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In a recent development, Google, AT&T, and Vodafone have collectively invested $206.5 million in AST SpaceMobile, positioning it as a formidable competitor to Starlink. AST SpaceMobile aims to deliver smartphone services via low-Earth-orbit satellites. This marks the inaugural investment for Google and AT&T in AST SpaceMobile, complementing Vodafone’s existing financial involvement in the satellite venture. The funding announcement was made through a press release on Thursday, coinciding with AST SpaceMobile’s declaration of a $100 million public stock offering on the same day.




AST SpaceMobile revealed that both Vodafone and AT&T have initiated purchase orders for network equipment from the company to support their planned commercial services. Simultaneously, Google has committed to collaborating on product development, testing, and implementation plans for SpaceMobile network connectivity on Android and related devices. AST SpaceMobile, already backed by investments from Rakuten, American Tower, and Bell Canada, currently operates a substantial test satellite in orbit.




While SpaceX’s Starlink, a subsidiary of SpaceX, has secured agreements with T-Mobile in the US and various international carriers for satellite-to-smartphone services, AST SpaceMobile’s collaboration with AT&T is not entirely new. Despite this being AT&T’s first financial investment in AST SpaceMobile, the two companies have been working together. AT&T has leased spectrum in the 700 MHz and 850 MHz bands to AST SpaceMobile, aiming to deliver mobile broadband to underserved and unserved areas covered by the leased spectrum. This collaboration was detailed in an application submitted to the Federal Communications Commission last year.

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