LTE Evolution Program Released For GX400 AT&T HSPA+ Intelligent Gateways

Yesterday Sierra Wireless released an LTE Evolution program for their HSPA+ GX400s that mimics the program that they already have in place for the upgrade of the Verizon Wireless EVDO REV A GX400s to LTE. This brilliant piece of marketing allows a future upgrade to LTE for fee for this option paid up front. It is like buying into the LTE futures market. For clients with money to spend now, but a mandate to move to LTE when it rolls out, this program may fit the bill exactly. The part numbers are below:

1101207 GX400 HSPA+ AT&T and others (incl. AC power cable and 3 year warranty) CANNOT BE UPGRADED
1101276 GX400 HSPA+ AT&T and others (incl. DC power cable and 3 year warranty) CANNOT BE UPGRADED

GX400 UPGRADE READY
1101445 Upgrade Ready GX400 HSPA+ AT&T and others (incl. AC power cable and 3 year warranty)
See here.
1101446 Upgrade Ready GX400 HSPA+ AT&T and others (incl. DC power cable and 3 year warranty)
See here.
GX400 PERFORM UPGRADE
9010112 Upgrade to GX440 LTE AT&T (incl. AC power cable and warranty)

Sierra Wireless Releases The AirLink GX400 For HSPA+

The wait is over for the Sierra Wireless Airlink GX400 for AT&T’s HSPA+ network. The device can be ordered starting September 1st, with the first GX400s shipping out the door on September 30th. What is distinctly missing from this product announcement is the existence of an LTE Upgrade-ready SKU for this device. Sierra Wireless plans on releasing an LTE Evolution program for the HSPA+ GX400 that mimics their offering for the VZW GX400. However, the final details and pricing for the upgrade-ready product are still being worked out and are not published at this time. For more information on the AT&T GX400 that includes photos, visit the USAT ordering portal at http://www.usatcorp.com/proddetail.asp?prod=1101207-AirLink-GX400-HSPA-Plus.
 
The text of the Sierra Wireless AT&T GX400 product brief follows:
 

Product Description:

 

 

Versatility and high-performance for
Mobile and Fixed Environments
One Platform; Many Applications!

 

 

Small, rugged form factor, multiple interfaces and standard GPS provide high-value versatility for nearly any M2M application. With HSPA+ mobile broadband connectivity, versatility and flexibility, the GX400 is designed for use in mobile environments (AVL/tracking, field service, public safety) or fixed/portable settings (industrial, utilities, security, enterprise, point-of-sale). A powerful ARM 11 class micro-processor and the addition of an expansion slot, leave room for growth via support for additional connection or communications options and future technologies.

 

Key Features: GPS standard; HSPA+; ARM11 class processor; expansion slot for extended capabilities; Rugged (hardened aluminum case, e-Mark, IP64 rating, MIL-STD 810-F, Class I
Div
2); remote management

 

Powered by ALEOS embedded intelligence and managed by the AirLink Management Services, the GX400 is
a one device fits all solution that allows customers to deploy and manage the same device for multiple applications, simplifying deployment and management.

 

Key Target Markets
and
Applications:

 





















    Public Safety (Law Enforcement, Fire and Rescue)

o  GX400 installed in
police cruiser and tethered to a rugged laptop. Provides an officer with high-speed, persistent connectivity to vital databases. Enables dispatcher to locate the entire
fleet in real time, improving efficiency and the safety of the community.



    Retail/POS (POS terminals, Vending)

o  GX400 installed in high-end wireless vending machines to monitor inventory and collect
payment. GX400 replaces DSL or Cable and acts as a Big Long Ethernet Cable (BLEC) between remote device and central offices.



   
Field Service (Utilities, Service and Repair)

o  GX400 installed in Utilities service vehicle for 3G mobile data and location. Integrated with 3rd

party tracking application and man-down alarm
for
safety of field service workers.



