Satellite Internet Starspeeder in trouble
Starspeeder, the Internet via satellite service operated by Luxembourg-based media company Communication and Banking Equipment Luxembourg (CBL), has run into difficulties. Both its Austrian sales partner Skysurf (http://www.skysurf.at) and its German sales partner Schott (http://www.internetvia-satellit.de) have ceased the commercialisation of the service. The Starspeeder homepage and portal (http://www.starspeeder.lu), which utilises two transponders on Europe*Star 1 (45 degrees East), has been down for several weeks.
The service has encountered problems since day one.
After its launch, which took place several months after the announced date of the end of 2000, the customers faced continuous software problems, signal losses and network overloads. Schott, which previously marketed Starspeeder in Germany, has pointed the finger at CBL and issued a statement on its website stating that all contracts had to be cancelled on July 31 because “it seems that Starspeeder has been taken out of service. It has not been possible for us to reach someone at CBL and if we do, we don’t get any information. We assume that CBL is in financial trouble. Therefore we will cancel our co-operation with CBL with immediate effect. Furthermore, we will sue CBL as, in our opinion, a company like this shouldn’t be in the market in the first place.”
Schott has assured all customers who have paid in advance that they will receive a refund. The company claims that it is currently negotiating with an alternative partner to offer an Internet via satellite solution soon.