updated 10:25 am EDT, Thu June 17, 2010
Clear expands 4G devices to cater to hotspots
Clear today swung attention back to its 4G networking hardware with a particular focus on Macs. The Sierra Wireless-made 4G+ Mobile USB is its first dual 3G and 4G modem to support Macs and gives them an EVDO data connection fallback when 4G coverage is poor or non-existent. It should work with Mac OS X Leopard or later and will cost either $115 outright or $6 a month for a lease.
Routers now include two new options. The Spot 4G is a basic 4G-only mobile router for those that don't plan to leave Clear's coverage, sharing its WiMAX with up to eight other devices over W-Fi. The Spot 4G+ is a rebranding of Sprint's Overdrive with a 3G option and up to five devices sharing the network.
Both are OS-independent and carry different prices to reflect their expanded functions: the Spot 4G costs just $100 up front or $5 on a lease, while the Spot 4G+ costs $225 immediately or $6 per month.
Rates for access depend on how the device will be used and whether it supports 3G. The Spot 4G is the least expensive to use at $45 per month for an on-the-go connection or $65 per month to add home use, while the 3G-capable hardware raises these subscriptions to $61 and $81.