AT&T offers Mac-compatible BroadBandConnect USB modem

Users of AT&T’s cellular phone and data service will soon have a Mac-compatible alternative to connect online without using a PC Card or ExpressCard slot. Sierra Wireless and AT&T on Wednesday announced that its AirCard 875U USB modem will be available through AT&T beginning May 7, 2007, at prices starting at $49.99.

The counterpart to Sierra Wireless’ AirCard 875 LaptopConnect card, the USB device provides tri-band UMTS/HSDPA capability, making it possible to connect to mobile broadband networks worldwide with data speeds up to 3.6 megabits per second download. It works at slower speeds where HSDPA isn’t available, as well.

The AirCard 875U has an internal antenna and can connect directly to a USB port or use an included docking cradle. Sierra Wireless makes an alternate version for networks that employ the EV-DO Rev A communications protocol instead.

Customers who buy the USB modem will be able to download from Sierra Wireless’ Web site a free client to enable it to work on the Mac, AT&T said.

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