KVH Unveils TracNet Mobile High-speed Internet Server for Use with Mobile DirecPC; Broadband Internet Service for Vehicles Now Available Exclusively from KVH Industries
MIDDLETOWN, R.I.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 27, 2001--High-speed mobile access to the Internet is now a reality for vehicles on North American roads following today's introduction of the TracNet™ Mobile Internet Server from KVH Industries (Nasdaq: KVHI) at the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) National Trade Show in Louisville, Kentucky. By extending the reach of DirecPC® high-speed Internet services to vehicles, KVH has made the full power of the Internet available to travelers, businesspeople, public and emergency services, and "dashboard technology", including emerging telematics products. TracNet receives Internet downloads at speeds reaching 400 kilobits per second (Kbps) via the same award-winning TracVision® antennas used to receive satellite TV entertainment and the high-powered version of the DirecPC® satellite service, available exclusively from KVH Industries.
"High-speed Internet access via TracNet will be a tremendous resource for both business and recreational consumers," declared Martin Kits van Heyningen, KVH president and chief executive officer. "Business people on the road will be able to access their company's web site and critical information directly through the Internet, eliminating the need for proprietary networks and equipment. The emerging telematic industry will be able to use Internet-based data to provide valuable information to travelers, such as weather and real-time traffic maps, while consumers will have the ability to communicate via the web with friends and relatives, research their destinations, and use the complete, full-featured Internet."
TracNet consists of the server, a DirecPC modem, and a cellular/satellite return path antenna. The high-powered DirecPC downloads are received by a KVH TracVision mobile satellite TV antenna, which relays the data to the TracNet server. Two-way, high-speed access to Internet data is available to laptops and PCs either through TracNet's 10/100 BaseT Ethernet connection or the integrated 802.11b wireless network, which permits multiple users to surf the web at any time from virtually anywhere in or around the vehicle. Requests for additional data, outgoing e-mail, and other information are relayed to DirecPC through TracNet's return path, which includes a land-line connection for use while parked and a wireless satellite/cellular system for use while the vehicle is on the move.
Not only does TracNet provide access to broadband Internet data, but it does so using TracVision antennas, the #1 line of mobile satellite TV antennas in the RV and motorcoach industries. As a result, travelers aboard vehicles equipped with a Digital Video Broadcast (DVB)-compatible TracVision system can easily switch from their favorite satellite TV entertainment to high-speed, fully functional Internet access without purchasing a new antenna.
"The TracNet system offers a dramatic increase in download speed and functionality compared to existing mobile Internet solutions," explained Ian Palmer, vice president of satellite sales. "Internet downloads will be delivered to TracNet users via DirecPC at speeds reaching 400 Kbps, 7 times faster than the 56 Kbps dial-up connections found in most homes and RV parks, and almost 30 times faster than other alternative mobile data connections. This translates into significant cost savings based on download size. For instance, a 1 megabyte file would typically cost $0.26 to download via TracNet versus $3.70 using a cellular modem, $17.92 via Globalstar, or almost $42.00 using Iridium."
"The launch of TracNet and the introduction of mobile DirecPC directly relate to our ongoing development of ultra-low profile satellite antennas suitable for use aboard sport utility vehicles, mini-vans, and smaller automobiles," added Kits van Heyningen. "The ability to receive broadband data will provide mobile users anytime, anywhere access to the same media-rich web content, resources, and corporate networks they use in their homes and businesses. KVH Industries, the leader in mobile satellite entertainment, has now brought together all of the components necessary to offer high-speed Internet, wireless data access, and satellite television to mobile consumers, creating the first and only true mobile Internet solution."
The DirecPC service was developed by Hughes Network Systems, a leader in satellite technology and worldwide communications systems. Broadcast using Bell ExpressVu's high-powered DVB satellite and available to mobile users only through KVH, the DirecPC signal will be accessible using any of KVH's 18- and 24-inch DVB-compatible TracVision satellite antennas anywhere within the continental United States and as far as 100 miles off the coast for marine customers.
KVH Industries, Inc., is an international leader in developing and manufacturing innovative, mobile, high-bandwidth satellite communications systems, tactical navigation products, and fiber optic products. The company is based in Middletown, Rhode Island, and has a fiber optic research and manufacturing facility in Tinley Park, Illinois, and a European sales office in Hoersholm, Denmark.
KVH Mobile Broadband via TracNet and DirecPC is the Only Mobile Solution to Provide Affordable, High-speed Internet Access
Mobile Internet Download Typical Cost Time to Cost for
System Speed Per Minute Download 1 MB 1 MB
(Kbps) (minutes) Download
KVH TracNet 400 $0.79 0.3 $0.26
Cellular Modem 14.4 $0.40 9 $3.70
Globalstar 9.6 $1.29 14 $17.92
TMI/Motient 4.8 $1.19 28 $33.06
Iridium 4.8 $1.50 28 $41.67
Kristian Svindland or Jolinda Taylor