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AT&T has announced that they'll be bringing space-based broadband network direct to everyday cell phones in the not-too-distant future


In December 2022 Patently Apple posted a patent report titled "Apple has Won a Patent relating to possible future Satellite Services beyond the iPhone 14's Emergency SOS Satellite Service." We're now learning that AT&T is out to get the jump on Apple.

Yesterday AT&T and AST SpaceMobile announced that they had entered into a definitive commercial agreement to provide a space-based broadband network direct to everyday cell phones. This agreement extends until 2030. Previously the companies were working together under a Memorandum of Understanding. This is not just one small step, but one giant leap towards enhanced connectivity for consumers and businesses across the country.

This summer, AST SpaceMobile plans to deliver its first commercial satellites to Cape Canaveral for launch into low Earth orbit. These initial five satellites will help enable commercial service that was previously demonstrated with several key milestones. These industry first moments during 2023 include the first voice call, text and video call via space between everyday smartphones.

"Working together with AT&T has paved the way to unlock the potential of space-based cellular broadband directly to everyday smartphones. We are thrilled to solidify our collaboration through this landmark agreement," said Abel Avellan, AST SpaceMobile Founder, Chairman, and CEO. "We aim to bring seamless, reliable service to consumers and businesses across the continental U.S., transforming the way people connect and access information."

This is another key step on AT&T’s path to providing even more expansive connectivity on America’s largest wireless network1. There are many situations where dead zones outside will become a thing of the past thanks to the reach of a satellite solution providing two-way connectivity.

One day in the not-too-distant future, consumers will feel a greater peace of mind knowing they have connectivity in places like wilderness areas, including our national park land, rural highways, and other hard to reach locations around the country.

The question now becomes, when will Apple be expanding their satellite services as noted in their 2022 patent filing?  

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