Improving the integration of satellite networks with more traditional terrestrial telephone infrastructures, will help next generation telephony move from concept towards reality, as researchers are demonstrating.
Historically, we have been accustomed to using fixed-line infrastructures for traditional telecommunications, cellular networks for mobile services, and satellite architectures for high-capacity links and ‘one-to-many’ broadcasting. While more and more operators are starting to offer both fixed-line and mobile services, satellite services have remained distinctly separate.
But if the concept of UMTS (Universal Mobile Telephone Services) – of individuals having a single universal number for all their communication services – is ever to become a reality, operators and service providers need to find a way to integrate satellite architectures and their distinct advantages of high-capacity and wide coverage with the more familiar terrestrial infrastructures.
Tara Morris | alfa
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