HP Will Ship Gobi-Enabled Notebooks

Qualcomm's MDM1000 Gobi chipset, launched last October, enables high-speed connectivity on both CDMA200 EV-DO and UMTS HSPA networks on a single platform, letting customers connect to both networks from both GSM carriers like AT&T and Sprint that operate on the HSPA network and others like Verizon on the CDMA.

The dual-connectivity will give customers the ability to choose a notebook first, and then a network, giving them greater flexibility in purchasing hardware. Firmware is loaded dynamically from the notebook, allowing mobile workers to switch between networks while in the field or traveling both nationally and internationally.

"For the reseller channel this is great because they can sell one product that works with all of the North American operators," said Harold Merkel, Manager of Strategic Marketing, HP Personal Systems Group.

Merkel said the technology is not available in its current product lines but will be introduced in new models which are expected to launch mid-year.

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"This is a solution for all segments of business users ," Merkel said. "It's really for the small SMB customers who have unmanaged IT, but also for medium size and enterprise customers. It spans all segments."

Resellers can target vertical markets with mobile workforces or those that require travel including the insurance industry, public service, public safety officials like police and firemen who use WAN networks. "People who need to be connected on the go or have a mobile office working out of their car, that's where this will be compelling," Merkel said.

"[Also], we think this is going to be really attractive to multi-national companies that are appearing in several countries. One of the issues they have today is that they have to have individual solutions per country. If you're a global company like Shell or Coca Cola and you want to manage your IT and standardize, this is a great solution for them," he said.