of Huawei Carfì can easily be updated online. A major disadvantage of Huawei HiLink app: in the test with Android smartphones, the program fell on extremely high energy consumption, often it was the strongest consumer before the display. Here Huawei should urgently provide an update for Remedy.

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