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Viasat Rolls Out New Residential Internet Plans, Shareholders Approve Inmarsat Merger 

By Rachel Jewett | June 22, 2022
ViaSat headquarters in Carlsbad California

Viasat headquarters in Carlsbad, California. Photo: Viasat

Viasat is rolling out new residential internet service plans in the U.S., pledging to deliver up to 150 Mbps in select areas, ahead of its ViaSat-3 satellite launch. The five enhanced service plans announced Wednesday will deliver download speeds up to 25 Mbps and 150 Mbps in select areas. 

The company said the plans offer 4k streaming support, double download speeds in select areas, and unlimited standard data. Cost and data speed vary by area. The new plans are currently available in select markets, with plans to roll out nationwide.

Steven Mesnick, general manager of U.S. Broadband at Viasat said the new plans deliver 100 times the speed compared to the first service plans offered when Viasat entered the residential internet market ten years ago. 

“With the launch of these New Choice home internet plans, we are introducing a new satellite internet experience to help meet the evolving needs of residential consumers. By optimizing our satellite network, we expect to deliver more data at faster speeds, more consistently. These speeds will enable us to provide the experience that our customers desire,” Mesnick said. 

The first satellite in Viasat’s anticipated ViaSat-3 constellation is set to enter service in early 2023, and the company said the satellite will deliver greater bandwidth capabilities for more speed, data and streaming options.

In the company’s recent full year financial results, Viasat said competition is increasing in residential broadband due to improving terrestrial alternatives and government subsidies, but the company sees growth opportunities in new higher speed plans. 

Viasat faces increasing competition from satellite providers as well. SpaceX’s Starlink offering is available in parts of the U.S. at $110 per month. Recent Ookla speed tests placed Starlink residential broadband download speeds in the lead over Viasat and Hughes at about 105 Mbps. 

In addition, Viasat shareholders on Tuesday voted to approve the company’s proposed acquisition of Inmarsat. Viasat continues to expect the transaction to close in the second half of calendar year 2022. The acquisition will bring together two major satellite operators with businesses in broadband, mobility, and defense, with a spectrum license portfolio across the Ka-, L-, and S-bands.