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Satellite internet market heats up as Starlink’s entry faces hurdles

While Eutelsat OneWeb has secured approval from IN-SPACe for providing commercial satellite broadband, Starlink’s entry into India has been delayed due to regulatory hurdles.

The battle for the satellite broadband sector is heating up in India and if all goes well, India will soon have wireless broadband services just like Elon Musk’s Starlink. For the uninitiated, Starlink is the global satellite broadband company and it has been eyeing the Indian market with keen interest. However, Starlink’s entry into India has been delayed due to regulatory hurdles and a brewing battle over potential spectrum allocation with Reliance Jio, who has partnered with Luxembourg-based satellite and terrestrial telecom provider SES to provide satellite-based broadband service called Jio Space Technology.

Tata Group-owned Nelco who are also in the running to offer high-speed satellite internet in India, and Amazon’s Project Kuiper, aimed at deploying a massive satellite constellation to deliver broadband services globally, are likely to follow suit, eager to tap into the vast potential of India’s growing internet market.

Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite broadband uses satellite constellations orbiting the Earth to provide internet. While initially, such services may come at slightly higher costs, market dynamics and the growing number of users are expected to drive down prices over time.

In a momentous move poised to reshape India’s satellite broadband sector, now, a Bharti Airtel-backed unified venture of EutelsatOneWeb has received approval from IN-SPACe, the space regulator responsible for regulating space activities and granting authorization for conducting space activities in India. This means Eutelsat OneWeb can commence commercial satellite broadband services in India as soon as the government allocates the necessary spectrum.

With the green light in hand, the company has received approval to establish and operate two gateways in Gujarat and Tamil Nadu. These gateways will provide much-needed high-speed, low-latency internet connectivity to customers across India once the services are launched.

In conclusion, the satellite-based internet landscape in India is undergoing a transformative shift, driven by the entry of diverse players with innovative connectivity solutions. This burgeoning ecosystem holds immense promise for empowering a vast and varied consumer base with access to high-speed, low-latency internet services. As these players continue to refine their offerings and expand their reach, India is poised to become a global leader in the adoption of satellite-based internet technologies. Zee News

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