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Sat phones will get smaller, but prices will stay high

The gear will shrink, but the cost won't for five to ten years

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The first generation of Iridium phones may be bulky and expensive, but Kyocera aims to halve the size within 18 months, said a senior company executive here today. Prices however will stay high for the next few years. Takashi Kuki, manager of the international sales department at the Kyocera Corporation said he expected the cost of satellite telephony to drop to more affordable levels in the next five to 10 years. Iridium itself, which went live earlier this month, is back on track, he said, and initial delays and data difficulties to be ironed out this week. Meanwhile, rumours were circulating in Japan that Kyocera is set to take over rival Oki. The latter turned in poor financial results recently and Kyocera has baled it out over its telecomms division, it emerged. ®

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