BlueTooth: it will get you into your hotel room and chance the channels on your TV
Hello for 3-2001
By: Mike Lipshultz

One of my pet peeves is the TV remote in hotel rooms.  More often then not it is fastened down to the bedside table.  Using it is a little more convenient then walking over to the TV, but it still is an inconvenience.  Hey, I like to have the remote in my hand not on a table.  Looks like technology is coming to my rescue.  Currently several hotels are testing a system that lets customers with  enabled devices use the units for everything from room keys to a TV remote.

The service will first be available on Ericsson phones and at the Holiday Inn on Wall Street, in New York.  Hotel guests using the system will provide credit card and phone number (to their BlueTooth enabled phone) information upon making their reservations.  Upon entering the hotel, if the phone is on, they will automatically receive a message from the hotel’s computer asking if they would like to check in. If so, the guest just has to enter the personal identification number they received when they booked, the systems computer will send back a message with their room number.

It's Alive, It's Alive!

Most folks thought that the satellite phone system Iridium was dead and gone.  A victim of Bankruptcy.  Let me tell you it ain’t so.  It seems the US Government uses the system so they came to the rescue.  Here is the complete information from the Iridium web site
( ):

"The US Military saves the iridium Satellite Phone System


The Pentagon has made a $72 million deal that will keep a $5 billion fleet of satellites in orbit. The Defense Information Systems Agency awarded a two-year contract to Iridium Satellite LLC, a venture capital firm that purchased the assets of the bankrupt Iridium satellite communications system developed by Motorola.

The contract, which includes options to extend the deal through 2007 at $252 million, gives unlimited airtime to 20,000 government workers who currently use the Iridium network for mobile phones and paging. Boeing will operate the system, the Pentagon said.

On Nov. 20 a New York bankruptcy judge approved Iridium Satellite’s $25 million offer to buy the satellites and Iridium’s Leesburg, Va., operations center. At least two other offers were made, but the court said Iridium Satellite, backed by aviation industry veteran Dan Colussy, was the only bidder to submit a deposit, making it qualified to make a formal bid.

The Pentagon said in a news release that the “state-of-the-art” system provides access anywhere on Earth at any time, a unique feature sorely needed by the Navy.

“Iridium will not only add to our existing capability, it will provide a commercial alternative to our purely military systems,” deputy undersecretary of defense Dave Oliver said in a news release. “This may enable real civil/military dual use, keep us closer to the leading edge technologically, and provide a real alternative for the future"

CT Expo, Los Angeles.

By the time you read this I will be at the CT Expo in Los Angeles.  I love this show.  The Computer Telephony show has grown from a very small walk-through-it-in-an-hour show to a major it-takes-a-couple-of-days-to- do show.  I will be on the hunt as usual for systems for the SO and HO offices.  Look for a show report in April.


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Last modified: November 08, 2002