MCLEAN, Va., Oct. 20, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Iridium Communications Inc. (NASDAQ:IRDM) announced today that it has successfully conducted the first ever voice and data ground test call over the next-generation Iridium Certus broadband network, currently under development. Iridium Certus is the new global broadband capability being introduced on Iridium NEXT — Iridium's next-generation satellite constellation.
The voice and data call utilized and demonstrated the capabilities of three newly developed core components of the Iridium Certus communications system for the first time: the broadband satellite terminal, Iridium NEXT satellites, and upgraded capabilities in Iridium's terrestrial gateway.
The call originated from a prototype satellite terminal previously announced as the Iridium Certus Broadband Core Module (BCX), then processed through an Iridium NEXT satellite undergoing testing for first launch that was updated with Iridium Certus software, and then terminated through the Iridium Certus gateway subsystem connecting to the public network. The broadband call demonstrated highly anticipated enhanced voice and broadband capabilities of the new Iridium Certus service. The service will introduce an initial data speed of 352kb/s and a new, high quality voice codec which will operate at 2X the current bit rate of Iridium's current generation offerings. Iridium Certus's uniquely scalable architecture will enable data speeds eventually as high as 1.4 megabits per second for a single user terminal after Iridium NEXT deployment is completed.
"This is a major milestone in proving the quality and potential of Iridium Certus. With our new BCX module and the enhanced capabilities offered through our Iridium NEXT satellites, our manufacturing partners will be able to offer industry-leading satellite broadband capabilities through our global distribution channels to the aeronautical, maritime and land mobile markets," said Brian Pemberton, vice president and general manager, maritime and aviation businesses at Iridium. "Iridium Certus will be a major advancement in broadband mobile satellite voice and data communications from anywhere in the world."
Iridium Certus will deliver an enterprise-grade mobile satellite broadband service that is able to serve as a standalone service or complementary component of a VSAT solution. Iridium Certus terminals are also expected to be able to offer maritime and aviation safety services once approval is granted by the respective authorities. In addition, the terminals are multi-service capable, allowing terminal manufacturers to enable multiple Iridium services such as Short Burst Data and Iridium Burst®, in addition to broadband and high quality voice — all from the same user terminal. The Iridium Certus service will enter beta testing as Iridium NEXT satellites come online, even prior to the full deployment of the Iridium NEXT constellation, with commercial service launch to follow a successful beta testing phase.
About Iridium Communications Inc.
Iridium® is the only mobile voice and data satellite communications network that spans the entire globe. Iridium enables connections between people, organizations and assets to and from anywhere, in real time. Together with its ecosystem of partner companies, Iridium delivers an innovative and rich portfolio of reliable solutions for markets that require truly global communications. The company has a major development program underway for its next-generation network — Iridium NEXT. Iridium Communications Inc. is headquartered in McLean, Va., U.S.A., and its common stock trades on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the ticker symbol IRDM. For more information about Iridium products, services and partner solutions, visit www.iridium.com.
Statements in this press release that are not purely historical facts may constitute forward-looking statements as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company has based these statements on its current expectations and the information currently available to us. Forward-looking statements in this presentation include statements regarding the development and capabilities of the Iridium NEXT constellation and the development, deployment and capabilities of products for Iridium Certus broadband. Forward-looking statements can be identified by the words "anticipates," "may," "can," "believes," "expects," "projects," "intends," "likely," "will," "to be" and other expressions that are predictions or indicate future events, trends or prospects. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Iridium to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, uncertainties regarding Iridium NEXT development and functionality, potential delays in the Iridium NEXT deployment, the development of and market for Iridium Certus and related products, and the company's ability to maintain the health, capacity and content of its satellite constellation, as well as general industry and economic conditions, and competitive, legal, governmental and technological factors. Other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by the forward-looking statements include those factors listed under the caption "Risk Factors" in the Company's Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2014, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission ("the SEC") on February 26, 2015, and the Company's 10-Q for the quarter ended June 30, 2015, filed with the SEC on July 30, 2015, as well as other filings Iridium makes with the SEC from time to time. There is no assurance that Iridium's expectations will be realized. If one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or if Iridium's underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those expected, estimated or projected. Iridium's forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this press release, and Iridium undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements.
Press Contact: Diane Hockenberry Iridium Communications Inc. +1 (703) 287-7421 Diane.Hockenberry@iridium.com