Windows 8 – Where Mobile Broadband will just work

Windows 8 comes with a number of enhancement for mobile broadband functionality. If you’re interested in the details I recommend you read the content I have referenced at the end of this blog post. But in short if your mobile broadband device meets the Mobile Broadband Interface (MBIM( specification then Windows 8 will load the inbox class driver (MBCD) so there is no need to install 3rd party drivers. If then the operator in a given country has submitted their connection information to Microsoft you can just establish a connection to the internet without the need of installing additional software or entering connection details.

The default installation of Windows 8 includes the APN Database (mobile broadband connectivity directory) which is basically just an XML file stored under C:\Windows\System32\apndatabase.xml that holds all the connection information for the various operators that have submitted their connection details (According to the documentation, this database is automatically updated via Windows Update).

The current APN Database dated 12.09.2012 contains connection details for 135 countries world wide and there are about 230 different operators (providers) that have submitted their connection data for inclusion.

The below table shows my top 10 country list and the providers that are included within the APN database. (I selected the countries based on the top 10 countries where my blog readers come from).

Country

Provider

United States

AT&T

 

Cincinnati Bell Wireless

 

Plateau Wireless

 

Rural Cellular Corporation

 

SunCom

 

T-Mobile USA

 

T-Mobile USA: ASpider

 

T-Mobile USA: IDT

 

T-Mobile USA: Roam Mobility

 

T-Mobile USA: Simple Mobile

 

T-Mobile USA: Solavei

 

T-Mobile USA: Tracfone

 

T-Mobile USA: Walmart

 

T-Mobile USA: Wyless

 

Verizon

United Kingdom

3

 

Cable & Wireless Guernsey Ltd

 

O2

 

Orange

 

T-Mobile

 

Vodafone UK

Germany

E-Plus

 

O2

 

T-Mobile

 

Vodafone.de

Canada

Bell

 

Rogers

 

Telus

France

Bouygues

 

Free Mobile

 

Orange

 

Orange Caraïbe

 

Orange La Réunion

 

SFR

India

Aircel

 

Airtel

 

Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited

 

Idea

 

MTNL

 

Reliance Communication

 

Tata Docomo

 

Vodafone India

Netherlands

KPN/Hi

 

Tele2

 

Telfort

 

T-Mobile

 

Vodafone NL

Australia

Hutchison – 3

 

Optus

 

Telstra

 

Vodafone Australia

Russian Federation

Chelyabinsk Cellular Communications LLC

 

DonTeleCom

 

Ermak RMS

 

MegaFon

 

MTS

 

NCC

 

OJSC Sibirtelecom

 

OJSC VimpelCom

 

PrimTel

 

Uraltel

 

Yeniseytelecom

Italy

3

 

TIM

 

vodafone IT

 

Wind

Sweden

3

 

Halebop

 

TDC Sweden

 

Telenor

 

Telia

Switzerland

Orange

 

Sunrise

 

Swisscom

 

Tele2

If you want to know what provider is included in your country just open the apndatabase.xml with an XML reader, notepad or import the XML into Excel and then search for the country name.

Additional Information

Overview of Mobile Broadband in Windows 8
Engineering Windows 8 for mobile networks
Understanding mobile broadband and connection management in Windows 8
Connecting Windows 8 to mobile broadband and Wi-Fi networks
MBIM-Based Mobile Broadband Requirements for Windows

3 thoughts on “Windows 8 – Where Mobile Broadband will just work

  1. Hi there,

    Very informative article.

    We have a custom APN, and I have been battling extensively to get it working on Win8…

    Same adapter, same settings, same SIM, works 100% on Win7… but not on Win8

    Do you think it would make a difference if some how, we include some settings from the Operator in that APN DB file?

    We have a SQL DB that checks a user name, password and MSISDN and then allows the user to connect to our back end systems, but I don’t think the issue is here, as it all works 100% on Win7.

    We have even been sent MULTIPLE replacement cards from Dell, as initially we thought it was a hardware related issue, but none of this seems to have resolved the issue.

    Anyone else with some feedback regarding this?

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