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Summary:

Elektrobit is showing off its reference design for a multimode 3G and satellite handset phone at the CTIA Wireless I.T. and Entertainment show this week in San Francisco, and it’s a far cry from the clunky satellite phones of yore. It first unveiled the phone in […]

Elektrobit is showing off its reference design for a multimode 3G and satellite handset phone at the CTIA Wireless I.T. and Entertainment show this week in San Francisco, and it’s a far cry from the clunky satellite phones of yore. It first unveiled the phone in April, during the larger CTIA Wireless show. At that time Elektrobit said TerreStar, a network that plans to operate a combined terrestrial and satellite network, would use the phone, but since Terrestar was experiencing financial and management problems, few industry watchers got excited.

However in the five months since, TerreStar has signed an agreement with AT&T that allows for seamless hand-offs between AT&T’s 3G network and TerreStar’s satellite network. So a truly worldwide 3G phone (AT&T operates a GSM network) is getting closer, although it still relies on TerreStar launching its satellite next year. The deal with AT&T has me thinking that TerreStar is focusing less on the terrestrial aspects of its planned satellite and terrestrial network, which would lower its costs of building out a network and possibly keep the satellite company in the game.

By Stacey Higginbotham

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  1. Stacey are you paid by Terrestar to keep pumping them?

  2. I think Broadband will be eventually be a commodity and the only differentiation will be higher speed. But basic connections will be available for free.
    What does Ubiquitous mean? :)

  3. Stacey Higginbotham Monday, September 22, 2008

    Kit, I think you’ll find my coverage of TerreStar has been less than optimistic, but this is potentially good news. http://gigaom.com/2008/04/22/is-4g-via-satellite-destined-to-fail/

  4. Qualcomm Marries Satellite and Cellular Networks – GigaOM Monday, September 22, 2008

    [...] firms pushing a combined terrestrial and satellite network. Qualcomm’s chipsets and the willingness of cellular carriers to accept handoffs from satellite networks could change all [...]

  5. This site alleges, the stock has been a pump and dump all along back since the Motient days. Lots of links to credible information. The criminal histories are really interest. <a href=”http://www.boardbuffoonery.com/”<Terrestar

  6. sorry, put the link in wrong. Terrestar

  7. The Ominous Return of the Satellite Phone Thursday, May 21, 2009

    [...] model from the 90s. Even though TerreStar’s service will launch at the end of this year with normal-sized phones that also work on cellular networks, the likelihood of success doesn’t seem high. But in [...]

  8. Satellite Cos. Pitch Their Spectrum to the FCC and Eventually Carriers Monday, November 9, 2009

    [...] One of the bigger beneficiaries of the ATC decision, a company called TerreStar, appears to have switched its goal from providing broadband to offering satellite communications as a backup to existing cellular [...]

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