Nova Media just did what mobile companies have seemingly been afraid to do over the past six months or so: They made something smaller!

Nova’s Xifi is a portable 3G router and personal Wi-Fi hotspot no larger than a thumb drive. Xifi has a retractable USB plug for drawing power, and a microSD card slot that turns the device into an ad-hoc NAS (Networked Additional Storage) for file sharing from cards up to 32GB in size. Xifi also features browser-based setup so you can configure your hotspot from a smartphone or other mobile device on the go; according to Nova’s Website, you just “plug it in to any USB port, a Battery Pack or ac-adapter and you can establish a mobile WiFi Hotspot immediately.” Bring your own SIM card, of course.

Xifi can handle up to 8 simultaneous hotspot users at up to 54 mbps on its 802.11 b/g WiFi network. That’s not blazing fast by today’s a/b/g/n standards, but neither is the device’s HSPA 14.4/5.76 maximum 3G connection speed. But what you give up in terms of throughput you get back in the way of portability and versatility. the SIM-unlocked Xifi is a quad-band GPRS/EDGE device with triband 3G/UMTS, and weighs a scant 30g. Perfect for your hi-tech backpacking trip around Europe; just imagine what you’ll be able to trade free WiFi for when you hit the hostels in Prague and Interlaaken!

Xifi is available now direct from Nova Media for 150 EUR  – or roughly $237 USD (180 EUR) shipped to the United States.

[Via: 9to5Mac]