Inmarsat shows next generation mobile communications at Gitex 2002
Regional BGAN, Inmarsat’s next generation of mobile data communication services, is an ideal solution that extends fast mobile communication capabilities to an overwhelming part of the region.
Inmarsat Ltd, global mobile satellite communications provider, will be showcasing, for the first time in the Middle East, the portability and power behind its Regional Broadband Global Area Network (Regional BGAN) service, due for commercial launch in November 2002.
Regional B-GAN offers vertical industries operating from remote areas where telecommunication is not available or in areas where mobile high-speed data is not available, mobile data communication that is expected to be twice as fast as current terrestrial General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) services.
The service will be available in up to 99 countries, across the Middle East, northern half of Africa, Western and Eastern Europe and large parts of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and the Indian sub-continent.
Regional BGAN boosts businesses data exchange capacity to up to 144 kbit/s using a secure shared channel and is deployed instantly with a lightweight satellite modem hooked to a laptop, according to a company press release. GRPS, according to Jawad Abbasi, president of Arab Advisors Group, is a service that has not picked up yet in the region on the consumers level and is usually restricted to densely populated areas around the Arab world.
“For example, GPRS, much like the GSM networks on top of which it operates, covers around 10 percent of the geographic area of Egypt and six percent of the geographic area of Jordan. Despite the roll out of GPRS services by most of the region telecom operators, extending the
geographic coverage of GPRS is not a priority, especially that revenues are yet to cover initial investments.”
Regional BGAN, twice as fast as current GPRS extends mobile datacomm connectivity to wide areas not covered or served by GPRS and GSM networks. This, according to Abbassi, is an advantage for companies or individuals who need data connectivity in remote areas.
Because it is based on Internet Protocol (IP) packet technology, users only pay for the amount of data they send and receive, and not for time spent online. This enables users to stay ‘always connected’.
“The service is particularly suited to applications where data is sent in bursts, such as e-mail, browsing the Web, and connecting to corporate LANs and intranets. Other applications include file transfer and FTP for downloading files from the Internet and sharing files with colleagues; e-commerce, for online ordering and procurement; and secure end-to-end
connectivity over a corporate Virtual Private Network (VPN),” says Gill Govier, Director, Regional B-GAN Commercial Launch Team at Inmarsat.
“With Regional BGAN, industries operating in the most remote areas in the region will be instantly able to establish direct communication, at high speed, with the rest of the world, and we are coming to Gitex to show it to the Middle East users first.”
Inmarsat Ltd owns and operates a global satellite network and delivers its solutions through a distribution network of approximately 260 distributors and other service providers operating in around 80 countries worldwide to end users in the maritime, land and aeronautical sectors.
Inmarsat’s portfolio of satellite solutions includes voice, fax, intranet and Internet access and other data services. At the end of March 2002, over 243,000 terminals were registered
to access Inmarsat Ltd’s services. Inmarsat Ltd is a subsidiary of Inmarsat Ventures plc. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)
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