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BT has named five companies to trial its new high-speed Internet satellite service.

Nildram, PlusNet, Eclipse Internet, izR Solutions and KB Media (who they?) are set to begin a six month trial of the service, which is designed to appeal to small businesses and high-use home users unable to hook up to an existing ADSL or cable service.

A sixth ISP is also trialling the service but declined to be named.

The wholesale price for the pilot has been set at £10 a month, with a one-off connection charge of £360 for the equipment and installation of the dish. However, it's up to service providers to set their final prices.

The service allows users to download data at speeds of 256kbs, but higher speeds up to 4Mbps are also available on a pay-as-used basis.

The return path is via a conventional phone line to the consumer's existing internet service provider.

BT also provides a two-way broadband satellite service but that costs a flipping fortune compared to bog-standard ADSL. Unfortunately, it's also the one that sounds like's it's going to be most use... ®

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