OneWeb: Investor Write Down

Japanese technology giant Softbank has written down the value of its stake in British satellite maker OneWeb by £380m, the Telegraph can reveal.

OneWeb, which is backed by Softbank, Airbus and Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group, has burned through billions in investor cash for its plans to launch a web of hundreds of low-orbit satellites.

Softbank took an impairment loss on its stake in OneWeb earlier this year, while some early investors have lost as much as half of the value of their stakes, a source said.

Founded in 2012, OneWeb is one of Britain’s technology “unicorns”, a start-up valued at more than $1bn.

It hopes to launch hundreds of satellites to improve mobile and internet connections…

 

This not good news for OneWeb who seem to be having problems getting spacecraft launched.

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OneWeb Secures Global Spectrum Further Enabling Global Connectivity Services

OneWeb, whose mission is to connect everyone everywhere, is pleased to announce it has succeeded in bringing into use its spectrum rights in the Ku- and Ka-band spectrum.

To achieve this milestone, OneWeb’s satellites have been transmitting at the designated frequencies in the correct orbit for more than 90 days, enabling OneWeb to meet the requirements to secure spectrum bands over which it has priority rights under ITU rules and regulations.

These rights will now be confirmed as the UK administration, which has filed our satellite system with the ITU, will complete the required Notification and Registration process of the company’s LEO network.

“Spectrum is a scarce resource and the ITU plays a vital role in the global management for access. The harsh reality for anyone trying to make a real impact on global connectivity is that no matter how good your network is, success is not possible without the right spectrum. With our spectrum now in use, OneWeb has proved it can bring together all the elements required – in space, on the ground, and in between – to change the face of connectivity everywhere”, said Ruth Pritchard-Kelly, Vice President of Regulatory for OneWeb.

By meeting the requirements of the ITU regulations, OneWeb is well on its way to securing spectrum rights to high priority Ku-band spectrum for service links, and Ka-band for its global gateways. It will now have access to over 6 GHz of spectrum that will enable it to deliver its high-speed, low latency connectivity.

Continue reading at SpaceDaily.com

 

An Optimistic Update from Telesat

Telesat Test One

Larry Press writing at CIS 471 has the details:

Emily Jackson interviewed Dan Goldberg, Telesat President and CEO, in a recent episode of the Down to Business podcast. The interview followed the announcement that the Canadian Government would contribute $85 million (all amounts are in Canadian dollars) to support research and development in support of Telesat’s planned constellation of low-Earth orbit (LEO) satellites and another $600 million to subsidize Internet connectivity in rural Canada.

Goldberg pointed out that all governments subsidize rural connectivity and said the $600 million grant was expected to generate $600 million in revenue from below-market-rate sales to telephone companies and ISPs. The remaining capacity would be sold to others and he said they anticipated sales to enterprises, governments, ships, and airlines, but did not mention marketing directly to consumers.

Continue reading HERE.

 

Canada Spends $85 Million In Internet Satellites For Rural Regions

BY JORGE ERICKSON

SpaceX Internet rival and the Canadian telecom, Telesat, needs to link remote areas with its low-earth-orbit satellites. Now, it seems to have the support of Her Majesty’s management. The firm declared this week that it is joining hands with the Government of Canada to extend high-speed Internet all over rural regions. Over the coming decade, the government will donate $600 Million in Canadian currency towards the upcoming series of satellites by the telecom. An extra $85 Million of financial support will be employed to generate 500 new jobs, to promote STEM education, and to invest in R&D.

Continue reading HERE.

However:

“Telesat has made slow development in its objective of establishing a LEO (low-earth-orbit) collection of 292 satellites, planning to offer satellite Internet service by 2022.”

Space Needs to Be Regulated Before Humans Ruin It

By Greg Wyler for CNN Business Perspectives

My company, OneWeb, is focusing on what I believe is one of the world’s most pressing and fundamental issues: the need for equal access to the internet. The internet has become our economic lifeblood. And yet, nearly half the world’s population doesn’t have internet access.

Space is playing a crucial role in bridging this digital divide. OneWeb is launching 1,980 satellites to help bring internet access to people everywhere, and our first production satellites are already flying in space and have demonstrated very high download speeds.

Fiber and cable internet access technologies already permeate major cities where deployment is most financially viable. Similarly, these regions will also be the first to be served with 5G. Poor communities are the last to get connected, and without connectivity, those communities have no chance to lift themselves from poverty. OneWeb’s satellites will reach every community in the world and enable equal access to the internet for the world’s unserved and underserved.

Fifty years from the day when man first walked on the moon, we are still only approaching the possible. There will be tens of thousands of new satellites, space stations and manufacturing hubs in the coming years to bring advancements in communications, scientific research, monitoring the earth, exploring space and more.

This is exciting, but we must move carefully. The space environment around us is a pivotal resource for the future of humanity. Like our oceans and rainforests, space seems large, foreboding and infinitely strong. However, it turns out the low-earth orbit space environment is just as fragile as earth’s and, without carefully thinking it through, humanity can irreversibly destroy it — and fast.

Continue reading HERE.