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Ericsson Intros Mobile Broadband Module

The C 3607w can bring high-speed mobile connectivity to GPS navigators, e-book readers, portable gaming systems, and other electronic devices.

Ericsson is trying to get multiple consumer electronic devices connected to the Internet, and it introduced a broadband module Tuesday that can bring high-speed mobile connectivity to devices like GPS navigators, electronic-book readers, portable gaming systems, and other devices.

The module, called the C 3607w, is about a third the size of Ericsson's previous wireless products, and the company said it consumes about 40% less power. The low power architecture is achieved by decoupling the processor and connectivity design, and the module can achieve downlink speeds of up to 7.2 Mbps.

Ericsson said the module is flexible because it can be used in conjunction with ARM or Atom processors, as well as with multiple operating systems like Android, Windows, or multiple versions of Linux. The company has worked with multiple HSPA providers to ensure the module is pre-approved to run on multiple networks, and this could cut down on time to market. Ericsson said the C 3607w will be commercially available in the first quarter of 2010.

"Our vision is clear: all devices that can be connected will be connected as the technology required for an all-communicating world is now here," said Mats Norin, VP at Ericsson, in a statement. "This module opens a new realm of possibilities and innovation for the consumer electronics industry as they can now easily and cost-effectively integrate the power and speed of mobile broadband in today's and tomorrow's devices."

Consumers are already seeing mobile Internet connectivity become more prolific in devices like netbooks, and Sony recently introduced an e-reader that can use 3G data to browse, buy, and download content on the go. Ericsson's module cannot access CDMA 3G networks though, which may hinder its adoption in the United States because this technology is used by Sprint Nextel and Verizon Wireless. HSPA is used by the majority of operators around the world, and Ericsson described it as the "main track of technology" for the mass market.

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