Florida-based wireless vendor xG Technology yesterday announced the launch of a deployment program for its xMAX mobile wireless voice-over-IP (VoIP) service, with the first operators scheduled to have revenue-producing systems online using unlicensed spectrum during the second quarter of 2007.

Utilizing xG Technology’s patented single-cycle waveform solution, the xMAX VoIP system will let an operator cover 1000 square miles and about 30,000 subscribers—based on existing mobile-phone usage patterns—with a single $50,000 base station, xG Technology Chairman and CEO Rick Mooers said. While typical costs for tower rental and provisioning lines will apply, the fact that the xMAX gear leverages the unlicensed ISM band (902-928 MHz) means operators do not have to pay for spectrum.

“We wanted to show what we believe nobody else has yet—a true, low-cost mobile solution,” Mooers said. “We can put up a mobile wireless for thousands, not millions, of dollars and let the small guys compete with the majors on a cost-effective basis.”

To date, xG Technology has demonstrated the ability to transmit low-power broadband signals up to 18 miles and announced that an unnamed vendor has contracted to use its technology to deliver a point-to-point wireless backhaul solution. However, this offering initially will not deliver data, only voice, Mooers said.

“We’re just trying to do simple, stripped-down voice that is an unlimited service for a reasonable cost,” he said. “Later on, we’ll add data, Internet access and video ... It’s basically a software upgrade to add the functionality later.”

As announced previously, the xMAX VoIP phones will be able to function as a wired phone via an Ethernet port or wirelessly via a Wi-Fi hot spot or an xMAX network, Mooers said. The first generation of xMAX phones will not be able to seamlessly hand off calls between the Wi-Fi and xMAX network, he said.

Beginning yesterday, xG Technology is accepting applications for the xMAX dealer program that will award exclusive territories for VoIP deployments. Beta systems are expected to be online during the first quarter of 2007 and generating revenues for operators the following quarter, Mooers said.

"Preliminary response has been tremendous," Frank Peake, head of xG Technology’s sales and marketing, said in a statement. "Competitive providers that are interested in reaching their customers directly rather than relying on incumbent providers' networks have shown particular interest in locking up exclusive territories."