    Business Continuity (Retail locations and small/temporary office)

o  GX400 integrated with enterprise
router to provide primary or back-up data connectivity for a
retail or office locations. As a back-up provides near 100% up-time, as a primary connection eliminates the need for hard to install wirelines (DSL, Cable, Frame)



    Much, Much More….

o  The versatility of the AirLink GX400 enables it to be deployed in multiple applications in many segments.



Product
Features and
Benefits:

 






ALEOS Session persistence, simple

installation and embedded machine protocols. ALEOS simplifies integration, ensures session persistence and enables comprehensive device
management and control

Remote Management and
Control
Remote

configuration and troubleshooting with the
AirLink suite of management tools Including AirLink Management Services cloud based
remote management tool

HSPA+ With seamless fallback to
HSPA,

EDGE and GPRS

Rugged MIL-STD 810-F; IP64 (dust and

splashing rain);
Class I Div 2 for use in hazardous environments. 3-Year Warranty

ARM 11 Class Processor Faster processing

and room to grow, including new technologies

Status LEDs For easy network validation -

visible from the front and top of the device

Multiple Ports High Speed 10/100 RJ-45

Ethernet, USB on-the-go and DB-9 Serial

Mounting Flanges
No need for brackets,

mounts easily in trunk, under dash, etc.

Antenna Connectors RF = SMA, GPS =

SMA (active), Rx Diversity = SMA. Rx Diversity
provide optimal performance in
fringe areas

Digital I/O For vehicle sensors and dignostics

integrated with power connector

Expansion Card slot Enables

segment/application expansion through HW

changes

Security On-board SSL IPsec VPN client;

GRE Tunneling, MAC address filtering; IP

filtering; Port filtering, SSH, HTTPS

 

Ordering and Pricing:

 






Product Description

SKU

List Price

AT&T GX400 HSPA+
With AC
Adapter

1101207

$649 USD

AT&T GX400 HSPA+
With DC
Cable

1101276

$649 USD

 

Accessories:

 






Product Description

SKU

List Price

Antenna, Cellular Penta Band

(850/900/1800/1900/2100 MHz), Dipole (SMA)

120-110-2207

$25

Antenna, Tri Band -  PCS, Cellular & GPS, SMA,

Perm. Mount, 15 (CDMA)

120-110-2101

$120

Antenna, PCS, Cellular & GPS, SMA, Unity Gain

Magnetic Mount, 15 (CDMA)

120-110-2106

$135

SMA to TNC Antenna Connection Adapter (SMA

on Modem side - TNC Antenna side)

511-101-0024

$15

ENET Cable Straight Yel 3′

120-140-2050

$10

DB9 Serial Cable 6 Ft

120-140-2000

$10

DB9 Serial Cable 25 Ft

120-140-2001

$15

USB Cable, USB A/M,
MICRO B - 6′
Black

2000381

$10

AT&T Sierra Wireless GX400 HSPA+ Due Shipping In October

The long-awaited Sierra Wireless AirLink GX400 for the AT&T HSPA+ network is due to ship in October. The device, will, in areas that AT&T has rolled HSPA+ out, attain some very impressive uplink and downlink speeds AND fall back seemlessly to HSUPA, EDGE, and GPRS where HSPA+ is not yet available. In addition, of course, HSPA+ will be able to support Static IPs, which at this writing LTE cannot. For those who are interested in using HSPA+ as a stop-gap network on your way to AT&T LTE, Sierra Wireless will be offering the same type of LTE Evolution upgrade program for the GX400 HSPA+ as was offered for the VZW model. For more information about this program visit: http://www.usatcorp.com/products/Sierra-Wireless-AirLink-GX400.asp.

October Release Planned For Toughbooks With AT&T LTE

A tentative release date of October has been set by Panasonic for select Toughbooks with AT&T LTE 4G wireless modules integrated inside. All 4G Toughbooks will contain MIMO antennas inside the case. There is not a dock option that will allow MIMO functionality to pass thru to an external antenna at this time.

