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Inmarsat upgrades Fleet services

New 128 kbits/s option will allow ships to run broadband internet applications.

Inmarsat, the satellite communications provider, will soon upgrade its Fleet F77 service to support data transfer speeds of up to 128kbits/s. The move will allow ocean bound vessels to transfer greater volumes of data at higher speeds than before.

“We have seen a steady rise in the demand from the maritime industry for higher data speeds in recent years,” says Samer Halawi, regional director, Inmarsat Middle East, Africa and Central Asia. “This is a quantum leap in the level of service we can provide through our flagship Fleet solution.”

The 128 kbit/s service will be available from the first quarter of 2005 and Fleet F77 users will require only a minor software upgrade to use it. As well as enabling applications such as video conferencing and realtime chart and weather updates, the speed increase meets the latest requirements of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS.)

Inmarsat has also extended the area in which its Fleet F55, Fleet F33 and Mini-M ‘spot beam’ solutions can operate. Users will not have to upgrade their existing terminals to take advantage of the enhanced coverage.

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