New network trials in Paris

Solaris Mobile has teamed up with Alcatel-Lucent and TowerCast to create a hybrid network using complementary satellite and cellular mobile technology.

The new network, trial-broadcasting TV and radio services to phones, handheld devices and into cars, has a current footprint covering Paris and the surrounding areas is now open. The network will broadcast through next year, before a possible extension across France and other European territories, and the potential launch of commercial services.

While Solaris Mobile provides satellite capacity and frequency rights, Alcatel-Lucent provides the transmission equipment and TowerCast its antenna sites in and around Paris. The resulting hybrid network is intended to deliver the instant coverage of satellite with the 'deep network' capabilities of cellular mobile systems.

This new network, which has EC member states' blessing, will operate in 2 x 15 Mhz blocks of S-Band spectrum. The partners anticipate that such services, in frequency bands adjacent to the existing 3G mobile bands around 2GHz, will open up new opportunities for next-generation broadband and broadcast services, including video, data downloads and voice services.