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Novatel 3G modem coming, supports MacBook Air

updated 04:40 pm EDT, Thu May 15, 2008

MBA-Friendly 3G for Sprint

Sprint will soon sell a Novatel 3G modem that properly supports the MacBook Air's USB opening, if a spec sheet for the device obtained by Phone Arena proves accurate. The US carrier is reportedly set to launch the as-yet unannounced Novatel U680, an extra-thin USB modem which is explicitly compatible with the Air's slot. Novatel's device would support Sprint's faster EVDO Revision A network and is labeled in the leak as a "zero install" adapter that automatically loads drivers for most operating systems. Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows would all be served by the device.

The information supplied along with the leak also point to a near-term release for the U680, with business customers getting first access on June 11th followed by a wider release on June 15th. Novatel's equipment will purportedly sell for $250 without any contract but should be discounted to as low as $100 after signing up for a two-year data plan.

Sprint's angled 595U broadband adapter from Sierra Wireless and the mini, USB-based Compass, introduced by Sierra earlier this year, already support the MacBook Air's opening; Sprint also rolled out improved Mac Connection Manager software at CTIA with GPS support and other features.

by MacNN Staff



  1. mbdude

    Joined: Dec 1969


    u680 is NOT from novatel

    the u680 is likely to be the FRANKLIN CDU680 that is already sold for use on sprint EVDO network... just not by sprint (yet)

    fyi, sprint already has an EVDO usb modem that works with MacBook Air -- its the Compass 597.

  1. EVDOguy

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Yes, it is the Franklin CDU680, which is already sold to be used on Sprint.

    FYI, the Compass 597 does indeed fit and work great on a MacBook Air.

    Also, the Franklin CDU680 fits the MacBook Air, BUT it cannot rotate upright, like it can on all other laptops.

  1. mbdude

    Joined: Dec 1969


    more MBA info

    found a cool site showing lots of macbook air modem options ->

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