Sierra Wireless Debuts 4G LTE Mobile Hotspots: MWC

The AirCard 76xS mobile hotspot product family supports up to 10 simultaneous WiFi connections.

BARCELONA, Spain €” Sierra Wireless unveiled its newest family of AirCard mobile hotspots for 4G Long-Term Evolution (LTE) networks, following the release of the AirCard 754S. The new AirCard 760S, AirCard 762S and AirCard 763S offer several feature enhancements, including an improved user interface, longer battery life and expanded frequency-band support across the product family, providing variants compatible with most common frequency-band combinations around the world. The company said the mobile hotspots are expected to launch in select markets in North America, Australia, Asia and Europe over the next couple of months.

The AirCard 76xS mobile hotspot product family supports up to 10 simultaneous WiFi connections. The company claims that on a 4G LTE network it provides sufficient bandwidth to handle demanding applications like online gaming and streaming media. There is no software to install, and device settings can be managed through a Web browser. Once setup is complete, users can also connect devices; the WiFi Protected Setup (WPS) button can securely connect a device without requiring a keyboard or large screen.

"Our new generation of AirCard mobile hotspots has been built to make the user experience even better," said Dan Schieler, senior vice president of mobile computing for Sierra Wireless. "We listened to customer feedback and have incorporated new and improved features to make our hotspots even easier to use, and the fastest way to keep all your WiFi-enabled devices connected while on the move. We are looking forward to several network launches for these devices in the coming months."

Sierra Wireless AirCard mobile hotspots sport user-friendly display screens, which provide the device information needed to connect and monitor the hotspot network connection and battery life. The new AirCard 76xS product family expands this user interface with the addition of a navigation button that scrolls through additional screens, providing access to messages and alerts, firmware status and more detailed device information directly from the device itself without logging in to the Web interface. This enhancement is designed to save users time and make it easier to use the hotspot with devices that may not have a standard Web browser, such as WiFi-enabled cameras or mobile gaming devices.

Noting that high bandwidth often requires high power, the AirCard 76xS product family comes standard with a 2,000 milliampere-hour (mAh) battery, expected to improve battery life by approximately 30 percent, according to a company release. For heavy users, an extended battery (3,600mAh) will be available as an accessory purchase.

Other accessories available with the AirCard 76xS product family include a desktop-charging cradle, an external MIMO antenna and the AirCard Hub. The AirCard Hub, new from Sierra Wireless and sold separately, turns a mobile hotspot into a small office or residential gateway. It allows users to create a network at home or in the office, connecting up to 20 devices at once, between WiFi and Ethernet, to use the 4G LTE connection. The external MIMO antenna, also sold separately, offers an extra reception boost for users in areas with lower 4G LTE signal strength.