Well for a laptop lover like me, this is great news! Dell, HP and Lenovo are to debut laptops that are equipped with wireless broadband
. They've partnered up with Verizon Wireless to provide the hardware necessary to offer users Verizon's Evolution-Data Optimized or EV-DO network service with their laptops. The service allows people to stay continuously connected while on the road and away from phone lines for dial-up access or hotspots, and is currently used a lot by folks like travelling salespeople and so forth. The service is mainly targeted at business users for the time being, but later on this might be expanded to include ordinary punters like you and me.
Lenovo on Monday said that models within its ThinkPad Z Series, which begins shipping next month, will incorporate all the hardware needed to access the EV-DO service, eliminating the use of an add-in card.
Dell and HP, meanwhile, are getting started with external EV-DO cards, which fit into the PC card slot on their notebooks. The two companies are aiming to build in the EV-DO hardware, stating next year.
Dell plans to begin building the hardware directly into its notebooks, which it will be doing some time early next year. The EV-DO service currently costs about $80 per month for unlimited access, but Dell is offering a discounted rate of $60 per month, assuming that you already have one of Verizon's monthly voice plans and agree to a two-year contract.