New satellite service to aid Africa
Inmarsat hopes its forthcoming regional BGAN service will aid Internet growth in remote regions of Africa.
Inmarsat is planning to introduce a new satellite service which will enable Internet access in remote regions in Africa and across the world.
The new Inmarsat Regional Broadband Global Area Network (Regional BGAN) service, due for launch at the end of this year, will bring reliable high-speed data communications to the developing nations of North, Central and West Africa.
Enterprises in Africa attempting to compete in global markets are sometimes hampered by the constraints of the terrestrial telecoms infrastructure, which can be unreliable.
"Much has been said about the New Partnership for Africa Development (NEPAD) and the need to improve the availability, cost and reliability of African communications," said Michael Storey, CEO and President of Inmarsat Ventures plc. "Only then can African businesses and governments benefit from the IT revolution seen in many parts of the world today.
"This new Inmarsat service will give companies a head-start and enable more countries in Africa to become e-ready, to access the Internet and utilise the web-based applications and solutions that are part of everyday business life in the developed world," he added.
"In time we hope that with increased access to the International IT world possible with Regional BGAN, we will see Africa begin to develop a pool of technology proficient students and youngsters who will enable the development of locally relevant software developed in Africa, for Africa.”
Regional BGAN, due for launch at the end of the year, is expected to deliver a GPRS-compatible data service in up to 99 countries using a high-speed (up to 144kbit/s) shared channel secure channel.