Reston, Va. - Lightsquared, which
plans to wholesale a wireless 4G voice and data service, has signed contracts
with several companies that will sell the service under their own brands.
One contract is with a national
retailer. The others are with a website and two carriers, the company said
without disclosing their names. A contract with a device manufacturer has also
been signed. Neither names nor terms were disclosed.
The company, backed by hedge fund
company Harbinger Capital Partners, outlined
a timetable last year to build a 4G-LTE satellite and terrestrial voice and
data network whose service it would wholesale to retailers, cable operators,
and other companies that want to offer the service under their own brands.
Companies reselling LightSquared
service could offer a terrestrial-only service or an integrated
terrestrial/satellite service in which VoIP calls and data sessions could be
handed off between the terrestrial network and satellite. Satellite-only
service would be available in Canada and Mexico.
The company, which signed
contracts last year for base-station equipment, will build its network in four
markets this year -- Baltimore, Denver, Phoenix and Las Vegas -- as part of a
national rollout that will expand service to at least 100 million people by the
end of 2012, a spokesman said. By the end of 2013, the company will expand
service to 145 million people, and by the end of 2015, service will be
available to 92 percent of the U.S. population by the end of 2015, based on an
agreement with the Federal Communications Commission.