Novatel Wireless, Inc., a leading provider of wireless data access solutions, and Lucent Technologies, Inc. today announced that they have completed amendments to their joint development and supply agreements for the Merlin U530TM third- generation (3G) Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) wireless PC card modem. The Merlin U530 is a high-speed data device designed to enable mobile users to access the Internet and corporate intranets over mobile networks based on 3G UMTS technology.
Under the agreements, the two companies will collaborate on the continued development and commercial release of the Merlin U530 to mobile operators throughout Europe and Asia. Deliveries of the Merlin U530 to Lucent are scheduled to commence during the fourth quarter of 2003. Novatel Wireless will be one of Lucent’s key suppliers of the products and could receive orders valued at as much as $50 million over an 18-month period depending on customer demand.
The dual-mode (GPRS/UMTS), tri-band (900/1800/2100) Merlin U530 is among the first wireless wide area network (WAN) PC card modems in the market capable of handling wireless data transmissions up to 384 kbps in a mobile environment on a UMTS network. The Merlin U530 was jointly developed by Lucent and Novatel Wireless under an agreement announced in August 2002, and is offered to mobile service providers in conjunction with Lucent’s 3G UMTS mobile high-speed data solutions portfolio.
“The cards from Novatel Wireless combined with Lucent’s end-to-end UMTS high-speed data solutions will enable mobile operators to provide their enterprise customers with secure 3G high-speed data services that can increase productivity, reduce costs and improve customer satisfaction,” said Roger Derrien, vice president for UMTS product development with Lucent’s Mobility Solutions Group. “We look forward to working with Novatel Wireless to meet the growing demand for 3G business solutions.”
“The expansion of our agreement is a significant step as we move from the research and development phase of this initiative into the commercial realm,” said Peter Leparulo, chief executive officer for Novatel Wireless. “By expanding our working relationship with Lucent we can more effectively drive the adoption of high-speed wireless data solutions worldwide.”
Inserted into a laptop computer, the Merlin U530 can provide mobile professionals with wireless access to e-mail, Intranets and corporate databases via 3G UMTS networks with the same level of security and usability that they experience in their office. At speeds up to 384 kbps, the Merlin U530 seamlessly transmits data intensive files such as photos, PowerPoint presentations, AutoCAD files, and streaming audio and video.
UMTS — also known as Wideband CDMA (W-CDMA) — is an advanced and efficient wireless technology being introduced worldwide, and an international 3G standard established by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). UMTS is a spread-spectrum technology designed to support the 3G-evolution needs of Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM), and other wireless network operators.