The satellite communications (Satcom) sector in India is all set to see an influx of investments from global players as well as local companies in 2022. The Indian government will allow satcom players to offer satellite broadband internet services in the country. This isn’t just a good thing for the direct consumers, but even the terrestrial network service providers will benefit from the arrival of satcom companies.
With satcom services, connectivity in remote parts of the country would be possible where terrestrial networks can’t reach. But for the satcom sector to be a success, the government and the regulatory body must listen to what it wants.
Satcom Sector Wants Government and TRAI to Allocate Spectrum Administratively and Reserve Some Premium Spectrum Only for Satellite Services
The satcom players have two key demands. One is to administratively allocate the spectrum to satellite broadband companies instead of the auction route. The second is to reserve some amount of premium spectrum only for satellite services.
Now the thing is, the Indian Telecom operators feel like that would be the wrong thing for the government to do. If the telcos have to go through an auction to get their hands on the scarce resource that is spectrum, so should the satcom players.
But satcom sector has asked the government to see and follow the global practice of administrative allocation of spectrum to the satcom players.
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) is currently working on submitting spectrum auction recommendations to the Department of Telecommunications (DoT). So what will happen is unclear at the moment.
The satcom players also want the government to reserve some part of mmWave (milimeter wavelength) bands for satellite broadband. This is to ensure that when telcos roll out 5G services, there are no interferences between the services of satcom players and the telecom operators.
TRAI is expected to submit the recommendations by month-end or early April 2022.