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2 Feb 2022
New satellite connections provide digital boost to rural areas in India
Creating a local digital economy can be a challenge when your village is hundreds of miles from the nearest city. The use of satellite communication, such as the recently announced cooperation between OneWeb and Hughes Communications India Private Ltd. (HCIPL and part of Hughes Network Systems), may provide an answer. The two companies will provide satellite-based communications in India's rural areas.
Even greater challenges
In many parts of the world, it is already difficult to create digital economies and societies. While (relatively) fast networks are often already available, local politics and complex regulations can frustrate initiatives. Established companies often impede progress as well. Rural areas face even greater challenges. Almost always, there are no communication networks available, and land-based connectivity is far beyond what local initiatives can afford.
Satellite communications may come to the rescue in this situation. In a statement on the announcement, HCIPL highlighted the importance of high-performance satcom for Digital India, a program of the government of India with a vision to transform India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy.
Satcom will enable enterprises and government agencies, such as telecom service providers, banks, factories, schools, defense organizations, domestic airlines, and offshore vessel operators to locate offices and other forms of economic activity in areas that were previously largely agricultural and underdeveloped.
OneWeb will invest in the creation of gateways and points of presence to make the services available. HCIPL will offer a series of high-speed, low-latency services throughout the country. As a result of OneWeb's most recent satellite launch on 27 December 2021, it now has 394 satellites in orbit, over 60 percent of the planned 648 LEO satellite fleet.
Photo credit: OneWeb
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