[SatNews] As demand for mobile connectivity increases in regions where there is an absence of terrestrial infrastructure, mobile network operators (MNOs) are looking to satellite communications to expand their subscriber base, comply with universal service obligations and most importantly, provide rural communities with the necessary connectivity to help their populations and economies thrive.
Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd. (NASDAQ: GILT), a worldwide leader in satellite networking technology, solutions and services, and Intelsat SA (NYSE: I), the world's leading provider of satellite services, announced that they have joined forces to provide MNOs with a comprehensive 2G/3G cellular infrastructure solution to better serve rural regions.
Gilat's CellEdge small-cell-over-satellite solution, combined with Intelsat's global satellite coverage and IntelsatOne terrestrial infrastructure, means mobile network operators can now expand 2G/3G services quickly and profitably throughout their desired service territories.
An initial example of the collaboration between Gilat and Intelsat is RuralCom's thousand-mile-long Alaska Highway and British Columbia Coast cellular network. Gilat's CellEdge 3G network is leveraging Intelsat's global satellite fleet through its Intelsat Horizons 1 satellite and its IntelsatOne terrestrial network. Gilat's CellEdge 3G network is optimizing space segment usage through a hub located at an Intelsat teleport. Joining forces, the two companies are enabling RuralCom to quickly expand its network and extend its subscriber base at a significantly reduced capital expenditure base level.