Novatel Wireless today introduced the Merlin for GPRS Wireless PC Card Modem. The PC card modem provides Windows and Mac OS-compatible laptop computers with wireless Internet access using the GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) standard, much like a similar product announced today by Xircom Inc.
The unit is designed to work on the United States GPRS Network frequency, 1900MHz. GPRS is a high-speed wireless data transmission technology that overlays the GSM voice network. The Novatel product provides wireless data communication with transmission speeds up to 56Kbps.
Novatel Wireless CEO John Major says that support of GPRS is enabling his company to enter into the global arena.
“GPRS technology, which leverages the global reach of GSM networks, is designed with global roaming in mind,” said Major. “Mobile professionals will have the ability to access their data regardless of which country they are traveling within.”
The Merlin for GPRS Wireless PC Card Modem is currently in beta testing. Its release schedule and pricing were not announced, but Novatel Wireless noted that it will be “priced competitively with other wireless Type II card modems.”
The Merlin for GPRS Wireless PC Card Modem will function with Type II PC card slot-equipped Macs running Mac OS 8 or higher.