Yota Devices based in Moscow, who came into limelight after announcing dual-screen Android Yota smartphone, has now shaken up the portable router market with the introduction of Ruby, a new multiband WiFi hotspot, for smartphones and laptops, at CTIA 2013 in Las Vegas.
Ruby supports most of the mobile connections in the world, including EDGE, HSPA+ and several LTE bands, and has a hidden slot for users to insert local SIM cards to stay connected more affordably while travelling.
Ruby substantially improves the battery life of smartphones. Smartphones connected to Ruby via WiFI use 3 – 5 times less energy for data transmission compared to 3G HSPA+. Ruby’s 2100mAh battery powers the unit for up to 16 hours of use and up to 60 hours on standby, which is more than two times longer than competitors. It charges using any USB or micro USB to 70 percent capacity in less than an hour. Ruby’s display, which shows battery and signal status, is the first router to use energy-saving E Ink technology, which Yota Devices also features on its YotaPhone.
The power button on top has three user modes.Slide it one way to create a private password-protected network; slide it the other way for an additional public network that supports up to 10 connections; and turn it off when in the central position. The LED backlit logo informs users of the type of network it is connected to — blue if connected to 4G, orange if the device has downshifted to 3G or 2G.
Ruby also has a number of features that appeal to operators as well. Yota Devices’ specially-designed software allows operators to monitor the usage of the device and optimize network performance. Ruby’s driverless installation and automatic software updates reduce calls to operators’ customer help desks. Ruby supports operators’ efforts to sign up new subscribers by allowing them to brand the device with their logo and to invite those who use the router’s WiFi sharing mode to become trial users.
Ruby is available for order by mobile carriers in European markets, Russia and some Asia Pacific markets immediately. Rollout to other markets, including North America, will follow at the end of 2013.