In a significant step forward for the telecommunications industry in India, the Department of Telecom (DoT) has granted Internet Service Provider (ISP) licenses to Jio Satellite Communications and OneWeb. Both companies had previously obtained permits to offer satellite communication services, and this latest development marks a crucial milestone in their efforts to revolutionize internet connectivity.
With the newly acquired ISP licenses, Jio Satellite Communications and OneWeb are empowered to provide internet services by seamlessly integrating satellite capabilities with terrestrial networks. They can also utilize Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) technology to establish direct connections with end consumers. This move reflects a commitment to bridging the digital divide and expanding internet access to previously underserved regions.
However, while the ISP licenses are a significant step forward, the crucial aspect of spectrum access for delivering services to consumer terminals remains pending. Spectrum is essential for ensuring efficient and reliable provisions of satellite-based internet services. Addressing this aspect will be pivotal for Jio Satellite Communications and OneWeb to fully realize their vision of comprehensive connectivity.
OneWeb, backed by the Bharti Group, has strategically positioned its own constellation of satellites in both geostationary (GEO) and low earth orbit (LEO). This positioning allows for optimized coverage and improved latency, promising a robust and reliable satellite communication service. OneWeb’s services are expected to connect every corner of the country, with implementation set to commence next month.
On the other hand, Jio Satellite Communications has partnered with Luxembourg SES Satellites, leveraging a combination of GEO and medium earth orbit (MEO) satellites. This collaboration enhances the company’s ability to provide comprehensive coverage and high-speed broadband services. At the India Mobile Congress, Reliance Jio demonstrated its satellite-based giga-fiber services, signaling its commitment to delivering high-speed broadband services to underserved regions.
The developments by Jio Satellite Communications and OneWeb showcase the growing importance of satellite-based internet services in expanding connectivity across vast and remote areas in India. As these companies navigate the pending challenges and secure spectrum access, the industry anticipates a transformative impact on internet accessibility. The emphasis on affordability and competitive pricing indicates a commitment to making high-speed broadband services accessible to a broader population.