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Setting up the Huawei E5331 Mobile Wifi with an iPad
on 29 August 2013
The internet speed is good.
Wifi range of the unit is good.
It is very compact.
As it allows several devices to be connected at the same time, you avoid the cost of having multiple SIM cards for multiple devices.
Back cover not easy to remove making frequent SIM card changes difficult.
Instructions are inadequate.
Battery life could be longer but at expense of compactness.
This unit proved a bit of a life saver recently when on a family vacation in northern Italy in a place where there was no internet connection. I purchased a pre-paid SIM card with an internet data allowance from the service provider Three (tre.it in Italy) in Milan on our way there. I had to activate the sim card and configure the unit manually and the enclosed instructions are poor on this aspect. Fortunately, I had wifi internet access in our hotel in Milan to get some external guidance on my iPad. There may be more elegant solutions than this particularly if your sim card is pre-activated but here is what I found and had to do to get it to work on an iPad.
What you get in the box:
Mobile Wifi Unit
What else you will need:
USB charger, USB travel adaptor or a computer with USB power to charge the battery.
Standard SIM card with Pin Code.
The SSID of the unit - this is labelled inside when you take off the back cover.
The wireless key - this is also labelled inside.
What else you may need if your SIM card does not auto activate:
The APN of your service provider - tre.it in my case.
The user name of your service provider - "guest" in my case for tre.it.
The password of your service provider - again "guest" in my case for tre.it.
See this link for a list of APN user names and passwords:
To set up the Huawei E5331 Mobile Wifi with an iPad:
Prise off the back cover. This can be difficult with your bare hands and may break your nails. There is a slot on the edge of the side that is furthest from the power button. I used an old credit card to lever into this slot to get the cover off without damage. Leave the cover off until you are fully up and running.
Make a note of the wireless key labelled inside.
Insert the SIM card - it can only go one way.
Insert the battery - again, there is only one way and it's easy to do.
Power on the unit.
If the battery indicator is red, you need to charge it using the USB cable and a USB charging device.
The Wifi indicator should show green.
The internet signal indicator may show green (activated), orange (weak) or red (not available or activated). Mine showed red.
To configure the unit using an iPad.
Go to the Settings App on the iPad, set the Wifi to the SSID of the unit (Mobile Wifi-8546) in my case.
Enter the wireless key.
Check if you have access to the internet. I did not in my case and the internet indicator was red.
If you have no internet access, go to the browser (Safari on the iPad), enter[...] (the Huawei Web Management Page) in the address bar and hit Go.
You will be asked for a user name. This is "admin". (The instructions do not tell you this).
You will also be asked for a password. This is also "admin". (The instructions do tell you this).
In my case I was prompted to enter the Pin Code for the SIM card. After I did this the internet signal on the unit turned green but I still had no internet access.
The Huawei Web Management Page reported a problem with my service provider profile.
If you get a similar message, go back to the Huawei Web Management Page which is
Again the username is "admin"
The password is "admin"
Select the option DIAL UP. Then the option PROFILE MANAGEMENT.
Create a new profile called what ever name you will recognise your service provider as and enter your service provider APN, User Name and Password as listed in the link above or from another source. In my case I named the new profile tre.it, the APN was tre.it and the User Name and Password were both "guest",
Then select the new profile from the profile name drop down list to set it as the default profile for the unit.
Restart the device by selecting SETTINGS, SYSTEM and REBOOT.
The reboot takes several minutes during which the unit powered down and the iPad wifi connection to the unit was lost and it defaulted to the hotel wifi. I had to re-connect the iPad wifi to the unit and after several more minutes, internet connection was finally established.