Regional Broadband Global Area Network

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What Does Regional Broadband Global Area Network Mean?

Regional broadband global area network (RBGAN) is a now-defunct IP-based, shared carrier service that was offered on a regional basis. The service was provided by network mobile satellite company Inmarsat, but was withdrawn in 2008 and replaced by the broadband global area network (BGAN), a global satellite Internet network.

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Techopedia Explains Regional Broadband Global Area Network

Inmarsat is a British company that provides telephony and data services to users worldwide. The company has developed a series of networks since it was founded in 1979. The withdrawal of RBGAN occurred because it was superseded by the newer BGAN technology.

BGAN signal acquisition requires line-of-site with the geostationary satellite and requires the user to have a compass and a general idea of the satellite’s location. Slowly turning the terminal will soon indicate signal capture, which can be done in less than a minute for an experienced user with a good signal.

Some limitations include prohibited use on the open ocean in a moving vessel, although Inmarsat does provide broadband service for maritime communications using all 14 satellites. Regular terminals also cannot be used on aircraft.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.