Nokia tablet to use US carrier's WiMax network

US carrier Sprint Nextel's new ultrafast cellular data network is getting some support from Nokia, which is going to launch a web-browsing 'tablet' for the WiMax network as it goes live this summer, an Associated Press report said.

The Associated Press report said Nokia's Web tablet, which features a 4.1-inch touch screen and a slide-out keyboard, is likely to join a tiny laptop from ASUSTek Computer as the first gadgets that can use the network, in addition to laptop cards and desktop modems.

Nokia previously announced its intention to make a WiMax tablet, but provided specifics for the first time, the report said.

The tablet will be a modified version of Nokia's N810 model, with a slight bulge on the back for the WiMax antenna.

Nokia president Mark Louison said the price would be similar to the N810, which sells for $439 on Nokia's web site.

Contrary to usual practices in the US wireless industry, Nokia will be selling the devices, rather than the carrier, the report also said.

Activation for Sprint's network will happen in much the same way people buy access to commercial Wi-Fi hotspots. If WiMax becomes available in the area, the tablet will notify the owner that it has picked up a signal, the report further said.