Easynet to offer satellite Net access

UK Internet service provider Easynet announced Tuesday that it is to offer high speed Net access via satellite.

The service uses BT Broadcast Services satellite technology and will be targeted at both home and business users. The satellite system will, according to Easynet, provide Internet access at four times the speed of conventional modem access and coverage across the whole of Europe. The technology is capable of delivering 41MB per second and Easynet will offer customers a bandwidth of 1MB per second

The technology has been on trial since last year and according to BT, is initially aimed at high-end users, small to medium-sized business and home offices. Graham Warren, technical services manager for BT anticipates "widespread introduction" among these target groups in the next year. For the mass market the introduction of video streaming and downloadable music will speed the adoption of high speed access in the home within the next four or five years, Warren predicts.

Warren does not believe any one technology will win out in the race to introduce high speed access to the UK: "There will be all sorts of high speed delivery to homes, including ADSL and satellite," he said.

The Easynet service will be available immediately at a fixed monthly fee of £49.99. Users will need a PC card and a 60cm satellite dish which will cost around £250.

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