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UK Mobile Broadband Modems Hit Problems on Mac OS X Snow Leopard

Posted: 12th Nov, 2009 By: MarkJ
mobile broadband logoApple's latest Mac Operating System (OS) software, 10.6 Snow Leopard, is causing serious problems with many of the USB Modems (Dongles) used by most of the UK's five main Mobile Broadband operators. That is despite Snow Leopard having been around for a good couple of months, which should have been enough time to fix any problems.

The issue apparently relates to a lack of updated driver software and mostly affects Huawei (China) based modems, such as the E169G used by Three (3) , the rebranded E170 used by T-Mobile and the E160 on O2 . Indeed much of the blame is being placed at Huawei's feet for failing to write good software and not acknowledging the obvious compatibility problems in time.

Mercifully Electricpig reports that Orange is taking matters into its own hands and is writting custom software for the modems. Meanwhile Vodafone has just this week issued updated code to correct the problem, which can be downloaded HERE. Sadly other operators are being somewhat less proactive.

So, if you have Snow Leopard installed and plan on using a USB Mobile Broadband Modem, make sure to contact your chosen operator first to check for compatibility. Note that issues like this do not affect owners of MiFi or 3G equipped router devices because they do not require client drivers.
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