by Jacqueline Emigh
A Wireless N adapter billed as the smallest on the planet is now available from TRENDnet. Measuring well under one inch across each of its three dimensions, the 150 Mbps Micro Wireless N USB Adapter, model TEW-648UBM, is meant to ease WiFi networking in multiple ways.
For starters, by sticking out less than one-third of an inch from the edge of PC when plugged into the USB port, the miniature WiFi adapter lets you stow a computer with the adapter inside without harming either the adapter or the PC, according to a statement from Trendnet.
The adapter is also the only “product in its class” to come with a WiFi Protected Setup (WPS) button, for connecting to a secure WiFi network without entering the network name and wireless password or encryption key.
WPS router is required
There’s a catch here of course; in order to use the WPS button, you need a router from TRENDnet — or some other manufacture — that also supports WPS.
To connect to the network, you press the WPS button on the router first, before pushing on the button on TRENDnet’s micro adapter and confirming that you want to connect.
A group of vendors known as the WiFi Alliance devised the WPS protocol a few years back to offer a standardized way of connecting to WiFi. Many WiFi routers and access points (APs) produced since about 2008 support WPS, including models from Belkin and Linksys, for instance.
Even if you already have a WiFi adapter, either built into your PC or as a separate device, TRENDnet’s new micro adapter looks as though it could come in handy if you have an older adapter that doesn’t support WPS or Wireless N speeds — and if you don’t mind investing in a newer and more capable router.
As small as Logitech’s Unifying USB receiver
The specific dimensions of TRENDnet’s TEW-648UBM are 0.59 x 0.74 x 0.28 inches. TRENDnet’s micro adapter is about the same size – or maybe even exactly the same size – as Logitech’s Unifying USB receiver.
Priced at merely $39.99. Trendnet’s 150Mbs Micro Wireless N USB Adapter is already shipping.