Vodafone UK will launch a new version of its 3G data card for Macs later this year, the company confirmed today.

The Vodafone Mobile Connect USB Modem will be available in the autumn. It allows customers to access Vodafone's high speed 3G broadband service by simply plugging the device into the USB slot on their computer.

Vodafone says it has launched the new device in response to the demand for 3G broadband from users of the latest generation of laptops.

Users will be able to access download speeds of around 1.4Mbps and upload speeds of up to 384 Kbps, across Vodafone's growing 3G network. Currently this is available in Greater London (within the M25), the West Midlands, Glasgow, Liverpool, Sheffield, Greater Manchester, Bristol and Tyneside, with plans to reach 75 per cent of the UK population by summer 2007.

The service is also available in a number of other countries worldwide (Austria, Australia, France, Germany, Portugal, Spain and Hong Kong). When outside of 3G broadband coverage, customers will automatically be able to access the web using Vodafone's existing 3G and GPRS services.

John Lillistone, head of enterprise data services, Vodafone UK, commented: "The Vodafone Mobile Connect USB Modem is designed so that anyone, regardless of their choice of computer, can access high speed data while on the move. This will be of particular appeal to the large number of our small business customers that work in the creative industries, who have tended to prefer Apple computers or the latest design of laptops."

Dale Vile, research director at Freeform Dynamics said: "All moves to make 3G access available to a broader audience are welcome, and it is nice to see that the Mac community has not been forgotten as part of this."