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Service providers to satellite fleet operators: Our customers or our business- pick one

SINGAPORE — Satellite service providers said they are bracing for a new attack on their business by satellite fleet operators seek to offset stagnant revenue by going directly to end users. Senior officials from Encompass Digital Media, NorthTelecom and Speedcast said the decline in satellite bandwidth prices, while good news for their business, is causing satellite operators to muscle in on...

ViaSat-3 schedule slipping, cost going up

SINGAPORE — Satellite broadband hardware and services provider ViaSat Inc. on May 25 said its ostensibly three-satellite ViaSat-3 broadband satellites would be in service later and cost more than initially planned. The delays are likely due to challenges associated with the satellites’ payloads, which ViaSat is building itself at a purpose-built Arizona plant, the first time the company has...

O3b denies ABS customer-defection claim, says rain fade is manageable

SINGAPORE — The chief executive of O3b Networks on May 24 flatly denied allegations by competitor ABS that an O3b customer in the Pacific islands had replaced its O3b Ka-band capacity with bandwidth from ABS’s C- and Ku-band satellite following a series of service outages. Steve Collar said he could not comment on ABS’s new contract in East Timor with an O3b customer except to say that O3b is...

OneWeb promises US regulators 2019 Alaska coverage; Intelsat merger unclear

SINGAPORE — Start-up satellite constellation operator OneWeb on May 19 told U.S. regulators that it would be able to provide broadband access to all of Alaska in 2019. OneWeb told the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that its 800-plus-satellite constellation is on schedule and ready to fulfill the FCC’s goal of broadband coverage of all U.S. territory to reduce the digital divide....

ViaSat measures ViaSat-2 vs OneWeb, SpaceX, Gogo 2Ku

Takeaways from ViaSat CEO Dankberg’s May 17 investor conference remarks: — LEO constellations: ‘I don’t understand OneWeb/SpaceX. Few care about latency.’ — ViaSat-2: 100-200 Mbps for residential users, wireless model in Lat Am. — 6-month penalty vs Hughes’s Jupiter-2 will evaporate in 6 months. — Gogo’s 2Ku service is ‘just an antenna. The issue is satellite capacity.’ — A prospective ban on laptops on commercial flights won’t materially damage larger IFC market.

Arianespace launches SES-15 in 2d Euro Soyuz GTO mission

PARIS — The successful May 18 launch of a Europeanized Russian Soyuz rocket carrying the SES-15 satellite gave launch-service provider Arianespace confidence that it can make its 12-launch goal this year despite a 44-day shutdown due to strikes in French Guiana. The launch also allowed fleet operator SES to get its satellite into orbit more quickly than would have been the case if it had waited...

Is China rolling up Asian HTS demand?

PARIS — China’s latest manufacturing wins in Indonesia for high-throughput satellites (HTS), coupled with earlier contracts in Thailand and Hong Kong, indicate the challenge facing U.S.- and European-based Internet-delivery constellations planning global coverage. The news does not get better outside China’s expanding reach. India too, which like China has set a high priority on building its own...

Gilat on protecting satcom IP in China: A necessary dilemma

PARIS — Satellite broadband hardware and services provider Gilat Satellite Networks on May 16 said positioning its technology to the fastest-growing satcom markets — broadband mobility, cellular network backhaul and China — has begun to show results. The company is especially bullish about its near-term prospects in China, where it has established a relationship with major satellite and...

Orbcomm active on M&A front, sees major demand boost 

Takeaways from Orbcomm’s May 4 earnings results: — Expect a midsize acquisition using high-yield bond proceeds this year. — Hali service for small maritime vessels to extend AIS business reach. — Giant order with China’s CIMC appears to be on the horizon. — Company scrambling to meet increased product demand this year. PARIS — Satellite M2M/IoT provider Orbcomm Inc. told investors to expect a...

Eutelsat: TV revenue dip to rebound, HD take-up outpaces MPEG-4

Caption: Eutelsat Chief Financial Officer Sandrine Teran Credit: Eutelsat   PARIS — Satellite fleet operator Eutelsat on May 11 said a 4.1% decline in its video business for the three months ending March 31 included one-time items that will not repeat and that HD adoption is outpacing the effects of MPEG-4 compression. Eutelsat also said U.S. military demand has stabilized after recent...

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