Thursday, September 30, 2010

LightSquared to offer free satellite phones

LightSquared has announced a partnership with the United States Indian Health Services agency to supply free satellite phones and services for use in Native Indian and Alaska Native communities through to the year 2020.

The new project calls for LightSquared to provide up to 2000 phones for the project, with an initial commitment of 500 phones by Dec. 31, 2010. LightSquared said it was functioning with IHS staff on developing plans to incorporate tribal governments input for the new service and to establish a pilot project later in November for health centers in New Mexico, Colorado and Texas.

In August, the company triggered a spectrum re-banding clause in an existing contract agreement with Inmarsat Plc that calls for Inmarsat to begin re-banding its L-Band spectrum covering North America. Once completed, the re-banding will provide LightSquared with wireless spectrum it plans to use to begin building a new terrestrial satellite hybrid network.

LightSquared also announced new plans to build a nationwide LTE network using its wireless spectrum assets and to wholesale access to that network to interested parties. The agreement includes an 8-year, $7 billion equipment and management contract with Nokia Siemens Networks signed in July.

LightSquared’s newly proposed satellite phone services are set to run on the assets of the former SkyTerra Communications network, which Harbinger acquired in March. The new wholesale plans are to include both terrestrial and satellite communication services to the affected IHS communities.


Post a Comment