Inmarsat fills gaps with GPRS-speed device

Satellite communications provider Inmarsat is to release a portable device which will give access to GPRS-speed communications in...

Satellite communications provider Inmarsat is to release a portable device which will give access to GPRS-speed communications in large parts of the world not covered by a mobile network cell, writes Antony Adshead.

The equipment could prove useful to executives who need mobile phone and Internet access in out-of-the-way places as coverage will extend from western Europe eastwards to large parts of the former Soviet Union and the Indian subcontinent as well as north Africa.

The regional Broadband Global Area Network (BGan) is based on GPRS technology and will give bandwidth of 144mbps in 99 countries. It will allow access to the Internet and corporate networks while the device can link to handheld devices via Bluetooth, USB or Ethernet ports.

The regional BGan is the precursor to Inmarsat's roll-out of its BGan, which the company hopes will provide data speeds of up to 432kbps by 2004.

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