Well, that was short lived. Consumer electronics have a pretty short
life-cycle these days. Even the HTC-build Google
Nexus One only remained
on sale for a few months, and now one of Clear's mobile hotspot devices
has bit the dust. The iSpot was an interesting product from the start.
It was a small 4G pebble that provided access to WiMAX services only,
but there was one other big restriction. It would only work with Apple
devices. MacBook, MacBook Pro, iPad, iPhone, those type of devices.
Basically, it was a WiMAX
device designed specifically for Apple users.
Because of that limitation, it was offered for just $100, with no
contract attached. And then, monthly rates to WiMAX were just $25 per
month (though the access was throttled at 6Mbps down). That's still
extremely cheap for off-contract data, let alone 4G data. But there was a
huge problem: hackers quickly figured out how to bypass the lock that
allowed it to be used only with Apple devices, making it a free-for-all
to be used with any device at all. And also, some reports stated that
the iSpot had trouble connecting with Apple devices. Basically, it feels
like the unit simply wasn't worth the trouble for Clear to keep alive.
Now, over on the Clear Forms, a moderator has made clear that the iSpot
is discontinued, and if you want one you'll have to run on down to a
local Clear retail store and hope they have leftovers in stock. Once
that stock is depleted, none will be ordered again. The company plans to
keep a few around for warranty purposes, but that's about it. Another
one bites the dust, as they say.