[Satnews] Iridium (Nasdaq:IRDM) announces the availability of their next-generation broadband technology to manufacturing partners, to assist in their development of the first Iridium Certus(SM) broadband terminals, which will operate over the Iridium NEXT satellite constellation.
Functional terminal prototypes using these Iridium® broadband core transceiver (BCX) modules, are expected to begin end-to-end testing over the Iridium NEXT network in early 2016, with production units to be introduced later in the year as the Iridium Certus broadband service becomes commercially available.
Entering the next phase of product development, the Iridium Certus manufacturing partners will be able to incorporate the BCX module into broadband terminal designs to begin physical testing and production of their software and prototype terminals for the aeronautical, maritime and terrestrial markets. The BCX module itself will provide a significant advancement from Iridium’s current-generation broadband products. Initially supporting triple the data speeds of the current service, and eventually scalable to ten times the current throughput while consuming 75 percent less volume than the first-generation platform, the BCX module will be at the heart of a new generation of mobile satellite broadband solutions which will transform the industry.
Iridium Certus will be an enterprise-grade mobile satellite broadband service, with the functionality, reliability and versatility to operate as a standalone solution or complementary component of a VSAT solution. While the BCX module will initially support data speeds over the Iridium NEXT network that are comparable to current industry mobile broadband products, the scalable architecture of the transceiver will enable a broad range of products, with data speeds eventually as high as 1.4 megabits per second, for a single user terminal after the Iridium NEXT satellites are fully deployed.
Iridium will continue to work closely with each of the manufacturers to provide technical support and testing services throughout the development process. The BCX modules, which have been delivered to manufacturers, have been pre-tested and pre-integrated with both the current Iridium network satellites and Iridium NEXT waveforms to enable testing in both environments.
“Delivering these developer kits into the hands of our manufacturing partners is a crucial milestone in our progress toward bringing exciting new Iridium Certus products to market, as it allows our partners to continue to advance their development,” said Brian Pemberton, vice president and general manager, maritime and aviation businesses at Iridium. “Documents, schematics and protocols are helpful, but now they have the technology in their hands, and can turn the conceptual into the practical. Iridium Certus broadband products will be targeting the more than 750,000 potential subscribers across the core vertical markets. We envision that the products from our manufacturing partners will significantly alter the mobile satellite broadband landscape over the next decade.”