[Via Satellite 08-06-2015] Iridium has received the first delivery of the Broadband Core Transceiver (BCX) prototypes for interoperability testing on the Iridium NEXT satellite network infrastructure. Cambridge Consultants, a product development firm, designed the prototypes, which will be distributed to Iridium Certus broadband manufacturing partners, which Iridium announced earlier this year. With the BCX prototypes, partners will be able to design, build and distribute products compatible with the new broadband capabilities enabled by the Iridium Next network. BCX production deliveries are planned for the first half of 2016, and commercial availability of the Iridium Certus broadband service is anticipated to begin in late 2016.
The BCX module is approximately 75 percent the size of the first-generation Iridium broadband equipment size, and will initially support triple the data speeds of the current service. Iridium expects the scalable architecture of the transceiver to enable data speeds of up to 1.4 megabits per second for a single user terminal after the Iridium Next satellites are fully online. The company said in an Aug. 8 press release that Iridium Next remains scheduled to begin launching in late 2015 with commercial service expected in late 2016.
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