Lenovo has announced Lenovo Mobile Access, a no-contract mobile broadband service that allows consumers to ditch MiFi subscriptions. All ThinkPad laptops that come with embedded mobile broadband connectivity will also come with Lenovo Mobile Access pre-installed. The service will be pay-as-you-go, allowing users to purchase blocks of time or data. The service is provided through Macheen Inc., a cloud service platform recently acquired by Lenovo.
"We live in world where it's not only undesirable to be without online access, it's often disruptive to businesses. For that reason we wanted to create a flexible mobile broadband solution that would be unparalleled in its ability to help business users stay connected and working," said Dilip Bhatia, vice president and general manager of the ThinkPad Business Unit at Lenovo. "Fundamentally, Lenovo Mobile Access gives individual and corporate customers options to determine how, when and where they want to connect with online applications and services, all at a price that fits their budget."
The lowest-end "Time Pass" that can be bought for Lenovo Mobile Access is 30 minutes, costs $1.95 and has a 30 MB data limit. Users can also purchase a day-long pass for $8.95, though it has a 200 MB data limit. For those that travel often, Lenovo is also has monthly plans for 2 GB or 6 GB of data. The monthly plans are auto-renewable and can also be purchased by companies for allotment to employees.
"To date, connectivity has been 'off the rack' and one-size fits all-too many mobile users are forced to squeeze into a mobile broadband contract that gives them either more or less connectivity than they need, or they go without entirely," said Richard Schwartz, president and CEO of Macheen. "With service by Macheen, Lenovo Mobile Access lets users trade ill-fitting plans for tailored connectivity featuring pay-as-you-go rates and customized access for any device, application and user. Quite literally, it's access to cloud-based content, services and applications that fits the way users work and live, meaning virtually all ThinkPad users can enjoy the value of true mobility."
Lenovo Mobile Access is already available for ThinkPad Classic and ThinkPad Edge devices with mobile data connectivity. The service is, so far, only available in the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, and the Netherlands.