ICT big-hitters back Mobile Broadband standard

Sixteen IT and mobile companies have come together to endorse an initiative to found a new category of always-connected ‘mobile broadband’ devices. The initiative aims to free WiFi-enabled notebook and laptop PCs from the necessity of working within range of hotspots.

Under the auspices of the GSM Association, the first phase unites mobile operators, PC manufacturers, and chipset providers to pre-install Mobile Broadband into a range of notebook PCs that will be ready to ‘switch on and surf straight out of the box in 91 countries’, according to the GSMA. Launch participants include 3 Group, Asus, Dell, ECS, Ericsson, Gemalto, Lenovo, Microsoft, Orange, Qualcomm, Telefónica Europe, Telecom Italia, TeliaSonera, T-Mobile, Toshiba, and Vodafone.

The GSMA has created a Mobile Broadband service mark, for consumers to identify Mobile Broadband-ready devices. Integrating Mobile Broadband into notebook PCs is the first step in a wider strategy to deliver wireless Internet access and management to a range of devices, from cameras and MP3 players to refrigerators, road vehicles, and set-top boxes, the GSMA adds.

Mobile Broadband offers “freedom from hot spots, freedom from complexity and freedom from security concerns," insists GSMA CMO Michael O’Hara. "We expect to see on several hundred thousand [Mobile Broadband-compliant] notebooks in the shops by the holiday season.”

More information:
www.gsma.org

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