Netgear teamed with Ericsson to make a 3G mobile broadband router, the Netgear MBRN3300E, that incorporates Ericsson broadband HSPA modules. The router lets users connect multiple devices that are WiFi and HSPA-compatible and sends the traffic over an HSPA 3G connection.
According to Mats Norin, vice president of mobile broadband modules at Ericsson, the router can be used as a replacement or complement to fixed connectivity such as DSL. "In many rural areas, copper line performance is bad and HSPA connectivity is faster than DSL," Norin said.
The Netgear modem works in 850 MHz, 950 MHz, 1.9 MHz and 2.1 MHz spectrum, and is interoperable with many different carriers and USB mobile broadband modems. Bob Burke, service provider marketing manager at Netgear, said the company does not currently have an operator deal. However, both companies envision selling the router standalone and bundled with an operator's service contract. Burke said besides selling the device to small businesses or home users as an alternative to DSL or cable modem service, he believes that transportation companies (trains, buses and the like) will be interested in the product because of its mobility aspect.
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