Hughes and ISRO launch India's first commercial satellite broadband service
Hughes Communications India (HCI) has launched India's first commercial High Throughput Satellite (HTS) broadband internet service. The service will use the Indian Space Research Organisation's (ISRO) GSAT-11 and GSAT-29 satellites to provide satellite internet across the country, including in remote locations. The new service is offering up to 10Mbps bandwidth and up to 2GB of data per day.
Why does this story matter?
- Despite the growth of mobile networks and the telecom sector in India, there are still regions in the country that experience connectivity gaps and poor networks. Many see satellite-based internet as the solution to this.
- Connectivity issues affect both normal consumers and commercial establishments. HTS broadband service by Hughes addresses the latter.
- This, in turn, will help in the commercial growth of remote locations.
The service will initially have 2-10Mbps internet speed
Hughes Communication India, a joint venture between US-based Hughes Network Systems and Bharti Airtel, has been testing HTS service in India for the past year in northern parts and border towns. The nationwide launch came after the government used shared infrastructure gateways. The HTS broadband service will initially have a speed of 2-10Mbps. Hughes provides broadband access to over two lakh sites.
What is HTS?
High Throughput Satellites (HTS) provides high bandwidth, increasing the amount of data transferred between the satellite and the ground. It uses the same amount of orbital spectrum as conventional satellites, reducing the cost per bit. HTS uses spot-beam to perform its operation. This enables it to focus on a limited area and provide fast connectivity. It brings satellite-based internet closer to terrestrial networks.
Hughes use Ku-band transponders on satellites
Hughes uses Ku-band transponders to provide satellite internet. In India, HTS supports applications such as Wi-Fi hotspots for community internet access, managed SD-WAN solutions, backhaul for mobile networks, and satellite internet for small businesses. Currently, the customers of Hughes in India are cooperative banks, 4G operators, and small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Some of its customers are Reliance Jio and State Bank of India.
HTS service will address connectivity gaps in India: HCI president
"With the new HTS capabilities powered by ISRO satellites, we are confident that HCI will continue to deliver excellent quality satellite broadband services and further enhance the connectivity experience that accelerates India's digital transformation," said ISRO chairman S. Somnath. This new broadband service will address connectivity gaps, improve network performance, and support the high bandwidth requirements," said Partho Banerjee, president, Hughes Communication India.