By Darren Ludington, Senior Director of Sales, iDirect, + Alvaro Sanchez, Sales & Marketing Director, Integrasys
Rural areas across the globe are lacking connectivity, especially in Latin America, Asia and Africa.
Now, worldwide governments and commercial entities are trying to connect the unconnected. For example, Silicon Valley players are focusing their efforts to provide affordable Internet to the most remote areas of the world at a lower price point and doing their best to bridge the digital divide.
Thanks to the advances in satellite technology in the space and ground segments, VSAT technology has been extremely well positioned for connecting the unconnected in a reliable, fast and secure way.
High Throughput Satellites (HTS) allow end users to experience greater bandwidth capacity at a lower cost. Among HTS advances are the frequency reuse through multiple spot beams architecture—by minimizing the footprint, the bandwidth is increased and the price drops by reusing the same spectrum multiple times within the same spacecraft.
Space technology innovation has pushed ground technology to quickly adapt to this new way of thinking; therefore, equipment manufacturers, such as iDirect, are innovating to lower the cost of network deployment and to also support massive network expansion.
Integrasys has developed the cutting edge technology on self-installation antennas and commissioning of the remotes. Together, iDirect and Integrasys bring forward an unprecedented combination for simplicity, service availability and performance in approaching the solutions for the digital divide.
Today, VSAT is the preferred solution for many service providers as this technology is much easier to deploy (previously a main concern), is more cost-effective and provides a greater service.
Recently, VT iDirect was awarded by Entel Chile for the provisioning of a Universal Satellite Hub and several Evolution® remotes for the rural VSAT market, specifically for 2G, 3G and 4G backhaul deployments. This will allow Entel Chile to deploy their networks with the latest iDirect technology.
iDirect leverages Satmotion Pocket from Integrasys as the iDirect remote commissioning solution for intelligent and quick deployment of VSATs. Satmotion Pocket is used by Entel Chile for auto-commissioning their VSATs without contacting the NOC—that adds the important value of having the maximum quality of the service and, at the same time, being able to complete deployments in as short a time frame as possible.
Satmotion Pocket enables the installer to perform the commissioning process by using the intuitive iOS or an Android App. This brings extreme efficiency to those service providers who aim to benefit their customers of the most innovative technology.
While the collaboration between these two technology providers has been successful, customers are demanding even more and asking: Why not use Satmotion Pocket from the hub to virtually monitor the site?
Typically, site monitoring requires sending an installer to the site, which can take a few days. Today, Integrasys has introduced Alusat, the evolution of Satmotion Pocket. Alusat allows users to check the RF health of the overall network at the hub without the need of the tedious processes necessary to coordinate all actions with satellite operators or the local support at the site.
Service providers can ensure Quality of Service (QoS) and Service Level Agreements (SLAs) compliance automatically using an intuitive tool for remote maintenance. This is a huge step forward in the ground technology innovation that is being driven by HTS.
This new remote maintenance technology aims to further simplify the VSAT solution by providing greater value to service providers looking to save operational expenses without compromising service availability and network performance.
Darren Ludington is the iDirect Senior Director of Sales for the Latin America region where he currently manages the commercial activities for Mexico, Central and South America. Since joining iDirect in 2004, Ludington has held various technical and customer-facing roles and was responsible for assisting customers across the globe with product selection, designing satellite networks and infrastructure, and delivering technical training. He has worked in the engineering and satellite communications industries for over 15 years, spanning a wide range of technologies. Ludington is also fluent in English and Spanish, written and spoken.
Alvaro Sanchez is Sales & Marketing Director at Integrasys. Alvaro is responsible for Satellite Carrier Monitoring at Integrasys and providing the most innovative solutions for satellite operators and service providers. Currently Alvaro is the head of the USA office in DC area. Prior to Alvaro joining Integrasys, he was a signal analysis expert at CERN European Organization for Nuclear Research.