By Patrick Avenell

Telstra has announced the impending limited release of Australia’s first 4G broadband device, the descriptively named USB 4G.

Around 2,000 of these dongles will be sold to existing Telstra ‘account managed business customers’ in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane from 29 August 2011, with a full rollout expected before the end of 2011.

Users will be able to access Telstra’s nascent 4G network when accessing the internet from with 5 kilometres of the GPO in these three cities. Outside this range, the device will use Telstra’s existing 3G network.

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“Telstra’s 4G-enabled network is the next generation in mobile broadband and is set to offer Australians an even faster mobile connection,” said Telstra CEO David Thodey.

“The commercial pilot will give some of our customers a taste of the faster speeds, greater capacity and quicker response times that can be available for mobile services on 4G ahead of our national launch in major capital cities and selected regional centres later this year.

“Australian businesses already tell us they want fast, reliable mobile broadband with more than 2 million customers connecting to our network for internet on the go. Our investment in next-generation 4G mobile technology will help meet Australia’s growing demand for faster speeds and create additional capacity in our network.”

The USB 4G will be available for $0 upfront and $49 per month over 24 months with 7GB of data included (minimum cost is $1,176).

Superfast: The new USB 4G from Telstra.