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LightSquared CEO: "We want to be a dumb pipe company"

Posted: , by Scott H.

LightSquared CEO:
In a world where wireless providers want to tack on as many extra “services” as they can, LightSquared aspires to be different, says CEO Sanjiv Ahuja. “LightSquared is building the ultimate dumb pipe,” Ahuja said during his Open Mobile Summit 2011 keynoted address. "We want to be the dumbest wireless broadband pipe. No intelligence in our network. None. Zero."

LightSquared is currently rolling out their new LTE network, claiming they will bring LTE to 100 million U.S. customers by the end of 2012.  If they meet success, it could usher in a world of phones with no carrier-mandated bloatware, as well as a reduction in the cost of services such as text messaging and even voice calling.  The price of those services are kept artificially high by current carriers because they don’t allow them to be treated as data, allowing companies like Verizon and AT&T to pad their profit margins on these commonly used features.

The business model that LightSquared has proposed would be like that of your water or electrical utilities: they would provide the data pipelines, and just charge you for the data you use.  It would be up to handset manufacturers and software companies to create an open market of services customers could choose from.  The end result could be lowered prices, as well as the ability for consumers to choose only the services they want a la carte, rather than having to accept the milieu of bloatware services that are currently preloaded onto smartphones.

Sound good?  First LightSquared will have to overcome hurdles thrown up by the GPS industry, whose products have seen interference as LightSquared tests their LTE network.  Ahuja expressed optimism that those challenges are being addressed. "We are working closer with the FAA to ensure there are no safety issues. We are very confident we'll solve that."

source: Light Mobile Reading via BGR

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posted on 07 Nov 2011, 14:22 3

1. crankyd00d (Posts: 191; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)

Of course they would say that, since they don't yet have a single one customer for their dumb pipe business the offers are amazing, just wait 'till they get a bunch of customers and their network is on its knees for them to get greedy really fast

posted on 07 Nov 2011, 14:32 4

2. jdrevolution (Posts: 87; Member since: 07 Oct 2011)

They may just want to keep it simple versus getting tied up in a lot of different things and getting confused.
K.I.S.S.: Keep it simple, stupid! :D
I could be wrong but we'll see.

posted on 07 Nov 2011, 19:42

4. evo-ninja (Posts: 31; Member since: 23 May 2011)

k.i.s.s, it's not a guitar lesson

posted on 07 Nov 2011, 18:05

3. codymws (Posts: 237; Member since: 17 Jun 2010)

Dump or dumb? The title says dumb, article says dump...


posted on 07 Nov 2011, 20:37

5. Gawain (Posts: 426; Member since: 15 Apr 2010)

Well, if the quote is accurate, if they're dealing with the FAA, they're doomed for failure since it's the FCC that rules that roost.

So, LTE on yet, another frequency which may interfere with, or perhaps may be interfered with by, GPS in the end game.

posted on 07 Nov 2011, 21:36

6. dave0087 (Posts: 1; Member since: 07 Nov 2011)

They have to work with the FAA because of the GPS systems used in aircraft. The GPS interference has been the big issue for LightSquared and is what is currently preventing them from launching their network.

posted on 07 Nov 2011, 23:15

7. iankellogg (Posts: 155; Member since: 15 Jun 2011)

My understand of the problem is bandwidth bleed. The bands that Lightsquared want to use are very close the the lower end of GPS bands and for some reason certain GPS receivers are operating slightly out of frequency enough so to be bothered by lightsquared. Also this is unrelated to GPS but if you thing LTE has bad coverage on verizon you will be thrilled on how awful LightSquared's range will be.

posted on 08 Nov 2011, 14:38

10. choupino (Posts: 69; Member since: 28 May 2011)

The actualual problem lies with the Aviation industry... There were specific insulators pieces that cost $0.05 to attach to their systems, that they opted not to spend the money on... Look up the spectrum that Lightsquared already had.

posted on 08 Nov 2011, 00:03

8. Univice (Posts: 39; Member since: 15 Jun 2010)

Yes! Yes! Yes! This is what I've been prompting the carriers to do at every opportunity. But of course they want to keep billing me for bundled services I don't use. It's all data.

posted on 08 Nov 2011, 12:54

9. nickjjay (Posts: 79; Member since: 10 Oct 2011)

I'm a huge fan of no bloatware

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