Intellian inks satellite communications partnership agreement with Speedcast

Satellite connectivity industry gains even higher orbit as provider of satellite communications technology systems announces collaboration with one of the world’s largest satellite communications service providers

Accelerated by use cases such as in-flight connectivity, maritime connectivity and providing broadband to remote locations, the satellite comms industry is on a roll. Now, aiming to meet what it says is accelerated demand for its services, technology solutions provider Intellian has announced a multi-year partnership agreement with service provider Speedcast.

The multimillion-dollar deal builds on the existing relationship between the two organisations in the energy, commercial maritime and cruise industries, and comes at what the firms say is a promising time for the industry, which has seen a recent explosion in demand. The partnership is designed to enable Intellian and Speedcast to collaborate in serving multiple markets with future-proof satellite connectivity, including the maritime and energy sectors.

As part of the agreement, Intellian will continue to provide equipment to Speedcast as a preferred supplier, ensuring delivery to meet customer needs, despite volatile supply chain constraints. This equipment encompasses the full range of Intellian's maritime portfolio as well as low Earth orbit (LEO) antenna systems and the inclusion of future land antennas, enabling Speedcast to serve every market. Intellian will also support continued equipment upgrades across Speedcast’s existing customer sites.

Intellian’s expanding product portfolio, from the industry-leading v240MT Tri-band antenna, NX Maritime VSAT series to the recently announced range of Enterprise terminals, is seen as being able to allow Speedcast to meet increasing customer demand amid growth in the satellite communications sector. The company said the upcoming launch of a manufacturing facility in Pyeongtaek, South Korea, will boost production and supercharge capacity, enabling Intellian to deliver optimised logistics and warehousing capabilities to Speedcast.

“With Speedcast’s global presence and expertise across multiple market sectors, this agreement signifies an important partnership for the industry,” said Eric Sung, CEO and president at Intellian. “The collaboration will allow us to continue to provide innovative solutions and value to customers globally, addressing the burgeoning demand for satellite communications across the markets we serve.”

The agreement follows Speedcast’s recent renewals with all its major cruise customers and the expansion of its Unified Global Platform (UGP), with the addition of 13Gbps of capacity to its network, in part to support European and Alaskan cruise requirements. Speedcast’s platform now includes 30Gbps of total bandwidth, which the company leverages in the design and deployment of complete managed connectivity systems for customers across energy, passenger and commercial maritime, and enterprise markets.

The new deal also comes as research from Euroconsult shows a 10% increase in the number of commercial aircraft connected to in-flight services compared with 2020, totalling 9,900 planes by the end of 2021. Within the next decade, the number of aircraft using such services is expected to double to more than 21,000.

In its latest industry analysis Prospects for in-flight entertainment & connectivity, Euroconsult says a strong year-on-year performance for 2021 contrasts with previous uncertainties in the aviation industry and its supply chain, one of the most seriously affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Data in the report shows IFC service providers continued to equip aircraft through 2021 and, while not returning to pre-2019 levels, in-flight connectivity showed strong signs of uptake in the year, with 120 commercial airlines offering in-flight connectivity to passengers with a total bandwidth capacity consumption rising to an unprecedented 24Gbps.

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