What is Satellite Internet And How It Works?

What is Satellite Internet And How It Works?

What is Satellite Internet and for whom?

Satellite internet is wireless internet beamed down from satellites orbiting the Earth. Satellite internet is a good option for people who live in rural areas where cable, fiber, or DSL internet providers aren't available. The best satellite internet services offer up to 300-500 Mbps download speeds, and subscribers can get unlimited data from satellite internet plans.

Internet from satellite providers is more expensive and usually comes with a smaller data allowance than cable and fiber options in the city. But satellite internet service is available nationwide, which makes satellite internet a popular option in rural areas/high hills/remote areas etc.

How it works?

Satellite internet is wireless internet that beams down the connection from a satellite (in space) to a satellite on a subscriber’s house. The satellite on the house then translates the signal with the router/modem, which beams satellite WiFi through the subscriber’s entire home.

Key players in the Satellite Internet space -

Viasat, HughesNet, and Starlink are the best satellite internet providers. Satellite internet costs $49.99 to $500.00 per month, depending on the contract and how much speed and data the subscriber wants.

Jio Platforms has recently signed a joint venture with European satellite-based broadband service company SES S.A. to explore satellite internet space.

Satellite Internet developments -

• Apple has incorporated a limited type of satellite communication into new iPhones (14 series), allowing users to send an emergency SOS even when they are disconnected from the internet, with no dish necessary. The satellite connectivity feature from Apple is different from the likes of satellite-based data and text connectivity incoming features from Lynk, T-Mobile, and Starlink.

The iPhone 14 Pro and the iPhone 14 Pro Max are enabled with the satellite connectivity feature, which allows users to directly connect to an overhead satellite and act as the satellite phone. However, Apple won’t allow users to use the Internet or place long calls with the feature, but the feature comes in handy for sending distress messages during emergencies in no network coverage or deadlock areas. 

“According to famous Apple Leakster Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple had already readied the hardware for satellite communication in iPhone 13 but couldn’t make it live due to failed partnership with the service provider. Kuo claims that the company this year could join hands with Globalstar to offer its satellite services”. 

For the Indian market, Apple will have to push harder as the country has a restriction on the usage of satellite phones. The users will have to take approvals from multiple authorities including a NOC from the Telecom department to implement the technology for any kind of emergency SOS.

• Huawei has also unveiled the new Mate 50 series with a satellite connectivity feature. The feature will be available in Huawei Mate 50 and Huawei Mate 50 Pro flagships.

• Technology giants, Google and Qualcomm are expected to launch Android phones with satellite connectivity features in the near future.

Broadband Satellite Services Market, Forcast To 2026

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Regional Outlook -

The global satellite internet market size was valued at $2.93 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach
$18.59 billion by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 20.4% from 2021 to 2030. The key factors driving the
growth of the satellite internet market are the surge in the adoption of satellite services in police, fire,
and other departments of various developing nations, and advancements in communication technology across the world. In addition, an increase in government initiatives for adopting satellite broadband communications services positively impacts the satellite internet market growth.

The North American region is expected to gain the largest market share throughout the forecast period (2020-2030) due to the rising demand for internet access across the region and the increasing adoption of advanced technologies.

The population in developed countries, such as the US and Canada is extensively tech-savvy and highly dependent on online services. This surges the demand for high-speed internet and in turn, is estimated to boost the market growth.

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