Search ITRealms:

Featured post

Agbalanze Onitsha Cultural Association: Origin & Developments - ITREALMS

BookReview@ITREALMS:  Agbalanze! Ogbuevi Ogbuevi nu o! Onye na nk’ie, Onye na nk’ie o! Nke onye chi, nya ze kw’oo! [PROTOCOLS] Title: Ag...

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

GWAL targets April for commercial roll out

PIONEER licensee of the Global Mobile Personal Communications by Satellite (GMPCS) in the country, the GlobalTouch West African Limited (GWAL) is targeting April next year, for its commercial roll out.

This is coming as GWAL, has voted the sum of $10 million (about N1,330,000,000 billion) to facilitate the take off of its satellite gateway project initiative located near Kaduna.

Chief executive, GWAL and former Executive Director in the Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL), Mr. Isaiah Abdulai Mohammed, made this disclosure while briefing newsmen at the end of one-day facility visit to the gateway house of its satellite at the outskirt of Kaduna, in northern part of the country.

GWAL is partnering in this project with a United States-based largest mobile satellite voice and data services provider, Globalstar.

According to him, Globaltouch which was founded in 1997 is a Nigerian company with 70 per cent investment equity, while its partners, Globalstar has 30 per cent.

“Our satellite gateway is under construction as you have seen in Kaduna to provide services to Nigeria and neighbouring West African countries as well as parts of the coastal Atlantic and Gulf of Guinea maritime region. We hope to commence commercial service in April 2009,” Mohammed said.

Affirming this, management consultant to GWAL, Mr. Peter Beacon, said that Globalstar with head office in Silicon Valley, also has corporate offices in Canada, Ireland, Panama and Brazil.

He said that the telco has shifted from a wholesale business model, to offering of mobile satellite voice and data services to over 329,000 commercial and consumer subscribers in over 120 countries globally.

Mr. Beacon also said that Globalstar’s Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite architecture is well positioned to meet the growing demand for global satellite voice and data.

“Globalstar operates a constellation of 48 operational low-earth-orbit (LEO) satellites at approximately 1414 kilometres (km), while it has Geostationary satellites orbit at approximately 32,000 Km.

“LEO is a global constellation of multiple satellites, while each GEO or Geostationary satellite covers a specific region of the earth’s surface,” he said, enumerating the advantages to include that Globalstar spectrum holdings are global, customers in over 120 countries, with virtually no latency and lower power requirements for handsets and data terminals,” he said.

In readiness of the company to improve service offering, he revealed that Globalstar recently signed agreements that would enhance both the receiver sensitivity and the overall customer messaging capacity of the current Globalstar Simplex data network.

“The Messaging capacity of the network is expected to increase by up to 10 times what is currently available, while receiver sensitivity is expected to increase by as much as 40 per cent,” he said.

Potential increase, he said, is anticipated in the overall gateway geographic coverage with increase in messaging reliability which already exceeds 98 per cent.

“Initial testing of the upgrades is expected to be completed in early 2009,” Beacon said.

The telco’s services would be available wit second-generation enabled handset Global Satellite Positioning (GSP) 1700 satellite phone designed for use with current and next-generation satellites.

“Globalstar’s newest phones are much smaller and lighter than the first generation handsets and comes with more features,” he declared.

Presently, Mr. Beacon said that these handsets weigh only 200 grams and has a volume of 225 CC, four hours of talk time and up to 36 hours of standby time.

Other features, he said, include four line full color Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) display with user backlight preferences, backlit keypad, Universal Serial Bus (USB) data cable ready, standard audio headset jack and the choice to choose from a variety of colors; red, silver and copper.

ITREALMS Online ... delivering news for ICT4D

No comments: