ArrayComm, Redback Form Broadband Wireless Alliance

ArrayComm Inc. and Redback Networks Wednesday teamed up to collaborate on developing advanced network solutions for wireless broadband access.

The joint effort merges Redback’s Subscriber Management System with ArrayComm’s i-BURST technology to produce IP-transparent wireless systems for seamless integration with wired networks.

The alliance allows content and service providers to serve-up high-speed wireless access that could rival wire line broadband services.

ArrayComms mission is to add mobility features to broadband Internet access by attaining new levels of spectrum efficiencies in the world of wireless services.

Nitin J. Shah, ArrayComm executive vice president and general manager for Internet products, said the agreement with Redback represents a major step toward widespread deployment of its i-BURST technology.

“With the advent of i-BURST, subscribers will access the Internet anytime, anywhere, via laptops and next-generation devices for the same kinds of media-rich experiences they have come to expect over broadband wire line networks,” Shah said.

Shah noted that Redback is an industry leader in subscriber management technology and would provide essential network architectural elements that enable service providers to extend Portable Broadband Access to their customers.

“This development changes the rules of the wireless data game, proving that the wireless Internet needn’t be constrained by the complexities and limitations of today’s narrow-band wireless networks,” Shah said.

The integration of i-BURST with Redback’s SMS yields robust and flexible network architecture. Built from the ground up for high-speed IP-transparent wireless data transport and scalable performance, the systems allow for simplified network integration and avoid the complexities inherent in supporting data services over legacy cellular systems.

Internet service providers can use their existing equipment to deliver broadband wireless services, while content providers can employ a common content base for both wireless and wired access.

Gaurav Garg, Redback vice president of strategy and business development, said the firm continuously monitors and evaluates wireless access technologies, and ArrayComm’s i-BURST technology is a sure winner.

“Not only does it provide a very clean solution for portable broadband access, but also fits well with current broadband infrastructure and ISP service models,” Garg said. “With this agreement, we continue to enhance the service and operational model for both wireless and wired operators, and enable new and innovative applications for wireless communications.”

At the core of i-BURST is ArrayComm’s IntelliCell adaptive smart antenna operating on spatial processing technology. With as little as 5 MHz of unpaired spectrum, i-BURST is designed to outperform current cellular data solutions by over 400 times and exceeds tomorrow’s third-generation solutions by more than 40 times.

A typical deployment using 10 MHz of spectrum is expected to deliver 40 Mbps of data throughput per cell and provide online connectivity to many users anytime, anywhere, at user data rates in excess of 1 Mbps in a fully loaded system.

Cellular phone pioneer Martin Cooper captains ArrayComm from its headquarters in San Jose, Calif. Known for its leadership in smart antenna-based wireless communications, the company recently closed on a $15 million round of financing led by an $8 million investment by Sony Corp. .

According to David Nowicki, ArrayComm vice president of marketing said it is testing its I-BURST technology in San Jose later this year.

“Weve received an experimental license from the FCC to test our portable broadband system in San Jose this year,” No

wicki said. “We anticipate completing additional test markets through 2001, and prepare for commercial release sometime in 2002.”

Nowicki added that while i-BURST gains broadband efficiencies in wireless spectrum to permit portal broadband access, its content would blow users away.

“Shouldnt you be able to buy an appliance, with a single I-BURST chip set, that allows you to step outside and surf the Net or e-mail a friend?” Nowicki said. “The Redback partnership and Sony funding will go a long way to deliver just that type of service to broadband users worldwide, forever free from wires.”

Its patented IntelliCell technology dramatically enhances the capacity, coverage, and quality of wireless cellular systems. It works with all wireless air interfaces.

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