Minneapolis - Best Buy has begun reselling Clearwire's 4G Mobile WiMAX data service.
The deal, first announced in July, will enable the retailer to offer wireless-broadband service on 23 computing models from Asus, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Samsung, Sony and Toshiba at most of its stores. Best Buy will also provide service activation, billing and connection support.
The service will be marketed under the chain's Best Buy Connect brand for mobile computing, and will initially be priced at $45 per month for unlimited 4G service with a month-to-month or two-year contract. Best Buy will waive the $35 activation fee for customers who purchase the two-year contract, and will provide an additional $150 off select hardware devices.
Best Buy launched its Connect wireless services portfolio last spring by offering Sprint's 3G wireless broadband-data service. The chain has also entered
to resell that company's planned 4G LTE voice and data service, with trials set to being in the first quarter of 2012.
Under the Connect program, the chain acts as an MVNO, billing consumers, providing customer support, and selling mobile computing devices embedded with wireless modems at subsidized prices with wireless activation.
"We're finding that customers increasingly want choice in service providers for mobile broadband," said Best Buy Connect VP Jed Stillman. He described the company's mobile offering as "an end-to-end option that gives them the freedom to connect virtually, whenever or wherever, and the convenience of one point of contact-- Best Buy -- for selection and service."