Satellite Sector Looks Fit for Longevity
While reviewing the last 30 years of history during SATELLITE 2011 many of the discussions during the show looked not at the position the satellite sector holds today but where satellite players might find themselves 30 years into the future
The leaders of the four largest FSS companies set the direction of this discussion during the opening panel, looking to what services will be driving their operations in the future, the potential of satellite broadband and maritime services and the direction of the broadcasting sector as services such as 3-D and Ultra HD continue to demand even more bandwidth for delivery.
A primary focus of many of these discussions is how the satellite sector fits into the communications business as a whole, where satellite players are a small percentage of the overall revenues derived by terrestrial-based operations. Partnering, rather than competing with terrestrial operators, was a theme of many comments. “The main growth will come from our ability to sell the telcos to the right solutions. We need to part of the network of terrestrial operators. If we really succeed to have satellite as part of the total infrastructure, this is the way we can have a lot of opportunities in the future,” SES CEO Romain Bausch said.
Many satellite executives continue to see this melding of the satellite infrastructure with the terrestrial infrastructure as the future, and it’s a viewpoint that is hard to argue. Certainly, there are areas where terrestrial providers will continue to improve at a rapid place and either replace satellite options or come to dominate the market. But there are advantages that satellite has in areas such as the maritime market and other geographical reasons that mean satellite will continue to find plenty of business.
The satellite sector is not going anywhere, as I have yet to hear any of the players involved discussing how the demand for bandwidth is dropping. But it looks like the satellite sector will have to keep adapting to the market as well as it always has, and it will be interesting to follow what how satellite players keep up with changes.