Kacific has an exciting story to tell. Our project will bridge the digital divide in some of the most isolated places in the world. It will truly make the world a smaller place, giving direct broadband access to entire countries deprived of suitable connectivity and allowing them to make a quantum leap into the digital world.
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Kacific founder and CEO, Christian Patouraux, accepted the 2018 Better Satellite World Award at a ceremony in London on Monday night in recognition of the company’s work bringing affordable connectivity via next-generation satellites to the people of South East Asia and the Pacific.
Bestowed by the Space & Satellite Professionals International (SSPI), the award honours companies who use satellite systems to make the world a more prosperous, healthier, better-educated, sustainable and inclusive home for humankind.
“When I started Kacific, I wasn’t interested in following the status quo. By serving only narrow, lucrative telecoms segments, the status quo was leaving many populations behind and increasing the digital divide,” said Christian Patouraux. “Kacific didn’t re-invent the wheel, but my team and I took advantage of innovative new space technology and operated a lean organisation to match the cost expectations of emerging markets.”
“The flagship project in our proof-of-concept service connects the Vanuatu Interisland Telemedicine and Learning Network. The Network has already saved the lives of a number of people in emergency situations, because of the speed with which outer island health clinics can contact the main hospitals and specialist doctors. So, we know that our satellite, Kacific1, will make a tangible difference to people’s lives. This service is just one of several community-based projects we are currently operating in Asia Pacific. We are honoured to receive this award ahead of 2019, when the services of our next-generation satellite commence,” said Patouraux.
Once launched in 2019, Kacific’s first satellite, Kacific1, will help connect more hospitals, clinics, schools, libraries, post offices, police stations and many other public institutions in rural areas where terrestrial broadband infrastructure is not an option or not economical. The satellite beams will cover previously isolated or underserved regions of South Asia, South East Asia, Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia, providing a channel for connectivity.
Adrian Potter, our Vice President of Special Projects, is also an excellent and vibrant writer. He’s penned a piece encouraging entrepreneurs and smart businesses to take advantage of low CAPEX costs to set up Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) and mobile networks in remote regions. Here are some highlights from his piece below:
Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) and mobile networks are no longer the sole domain of the big end of town.
With everyone so focused on the main population centres and suffering from an ARPU race to the bottom, resulting in a bottom line bloodbath, only a few are looking to the more remote and rural locations. Most believe these locations are too remote or too difficult to be profitable. Current mainstream thinking is that these rural and remote areas should be left to governments for subsidies from tax payers or universal service obligations on the major telcos.
When my father moved our family to the Pacific Islands in the late 1970s, I remember him saying, “son, there’s always opportunity for smart men on the frontier”. This is never truer than it is today.
Remote connectivity for 4G base stations is simple and cheap now
Forget expensive fixed digital microwave links on distant mountain tops, often with single points of failure. The new breed of High Throughput Satellites (HTS) using Ku and Ka Band are making connectivity to these far-flung locations easier and cheaper. Prices are already significantly under USD$300 Mbps a month for true broadband speeds into inexpensive fixed antennas of 1.2m or less. Forget the nonsense about LEO and MEO vs GEO latency. This is a marketing myth and sales tactic used by those operators seeking an advantage where one does not exist. In all but two very unique use cases, such as high frequency share trading, latency is completely irrelevant to the end user experience. Web browsing, VoIP, video streaming, Skype, Facetime etc. or almost 99.99% of the internet has no issues with GEO latency, FACT.
Adrian’s right, it is an interesting time to be operating in telecommunications and internet services, especially in the fast-developing regions of Asia and the Pacific. There’s an incredible demand from populations all over the fast-growing APAC region. There are untapped markets that can be reached effectively by the right operators with very low risk. Which is why we offer our partners simple, affordable infrastructure and fair wholesale prices.
This week, Matteo Catanuto, our Sales Director for New Zealand & Pacific Region, headed to the NZ Tech Podcast studio to discuss satellite broadband’s role in New Zealand.
Alongside host Paul Spain and Eric Chang, from consumer tech brand Xiaomi, Matteo shared some insights into the new developments in satellite and how that translates to better broadband performance for people and businesses in Asia Pacific.
In New Zealand, a long, mountainous country with just over 4.5 million people spread throughout rural areas, satellite fills the gaps for those who today can only get slow, expensive internet or none at all. Kacific complements fibre by offering different options from mobile backhaul, and rural connectivity to bringing broadband to aeroplanes, boats and ferries.
You can listen to the full podcast here – skip to 39:30 to hear more from Matteo on Kacific’s impact in New Zealand.