New Patent Recognizes TracVision A5's Patch Antenna Design, Component in Low-profile Automotive Satellite TV System
MIDDLETOWN, R.I. – (BUSINESS WIRE) – March 8, 2005 – KVH Industries, Inc., (Nasdaq: KVHI) announced today that it has been awarded U.S. patent #6,856,300, "Feed Network and Method for an Offset Stacked Patch Antenna Array." This technology is a key component in the hybrid phased-array antenna used in KVH's innovative in-motion TracVision(R) A5 satellite TV system for automobiles. The TracVision A5 provides access to 125+ channels of live satellite TV programming from DIRECTV (NYSE: DTV) and was the recipient of the 2004 "Most Innovative Product Design" Award from General Motors (NYSE: GM).
"The technology outlined in this patent has allowed us to create a flat panel antenna system that is at the heart of the TracVision A5, one of the premier satellite TV antennas in KVH's family of products," said Kal Ganesan, KVH's vice president of engineering. "While phased-array antennas have been available in the military environment for a number of years, the cost has prohibited them from entering the mainstream market. Our new patented technology and other innovations enabled KVH to create a hybrid phased-array antenna that is affordable to consumers and brings outstanding satellite TV entertainment into cars."
The TracVision A5 is a low-profile satellite TV antenna designed specifically for passenger vehicles. The 5-inch high TracVision A5 uses KVH's hybrid phased-array technology to create an antenna with a rugged, sleek design suitable for anything from conversions vans and SUVs to minivans and other vehicles. The TracVision A5 antenna is designed for easy installation and is compatible with most factory-installed and aftermarket roof racks. KVH also offers a tamper-resistant roof mount system for vehicles without roof racks. In July, 2004, KVH was awarded U.S. Design Patent #D493,164, "Mobile Antenna," for the design of the TracVision A5. A number of additional technology patents are also pending.
The award-winning TracVision A5 opened the automotive market to mobile satellite TV service, allowing travelers to enjoy digital-quality DIRECTV(R) programming on open roads across the United States. Shipping since September 2003, the TracVision A5 reached consumers just as the demand for passenger entertainment systems began to intensify in the automotive marketplace. Passenger entertainment is now among the most popular automotive accessories on the market today, with more than one-third of 2004 model year SUVs and minivans sold in the U.S. equipped with in-vehicle video screens, according to J.D. Power and Associates. Industry analyst Frost & Sullivan projects that by 2011, more than 36 million automobiles in the U.S. will be equipped with video systems and of these, more than 3 million will receive mobile satellite TV programming.
The TracVision A5's impact on the automotive market has not gone unrecognized. In addition to the GM award, the company received the Market Leadership Award from industry research firm Frost & Sullivan, which recognized KVH's pioneering efforts to develop and support the automotive satellite TV marketplace. KVH has also been named a finalist for the prestigious 2005 Automotive News PACE Award, as well as a Consumer Electronics Association "Design & Innovation Honoree," among others.
Additional information regarding the TracVision A5 and KVH's complete line of mobile satellite TV systems can be found at http://www.tracvision.com.
KVH Industries, Inc., is the leading provider of in-motion satellite systems, having designed, manufactured, and sold more than 75,000 mobile satellite antennas for mobile applications on boats, RVs, trucks, buses and automobiles, more than any other company. An ISO 9001-certified company, KVH has headquarters in Middletown, Rhode Island, with a fiber optic and military navigation product manufacturing facility in Tinley Park, Illinois, and a European sales, marketing, and support office in Kokkedal, Denmark.
This release may contain certain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements include, for example, the functionality, characteristics, quality and performance of KVH's products and technology; anticipated innovation and product development; and customer preferences, requirements and expectations. The actual results could differ materially. Factors that may cause such differences include, among others, those discussed in KVH's most recent Form 10-Q filed with the SEC. KVH assumes no obligation to update its forward-looking statements to reflect new information or developments.