iDirect Partner Perspective: Axesat

Mauricio Segovia - Axesat CEOMauricio Segovia, CEO, Axesat, sits down with iDirect and offers his perspective on the emerging LatAm market, HTS and what’s next in 2017 for Axesat.

iDirect: Please describe Axesat and its role in the emerging LatAm satellite market.

Segovia: Axesat is a multinational company based in Colombia focused on providing solutions that guarantee the best possible service experience to Latin American companies. We have over thirteen years of experience and over 200 employees committed to understanding our customer’s needs to deliver solutions that truly add value to their businesses. We have offices in Colombia, Mexico, Chile, Ecuador and Peru and we also serve the Argentinian, Venezuelan and Central American markets via strategic partners.  We have over 8,000 active satellite links and over 800 clients distributed throughout the region.  Our main goal is to solve the business connectivity needs of companies and telcos in a cost-efficient way.

iDirect: How long have you been an iDirect partner and why did Axesat select its technology?

Segovia: Axesat is constantly looking for the best way to deliver the best solutions to respond to our customer’s needs. Therefore, we continuously look for the best available technologies that allow us to satisfy our customer needs.  In such a process, in 2010, we decided to begin our relationship with iDirect, acquiring the Evolution® platform to complement our existing product portfolio.

iDirect: What verticals do you serve and which services do you offer in your core markets?

Segovia: We have a presence in several verticals.  Not one of the verticals we serve account for more than 10% of our revenues, which together with our geographic reach allows us to weather the storms when a vertical is not doing well.  We have customers in government, oil and gas, energy, mining, infrastructure, retail, banking, and agriculture.  We have developed a complete portfolio of satellite solutions from a deep market understanding of the segments we have a presence in. With our portfolio we offer data, video, voice, backhaul, manage services and trunking solutions to all our core markets. Read More

A Year of Milestones for iDirect and Our Partners

Mary CottonBy Mary Cotton, iDirect Chief Executive Officer

For the past several years in this annual article, I have focused on the emergence of High Throughput Satellites (HTS). I have written about the opportunity for satellite communications to break out from niche technology status to play a larger role in the end-to-end network as global demand for bandwidth explodes.

Well, that opportunity is decidedly here. HTS capacity is filling the skies and opening markets on the ground. As with any type of opportunity, though, meeting demand means raising your game. So in 2016, iDirect made significant progress powering our customers’ innovations and enabling our ground infrastructure platform to capitalize on our industry’s immense opportunities.

Milestones in Delivering Mobility Service

iDirect’s mobility partners made headline news this year as several highly anticipated HTS services built on iDirect became commercially available. Inmarsat GX went live with tremendous success, and Inmarsat immediately realized customer wins across maritime, government, and aviation markets.

In 2016, the first Intelsat EPICNG satellites went into service, making HTS capacity available for commercial shipping vessels and tankers operating in the North Atlantic, as well as for cruise ships and other leisure vessels in the Caribbean. And 2016 saw the successful launch and adoption of Telenor’s THOR 7 satellite, which provides HTS coverage over European shipping lanes.

iDirect supported several more partners in launching and expanding their mobility networks this year. Marlink signed up for capacity with both Inmarsat and Intelsat, making its move into HTS-based services. iDirect partnered with SES to launch their Maritime+ service, which represents its first Ka-band maritime offering. Speedcast expanded their global maritime network on the iDirect platform. And Globecomm launched a high-capacity satellite service for fixed and mobile assets on a global basis.

We are excited to see continued innovation in the mobility market, especially in the antenna industry, where flat panel solutions are opening new opportunities. This year iDirect supported VSAT antenna manufacturer Kymeta in launching a ground-breaking “no dome” antenna for the superyacht market. Kymeta mTenna represents an entirely new class of VSAT technology that can be hand-carried onboard and self-installed on commercial shipping vessels, fishing fleets, and even leisure vessels, creating additional market opportunities. Read More

iDirect’s Next-Generation DVB-S2X Technology Unlocks the Power of the Intelsat EpicNG Platform in Over-the-Air Tests

New iQ Series remote spurs substantial efficiency improvements, approaching 6 bps/Hz  

