Jio Platforms gets approval to launch satellite internet in India

Jio Platforms' approval marks an important step in the competition for satellite communication services, alongside efforts by Amazon and Elon Musk's Starlink.
Jio Platforms gets approval to launch satellite internet in India
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Reliance Industries' Jio Platforms, in partnership with Luxembourg's SES, has received the green light from India's space regulator to operate satellites for high-speed internet, reported news agency Reuters.

According to a government official, three approvals were granted to Orbit Connect India, a venture set to deliver the internet via satellite.

These clearances, issued by the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe) in April and June, allow Orbit Connect to position satellites above India.

However, further approvals from the Department of Telecommunications are still required before the service can begin.

The approval comes as an important development in the race to offer satellite communication services, where companies like Amazon and Elon Musk's Starlink are also seeking permission.

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Jio Platforms gets approval to launch satellite internet in India

IN-SPACe Chairman Pawan Goenka told Reuters that Inmarsat and others have also received nods to operate satellites, highlighting the growing interest in the satellite broadband market.

Deloitte forecasts strong growth for India's satellite broadband market, estimating a 36% annual increase over the next five years, with revenues expected to reach Rs 1.9 billion by 2030.

Globally, the competition to connect rural areas via satellite internet has picked up pace. Amazon's Kuiper initiative, with a planned $10 billion investment, and SpaceX's Starlink, already operational, are key players in this space.

Recently, Starlink also received preliminary approval from Sri Lanka to offer its services there.

Goenka highlighted the benefits of increased competition in India's satellite internet sector, suggesting that competitive pricing would drive innovation to meet consumer expectations, similar to developments seen in the automotive industry.

IN-SPACe is set to further authorise private companies to operate ground stations in India, facilitating satellite data downloads.

The government's recent policy changes, including opening up the space sector to foreign direct investment, have sparked investor interest, with an increase in funding compared to previous years.

"Last year investments into private companies were $2 million-$7 million. This year they are talking $20 million-$30 million. The proof of concept has happened," Goenka told Reuters. 

Source: India Today

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