O3b Ready to Launch Second Wave of Satellites
[Via Satellite 03-25-2014] O3b Networks’ second group of four satellites have successfully completed the required ground testing and are now ready to ship from the Thales Alenia Space facility in Rome, Italy to their launch destination at Le Centre Spatial Guyanais (CSG) in Kourou, French Guiana. The launch could happen as early as this June, pending final confirmation from launch provider Arianespace.
After the launch, O3b will begin offering commercial service for all of its customers across the globe. Telecom Cook Islands has already initiated full commercial operation in the Cook Islands over the O3b fleet. Islanders are now reportedly experiencing connection speeds comparable with fiber, and are now equipped with enough throughput to fuel mobile broadband.
“We have great momentum in 2014, completing our next four satellites and now with our first customer fully operational. It has been so gratifying to see the impact that delivering broadband for the first time to the Cook Islands has had,” said Steve Collar, CEO of O3b. “The wide-eyed excitement at instantaneous downloads, zero delay voice and Skype, things that can be taken for granted in New York but not in Rarotonga. Not until today.”