May 4, 1998
Of Satellite Company's Bid for 2 GHz MSS Spectrum
WASHINGTON, D.C., Monday, May 4, 1998 - The North American GSM Alliance LLC, a consortium of U.S. and Canadian digital wireless Personal Communications Services (PCS) carriers, today filed comments with the Federal Communications Commission, giving its support to Celsat, an applicant for a 2 GHz Mobile Satellite Service system license.
The Alliance said it gave its support because of Celsat's pricing and innovative technology, which works very well with Global System for Mobile (GSM) communications networks.
"Celsat has the potential to provide Alliance members with instant national coverage," explained Don Warkentin, President and Chief Executive Officer of Aerial Communications, Inc., and chairman of the GSM Alliance. "Members of the Alliance will be able to offer the most complete coverage of North America available anywhere - at low PCS prices."
Celsat's system would initially permit operation anywhere in the continental U.S. as well as a significant portion of Canada and Mexico. It would also provide high-quality communications with half the power of current satellite licensees.
In its comments filed with the FCC, the Alliance explained that Celsat's technology will reduce the cost of voice communications to pennies per minute, in comparison with other satellite carriers which expect to charge several dollars for a minute of airtime. Handsets for the Celsat system would also be more similar to small, convenient GSM handsets than to the bulkier handsets more typical of satellite-based systems.
"We trust that the FCC will give Celsat a chance to compete," Warkentin said, "and to allow us to provide consumers with true continental coverage and mobility. This would be consistent with the agency's policy of enabling new applicants to bring innovative and effective technology to the marketplace. Such an open and level arena ensures that consumers are being served in the most efficient and cost effective manner."
The GSM Alliance, L.L.C. is a consortium of U.S. and Canadian digital wireless PCS carriers, which helps provide seamless wireless communications for their customers, whether at home, in more than 1,000 U.S. and Canadian cities and towns, or abroad. Using Global Systems for Mobile (GSM) communications, GSM companies provide superior voice clarity, unparalleled security and leading-edge wireless voice, data and fax features for customers.
Current members of the GSM Alliance now include: Aerial Communications, Inc., BellSouth Mobility DCS, Cook Inlet Western Wireless; Microcell Telecommunications Inc., Omnipoint Communications, LLC, Pacific Bell Mobile Services, Powertel, Inc., and Western Wireless, Corp., which continue to operate their own businesses and market under their own names.
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