updated 01:15 pm EST, Tue February 17, 2009
Novatel HSPA+ modems
At Mobile World Congress on Tuesday, Novatel Wireless announced it will soon release the Ovation MC996D USB modem. The adapter is Novatel's first capable of accessing HSPA+ data networks and reaches download speeds of up to 21.6Mbps and 5.76Mbps in uploads, or about three times faster than current 3G networks. The modem operates on the 900MHz and 2,100MHz frequencies, allowing users to access the Internet from most places around the world outside of North America. The device doubles as a data storage device, supporting microSDHC memory cards up to 32GB in size.
The MC996D ships with an automatic install connection manager that lets users of at least Windows systems setup the modem without drivers. No mention of Mac support is made, though the company typically supports OS X systems. Release dates and pricing information for the new Ovation are also unavailable, though companies such as O2 Germany are expecting to launch HSPA+ service later this year.