The free wireless internet startup FreedomPop is targeting the likes of Comcast and Cablevision with its Hub Burst home router, which is now available for purchase.
First announced back in December, the $89 Hub Burst brings FreedomPop’s free wireless service beyond mobile devices. It comes with 1 gigabyte of free WiMax 4G, and you can also purchase additional bandwidth starting at $10 a month.
Like all of FreedomPop’s devices, there’s a big social component with the Hub Burst — you can earn additional bandwidth by referring family and friends. FreedomPop also offers a variety of special promotions that grant more bandwidth when completed.
While routers for cellular connections aren’t anything new, FreedomPop’s strategy certainly offers something new for home broadband users. For many people, it doesn’t really make sense for them to subscribe to home broadband connections, so a solution like the Burst Router could be ideal. (It sounds like the best way to get your non-techy grandma online.)
Unfortunately, since FreedomPop relies on WiMax 4G, you won’t see speeds anywhere near typical home broadband connections. The company’s next wave of devices will run on Sprint’s LTE connection, which has the potential to reach or surpass home broadband speeds.
VB's research team is studying mobile user acquisition... Chime in here, and we’ll share the results.