Published: Sunday 30 April 1995

HI-TFCH Satellite phones - satphones, for short - will soon make it possible for train travellers to make long distance calls while*on board.

The satphone, no bigger than a briefcase, is a part of the modernisation drive in communication facilities on the railway networks. Immarsat is the moving force behind this venture. Tests will short! conducted with portable Immarsat-M stphones on trains across country. There will be direct dialling, and data-connection facilities. According to the Union minister of state for communication, Sukh Ram, "The initiative to expand the cooperation in mobile satellite services would start in the middle of this year, with 2 proto type vehicle-mounted terminals installed on trains throughout India's rail network."

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