Eutelsat’s Ka-Sat makes broadband progress
May 19, 2014
By Chris Forrester
Eutelsat launched its massive Ka-Sat craft back in December 2010, and it is fair to say that the broadband and data satellite took some time to make any real progress.
Now, the 6-tonne satellite is making steady – and more valuable – progress. The highly complicated craft focuses its 82 spot-beams onto tightly targeted regions of the planet stretching from Scandinavia to Morocco and as far East as the Black Sea. While the satellite’s broadband delivery doesn’t compare numerically the terrestrially delivered broadband connections, it is now clear that Eutelsat’s ‘Tooway’ system is making its presence felt and in particular to those parts of the world where terrestrial broadband cannot reach.
Eutelsat uses ViaSat’s SurfBeam-2 hub system, and coincidentally has just agreed a major output deal with ViaSat for all of Eutelsat’s new 3B satellite Ka-band capacity over Latin America.
A year ago (Q3/2013, as at March 31st) Eutelsat was talking of a major capacity deal for Ka-Sat (with Rawafed Libya). By June 2013 they claimed a total of 91,000 Ka-Sat terminals deployed, and this grew to 108,000 terminals by September 30 last year, and 124,000 by December 31st 2013.
Now, in its latest numbers (to March 31st 2014) it is reporting 140,000 “activated” terminals, up 13 per cent, which helped drive the operator’s ‘value-added services’ segment for the quarter-year jump from €14 million to €21 million y-o-y.