The satellite communications (Satcom) is likely to play an important role in providing high-speed broadband and affordable digital connectivity, a top government official Wednesday said.
“Satcom is expected to play an active role in providing high-speed broadband access and affordable digital connectivity to the unserved and underserved,” Aruna Sundararajan, Secretary, Department of Telecommunications (DoT) said.
The government, she said, is committed to unlocking the potential of the Satcom to connect the unserved and the underserved and bridge the digital divide.
Data growth is being driven by people using data for the very first time, and according to her, most of them come from India’s rural hinterland.
The government has also embarked on a roadmap to connect more than 5,000 villages in the North East and Jammu & Kashmir by satellite-driven bandwidth, as a part of ambitious BharatNet phase-II program.
“When it comes to providing the connectivity to deep rural and inaccessible hilly areas, there is no alternative to Satcom,” K Sivan, Secretary Department of Space (DoS) and Chairman, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in a statement said.
Satellite technology, according to the Broadband India Forum (BIF) has an immense potential for broadband applications.
The Satellite communications ecosystem, is, however, at the cusp of huge change led by new and emerging satellite technologies such as LEO (Low-earth-orbit) and MEO (Medium-earth-orbit) systems.
State-run telco Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) is also planning to leverage LEO satellites for connectivity in remote and far-flung areas with the unfriendly terrain.
Industry estimates suggest that the Satcom sector in India has an investment potential of $100 billion.