TechCrunch Disrupt Berlin is coming up this weekend – in fact, the Hackathon is already under way – and for those of us coming in from out of the country, the biggest worry is always the fear of being disconnected. Some take to buying a pay-as-you-go SIM Card in every country they travel to, others buy mobile hotspots at electronics stores and return them a few days later. On my last trip to Germany for IdeaLab!, I was outfitted with a DeMiFi, and I ended up being a fan favorite for locals and internationals.
Essentially a 4G SIM Card jammed into a mobile hotspot, the deMifi lets internationals stay connected outside the conference, and even serves as a back-up to the inevitable conference wi-fi lag/outage. I ended up hooking up a few locals to the password-protected hotspot at IdeaLab when the wi-fi went down during a keynote presentation.
For travelers planning on coming in, deMiFi can be delivered to your hotel/lodging, comes with a USB & power outlet charger, and starts at just 3€/day. On the day you leave, simply drop the deMifi in the mail (or at the concierge of the hotel) with the pre-paid envelope that it comes with, and you’re good to go.
For #Disrupt Berlin, I highly recommend charging the hotspot every day, and when your computer is plugged in to a power outlet, charging it against your computer. While the internet connection is strong, the device runs pretty hot and runs out of battery in a matter of hours if you’re using it constantly. I had trouble loading heavy files using it (video files), but writing articles and keeping up with Twitter/Email was pretty easy.