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VSE NET launches Germany’s first commercial mobile WiMAX network


The regional provider VSE NET of the Saarland today launched Germany’s first commercial WiMAX network / first live video connection via the WiMAX network at an inauguration ceremony in Schloss (Castle) Dagstuhl.

“Provisioning of broadband services is currently one of the most important infrastructure priorities for any country. We are enhancing the attractiveness of the commercial location Saarland including the rural areas”, said Joachim Rippel, Minister of Commerce and Science of the Saarland, in his opening speech at the VSE NET WiMAX network inauguration in Schloss (Castle) Dagstuhl near Wadern in northern Saarland. The regional telecommunication provider VSE NET is implementing the project in close cooperation with Inquam Broadband, a nationwide licence holder, and the international telecommunication supplier Alcatel-Lucent. “By allocating the frequencies for broadband wireless access Bundesnetzagentur has created the regulatory preconditions for wireless broadband access”, commented Dr. Rüdiger Hahn, director of the Bundesnetzagentur.

During this initial phase of the network roll out VSE NET will offer voice telephony and fast Internet access as well as other data applications for consumers and enterprises in the north of the Saarland probably as from January 2008. The VSE NET broadband network - based on the IEEE 802.16e-2005 WiMAX standard - was deployed by Alcatel-Lucent in just four months thanks to the WiMAX radio technology which requires no complex underground engineering operations, is designed to support stationary and nomadic as well as mobile applications in future. “This service is eagerly anticipated by individuals and especially local businesses”, says Dr. Georg Müller, VSE board member and thereby responsible for the innovative step taken by the VSE NET subsidiary in the Saarland, and he elaborates further: “What is important is that we enter the market soon with a high-quality service”.

The roughly 100 participants in the ceremony held at Schloss Dagstuhl will be able to experience the quality of the WiMAX network quality themselves. For the first time, a broadband live video connection is established from the lecture hall in the castle, via the VSE NET network, to a WiMAX receiver in the industrial area of Wadern. Alf Henryk Wulf, deputy chairman of the board of the supplier Alcatel-Lucent in Germany, comments on the innovative step: “With WiMAX in a mobile version, VSE NET not only puts its money on a technology that is available now, but also on a technology with a secure future. Because the new technology is fully based on IP!“.

Based on a VATM market survey (Association of telephony- and value-added service providers in Germany), about 40% of the German population had broadband Internet connection by the end of 2006. Market expectations are that this share will increase to 50% by the end of this year. WiMAX complying with the IEEE 802.16e standard is an effective technology for providing rural areas in particular with broadband Internet access at reasonable prices.

About Saarland
Saarland is one of the 16 states of Germany. The capital is Saarbrücken. It has an area of 2570 km² and 1,045,000 inhabitants. In both area and population it is the smallest of the German Flächenländer (“area states”). With 65.1 percent, it is the most Catholic state in Germany, being one of two states (the other one being Bavaria) that has a majority Catholic population. The state borders France (département of the Moselle) in the south and west, Luxembourg in the west and Rheinland-Pfalz in the north and the east.

About WiMAX
WiMAX solutions are important last-mile components for universal broadband access, fulfilling the needs of many consumers for fast Internet access and new services. QoS monitoring of individual point-to-point connections guarantees best connection quality for video-on-demand, high-speed Internet access for mobile applications and Internet telephony (VoIP) in real time. The technology’s low latency times and point-to-point communication also make it ideal for gaming with a high degree of interactivity. A single 3-sector WiMAX base station can connect up to 100 small businesses or over 500 households to the Internet.

VSE NET GmbH is a regional telecommunications service provider and network operator for southwestern Germany based in Saarbrücken. The company, which is a subsidiary of artelis s.a., mainly focuses on business customers as a one-stop provider of telecommunications services – from corporate networks to Internet access and telephony – in the Saar and neighboring regions. In 2006, VSE NET recorded sales of €42 million.

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About Inquam
Inquam Broadband GmbH is a majority owned subsidiary of NextWave Wireless (NASDAQ: WAVE). NextWave develops next-generation wireless broadband products and technologies for mobile device and network equipment manufacturers and for wireless service operators. Inquam Broadband holds 3.5GHz broadband wireless access frequencies in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Slovakia and Croatia and intends to build and/or operate BWA networks in cooperation with partner companies interested in providing wireless broadband services to their customers.

About Alcatel-Lucent
Alcatel-Lucent (Euronext Paris and NYSE: ALU) provides solutions that enable service providers, enterprises and governments worldwide, to deliver voice, data and video communication services to end-users. As a leader in fixed, mobile and converged broadband networking, IP technologies, applications, and services, Alcatel-Lucent offers the end-to-end solutions that enable compelling communications services for people at home, at work and on the move. With operations in more than 130 countries, Alcatel-Lucent is a local partner with global reach. The company has the most experienced global services team in the industry, and one of the largest research, technology and innovation organizations in the telecommunications industry. Alcatel-Lucent achieved adjusted proforma revenues of Euro 18.3 billion in 2006 and is incorporated in France, with executive offices located in Paris. [All figures exclude impact of activities transferred to Thales]. For more information, visit Alcatel-Lucent on the Internet:

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