Kicking off the release of a new series of adapters, Sierra Wireless today unveiled the Apex 880. The USB adapter is smaller and sleeker than earlier AirCard devices but manages to support a full HSUPA connection; users on AT&T's upcoming network and other carriers can download as quickly as 7.2Mbps in peak conditions but also upload at 2Mbps when supported. This and normal HSPA work on all three supporting bands across the world; legacy EDGE and GPRS support four bands for wider roaming.
The modem joins the latest generation of these modems and includes a microSD slot to shuttle information from a cellphone or between computers without requiring a second adapter. Additional built-in storage contains the drivers needed to install the device and will install themselves the first time the Apex is plugged in. Mac OS X, Windows 2000, and later systems are supported out of the box for the Apex, which is expected to ship by January but whose price will likely depend on individual carriers and their service plans.