Feeds

Motorola dodges $4bn damages

Orbital sword of Damocles sheathed

High performance access to file storage

Motorola has settled claims outstanding from the company's involvement in the ill-fated Iridium satellite phone system, ending up having to pay nothing despite creditors' attempts to squeeze $4bn out of the beleaguered technology company.

Iridium was and is a mobile phone system based on connecting handsets direct to satellites, and was one of a few systems announced with great fanfare in the late 90s to provide connectivity anywhere in the world.

The problem is that launching satellites is very, very, expensive, and it takes a long time. This means that calls over satellite are also expensive - as those planning to use in-flight mobiles will soon discover. Also, satellite technology is always slightly old by the time it's in use, so ground-based systems can offer faster speeds based on newer technology.

That combination led to insufficient customers, and bankruptcy in 1999 after less than a year in operation. The assets were then snapped up on the cheap, the system is still operational and used by those people who find coverage more important than cost - as evidenced by the Iridium Flare - reflections from the satellites visible to the naked eye.

Motorola's dispute harks back to that bankruptcy, with creditors accusing the company of "voidable preference, fraudulent conveyance, breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty" and claiming the aforementioned whacking great sum in damages.

Escaping such a hefty payout must have brought out the little plastic cups of cava at Motorola - it could certainly do with a bit of good news these days. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
A black box for your SUITCASE: Now your lost luggage can phone home – quite literally
Breakfast in London, lunch in NYC, and your clothes in Peru
Broadband Secretary of SHEEP sensationally quits Cabinet
Maria Miller finally resigns over expenses row
Skype pimps pro-level broadcast service
Playing Cat and Mouse with the media
Beat it, freetards! Dyn to shut down no-cost dynamic DNS next month
... but don't worry, charter members, you're still in 'for life'
EE dismisses DATA-BURNING glitch with Orange Mail app
Bug quietly slurps PAYG credit - yet EE denies it exists
Like Google, Comcast might roll its own mobile voice network
Says anything's possible if regulators approve merger with Time Warner
Turnbull leaves Australia's broadband blackspots in the dark
New Statement of Expectations to NBN Co offers get-out clauses for blackspot builds
Facebook claims 100 MEEELLION active users in India
Who needs China when you've got the next billion in your sights?
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.