United Online, a provider of consumer products and services over the Internet, and Clearwire, a provider of 4G wireless broadband services in the U.S., announced their five-year wholesale agreement.
The new agreement enables the availability of 4G mobile broadband service under the NetZero brand name via the Clearwire 4G mobile broadband network in 2012.
“NetZero has been delivering high quality, free and value-priced Internet access since 1998, and we believe this deal with Clearwire will give us the ability for the first time to bring affordably-priced, 4G high-speed mobile broadband service with 6 mbps to 10 mbps speed to the masses,” said Mark R. Goldston, chairman, president and chief executive officer of United Online, in a statement.
The partnership enables customers to access the service by buying either a NetZero USB modem to connect a single device, or purchasing a NetZero personal hotspot that can connect up to 8 Wi-Fi enabled devices.
The NetZero 4G mobile broadband service is expected to offer an affordable Internet connection across the U.S. within the Clearwire 4G network coverage area.
“NetZero is well known for extending the availability of Internet services to new customer segments and we are pleased to help them expand their product lineup into the mobile broadband market,” said Don Stroberg, senior vice president of Strategic Partnerships & Wholesale at Clearwire.
“The Clearwire 4G mobile broadband network offers benefits to numerous businesses in a range of industries. Soon, NetZero customers will have the freedom to connect with the people, information and services that matter most while on the go anywhere within the Clearwire 4G network coverage area,” Stroberg added.
Clearwire's 4G high-speed mobile broadband network will be similar to Wi-Fi but without the short-range limitations. Clearwire's network offers average mobile download speeds of up to 6 mbps. Its 4G network is available in more than 70 cities across the U.S. including 35 of the top 40 markets covering areas where approximately 130 million people live.
Recently, Clearwire and Locus Telecommunications announced a new agreement that will enable Locus to add prepaid 4G mobile broadband service, through Clearwire's 4G networks. The prepaid 4G service via Clearwire's 4G network is slated to be available to consumers later in 2011.
Rajani Baburajan is a contributing editor for MobilityTechzone. To read more of Rajani's articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Jennifer Russell