Amid continued worry that its proposed wholesale LTE network will produce harmful GPS interference, LightSquared is still signing up customers. The company's latest: a deal with netTALK.com, a VoIP service provider.
The two companies inked a multi-year wholesale sale. Under the agreement, netTALK will become a wholesale customer on LightSquared's planned LTE network, and will develop its own branded voice and high-speed mobile data services for its customers.
NetTALK, which was formed in 2009, sells a product call DUO, which allows customers to make free nationwide calls to any landline or mobile phone in the U.S. and Canada from anywhere in the world. The device allows users to connect directly to an Internet connection through a router/modem, rather than passively through a computer. NetTALK also has a free video chat application, a smartphone application conference bridge services.
NetTALK President Anastasios Kyriakides said the company is currently developing an affordable a total solutions package with a forthcoming products, including netTALK TV, as well as mobile broadband. He said the company has over half a million subscribers, primarily in the U.S. and Canada, and that netTALK will use LightSquared's network to deploy both voice and data services.
LightSquared has signed up several customers, including Leap Wireless (NASDAQ:LEAP), Cellular South, Best Buy and Open Range Communications. Reports also have indicated that LightSquared has consummated a network-hosting deal with Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S), though both LightSquared and Sprint have declined to confirm or deny the reports.
During a recent congressional hearing, lawmakers and officials from federal agencies called for more testing of LightSquared's LTE network to ensure that it does not interfere with GPS receivers. However, officials said they are still hopeful they can find a solution that will allow LightSquared to proceed with its network buildout while not harming GPS. LightSquared expects to submit a final report to the FCC on GPS interference tests by June 29. Kyriakides said his company is not concerned about potential GPS interference issues with LightSquared's network, noting LightSquared's plan to use the lower portion of its spectrum to launch its network, where there is less interference.
- see this release
U.S. officials call for more LightSquared GPS testing
LightSquared plans to submit GPS i nterference report by June 29
LightSquared reworks network plans to avoid GPS interference
Sprint consummates LTE network-sharing deal with LightSquared
LightSquared's GPS interference plan leaves more questions than answers
LightSquared gets extension on GPS report, inks deal on Sprint network sharing
Article updated June 28 with comment from netTALK.