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    Wednesday, September 30, 2009

    Reuters - TerreStar, AT&T to launch satellite smartphone

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    TerreStar, AT&T to launch satellite smartphone

    Wednesday, Sep 30, 2009 3:13PM UTC

    (Reuters) - TerreStar Corp's <TSTR.O> majority-owned unit signed a deal with AT&T <T.N> to launch the first fully integrated satellite smartphone, sending its shares up 39 percent to a 52-week high.

    Users will be able to access voice and data services in the United States, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and offshore coastal waters over either the AT&T cellular network or the TerreStar satellite network, said the unit, mobile communications provider TerreStar Networks Inc.

    The service is intended to work as a user's everyday cellular smartphone device, with satellite access capability as a secondary option when needed.

    TerreStar shares rose to a high of $2.95 before paring some gains to trade up 20 percent at $2.56 Wednesday morning on Nasdaq.

    (Reporting by S. John Tilak in Bangalore; Editing by Anne Pallivathuckal)

    Reuters - Verizon discontinues Internet Hub phone

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    Verizon discontinues Internet Hub phone

    Wednesday, Sep 30, 2009 8:30PM UTC

    NEW YORK (Reuters) - Verizon Wireless, the No. 1 U.S. mobile service, quietly stopped selling the Verizon Hub on Tuesday, just eight months after it launched the experimental device which combined a home telephone and Web applications.

    Verizon Wireless, a venture of Verizon Communications Inc and Vodafone Group Plc, did not explain why it stopped selling the device, which launched on February 1.

    "We look at our products and we rotate them in and out. This isn't anything other than business as usual," company spokeswoman Brenda Raney said. "Technology is changing and there may be different opportunities available."

    Verizon, whose traditional home phone service has been steadily losing customers, had said in January that the Hub, with its roomy touch screen display and Web apps like weather and traffic reports, was a reinvention of the home phone.

    It had also shown prototypes for future hub products and talked about plans to build a special app store for the device, which cost $199 and came with a $34.99 monthly fee on top of home broadband service fees.

    However, analysts had said at the time that the company would have a tough time convincing consumers that the device was so much better than a traditional home phone that it was worth paying extra for, especially in a weak economy.

    (Reporting by Sinead Carew; Editing by Phil Berlowitz)

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