Eutelsat and ViaSat will shortly sign a joint-venture agreement that will eventually cover the use of a ViaSat-3 satellite, and the use of Eutelsat’s existing Ka-Sat broadband-by-satellite service.
ViaSat has its next satellite, ViaSat-2 (which launches around April 25th for service over North America).
ViaSat’s existing service supplies 675,000 residential subscribers (down a little from 687,000 users a year previously), but generating revenues up 13 percent y-o-y and with ARPU (per subscriber) of $63.11.
ViaSat is also planning for a pair of extremely high-capacity broadband satellites (their ViaSat-3 class designs). One will be placed to serve Europe, the Mid-East and Africa and will be the subject of the Eutelsat joint-venture. The second will go to the Asia/Australia regions.
While subscriber growth and revenue a prime objective for ViaSat, the new satellite are also targeting In Flight usage, for entertainment and broadband ‘direct-to-seat’ for airline passengers. ViaSat recently announced a major contract win with American Airlines, which agreed to install the ViaSat service on the airliner’s new 737 MAX aircraft and to retrofit 500 airplanes in its domestic fleet with ViaSat’s Exide in the Air service.
ViaSat’s airline services currently reaches 555 commercial aircraft, with another 750 scheduled to be equipped by 2019.