Kacific Satellite Plans Satellite for Pacific Markets

Pacific World Bank Islands

Kacific’s anticipated coverage map. Photo: Kacific

[Via Satellite 12-09-13] Kacific Broadband Satellites plans to launch a Ka-band High Throughput Satellite (HTS) to provide enhanced broadband to 40 million people in the Pacific, including the Pacific Islands, New Zealand, Eastern Indonesia and Papua New Guinea. It will operate up to 48 beams, each providing coverage of 700km diameter and up to 400Mbps (duplex) throughput. The company expects to commission its launch vehicle and payload in 2014 and to provide broadband services to the region by late 2016.

Pacific island nations have two to seven times lower Internet penetration than continental nations with comparable GDP per-capita and adult literacy rates. According to the World Bank, the Pacific is significantly underserved in terms of broadband access. Estimated total potential demand for bandwidth is 44 Gbps. Today just 20 percent, or less than 10 Gbps, is supplied.

Currently, 1 Mbps broadband services can cost more than $700 per month in some territories. Kacific is preparing to sell wholesale bandwidth that it anticipates telcos and ISPs will offer to end users at speeds of up to 10 Mbps, with price points as low as 5 percent of current costs.

“This will be the world’s most geographically dispersed broadband satellite footprint,” says Kacific CEO Christian Patouraux. “Our aim is to create a high quality broadband network offering direct Internet access to around 99 percent of the government agencies, institutions, businesses and people within the total footprint area.”

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