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Mobile & Wireless

ip.access and Altobridge to develop GSM solutions for ships and planes

Monday 13 October 2003 | 14:25 CET | News
ip.access, a wholly owned subsidiary of TTP Communications, announces that it has signed a product licence agreement with Tralee, Ireland-based Altobridge Limited that will offer pioneering new GSM voice and data services to the aviation and shipping industries. The satellite-based solution joins Altobridge’s end-to-end GSM gateway with ip.access’ nanoBTS™ picocellular basestation to provide seamless GSM services on board aircraft and ships. The first prototype is due to be launched in the first quarter of 2004. EU-funded research from independent consultancy ESYS recently reported that more than 50 per cent of respondents to an online survey of 300 passengers now rated connectivity as an important issue. Separate research conducted by SITA has found that 25 per cent of airlines will offer their passengers on board email services and 22 per cent will offer SMS services by the end of 2003. These figures are expected to rise to 46 per cent of airlines offering email and 45 per cent offering SMS by 2006. The research shows a rising demand from the airlines and the travelling public for services that can be offered by the Altobridge / ip.access solution simply and cost-effectively. The ability to provide “sky/sea phone” services offers new revenue generation opportunities for the aviation and maritime industries, which include the cruise, freight, general aviation and air transport fields. Altobridge, which is providing the ground-to-air and air-to-ground interface for the solution, is currently in discussions with several leading industry players. Mike Fitzgerald, CEO of Altobridge, said, “ip.access is at the forefront of picocellular design and the nanoBTS technology is absolutely pivotal to enable us to serve this market and meet today’s demand for continuous communication.” Commenting on today’s announcement, Simon Albury, Business Development Director for ip.access said, “Environments such as ships and aircraft are extremely restrictive with regard to size, weight and power, proving a major barrier to the deployment of GSM services until now.” He continued, “With the smallest footprint and lightest unit weight available in the industry for GSM, the nanoBTS is the optimal solution to address this emerging market and provide new revenue opportunities and differentiation for the airline and shipping industries.” The ip.access nanoBTS is a GSM picocellular basestation that uses IP networks to deliver cellular voice and data services in the smallest and most cost-effective package available today. Through the innovation of using IP as the backhaul medium, the nanoBTS provides coverage and capacity simply and efficiently. The nanoBTS is part of the ip.access nanoGSM™ solution, which enables mobile phone coverage in traditionally hard-to-reach areas.

Categories: Mobile & Wireless
Countries: United Kingdom
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