RIL’s Jio gets space regulator’s nod to launch satellite internet : The Tribune India

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RIL’s Jio gets space regulator’s nod to launch satellite internet

RIL’s Jio gets space regulator’s  nod to launch satellite internet

Pawan Goenka, chairman of IN-SPACe



Bengaluru, June 13

A joint venture between Reliance Industries’ Jio Platforms and Luxembourg-based SES to provide gigabit fibre internet has won approval from the Indian space regulator to operate satellites there, a government executive said.

The three approvals issued to Orbit Connect India - which aims to provide satellite-based high-speed internet access - come as companies from Amazon.com to Elon Musk’s Starlink have been vying for the go-ahead to launch satellite communication services in the world’s most populous nation.

The authorisations have not been previously reported. They were granted in April and June from the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre, known as IN-SPACe. These allow Orbit Connect to operate satellites above India, but further approvals are needed by the country’s department of telecoms to begin operations.

Reliance, which owns Jio, did not respond to an email seeking further details.

Inmarsat, another company hoping to provide high-speed satellite-based internet, has also gotten approval to operate satellites over India, IN-SPACe chairman Pawan Goenka told Reuters. Two other companies, Elon Musk’s Starlink and Amazon.com’s Kuiper, have applied. Eutelsat’s Bharti Enterprises-backed OneWeb was given all of its approvals late last year.

India’s satellite broadband service market is expected to grow 36% per year over the next five years and reach $1.9 billion by 2030, according to the consultancy Deloitte.

Globally, the race to connect rural areas of the world via space-based internet is accelerating. Amazon plans to invest $10 billion in Kuiper, which was announced in 2019, the year SpaceX began deploying its first operational Starlink satellites.

“Comparatively low pricing of communication services in India will compel global players to drive innovation to reduce their pricing,” said Goenka. “This is already being done in many industries like automotive, where multinational OEMs had to innovate to meet expectations of Indian consumers of high performance and low cost.” — Reuters

Starlink in queue

  • Companies from Amazon.com to Elon Musk’s Starlink have been vying for the go-ahead to launch satellite communication services in the world’s most populous nation.
  • India’s satellite broadband service market is expected to grow 36% per year over the next five years and reach $1.9 billion by 2030, according to consultancy firm Deloitte.

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