OQO ultra mobile PC gets HSDPA option

Posted by Wolfgang Gruener

London (UK) - OQO today added a new model to it product lineup, now offering HSDPA mobile broadband in addition to the already available EV-DO option. But don’t get too excited just yet: The new “world broadband” device will not be sold in the U.S.

The new “e2” is the fourth OQO 02 version and the first that will be exclusively available to customers in Asia and Europe. The device’s mobile broadband module supports UMTS/HSDPA at 2100 MHz (it was unclear whether the chip also supports 850 MHz and 1900 MHz) and is and is downward compatible with GPRS/EDGE networks at 900 MHz and 1800 MHz, the manufacturer said. The maximum download speed is rated 3.6 MB/s.

The e2 will be offered in the same configuration as the 02 in the U.S. and will be available with a “choice of connectivity options, including tri-band wide-area wireless, WiFi 802.11a/b/g and Bluetooth 2.0,” OQO said. Pricing starts at £1100 (about $2230).

While the HSDPA UMPC is sold in a SIM-free and network unlocked version, it is surprising to us that OQO decided not to offer this model in the U.S., especially when we consider that the company is stressing that the system is targeted at “individuals and enterprise users around the world [who] are demanding access to all their information and applications wherever they go.” Choices for U.S. users who are interested in a mobile-broadband capable OQO 02 are limited to EV-DO from Verizon and Sprint – and solutions that aren’t supported in most parts of the world: According to 3G Americas, 2.86 billion cellphone and mobile broadband users are currently subscribing to a GSM/UMTS – based network, while the CDMA-base is estimated at about 386 million users.