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Starent's Mobile Services Get $22M Boost

The promise of advanced wireless services that combine voice, video, and data drew $22 million in new venture capital last week in Starent Networks' second round of funding from Matrix Partners and others.
The promise of advanced wireless services that combine voice, video, and data drew $22 million in new venture capital last week in Starent Networks' second round of funding from Matrix Partners and others. The money should carry Starent into the middle of next year, when the Tewksbury, Mass., company expects its first revenue.

Starent's ST16 Intelligent Mobile Gateway switch functions as a bridge between mobile networks and the Internet, says president and CEO Ashraf Dahod. Mobile operators could install the switches between their wireless base stations and backbone IP networks, where the switches can be used to provide new packet-based data services and enhanced voice services for the mobile service providers' subscribers.

Starent's switch operates at speeds compatible with upcoming third-generation wireless networks, which will provide average data throughputs of 144 Kbps to 384 Kbps, with peak transmission speeds of 2 Mbps, Dahod says. Speeds that high would enable mobile services such as combined voice and video messaging, videoconferencing, and voice instant messaging.