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Satnews Daily
January 20th, 2010

Iridium — 2-Way Tracking Tech In Smaller Package + Lower Cost

Iridium Communications Inc. (NASDAQ: IRDM) has unveiled its nexgen Iridium 9602 satellite data transceiver at its annual Partners Conference in Phoenix, Arizona. The Iridium 9602 is a full-duplex, short-burst data (SBD) transceiver designed for embedded applications in the rapidly growing market for remote asset tracking and monitoring solutions.

The product, which is the culmination of a two-year R&D program, has completed prototype testing, and Iridium expects to begin commercial deliveries in June. A unique feature of the Iridium 9602 is its built-in GPS input/output ports, which will permit system integrators to interface with an external GPS receiver, using a single dual-mode L-Band antenna for GPS and Iridium SBD, saving the cost of an antenna in their applications. The duplex data links provided by the Iridium 9602 will permit two-way communications to and from the remote devices, allowing users to reprogram the unit, adjust its reporting intervals and send on-demand queries for specific data updates. It will also enable first responders and search-and-rescue authorities to respond to emergency distress signals from personal location and tracking devices.

According to a November 2009 report by TMF Associates, the number of low data rate mobile satellite service (MSS) devices is projected to grow from 1.5 million active terminals at the end of 2009 to more than 3.1 million active terminals by the end of 2013, a compound annual growth rate of 21 percent.