China Transportation Telecommunications, a subsidiary of the Ministry of Communications, has announced the launch of a maritime satellite mobile phone service in Beijing.

The service will enable users to make calls with a mobile phone in deserts, in the sea or on high mountains where a GSM or CDMA signal is unavailable. With a size close to that of common mobile phones, the maritime satellite mobile phone only weighs 210 grams. The mobile phone has all of the new functions of the latest mobile phones available for GSM or CDMA networks.

At present, only a few developed countries in the world have opened this service, according to Michael Butler, president and chief operation officer of Inmarsat. Yang Kongyi, director of CTT, has told local media that the service covers Asia and the most part of Africa and it is expected to cover the entire world by 2008.


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