T-Mobile Venture Fund invests in femtocells

04 Mar 2008 | News


T-Mobile Venture Fund (TMVF), the venture arm of the German telecomms company Deutsche Telekom has made a strategic investment in Ubiquisys, a specialist in 3G femtocells. TMVF joins Google and original investors Accel Partners, Atlas Venture and Advent Venture Partners in funding the company.

Femtocells are small consumer devices the size of a paperback book that connect to the home broadband connection. This will enable mobile phone users to get high-speed 3G coverage using their existing handset, plus low-cost voice and data services in the home.

Femtocells allow operators to more effectively bundle mobile and fixed broadband services, and to offer mobile applications based on home presence and sharing data with the home network.

The Ubiquisys femtocell is currently in mass production with Sony Technium. These units are currently being trialled by mobile network operators. The investment by T-Mobile supports the drive towards the first commercial launches, anticipated towards the end of 2008.

“Femtocells are fundamental to the future of mobile. They solve the [home] coverage dilemma whilst lowering costs for operators and consumers alike. They pave the way for new mobile services that put the mobile phone at the centre of the connected home, and allow operators to offer improved fixed broadband plus mobile bundles,” said Axel Kolb, Fund Manager, T-Mobile Venture Fund.

“We identified Ubiquisys as the clear leader in this space, with an innovative product, a strong deployment ecosystem, and unique software to enable femtocell-ready applications.”

“Femtocells seamlessly join-up mobile phones, home networks and broadband internet for the first time. They also offer mobile operators a completely new method for deploying new network technologies,” said Chris Gilbert, CEO of Ubiquisys. “We are delighted to have the support of one of the industry’s most prominent venture groups, a company that shares our view of how of femtocells can revolutionise the mobile experience.”

Ubiquisys femtocells can be seen in action at the T-Mobile Pavilion at the CeBIT exhibition in Hannover this week.

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