D-Link on Monday announced its Mobile Wireless Routers, a new line of devices designed to provide WiFi-equipped computers with a connection to the Internet using a 3G mobile broadband wireless card.
The first model is shipping now for $299.99.
The Mobile Wireless Routers feature a card bus slot that works with cards from leading cell phone vendors that provide access to EV-DO, UMTS or HSDPA cell phone data networks. The router then shares that signal using IEEE 802.11g-compliant WiFi access, so notebooks, PCs or other WiFi-equipped devices within range can communicate wirelessly on the Internet without having to depend on their own mobile broadband cards.
The DIR-450 is available initially; that model is designed to work on EV-DO networks. Compatible cell service carriers in the U.S. include ACS Wireless, Alltel, Cellular South, Embarq, Sprint and Verizon Wireless. The DIR-450 is compatible with mobile broadband access cards made by Kyocera, Novatel and Sprint, and also works with certain Audivox, Kyocera and Samsung phone models.
D-Link also plans to release the DIR-451 — a UMTS/HSPDA-compliant model — later this quarter, with pricing to be announced at that time. That device will be compatible with networks used by Orangenet, Vodafone, Exelcom and Maxis, Cingular, T-Mobile, Celcom and Globe. Compatible broadband access cards include models from Novatel Wireless, Option Wireless, Sierra Wireless and Sony Ericsson.
Both devices features WEP, WPA and WPA2 support, and feature SPI and NAT firewalls for security. They sport four-port 10/100 baseT switched Ethernet ports. They also support Universal Plug and Play, feature an integrated Web interface for configuration, and supports Network Time Protocol (NTP).
System requirements call for Mac OS X v10.3 or later, and various versions of Windows.