New Cradlepoint CTR500 3G WiFi Router Released (I Gots One)


When I departed Sling, I reluctantly returned my their Cradlepoint MBR1000. Instead of immediately replacing the 3G WiFi router at Dash, I hung tight a few weeks knowing a new model was in the pipeline. And today my CTR500 ($170) arrived, overnighted from the 3GStore. Like the MBR1000, this model will share the 3G data connectivity of a USB or ExpressCard modem to create an local Internet-connected WiFi network. Unlike the MBR1000, this unit is much more compact and doesn’t have three antennas to get mangled within my backpack. A drop in speed and coverage from the N-spec to 802.11g should be inconsequential for my specific usage at shows and in hotels. Speaking of those shows… At Sling I often had a need for more than one Ethernet jack to hardwire multiple devices, while my laptop and the Dash Express GPS (GPRS & WiFi) can now be completely fed over wireless – so the CTR500’s one Ethernet jack (toggle between incoming or outgoing connections), versus the MBR1000’s four, will be sufficient. Fortunately we managed to survive both TECHcocktail and GSP East with a comparatively pedestrian Belkin WiFi router these last few weeks, but I’m a firm believer in redundancy and Cradlepoint has been rock solid.

11 thoughts on “New Cradlepoint CTR500 3G WiFi Router Released (I Gots One)”

  1. I’ve always wanted one of these, as I currently have a USB broadband adapter as well. Can’t live without it these days.

    Are you satisfied with the speed that you get from this router?

  2. So far, so good. The MBR1000 was rock solid and I expect similar from this model, though probably not as fast and reduced range. In setup and testing yesterday, worked fine throughout my apt.

  3. Looks cool and it seems to work with my Centro. Does anyone know if you could be online and take/make calls when a Sprint 3G phone is hooked up via USB cable?

  4. Is it possible to use this to play games over Xbox Live in the U.S. My best friend is a trucker and with the wifi at truck stops you must sign in and use a password so they won’t work with his xbox. Thanks!

  5. I bought an MBR1000 and a Sprint USB for use at a trade show at the Anaheim convention center. I was just a few days before the release of this new Cradlepoint device.

    At the tradeshow, I could lease a shared T1 drop for the 4-day duration of the show at $1200.

    Or the MBR1000 at a fixed cost of about $300, plus 12 months at $60 equal $1020 over a year.

    At the convention center, we consistently got about 2Mbps, greater than T1.

    We bought the devices just before the show, so we had never configured or even unboxed them before the weekend setup before the show. The Sprint USB (a Sierra wireless device) comes with self-installing software, so I had it up and running on my laptop pretty quickly.

    My technical lead smiled a wry grin when he looked at the MBR1000 and the USB stick and commented that there was no way that this thing would work out of the box.

    He plugged in the MBR1000, the USB stick into it, and the network cable to his Linux laptop, and said:

    “F*)%ing a… this thing works!!! Beautiful”.

    Plus when he started diving into the admin features of the router he was thrilled to see lots of options normally found on more advanced equipment.

    It really was amazing to have that sort of speed (not shared) available for the show. At night, I popped the USB out, took it back to my hotel, and avoided the $12.95/night wi-fi charges. and were terrific in helping me select options and getting the equipment to me for the show.

    Dave, thanks for your comments a couple of weeks ago as well. The MBR1000+USB modem solved a historically pita problem for us.


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