Amazon is testing a wireless network that will allow anyone with one of its devices to connect to the Internet, joining Google in attempting to offer their own services.
The network is being tested in Cupertino, California, and is part of a spectrum managed by satellite communications company Globalstar, according to private sources identified by Bloomberg.
Anonymous sources stated the trial is being carried out by Amazon in the locality of the Amazon Lab126 research facility and it’s here that the Kindle devices are built that could potentially run on the wireless Internet being considered. Chetan Sharma, an independent wireless analyst, also added: “Given that Amazon’s becoming a big player in video, they could look into investing into forms of connectivity,”
To make this possible Globalstar is attempting to convert its satellite based Internet spectrum into one that can support a Wi-Fi service suitable for subscribers. As part of this plan they are looking to gain regulatory authorisation to change 80 per cent of the spectrum so that it’s capable of terrestrial use.
“We are now well positioned in the ongoing process with the FCC as we seek terrestrial authority for our spectrum,” commented Globalstar CEO James Monroe in a recent earnings call.
Amazon isn’t the first technology firm to have tested an Internet service with Google another that has expressed strong interest in developing its own solution. In their case they’ve done so by bidding for wireless spectrum in various parts of the US. Google is building high-speed fibre optic broadband infrastructure across 17 US cities including Austin, Texas, and Kansas City, Kansas.
The company has also signed a deal to provide wireless connections to customers using in Starbucks’ coffee shops in the US. In addition to this, Google operates a wireless network in Mountain View, California and it’s here it could compete with Amazon’s proposed network.