Load this bad boy in your backpack and you’ll become a walking hotspot. The Novatel “MiFi” intelligent mobile hot spot, due out in the first half of 2009, will grab either a HSPA or EV-DO 3G data connection and essentially turn itself into a hotspot. But it’s not just a router. What’s most compelling about the MiFi, is that it’s the size of a credit card. And instead of acting simply like a router, it also has at least 100MB of storage on board, which is expandable via a microSD slot. That means you could potentially install applications to personalize the device’s landing page, or store your photos and media on board. It can offer 40 hours of standby and up to 4 hours of use on a full charge. So why would you get MiFi instead of a broadband card? So you can create a hotspot that multiple gadgets and users can take advantage of at once, is our guess. We’ll use the the minivan scenario to explain: the two kids in the backseat play Nintendo DS games against each other while whomever is sitting Shotgun surfs the Net. Novatel told us the MiFi would likely be available through a carrier partner, although one hasn’t been announced yet. A data connection plan for the MiFi could cost as much as a wireless data plan for your smart phone. Carriers may even hike up the data subscription price since it’s possible for more than one user to surf the Web or download at once. Pricing is expected to be under $200, before subsidies. Hey, maybe this is a better solution than embedded 3G in netbooks.