Sprint Launches Dell-made 3G/4G Netbook, Notebook

CHICAGO -- Sprint Nextel Tuesday unveiled dual-mode 3G/4G-embedded netbook and notebook computers, both made by Dell, at the 4G World conference here.

The devices are considered the first such dual mode devices to be announced by a national wireless carrier.

The new offerings include the Windows 7 Starter-based Dell Inspiron Mini 10 netbook that is free of charge -- after a $100 rebate and the signing of a new two year service agreement with Sprint. Sprint also unveiled a Dell Inspiron 11z notebook computer that runs Windows 7 Home Premium and sells for $149.99 after a $100 rebate and the signing of a two-year agreement for Sprint service.

Both devices will go on sale on Nov. 14 at Sprint stores and on Sprint.com, the company said.

Sprint's 3g/4G service plan is priced at $59.99 a month for unlimited 4G data and 5 GB of 3G data.

Since it launched its 4G service in 2008, Sprint has brought out 15 devices, 11 of which are currently available. Most of the products include USB modems to use with laptops, along with the Overdrive mobile hotspot that provides Wi-Fi access to five devices over WiMax .

Sprint today also announced it has partnered with AirStrip Technologies to provide a remote hospital patient monitoring application on the HTC Evo 4G and Samsung Epic 4G devices. With the application, doctors can wirelessly monitor patient data such as a woman's contractions prior to giving birth and the heartbeat of her baby.

The benefit of using 4G wireless is that doctors can quickly access data going back eight hours in a single view. A prior version on 3G only allowed up to four hours to be accessed.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen , or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed . His e-mail address is mhamblen@computerworld.com .

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