MURRAY HILL, N.J. -- Lucent Technologies Inc., the world's largest maker of phone equipment, unveiled yesterday laser technology that can transmit large amounts of information through the air over short distances. The equipment, which will be available next year, could be used to transmit voice, video and other data between office buildings, for example, or ships at sea. The lasers can carry as much as 65 times more data than conventional wireless systems can.
Lucent expects the laser products to appeal to phone companies that need to provide services in areas where it's impractical or too expensive to use fiber-optic cables, such as linking buildings across a river. Global Crossing Ltd., which is building a worldwide undersea-telephone network, is to be the first customer to test the products, beginning in December.