Herndon, VA, December 13, 2016 – iDirect, a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology and a company of VT Systems, today announced it has completed a successful round of over-the-air tests on the Intelsat 29e satellite leveraging iDirect’s next-generation iQ Series remote. iDirect’s ground infrastructure platform and iQ Series modem technology combined with Intelsat EpicNG satellites yielded a throughput rate of 5.71 bps/Hz – another demonstration of the up to 330% efficiency performance gains on the Intelsat EpicNG platform. This allows iDirect and Intelsat customers to exploit the full capabilities of the DVB-S2X standard so they can more efficiently meet demands for high-speed bandwidth.

The tests were conducted in Intelsat’s teleports from Oct 26-28, 2016 on the Intelsat 29e satellite, running on an iQ remote installed in Atlanta and iDirect’s new Universal Line Card and Hub chassis installed in Mountainside, MD. The successful tests included the operation of DVB-S2X carriers with 64APSK, 128APSK and 256APSK modulation and coding, and roll-off factors of 5%. The user data tests demonstrated substantial efficiency improvements reaching an industry-leading 5.71 bps/Hz in throughput per remote.

Intelsat NOC

“These milestone tests prove how our goals of higher performance, better economics and simplified access can be achieved in operational networks,” said Mike DeMarco, Senior Vice President, Operations, Intelsat. “With iDirect’s iQ remote technology and Intelsat EpicNG capacity, service providers can transition onto our high performance network while leveraging their existing investment in hub infrastructure. This is an important achievement in enabling our customers to expand their businesses into new applications and geographies and realize their future growth objectives.” Read More

Cloud Streaming For Air New Zealand Via Inmarsat’s Global Xpress

From Satnews

inmarsat global xpress air new zealandAir New Zealand has just signed on with Inmarsat for Global Xpress connectivity across the airline’s long- and short-haul fleets.

GX for Aviation  will be deployed by Air New Zealand to deliver a reliable, seamless broadband in-flight Wi-Fi experience across the world. For the first time, GX for Aviation connectivity will be integrated with Air New Zealand’s Inflight Entertainment (IFE) system provided by Panasonic. This was specifically requested by Air New Zealand.

The global nature of the GX network means that Air New Zealand’s ultra-long-haul routes, across the Pacific and on to the United Kingdom are covered, while the ability to layer-in capacity over Air New Zealand’s key regional destination hubs, such as the East Coast of Australia, will ensure that the customer experience will be of consistently high quality. The first GX-equipped aircraft are expected to begin proving flights in the second half of 2017, with services progressively available on Tasman, Pacific and long-haul fleets from the end of next year. It is anticipated that domestic routes will be added to the connected fleet from 2018. Air New Zealand joins a growing fleet of airline customers who have selected GX, including Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines and Singapore Airlines. Continue>

Com & Com Select iDirect Evolution® To Power VSAT Service In Myanmar

Service provider targets growing enterprise, banking and government markets with Ku-band service

Herndon, Va., December 5, 2016 – VT iDirect, Inc. (iDirect), a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology and a company of Vision Technologies Systems, Inc. (VT Systems), today announced that Com & Com has selected the iDirect Evolution platform to launch a new Ku-band satellite service in Myanmar. Com & Com is a joint venture between satellite service providers OSB Investment and Technology Joint Stock Company (OSB JSC) and Terabit Wave Company, Ltd. With the iDirect-based service, Com & Com will deliver high-speed satellite connectivity to organizations across Myanmar’s enterprise, banking and government sectors.

Myanmar is home to more than 60 million people, many of whom are located in rural and remote regions of the country. Couple this with the fact that few cities are connected to the fiber network, and you have an ideal case for using satellite connectivity in order to bridge the digital divide. Com & Com has set up an iDirect hub in the region to deliver high-quality voice and data services over Ku-band satellite, such as VoIP, VPN internet access, streaming media and data backup. For government agencies, the service will provide secure, private networking from any location, integrating agency operations.

