In a significant development for remote connectivity, Telstra, the Australian telecom giant, has initiated the transition of its remote mobile sites to the low Earth orbit (LEO) satellite network provided by Eutelsat OneWeb. This move marks a departure from the traditional geostationary (GEO) satellites, aimed at reducing latency issues and meeting the growing demand for real-time services among customers.
In a groundbreaking move, Viasat, Inc., alongside Terrestar Solutions, Ligado Networks, Omnispace, and Al Yah Satellite Communications Company (Yahsat), have come together to announce the formation of the Mobile Satellite Services Association (MSSA). This new consortium is set to enhance and promote the burgeoning Direct-to-Device (D2D) communication landscape, promising to deliver unprecedented scale and diversity in mobile satellite services.
Iridium, taking the telecommunications industry by storm, aims to connect satellites directly to devices such as smartphones and automobiles through their Low-Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite infrastructure tightly woven on 5G. The key feature here is connecting ordinary smartphones straight to satellite connectivity.
In a collaborative effort organized by the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT), major Japanese companies DoCoMo, NTT, Sky Perfect JSAT, and Space Compass are set to pioneer direct-to-device (D2D) services utilizing flying base stations.
Unveiling a transformative pact in the maritime industry, Spain’s Sateliot and maritime container tracking leader T42 aim to revolutionize container tracking and monitoring with 5G-IoT technology. This exceptional venture will deploy thousands of 5G-IoT sensors linked to Sateliot’s LEO satellite constellation, promising unparalleled oversight over sea-borne goods.
OneWeb, a Eutelsat entity, gained India’s coveted regulatory endorsement to usher in its satellite broadband service, evoking enthusiastic response from Eutelsat’s co-chair, Sunil Bharti Mittal. This development signifies a new era for India’s internet coverage in line with the Prime Minister’s digital vision. However, a crucial spectrum allocation by the government awaits, making OneWeb’s journey not entirely smooth sailing. An array of procedural and regulatory hurdles demands navigation, alongside competing market perspectives delaying the process.
Just under a year ago, the tech world buzzed with anticipation over a new partnership between chip mogul Qualcomm and satellite firm Iridium. The aim? Integrating satellite-to-phone services via Snapdragon Satellite and Iridium’s resources. However, a recent shift in direction caught the industry’s attention. Despite a successful demo, smartphone manufacturers didn’t opt to incorporate this feature, leading Qualcomm to end the agreement. Yet, in the face of disappointment, Iridium remains optimistic, envisaging an industry veering towards greater satellite connectivity. As earthquakes ripple across the telecoms landscape, all eyes await what’s next.
Reliance Jio’s introduction of JioSpaceFiber, a satellite broadband service, has rocked the telecom landscape. Offering gigabit speed connectivity even in remote Indian locations, this innovation brings affordable online engagement to all. Leveraging SES’ medium Earth orbit satellites, the joint venture holds the potential to transform India’s digital reach. Yet, this ambition is not without competition.
Amazon’s Project Kuiper, which birthed two prototype satellites aimed to test potential satellite broadband service, operates similarly to Space-X’s Starlink and OneWeb. The venture is set to increase internet connectivity in remote areas using an extensive satellite constellation. Still, the delay in launching has welcomed accumulating competition. Rabid advancements by competitors including satellite direct-to-device technology pioneers and those concentrating on 5G NTN IoT services could tilt the scales. Would adopting the 5G NTN-compatible network give Project Kuiper a competitive edge? Or will the ongoing innovations by industry leaders overshadow it? However, underlying operational challenges and time constraints might hamper Amazon from contemplating a substantial shift in direction.
Strengthening its lead in the telecommunications sphere, the UK Space Agency has recently allocated £20 million to further drone-based technologies and aerial connectivity initiatives. This exciting endorsement could dramatically shape the future of many sectors, from emergency services to healthcare, illuminating the transformative potential of drone-borne support systems. How will this funding amplify the UK’s fast-growing satellite communications industry and revolutionise our everyday lives? Dig deeper to find out!