Country-specific Communications Satellites

bangabandhuSpaceX, OneWeb, O3b, and other satellite network companies get a lot of attention for their plans to launch dozens (or perhaps thousands) of communications satellites in coming years.

Relatively less attention is paid to country-specific satellite launches that also have significant impact on expanding broadband.

For example, in early April, SpaceX is scheduled to launch Bangabandhu-1, a communications satellite for the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission. The $250 million satellite will provide broadcasting and telecommunications services to rural areas in Bangladesh from geostationary orbit.

Later in April, the Chinese are launching Apstar 6C, and the Russians are launching Blagovest 12L, both providing (among other things) telecommunications and mobile broadband services to rural areas in China and Russia.

As is always true with satellites in geostationary orbit, both latency and costs tend to be high. That said, each of these satellites (and other country-specific satellites scheduled for launch later this year) play an important role in the expansion of global broadband.

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