Wednesday, January 9, 2013

FoxFi acquired by PDAnet

I have a Samsung Galaxy Nexus LTE (SCH-i515), and my go-to app for WiFi tethering since Summer 2012 has been FoxFi. FoxFi originally only had one version, which was free. When activated, it sets up a wireless router instance on your phone. Fortunately, it's pre-set to use 802.11n and WPA2-PSK. All you have to do is accept the default SSID (FoxFi73) or create your own, set the password, activate it, and then connect to that SSID from your tablet/laptop. With an LTE phone and depending on the coverage zone, the speeds are better than a FiOS connection! I was in downtown Miami, FL last October and had download speeds of 28Mbps!

Anyway, FoxFi and its free use was an amazing ride. Some time in November, I received a pop-up when launching the app (after an update) that FoxFi was no longer solely free. You could continue to use the limited free version, which appeared to be on a time-based quota, but you had to restart the connection once you notice that it failed. Alternatively, you could purchase the unlock key to get unrestricted access for $7.

"What about rooting your phone so you don't have to pay anything?" you might ask. To that I answer, I was lazy. Plus, I thought the app was great and it got me out of a crappy internet connection otherwise when I was in Florida, so I went ahead and purchased the full version to support the developer. Fast forward a few months and this week I get a new pop-up every time I open the app that FoxFi is now under the PDAnet umbrella. Version 4.0 of PDAnet, published by June Fabrics, appears to incorporate FoxFi with its USB tethering capability. Anyone who's already purchased the FoxFi unlock can retain the unlimited tethering, but for newbies, the price is now $9.95. Still not a bad price, all things considered; especially since it's a one-time fee. 

If you're like me, and you don't want to have to go through the hassle of rooting your phone to get free tethering, skip a meal and spend the $10 on the app instead. Happy tethering!