Windows 8 data card coming from ZTE

The Consumer Preview version of Windows 8 is just a couple of days away from coming out to the public but one company is already planning to offer a Windows 8-supported device. Buried in a press release today from ZTE, the company also talked about its new MF668A data card.

The product will use the Mobile Broadband Class Driver that Microsoft developed specifically for Windows 8. It adds:

The data card, which supports RAW IP and high-speed transmission, is based on the new MBIM v1.0 specification, recently approved by the USB-IF, and natively supported in Windows 8 without additional software.

The device is being shown for the first time at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona, Spain. The company did not say when the data card would go on sale nor would it give a price point for the product.

As previously reported, ZTE also has plans to offer a new Windows Phone-based device, the Orbit. The low end smartphone will be one of the first to support the "Tango" software update for Windows Phone which will lower the memory requirements for such phones down to a mere 256 MB.

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9 Comments

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Installing WBB cards on Windows (even Mac) has always been Painful go good on Microsoft/ZTE for this. I wonder if it is backwards compatible with Windows 7 or Mac OS X if you don't have this driver. Portable Hotspots are still easier to use however (Use Built in Wifi).

Simon- said,
Installing WBB cards on Windows (even Mac) has always been Painful go good on Microsoft/ZTE for this. I wonder if it is backwards compatible with Windows 7 or Mac OS X if you don't have this driver. Portable Hotspots are still easier to use however (Use Built in Wifi).

How have they been painful? I have a Sierra Wireless device - download and install the driver, put the USB stick in, wait a few seconds then click on connect. I"M confused, where is the difficulty in that process of steps?

A few years ago I installed Ubuntu on my laptop. Without me doing anything it detected my broadband card and allowed me to connect without any additional software. I am glad to see some standards around how these cards should work, but this is an area where MS has been WAY behind on. Yes, yes, I know you can setup a dial-up connection to use your card now, but that is something only nerds understand.

sphbecker said,
A few years ago I installed Ubuntu on my laptop. Without me doing anything it detected my broadband card and allowed me to connect without any additional software. I am glad to see some standards around how these cards should work, but this is an area where MS has been WAY behind on. Yes, yes, I know you can setup a dial-up connection to use your card now, but that is something only nerds understand.

+1

sphbecker said,
A few years ago I installed Ubuntu on my laptop. Without me doing anything it detected my broadband card and allowed me to connect without any additional software. I am glad to see some standards around how these cards should work, but this is an area where MS has been WAY behind on. Yes, yes, I know you can setup a dial-up connection to use your card now, but that is something only nerds understand.

And where is apple in this?

Far behind or will they release a "revolutionary mobile boraband card that no one has used before" next quarter?

sphbecker said,
A few years ago I installed Ubuntu on my laptop. Without me doing anything it detected my broadband card and allowed me to connect without any additional software. I am glad to see some standards around how these cards should work, but this is an area where MS has been WAY behind on. Yes, yes, I know you can setup a dial-up connection to use your card now, but that is something only nerds understand.

part of the problem though is providers like verizon wanting to use their crappy connection management software..... and making firmwares to stop other software and drivers from talking to the cards... there needed to be a universal spec for ages, sure some people got around a lot of this by writing all in one drivers, but the hardware mfg's where partly at fault also

neufuse said,

part of the problem though is providers like verizon wanting to use their crappy connection management software..... and making firmwares to stop other software and drivers from talking to the cards... there needed to be a universal spec for ages, sure some people got around a lot of this by writing all in one drivers, but the hardware mfg's where partly at fault also


just as was the case for WiFi cards/dongles pre vista (and to some degree XP sp2), although some 3rd part software was usually there preinstalled it was pretty easy to remove and just use the built in WiFi manager.

The worst I've used is the Toshiba WiFi crap, it shows a radar like display for no good reason and makes things complicated in the process.

duddit2 said,

just as was the case for WiFi cards/dongles pre vista (and to some degree XP sp2), although some 3rd part software was usually there preinstalled it was pretty easy to remove and just use the built in WiFi manager.

The worst I've used is the Toshiba WiFi crap, it shows a radar like display for no good reason and makes things complicated in the process.

That is a really good comparison. I started writing about how Win 3.x required custom software to do a IP over PPP dial-up connection but Win95 included that, your analogy is way better :-) My point when I said MS is behind is that they "should" have included this with Vista, but I can forgive that, Vista was so delayed already. Not including it with Win7 was inexcusable. The funny thing is that they half included it. You can access cell-phone broadband over Bluetooth, but not if the card is directly attached to the computer, go figureā€¦

sphbecker said,
A few years ago I installed Ubuntu on my laptop. Without me doing anything it detected my broadband card and allowed me to connect without any additional software. I am glad to see some standards around how these cards should work, but this is an area where MS has been WAY behind on. Yes, yes, I know you can setup a dial-up connection to use your card now, but that is something only nerds understand.

So you did install the unreleased ZTE MF668A data card based on the new MBIM v1.0 specification (recently approved by the USB-IF) on your Ubuntu machine? And you think anyone is going to believe you?