Hugo Barra has taken the wraps off another slick new Xiaomi device. It’s called the Wi-Fi Mini, and it packs a 2×2 dual-channel 802.11AC router into an incredibly small (and attractive) package. The design looks an awful lot like it was inspired by Apple’s Magic Trackpad.
The Mini is designed for mobile use, like plugging into ethernet jacks in hotel rooms so you can actually get a solid wireless connection on your devices. It does, however, pack a pair of LAN ports of its own, so you could certainly use it at home to split a wired connection in a crowded entertainment center or office.
Xiaomi’s also soldered on a USB port so you can turn an external hard drive or thumbdrive into network attached storage. It’s powered by MediaTek’s MT7620A SoC — so you may even be able to load DDWRT onto the Wi-Fi Mini, and it has a whopping 128MB of RAM. There aren’t many consumer routers out there with that much RAM, and certainly none that retail for $20.
So there’s got to be a downside to the Wi-Fi Mini, right? There is, if you live anywhere other than China. It’s set to go on sale in Beta form for the ridiculously low price of ¥129, but while there’s an English version due soon it may never be offered up for sale outside China.
Fortunately, there are plenty of reputable sellers on sites like AliExpress that will no doubt be happy to ship you one once they’re available.