Up in the sky, it's a LightSquared bird

SkyTerra 1 launchWholesale broadband wireless services provider LightSquared has upped the competitive ante--literally--with the launch of a Boeing-built satellite that it will use to provide wholesale mobile services to millions of subscribers via a satellite-based nationwide 4G-LTE network.

The bird, which shot off from Kazakhstan's Baidonur Cosmodrome, features a 22-meter L-band reflector-based antenna so that LightSquared can "provide ubiquitous nationwide coverage and enable integrated satellite-terrestrial service using products that are similar to today's typical mobile devices in terms of size, capabilities and build costs," the company said in a news release.

LightSquared's launch comes at the same time that another national 4G wireless network provider, Clearwire (Nasdaq: CLWR), is deflating due to a lack of funds and additional support from its partners Sprint (NYSE: S), Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA), Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC-WI) and Bright House Networks.

For more:
- see this news release

Related articles:
Report: LightSquared gets more funding
LightSquared broadband mobile proposal now on FCC clock
LightSquared pledges to shake up industry with LTE network

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