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News Item

First Satellite-Terrestrial Smartphone

TerreStar GENUS Smartphone combines 3G terrestrial wireless capability with satellite voice

Wireless Technology Magazine

Elektrobit Inc, Elektrobit Corporation, and mobile communications provider TerreStar Corporation, have expanded their relationship to include EB's provision of turnkey product delivery services to TerreStar for the TerreStar GENUS Smartphone, an EB design. EB has sub-contracted with leading Electronics Manufacturing Services (EMS) provider Flextronics, to help provide these product delivery services.

The TerreStar GENUS Smartphone is an innovative mobile device that combines 3G terrestrial wireless capability with satellite voice and data services - all in a standard smartphone size and form factor. The TerreStar GENUS provides an enhanced end-user experience by leveraging the Windows Mobile 6.5 operating system, rich smartphone functionality and premium features, such as a touchscreen, WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS and a QWERTY keyboard, with satellite ubiquity and security. The TerreStar GENUS can be used throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and offshore coastal waters, and is intended to work as a user's everyday cellular smartphone, with satellite access capability as a secondary option, when needed.

To provide TerreStar the agreed product delivery services, EB has sub-contracted with Flextronics for comprehensive electronics manufacturing services, forward and reverse logistics, and aftermarket services support. This partnership will provide TerreStar with cost efficient manufacturing and complete supply chain visibility for the TerreStar GENUS Smartphone. By working with EB and its partner network, TerreStar can align its business objectives with device demand and an ongoing logistics and product lifecycle strategy.

"We remain committed to transforming the mobile experience by bringing the next generation of handheld solutions to market that will provide true mobile convergence and ubiquitous voice, data and video access across cellular and satellite connectivity options," said Steve AuBuchon, TerreStar's vice president of product management. "Partnering with EB and Flextronics was a strategic move, as each brings extensive expertise from across the wireless value chain to enable TerreStar to quickly and cost-effectively meet its aggressive go-to-market initiatives."

Flextronics was chosen for its proven track record of delivering cost effective manufacturing and logistics services to OEMs of mobile devices. They will manufacture and provide support services initially from its Linkoping, Sweden location.

"We understand TerreStar's need to assemble the right set of product delivery business assets to enable them to bring this new category of integrated satellite-terrestrial devices to market," said Francois Barbier, president Global Operations, Flextronics. "Our goal is to work closely with EB to ensure TerreStar has an efficient supply chain; offering operational advantages based on fewer touch points and lower cost. Our SBS (Special Business Solutions) organization enables our Customers to utilize Flextronics scalability to support future business growth. This is another great win for our SBS team."

The terms of today's agreement with TerreStar highlight EB's newly announced business model to offer complete products leveraging manufacturing partners. This service is in addition to EB's current service offering: pairing EB's technology assets and advanced research and development services with third party components to engineer creative wireless ecosystems.

"We are pleased to expand our long-standing relationship with TerreStar to include product delivery services, as we continually look to offer as much value as possible in every business relationship we engage in," said Jani Lyrintzis, vice president, Wireless Solutions, EB. "Together with our partners, we are working to deliver the first satellite-terrestrial smartphone to one of the world's most recognized mobile operators."

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