“While Myanmar continues to become a fast-growing area of opportunity for voice and data connectivity, a majority of the country’s population remains out of reach of the core fiber network,” says Theingi Lin, Managing Director, Com & Com. “Satellite technology helps to extend that reach, and iDirect Evolution provides a level of efficiency and scalability that ensures our VSAT service can always grow to meet the dynamic needs of the market. Further, the iDirect platform strongly positions Com & Com for long-term growth with the ability to service a wide range of markets and minimize operational and capital costs.” Read More

Chicago Start-Up Aims to Help Networks Keep Up with OTT

From Via Satellite

As consumers look to cut the cord on their cable providers and make the switch to contract-free Over-The-Top (OTT) video platforms such as Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime, traditional unicast delivery methods are proving inefficient as OTT video consumption skyrockets, slowing delivery and hoisting prices. The Chicago-based company V-Satcast, launched in July 2015, is in the process of addressing this congestion and price hike by developing hybrid broadcast/broadband OTT multicast streaming platform with the aim to quell the OTT digital video bottleneck and streamline delivery, enabling the further proliferation of OTT.

Lead by Executive Chairman Vern Fotheringham, former CEO of Leosat and Kymeta, V-Satcast’s system allows users to stream edge-cached digital video content, such as Netflix, directly from their home or local storage.
“Video is truly the pig going through the python. It is giant files, and when you try to access them through remotely hosted data centers where you have millions of replicated copies of exactly the same file being downloaded in millions of one-to-one unicast legacy session oriented [Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol] TCP-IP internet, it is proving to be massively expensive as a distribution medium,” Fotheringham told Via Satellite.

And OTT video consumption is only expected to grow, with Cisco Systems anticipating that video will exceed 80 percent of all internet traffic by 2018. Moreover, the migration to HD, 4K, 8K, 3-D and extremely high resolution video applications such as Virtual Reality (VR) stands to exceed the capacity of existing Internet Service Providers (ISPs). Continue>

In-Service M2M/IoT Satellite Terminals to Top $2.5 Billion by 2025 – NSR

From Via Satellite

The global satellite Machine-to-Machine (M2M) and Internet of Things (IoT) market will reach 5.96 million in-service satellite M2M/IoT terminals by 2025, according to Northern Sky Research’s (NSR) “M2M and IoT via Satellite, 7th Edition M2M7” report. These terminals correspond to nearly $2.5 billion in annual retail revenues, a doubling over 2015. The report finds the most lucrative application is land transport; however, other key verticals record strong growth.

“NSR’s latest report points to an optimistic picture for the industry; however, operators cannot stand still as increasing competition aims to take advantage of the growing demand for M2M/IoT,” notes Alan Crisp, NSR analyst and report lead author. “Growing cellular footprints, greater terrestrial reliability, and the rollout of 5G and [Low-Power Wide Area] LPWA networks are increasing competition within the M2M/IoT market globally. Longer term, IoT-dedicated smallsats will also enter the market, providing unique and potentially compelling value propositions to disrupt the current market paradigm.”
While competition within the M2M market will increase, opportunities also exist, such as dual-mode solutions, enabling operators to tap into new markets. Beyond this, with the growth of dedicated terrestrial IoT LPWA networks, such as Sigfox and LoRa, new, albeit relatively niche, markets for satellite participation will open up. The compelling value proposition to provide satellite IoT backhaul for such networks will enable new revenue sources in the longer term, once these networks are rolled out globally. Continue>

iDirect Unveils Powerful DVB-S2X Technology

Revolutionary new ASIC chipset redefines performance and efficiency levels for satellite networks  

Herndon, VA, November 30, 2016 – VT iDirect, Inc. (iDirect), a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology and a company of Vision Technologies Systems, Inc. (VT Systems), today announced transformational DVB-S2X technology based on a powerful, customized ASIC (Application-Specific Integrated Circuit) chipset that will deliver revolutionary gains in data throughput and will power a new line of DVB-S2/DVB-S2X remotes called the iQ Series. iDirect is also introducing exponentially higher hub processing capabilities and virtualization of core gateway components to offer further gains in performance and efficiency and lower business costs.

iDirect iQ SeriesiDirect’s DVB-S2X solution is the result of a significant investment to co-develop a state-of-the-art ASIC chipset that is customized to exploit the full capabilities of the DVB-S2X standard and optimized for the enhanced iDirect waveform. This next generation of technology will allow iDirect to leverage the benefits of today’s High Throughput Satellites (HTS) and the capabilities of next-generation HTS to unlock additional features of the DVB-S2X standard.

