Inmarsat M4 Wide Area Network (WAN)

Source: Stratos
Portable High-Speed Services for Voice and Data Stratos' Inmarsat M4 service extends a company's WAN (wide area network) via satellite
Inmarsat M4
Portable High-Speed Services for Voice and Data

Stratos' Inmarsat M4 service extends a company's WAN (wide area network) via satellite into the world's most remote regions, creating a Global Area Network. Tailored to the large data transfer requirements of users in the oil and gas, resource exploration, and broadcast sectors, Stratos' M4 service offers voice (4.8 Kbps) and high-speed data (HSD) capabilities to users in the Inmarsat global spot beam coverage area (see coverage area map). Stratos' Inmarsat M4 service delivers:

High-Speed Data. The M4 unit offers built-in high-speed data (56/64 Kbps) capabilities through an ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) interface compatible with off-the-shelf ISDN peripherals, such as modems and video conferencing equipment. With multiplexing, the 64-Kbps channel can also be subdivided into several slower speed voice, fax and data circuits, with 8 Kbps typically used for each voice circuit and 9.6 Kbps for each fax circuit. Depending on the terminal manufacturer, a standard analog telephone interface may also be provided for telephone, fax and modem equipment.

Increased portability. Much smaller than an Inmarsat-B, the M4 terminal is roughly the size of a laptop computer and weighs only 4kg (9 lb.). Shipped with a battery, it delivers more than 100 hours standby time and can be easily stored with a laptop computer in a portable over-the-shoulder carrying case.

Terminal size: H 6.8 cm (2.7 in.) x W 27.5 cm (10.8 in.) x
D 35.5 cm (14 in.)

Antenna size (folded out): H 34.0 cm (13.4 in.) x
W 77.4 cm (30.5 in.) x 1.2 cm (0.5 in.)

Advantages for the media sector. The M4 service offers a number of key capabilities to media members, including:

  • broadcast quality audio
  • store-and-forward video transfer
  • video conferencing
  • web access
  • high resolution photo transfers
  • Internet e-mail

Lower terminal costs and service rates. Stratos M4 terminals cost substantially less than Inmarsat-B land units. Stratos' M4 service also offers voice and HSD at rates significantly below Inmarsat-B, with voice charges comparable to mini-M and HSD service rates approximately one-third less than Inmarsat-B.

High-speed data applications. With the appropriate software and hardware, Stratos' Inmarsat M4 service supports the following applications:

  • web access
  • Internet e-mail
  • G3 fax (14.4 Kbps)
  • large file transfer (ftp)
  • WAN connectivity
  • video conferencing
  • image transfer
  • store-and-forward video
  • broadcast quality audio

Stratos' High-Speed Mobile Mailbox Service. This service (available 4Q '99) provides an "off the shelf" high-speed mobile satellite Internet messaging and communications solution to customers requiring extended functionality for their M4. For a low monthly fee, a subscriber is provided with their own mailbox that optimizes large data transfers via Internet e-mail and FTP between mobile and fixed users.

Specialized uses. Other applications supported by Inmarsat M4 service include remote diagnostics, telemedicine, remote monitoring, encryption systems (STU-III) and data streaming.

SIM card convenience. Like its mini-M predecessor, M4 terminals come equipped with a SIM (subscriber identity module) card reader. Multiple SIM cards can be used on the same M4 terminal, establishing unique accounts for each SIM card and providing a way to bill the card user rather than the terminal owner.

Near global coverage. Stratos' Inmarsat M4 service is available throughout the world's land masses, excluding the polar regions. (see coverage area map)

Toll free customer care. As with all Stratos services, Inmarsat M4 customers are provided with toll-free support by trained professionals at Stratos' International Customer Care Center, 24-hours per day, 7 days a week.

Service/product specifications subject to change without notice. Stratos will begin taking orders for its M4 products and service June 15, with commercial service scheduled for September 1, 1999.

Stratos, Scotia Plaza, 40 King Street W., Suite 3600, Toronto, ON M5H 3Z5. Tel: 416-777-9100; Fax: 416-777-9099.