In January last year US-based Echostar bought the ailing Solaris Mobile S-band transmission system that is orbiting on a Eutelsat satellite. On May 15th Echostar CEO Michael Dugan told analysts that the new business, Echostar Mobile, would go ‘live’ over Europe in mid-2016.
The system is waiting for the launch of a new satellite, Echostar-21. Dugan said: “We continue to be in contact with potential customers of the service in advance of the 2016 service launch. We continue to work with EU and member States to more clearly define and harmonize the regulations related to operation of satellite and to rest filed delivered services in order to offer more robust product offering to the EU marketplace.”
Echostar-21, was originally licensed as TerreStar-2, and is slated for launch next year. The Solaris Mobile assets were bought last year from its joint-venture owners Eutelsat and SES. Solaris Mobile had struggled to see any of its S-Band services gain traction with clients.
TerreStar-2 was acquired as part of the bankruptcy of TerreStar Networks in March 2012.
Echostar-21/Solaris Mobile could supply mobile voice, data and potentially pay-radio services over Europe using its S-band frequencies.