The D-Link SharePort Go III (DIR-510L) is a tiny travel router and charger that lets you wirelessly connect up to 5 devices to a single Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection. Making it even more valuable is its ability to charge up an iPad. And that’s not all it can do.
I was surprised when I first laid eyes on this rounded white box. It’s about the size of a double-thick iPhone 5, and D-Link boasts about how it’s the first portable router using the new and faster 802.11 AC Wi-Fi protocol.
On one of its sides are two USB ports, where you can either plug in a USB device that can be accessed by everything connected to the SharePort, or it can be used to charge any USB devices. One of those USB ports cranks out 1000mA of power, enough to replenish an iPad. The other can charge up an iPhone or any other USB device with 500mA of power. That capability alone is enough to raise a battery-hungry traveler’s eyebrows.
Another cool thing this unit can do is stream video, pictures, documents or music from a connected USB device. When I connected a USB thumb drive full of music, photos, video and Word documents to this little white brick, its DLNA server dutifully served those files to my iPhone and iPad. The files played and displayed well, except some of the video formats, which my Apple devices restricted. It’s not really a file server, but it’s the next best thing.
That feature is fun to play with, but the most important task this SharePort Go III handles is its ability to turn a single Ethernet port into your own private hotspot. It can do the same for a single Wi-Fi connection. These two tricks could save you some money and add considerable convenience in a hotel room.
I tried connecting the SharePort to an Ethernet connection, and it was a cinch to configure it as a hotspot. Suddenly, I could wirelessly connect my iPad, iPhone, and three other devices to this mini-router. I was delighted to see its performance, which was able to give me the maximum Internet speed my broadband connection was capable of — 55.86 Mbps (megabits per second) download, and 5.77 Mbps upload.
This being a dual-mode router, I saw that blazing performance on its 5GHz band. The 2.4GHz band wasn’t quite as fast, but still demonstrated the typical speeds I usually see on its more-crowded frequencies. You can use either band separately or simultaneously.
I was only slightly disappointed that I couldn’t use this box as a repeater, and if you have a wireless broadband modem, not all models are compatible. But those are small nitpicks that didn’t extinguish any of my enthusiasm for the D-Link SharePort Go III.
This is a remarkable little device. For $110, you can have the capability of a state-of-the-art router in a tiny roadworthy package. Its powerful 4000mA battery makes it an absolute necessity for any gadgeteer who travels, and its DLNA server adds to the fun. Overall, I think it’s an excellent value.