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Chinese telecoms manufacturer ZTE has launched what it claims to be the world's smallest 4G dongle.

The firm's MF823 mobile broadband stick is just 13mm thick and a third of the size of first-generation long-term evolution dongles, reports the Register.

But what the USB modem lacks in size, it certainly makes up for in power.

The dongle supports IPv6, LTE-FDD, UMTS-HSPA+ and GPRS/GSM, and offers up to 100Mb download and 50Mb upload speeds.

According to ZTE, the dongle features a second-generation Qualcomm LTE chip which has been designed to work at a lower temperature.

As such, the MF823 dongle does not feel as hot to touch as previous devices.

The 4G device has initially been launched in Kazakhstan, but European consumers will be able to get their hands on one in the coming months.

At present, mobile broadband users in 11 UK cities can access 4G networks, with this figure set to rise to 16 by the end of the year.

Ofcom expects there to be more widespread super-fast mobile broadband coverage in place by Q2 2013.

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