LightSquared's network affects majority of GPS units in US

LightSquared wants to build a 4G wireless network in the US. The plan is to sell off access to the network to wholesale businesses. However, the company has been hit by critics who claim that the network creates interference with signals sent to global positioning satellite units. Last June, LightSquared claimed that it had solved these issues, but a newly leaked study from the government says otherwise.

Businessweek.com reports that the tests on LightSquared's network were handled by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. The tests themselves, which were conducted between October 31 to November 4, indicated that “millions of fielded GPS units are not compatible" with the wireless network. In fact the number could be as high as 75 percent of GPS units.

The study concluded, "LightSquared signals caused harmful interference to majority of GPS receivers tested. No additional testing is required to confirm harmful interference exists."

The study itself wasn't supposed to be released until next week. Naturally, LightSquared doesn't care for the results of the study to be released early. In an email to Businessweek.com Martin Harriman, executive vice president of LightSquared, said in an email that the company is "outraged by the illegal leak of incomplete government data". He added, "This breach attempts to draw an inaccurate conclusion to negatively influence the future of LightSquared and narrowly serve the business interests of the GPS industry."

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