No Static IP for VZW LTE–New Timeline Is Q4 2011

For those of you, who, like me, are waiting for VZW to make Static IPs available for the LTE network, the wait just became longer. The new word from VZW is that Q4 2011 is when Static IPs will be made available for LTE. When I think about it, the double NATing that is inherent in LTE poses quite a problem. I hope that the greatest minds at Verizon wireless are working on this, because corporate users cannot do without a Static IP. On our test-bench, we have tried a DNS name work-around for some applications and met with no success.

Sierra Wireless AirLink GX400–An Insider's Guide

At CTIA in April, Sierra Wireless announced their new intelligent gateway platform, formally code-named Sharks, now officially named the Sierra Wireless Airlink GX400. I must editorialize here, and mention that I am disappointed that Sierra Wireless has made a departure from the former AirLink naming convention, which was word-based, and moved into the generic alpha-numeric format. A quick search of  the product name GX400 on Google turns up a Dell computer and a Honda car. Thus, the term GX400 is going to be difficult to brand as a Sierra Wireless intelligent cellular gateway. I vote that they immediately change the name to the Eagle. The ALEOS operating system on the GX400 soars, so Eagle would have been apt.

The feature set of the GX400 is an interesting amalgam of features from the Sierra Wireless Raven X and the Pinpoint X. This device has both the serial and the Ethernet ports of these devices, as well as the built-in GPS receiver of the PinPoint X. For clients who are streamlining their IT standards list for wireless telecommunications, and would like a single platform that can handle M2M and Automatic Vehicle Location (AVL) applications,  than this is the one. In addition, it is significantly less expensive than the Pinpoint X and much less expensive than the MP–both entries in the AVL space that Sierra Wireless has been very successful with. So why won’t every end-user jump ship from the PinPoint and the MP to the GX400 then? Well, the GX400 does not, at least at this time, have an option to integrate an WIFI access point inside the device, as the MP series does. And the GX400 also does not currently have any i/o telematics ports to offer, so setting up triggers with the GX400 is not possible at this time. As you may have noticed, I am being careful to use time qualifiers when discussing the feature set of the GX400 and comparing the feature set of the GX400 with the Pinpoint and the MP. This caution is due to the fact that the GX400 does have an expansion slot. It is my strong belief that Sierra Wireless will soon be announcing the availability of a wireless LAN module for the GX400, and with WIFI in the expansion slot, this functionality would make the device more on-par with the MP. However, please not, this expansion module has NOT been released yet. See more about the Sierra Wireless GX400 specifications at http://www.usatcorp.com/products/Sierra-Wireless-AirLink-GX400.asp

Currently, the VZW GX400 is the first to market, and this device is shipping at this time. Sprint will be next to market, and the AT&T device will be last to market (I hear that it is still being certified on the AT&T network at this time).

As in interesting marketing ploy, (which is also useful for clients that are very interested in rapid adoption of the GX400 platform), Sierra Wireless has announced that clients that buy  a special “upgrade-ready” version of the 3G GX400 today can upgrade to the 4G GX400 anytime prior to 12/31 2011. The upgrade program is not entirely a giant cash-saver and is not entirely high on the convenience meter, as the upgrade requires a $290 investment to perform this upgrade AND a trip back to Sierra Wireless to perform the upgrade. However, it still offers a viable upgrade path that will, ultimately appeal to a select set of enterprise users who need to deploy today, but want future flexibility. And, Sierra Wireless in the interim is able to announce that they have made the first LTE intelligent gateway available to the marketplace. For a complete description of the GX400 3G to LTE Upgrade Program program, you can navigate to http://www.usatcorp.com/pdf/Sierra_Wireless_AirLink_GX400_Upgrade_Program.pdf

In closing, for those Raven X, XT, XE users who are still jittery about rapid obsolescence about their device of choice, (since Sierra Wireless for a short period of time announced the upcoming end-of-life of the Raven in 2010), fear not. The Raven is still on the roadmap for 2011 and 2012 as well.