A mobile broadband service that equips Dell laptops with mobile phone SIM cards was unveiled Tuesday by TeliaSonera in Sweden.
Telia Connect Card, which provides a range of wireless services, is available now in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, and Finland, a TeliaSonera spokeswoman said. While laptops have been fitted with various mobile wireless features for years, the Telia Connect Card offers 3G/HSPA broadband, which can hit speeds of 7.2 Mbps.
The wireless connection is provided via the ubiquitous SIM card that is universally used by cell phone service providers using the GSM standard. Nearly all European service providers use SIM cards, and the cards are used in the U.S. by AT&T and T-Mobile as well.
The connection requires no additional equipment other than the SIM card, the spokeswoman said.
"This is one of the important major steps in developing the mobile broadband market, both for enterprise and consumer customers," said Kenneth Karlberg, president and head of TeliaSonera's business area mobility services, in a statement. "Now we have really reached the point where you can connect your laptop to the mobile network and surf on the Internet at very much the same speed as with normal broadband access in the fixed network"
Telia Connect Card will automatically switch subscribers between the services available on the card including HSPA (also called turbo-3G in Europe), WCDMA, and EDGE networks.
Telia Connect Card is available on most recently announced Dell laptops, which have been outfitted with optional integrated HSDPA broadband technology. TeliaSonera said it anticipates extending the service next year to other countries in its network service area.