For those of us who are constantly connected to the grid, living without the Internet may be a difficult concept to grasp, but the reality is that more than three billion people lack the proper access to the Internet.
In attempts to connect the “other three billion”, O3b Networks (St. Helier, New Jersey) is launching four additional satellites to accompany its existing network (launched in 2013) that is connecting, enabling, and transforming parts of the world that are currently unconnected and underserved.
According to Steve Collar, CEO of O3b, “The Internet is the most important and transformational technology available. It stimulates social development and serves as a direct link between broadband penetration and gross domestic product (GDP), which essentially ties connectivity directly to economic growth of a county, region, town, and of individuals. It enables people to start and run businesses by plugging them into the global marketplace.”
Entrepreneurs suffer a great disadvantage with the inability to be connected to the Internet, because it is economically viable for businesses to fulfill the growing demands for their products.
Once launched, O3b’s satellites will go through a period of in-orbit testing before being fully integrated into the rest of the network in February.
High Capacity, Fiber-Like Latency & Bandwidth
One of the problems with satellite communications is that geostationary satellites are far from the earth, at an altitude of 22,300 miles. “We’ve been able to bring our satellites closer to the earth at an approximate altitude of 5,000 miles, which reduces satellite delay,” explains Collar.
Latency (delay) is a big problem for IT networks as well. This is important because current IT networks have a lot of interaction, and if that interaction is going over a 600-ms delayed link, the whole system’s performance becomes very slow. As a result, people don’t use it.
“We’re also delivering bandwidth at price points that are affordable, which is important when you’re talking about deploying services into the emerging markets,” says Collar. “We also have the ability to deliver services around the world in a handful of weeks.”
O3b’s main targets are the telcos, such as the mobile and fixed-lined operators in the emerging markets. “The second group includes our enterprise customers, such as maritime operators and large cruise ship companies, energy customers, and government agencies who really need high efficiency and low latency networks,” says Collar.
What makes O3b unique is its ability to achieve low latency, tight throughput, complete flexibility of where the beams go, as well as the ability to deliver megabits of information at price points which are sustainable in the emerging market.
For more information visit www.o3bnetworks.com.
Filed Under: Aerospace + defense