updated 11:35 am EDT, Thu August 16, 2007
AirCard 595U at Verizon
Verizon today rolled out Sierra's AirCard 595U adapter, providing computers without a free ExpressCard or PC Card slot the opportunity to use the carrier's faster EVDO Revision A network for Internet access. The external modem is said to take advantage of all the extra speed and averages between 600Kbps and 1.4Mbps in downloads -- enough to download a 1MB file in eight seconds, Verizon esimates. Upload speeds are also much closer in performance than fixed broadband and average between 500-800Kbps, which lets the 595U upload the same file in about 13 seconds.
The USB modem includes a removable battery pack to boost reception strength in borderline access areas and a docking cradle for using the modem regularly at a desk. Verizon supplies the modem with VZManager connection software for Windows 2000, XP, and Vista; Sierra Wireless itself supplies drivers for Mac OS X and other operating systems, though Verizon did not specify whether VZManager was necessary to login to its service. The provider sells the AirCard 595U for $180 with a two-year data plan agreement, which itself costs $60 per month.