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Sprint's new Tri-Network Hotspot capable of data three-way

4G LTE, WiMax, and 3G in one? Sprint's Tri-Network Hotspot may not look sexy, but it's got some smooth moves.

Tri-Network Hotspot
It doesn't look like much, but this baby's got smooth moves.
Jessica Dolcourt/CNET

LAS VEGAS--Its anvil shape may not inspire you to slip it in your pocket, but Sprint's Tri-Network Hotspot, made by Sierra Wireless, gets more than a few things right.

First and most importantly, the device can switch not just among 4G and 3G network sources, but also between LTE and WiMax. That will theoretically increase your chances of getting 4G speeds when you travel, though the hot spot will also fall back on 3G (EV-DO) when 4G is scarce.

Second, that height isn't just for show. It conceals a 3,600mAh battery, which is good news for road warriors who rely on hot spots for frequent or long-term use. It sounds like just the thing I needed, in fact, for some of this CES blogging. Because of its heft, it is definitely a worker bee's tool.

Unfortunately, LTE wasn't flipped on at CES, so we'll need to test hot-spot speeds and stamina in the wild.

The Tri-Network Hotspot will support up to eight devices, and it has 32GB in storage space. Pricing and availability are still up in the air for this and Sprint's other two devices, the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and the LG Viper.