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Gone Are SIM Days. SATCOM Based Internet Will Run Mobile, Steatite Internet And Everything.

The Bharti Group-supported company, OneWeb, is poised to initiate commercial satellite broadband services in India by June this year, having applied for the necessary spectrum allocation. This move comes as part of a strategic collaboration with Hughes Communications India Pvt. Ltd. (HCIPL), where a six-year distribution partnership has been signed to deliver Low Earth Orbit (LEO) connectivity services across India.


Insights into OneWeb’s Anticipated Impact in India:

  • Early-Mover Advantage: HCIPL’s President and Managing Director, Shivaji Chatterjee, emphasized that OneWeb would have an early-mover advantage in the Indian market, given that competitors are either still in the development phase or lagging in data link speeds.
    • Spectrum Allocation: The commencement of OneWeb’s commercial services is contingent on the allocation of spectrum by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) through its Wireless Planning & Coordination Wing (WPC). The allocation is crucial for starting the satellite broadband services.
    • Beneficial Sectors: OneWeb’s services are expected to significantly impact various sectors, including aerospace, maritime, land mobility, cellular backhaul for 4G, defense, offshore rigs, remote banking, and enterprise branches, enhancing connectivity and operational efficiency.


    • Government’s Spectrum Allocation Policy: The Indian government has opted to allocate spectrum to satellite companies through an administrative process instead of an auction. While this means that the spectrum isn’t free of charge, companies would still need to pay a Spectrum Usage Charge (SUC).


    • Market Competition: OneWeb faces competition from entities like JioSpace Fibre and Amazon Kuiper, although these services are either still under development or focusing on different market segments.


    Awaiting Further Clarity from the Government:

    While the government has decided to allocate spectrum administratively, details regarding the rules and fees are still awaited for more clarity. Companies are required to pay the Spectrum Usage Charge (SUC), but the exact implications of the administrative allocation are yet to be fully understood.


    Competitive Landscape:

    • JioSpace Fibre: Jio’s MEO satellite service is yet to be fully developed, indicating that OneWeb might get ahead in operationalizing its services.


    • Amazon Kuiper: Amazon’s service is still a few years away and is reportedly focusing on B2C (Business-to-Consumer) services, contrasting OneWeb’s B2B (Business-to-Business) approach.


    Shivaji Chatterjee points out that the industry is awaiting more clarity from the government regarding the spectrum allocation’s regulations and charges. OneWeb, with its anticipated early start, is set to introduce a new era of connectivity solutions in India, potentially transforming the broadband service landscape and enhancing digital inclusivity across various sectors.

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