They say moving house is in the top ten of the most stressful things in life. Moving your Internet connection along with it is definitely in the social media addict’s top three. There are tons of horror stories from people disconnected for weeks after moving house, so I thought I would prepare well. I notified my Internet Service Provider (ISP) three weeks in advance and was horrified when I noticed that I had no TV or internet right after I moved in. I didn’t mind the fact so much that I didn’t have gas or warm water either, because Internet is my primary living condition.
One phonecall to my ISP told me that they never registered the fact that I moved house, so I had to run through the moving process by phone again. They said they were very sorry and promised me I would be back online in three working days. While three days is better than three weeks, it makes your evenings (that also include no television) quite an uncommon experience. I still had a pile of unread Wired Magazines but after reading for a few hours, I really wanted to check my e-mail.
There were no unprotected wireless networks in my new neighborhood, so I checked my e-mail on my Nokia N95. I have a fairly cheap (but slow) unlimited access plan but browsing the web and keeping up with your feeds and replying to e-mail is still something I would rather do on my laptop than on my phone. Enter the solution from Finland: Joikuspot.
JoikuSpot is a free and secure mobile software solution that turns Nokia Smartphones to WLAN HotSpots.
With JoikuSpot, you can connect your laptops and iPods to the internet easily and securely using your mobile phone’s 3G internet connection. You can carry the internet in your pocket, and will always have a secured personal Wi-Fi HotSpot on-the-go!
The company is on a mission:
The Joiku-vision is to liberate mobile internet everywhere on this planet through Mobile Wi-Fi HotSpots.
JoikuSpot currently only works with Symbian S60v3 hardware like the popular Nokia N95 and only supports the HTTP and HTTPs protocols. This is the main drawback from Joikuspot because it means you cannot check your (desktop) e-mail, which relies on the IMAP or SMTP protocol. You can check your webmail which (hopefully) uses the supported secure HTTPs protocol, but you may have to configure your browser to support automatic proxy detection. Everything is documented really well in the help PDF on their website, so setting up Joikuspot shouldn’t be a problem.
Within five minutes my MacBook was connected again, however the connection is not always stable. Sometimes it dies after a few minutes and loading pages is painfully slow. This is very likely due to my cheap and low bandwidth dataplan with my telephone provider, and I should probably go looking for a new text based browser to use in this setting.
Joikuspot definitely helped me endure my offline moving experience by providing me with the necessary online access to look up phone numbers of do-it-yourself stores, plan Google Maps trips to the nearest good restaurants, and stay in touch with inquiring friends and family as to how everything went.
Joikuspot seems to be planning to support more protocols in the future and I think the application would really benefit from it.