OneWeb India, from the promoters of Bharti Airtel, is all set to launch India's first commercial 'internet from space' service. This follows the entity receiving the authorisation from the government for the same on Tuesday
Eutelsat OneWeb aims to provide broadband connectivity from space through a string of 600-plus global low orbit (LEO) satellites. This 'internet from space' is expected to be the next big thing in connectivity, with the likes of Elon Musk's Starlink also in the fray. OneWeb, however, is the first off the block, receiving the authorisation from IN-SPACe, the government body for space regulation.
OneWeb India already has the necessary licences from the Telecom department to provide broadband services. However, services will commence only once the spectrum is allocated by the government.
"This will be a critical step forward to meet India's ambition of providing internet connectivity for all and will enable prime minister's vision of Digital India," said Bharti Group chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal.
Cyril Dujardin, co-general manager at Eutelsat, said, "Bridging the connectivity gap around the world requires collaboration across business but also with governments and regulators. We are pleased to have received these approvals. This will bring the country a significant step closer to providing high speed connectivity to even the most remote locations."
When ISRO launched OneWeb's set of 36 LEO satellites back in March, it had completed Eutelsat OneWeb's complete constellation of some 630 satellites needed to provide global connectivity. OneWeb is also all set to build two earth stations in the country, one in Gujarat and one in Tamil Nadu, to secure low latency high-speed internet connectivity to customers across India, once services are rolled out.