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Google invests in UK 'Femtocells' firm

Technology could boost indoor mobile speeds

Google has invested it a UK firm developing technology for boosting cellular coverage in homes and businesses.

The search giant participated in a $25m round of funding for Ubiquisys, a femtocells vendor based in Swindon. Technology venture funds Accel Partners, Atlas Venture and Advent Venture Partners also invested, Ubiquisys announced on Friday.

Femtocells, named for an order of size in physics that is smaller than 'pico ' or ' nano', are cellular base stations for individual homes or offices. Mobile operators hope to sell them to customers who will install them and immediately enjoy better coverage for data and entertainment services. Weak cellular signals indoors, where most high-speed data services are used, have stunted the growth of those lucrative offerings, according to industry analysts.

Google invested in Ubiquisys as part of efforts to help people use the internet wherever they are, with the richest possible experience, spokesman David-John Collins said.

"It's about promoting different ways and platforms for people to access the internet itself," Collins said.


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