The iQ Series establishes a new model for satellite remote performance providing a future-proof strategy to deliver successive gains in performance and efficiency as network operators strive to keep pace with the launch of increasingly higher throughput  satellites. Remotes can be continually reprogrammed over the air to increase network capabilities and throughput levels, driving a massive expansion of applications and setting new service level standards.

“We are incredibly excited to deliver DVB-S2X capabilities to our partners,” stated Wayne Haubner, Senior Vice President, Engineering & Emerging Technologies. “DVB-S2X represents a major opportunity for network operators to gain greater performance and efficiency to meet escalating user demands and realize lower business costs. We are currently performing over-the-air testing of our new DVB-S2X chipset, and results are demonstrating 500 Mbps of aggregate throughput. This technology will allow us to exceed 1 Gbps of throughput as we keep pace with future satellite developments.” Read More

Satellite Industry Association and Global VSAT Forum Collaborate On Joint Cyber Security Initiative

Core Principles Are Confirmed for Industry and Government Efforts to Promote Cyber Security 

GVF and SIAWASHINGTON, D.C. – The Satellite Industry Association (SIA) and Global VSAT Forum (GVF) – leading trade associations representing the satellite communications industry – have released a joint statement on the satellite industry’s commitment to cybersecurity, articulating core principles for cybersecurity and encouraging all segments of the satellite industry to continue efforts to address the dynamic challenge of cybersecurity.

The statement emphasizes the criticality of cybersecurity to the satellite industry’s core goal of providing mission critical, highly reliable, and secure connectivity.  “The satellite industry has a long history of providing secure solutions to diverse global customers,” the associations said, “including military and government users, corporations of every size and type, the non-profit and scientific communities, and individual consumers.”

Drawing upon the industry’s experience, SIA and GVF have identified three principles that—although not intended to be a comprehensive roadmap or exhaustive list—should be at the center of private and government efforts to promote national and global cybersecurity:

  • Voluntary, industry-led efforts and public-private partnerships are the optimal way to address cybersecurity at the national or international levels.
  • Robust cybersecurity is aided by voluntary information sharing, free from fear of adverse consequences.
  • Satellite industry organizations should actively address cybersecurity using industry best practices for risk management.

The associations expand upon these principles in the statement, offering further details of how they might be implemented by companies throughout the satellite industry and through government efforts.  In addition to articulating these core principles, the joint statement also details numerous initiatives within national governments, intergovernmental organizations, and international standards bodies evidencing the satellite industry’s foundational and long-standing commitment to cybersecurity. Read More

AfricaCom 2016: Visit iDirect and Discover Two Steps Forward to Higher Performance

Fire up high-speed DVB-S2X networks while dialing up the speed of your S2 networks

In a price-sensitive market like Africa, every saving counts. Every opportunity a service provider has to lower bandwidth costs for customers should be seized. Every chance to reduce internal operating costs should be pursued. And in a traditionally capex-heavy industry, any transformation in how networks infrastructure is purchased and deployed is graciously welcome.

africacom-2016

Fortunately, the prospect for better business economics is improving as satellite capacity comes online in greater abundance, at lower price points and at higher frequencies. The availability of stronger multi-spot beams and higher-powered transponders gives service providers the opportunity to substantially improve efficiencies and deliver more throughput over their given bandwidth.

In order to maximize efficiency and performance on the satellite, many service providers are looking to the new DVB-S2X standard. Compared to DVB-S2, the DVB-S2X standard features higher MODCODs (64APSK to 256APSK), finer granularity and better SNR values for better transponder saturation and to maximize the efficient use of the massive new amounts of HTS bandwidth.

To truly gain the benefits of DVB-S2X, service providers need a system-wide approach. At iDirect, we’ve done just that with a groundbreaking DVB-S2X product suite that enables fast and comprehensive adoption of the new standard. Read More