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Inmarsat Goes To Aruba

By | October 14, 2004

      London-based Inmarsat, a global provider of mobile satellite communications, has been a 802.11b wireless user since 1999, and it’s now decided to replace its aging wireless LAN at headquarters with some new gear from San Diego’s Aruba Wireless Networks. The carrier bought seven stackable switches including three Aruba 2400s and four Aruba 800s, saying more than 400 Inmarsat staffers spread out from London to other spots in Europe, the Middle East and North America will be able to tap into the enhanced network – and at faster speeds, going from a slow 11 Mbps to 54 Mbps. The Aruba switches reportedly will allow those workers to access the corporate network from home, from partner sites or from other Wi-Fi hot spots.

      Besides the age of its former WLAN, Inmarsat cited interference as another reason for buying a more secure switch. The carrier says it detected at least 10 other wireless networks in the “immediate vicinity” of its London office, so it chose Aruba’s 803.11a gear to avoid any potential interference pitfalls. Here in the States, T-Mobile USA ran into similar interference problems with competing Wi-Fi networks surrounding any Starbucks on any given day. That carrier reportedly installed Cisco-developed software in its networks to help its Wi-Fi access points find uninhabited airspace for its Wi-Fi subscribers.

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