[LINK] mobile mesh
kim at holburn.net
Thu Sep 13 06:36:30 EST 2007
> Mobile system promises free calls
> A new way of making calls directly between phones, for free, is
> being trialled by a Swedish company.
> It is hoping to dramatically improve communications in the
> developing world.
> Swedish company TerraNet has developed the idea using peer-to-peer
> technology that enables users to speak on its handsets without the
> need for a mobile phone base station.
> The technology is designed for remote areas of the countryside or
> desert where base stations are unfeasible.
> Projects backed by TerraNet recently launched in Tanzania and Ecuador.
> TerraNet founder Anders Carlius told the BBC World Service's
> Digital Planet programme that the idea for TerraNet came when he
> was on safari in Tanzania in 2002, and found that poor connectivity
> meant he could not ring friends riding in another jeep only a few
> metres away.
> "I started thinking, 'couldn't we get phone-to-phone without
> needing any other equipment, and actually have real voice
> communication, like a telephone call, between units?'" he said.
> Digital identity
> The TerraNet technology works using handsets adapted to work as
> peers that can route data or calls for other phones in the network.
> The handsets also serve as nodes between other handsets, extending
> the reach of the entire system. Each handset has an effective range
> of about one kilometre.
> This collaborative routing of calls means there is no cost to talk
> between handsets.
> When a TerraNet phone is switched on, it begins to look for other
> phones within range. If it finds them, it starts to connect and
> extend the radio network.
> Students in Sweden
> TerraNet say their network is perfect for communities like students
> When a number is dialled a handset checks to see if the person
> being called is within range. If they are, the call goes through.
> While individually the phones only have a maximum range of 1km, any
> phone in between two others can forward calls, allowing the
> distance to double. This principle applied many times creates a
> mini network.
> However, Mr Carlius admitted that this has created big problems
> with having enough available frequencies.
> The system can also be used to make calls to other TerraNet mesh
> networks via a net-connected PC fitted with an inexpensive USB dongle.
> "If you look at places like Africa, South America, India, China,
> we're really for the first time giving people a digital identity,"
> he added.
> "People are able to talk to other people using a phone number.
> "With our stuff, we are giving the low-end man or woman the chance
> to talk locally for free."
> Ericsson backed TerraNet - but other companies are sceptical
> And TerraNet phones currently only work with a special handset -
> although Mr Carlius said he hopes that it will eventually be a
> feature available on all phones, like Bluetooth.
> He said that were this to happen, it could potentially spell the
> end for the current Global System for Mobile (GSM) communications
> model. About 70% of all mobile phones use this technology.
> Mr Carlius said large mobile firms did not like the idea of using a
> peer-to-peer model to make calls.
> "One of the biggest things against us is that the big operators and
> technology providers are really pushing against us, saying this
> technology doesn't work and it doesn't have a business model," he
> "This is fine - just join us in Lund and see how the technology
> works, and ask our customers how our business model works."
> Mr Carlius said that mobile phone manufacturer Ericsson had
> invested around £3m in TerraNet, and this indicated that the
> business model for the network is sound.
IT Network & Security Consultant
Ph: +39 06 855 4294 M: +39 3494957443
mailto:kim at holburn.net aim://kimholburn
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Democracy imposed from without is the severest form of tyranny.
-- Lloyd Biggle, Jr. Analog, Apr 1961
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