US-Based Viasat Plans To Bring Satellite Broadband Services In India

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Ever since DoT asked TRAI to come up with regulations for satellite internet players, several foreign companies have started showing their interest. Notably, the satellite internet is expected to be the next big thing as it claims to provide connectivity in unconnected areas.

 

US-Based Viasat Plans To Bring Satellite Broadband Services In India

Interestingly, US-based Viasat is also planning to launch services in the country. The $2.25-billion satellite operator is also looking for approvals from the Government for the two satellites and for offering satellite internet services.

"We have filed applications with the Indian government and relevant agencies, seeking authority to use two of our Ka-band ViaSat-3 satellites - currently under construction - to serve India, and we look forward to the opening of the Indian market to these advanced broadband connectivity solutions," a Viasat spokesperson was quoted by ET.

It is worth noting that finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman also said that the Government plans to create a level playing field for satellite launchers under the policy. Viasat plans to come at that time when OneWeb and Starlink are all set to start operations next year in India. In addition, Amazon is also eyeing the same sector with its Project Kuiper.

Viasat Plans For The Satellite Sector

Currently, the company is operating in Chennai, where all staff has been working on satellite access platforms, web apps, and broadband businesses. Moreover, Viassat's satellites are expected to run on the 28 GHz band, which has become a bone of contention between satellite internet players and telecom operators as the latter wants half of the spectrum for their 5G services.

Notably, Reliance Jio, Airtel, and Vodafone-Idea are looking for half of the 28 GHz band for their upcoming services.

"Continued access to the full 28 GHz portion of the Ka-band for satellite broadband is critical to connecting individuals left on the wrong side of the digital divide in India, and we are optimistic the government will retain the 28 GHz band for bringing these satellite broadband solutions," Viasat's spokesperson added.

 

This issue is not going to end soon as both are looking for the same bands due to 28 GHz efficiency; however, we should not forget that any further delay in the spectrum auction or trials might delay the entire rollout and services.

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