Category Archives: Market

iDirect 2015 In Focus: The Coming Wave of Maritime Growth

As 2015 comes to a close, we’ll be taking a look at some of the major announcements of this past year at iDirect, highlighting the products and campaigns that had great impact on the industry.

Today we put the spotlight on one vertical market, which gained a lot of traction in the past year: maritime.

Alongside our partners, iDirect is playing a critical role in shaping this fast growing and evolving market as the leading provider for satellite service providers in maritime. More than 20,000 vessels are currently online, and the latest comsys Maritime VSAT Report projects that there will be 44,242 vessels with VSAT by 2018. In fact, 50% of all VSAT remotes deployed on vessels are made by iDirect, and eight of the 10 largest maritime VSAT service providers by revenue rely on iDirect’s Evolution platform to run their networks. Read More

iDirect SatHaul™ Optimization Suite Helps Mobile Operators Enhance 4G/LTE Experience Over Satellite

Features addressing speed, security and compression help mobile operators expand 4G coverage in smart and profitable manner

iDirect announced the release of the iDirect SatHaul™ Optimization Suite. This set of features is designed to enhance the cellular backhaul solution, iDirect SatHaul™, which helps mobile operators create a highly efficient and cost-effective solution for connecting rural and remote locations over satellite. iDirect is a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology.

Today, mobile operators are deploying networks to meet the strong end-user demand for greater bandwidth to support advanced services and applications. Innovations in satellite technology and ground infrastructure are making the technology a cost-efficient solution to extend network coverage and enable higher throughput capabilities at the edge of the network. The iDirect SatHaul™ solution is designed to help mobile operators expand coverage in a smart and profitable way. When used for 4G/LTE networks, the iDirect SatHaul™ Optimization Suite enhances the end-user experience and at the same time reduces the amount of bandwidth needed for voice or data, redefining the business case for serving rural and remote markets or specialized environments like emergency services or mobile networks.

Key features of the iDirect SatHaul™ Optimization Suite include:

  • TCP Acceleration overcomes throughput issues caused by satellite delay, improving data speed and performance all the way down to the handset.
  • IPsec is a security protocol that protects all data going through a 4G network. With iDirect SatHaul™ Optimization, traffic can be optimized and secured throughout the entire satellite transmission link, ensuring that no data is exposed or compromised.
  • Header Compression saves on bandwidth by removing irrelevant elements during transmission and compressing the LTE header stack.
  • Payload Compression boosts the efficiency of user traffic and application data by optimizing payload traffic while maintaining a good experience at the device level.

The iDirect SatHaul™ Optimization Suite will run on the new X7-EC, a variant of the iDirect X7 satellite remote that has been enhanced with extended processing capabilities. The X7-EC has all of the standard iDirect features that make it a powerful remote, including dual demods, multicast and advanced mobility features, along with embedded computing capabilities to run high-speed applications at the edge of the network. Having the optimization suite embedded within the satellite router delivers a single box solution to the mobile operator, providing a more cost effective solution, decreasing points of failure and lowering power requirements at the remote site. Read More

Getting Real: The Remote and Rural Reach of Satellite

Today, advances in satellite technology and wireless infrastructure are enabling mobile operators to reach new subscribers and expand their networks into remote and rural regions of the world in a smart, profitable way.

Let’s focus on one area where new wireless infrastructure is making an impact: small cells. When coupled with HTS (High Throughput Satellite) and advanced satellite ground infrastructure technology, small cells provide an efficient, targeted alternative for remote and rural coverage compared to large macro cells—at the same level of investment.

Small cells are being deployed globally in urban areas, as opposed to using large macro cells, in order to offload data traffic in congested areas. Based on their size, small cells are easier to deploy, require less energy and need less infrastructure at a site. Building on the same small cell infrastructure being used to connect urban sites, the business case for connecting rural and remote sites is changing.

A recently published white paper by Real Wireless analyzed rural populations in more than 200 countries, along with various rural areas within the United States. The goal was to assess the potential benefits of small cells in bringing coverage to rural and remote populations worldwide.

At iDirect, we wanted to take this analysis a step further. So we commissioned Real Wireless to augment the findings from this study and independently assess the benefits to operators of using satellite backhaul on remote cellular sites.

Our goal was this: Given the option to deploy small cells with satellite backhaul as a complement to traditional macrocells, rather than just choosing macrocells alone to extend coverage, would mobile operators be able to extend their reach with the same investment? Read More

Breaking Down the Satellite Silo

In the journey towards creating the end-to-end network, telecommunications providers realize the critical role that satellite plays in meeting every customer need. They are achieving success by deploying satellite at the core of their networks.

New Market Growth

Such success stories were front-and-center during last week’s webinar “Breaking Down the Satellite Silo” hosted by Via Satellite Editorial Director Mark Holmes. Eric Watko, Vice President, Integrated Solutions and Space Systems, iDirect, was joined by Stuart Burson, Associate Director, Satellite Solutions Group, Verizon, and Renato Goodfellow, Head of Global Satellite, BT Global Services, BT Group, in a discussion on the ways in which global carriers are integrating VSAT seamlessly into their portfolio of services.

Watko kicked of the discussion by outlining the objectives facing all parts of the value chain. For satellite, it involves overcoming barriers of interoperability, easing deployment and lowering costs. For telecom providers, it’s having all access technologies seamlessly working in unison to fulfill every customer experience. Read More

L2oS Video Series #6: Using Satellite for Backup Services

The occasional failure of fiber Internet links can become very costly. Especially in high-value settings such as retail, where sales are lost if credit cards are not processed. Satellite is able to solve this problem and boost availability in a cost effective manner.

iDirect’s Layer 2 over Satellite (L2oS) enables real-time backup by transporting routing protocols all the way to customer edge routers for seamless handover of service if the primary terrestrial link fails. And with satellite terminals installed and ready for backup at each site, service providers can take advantage of iDirect’s Layer 3 Multicast Fastpath to efficiently distribute optimized data across all the sites, such as HD broadcast, IPTV, and digital signage.

Want to learn more? Click on this link!

iDirect Signs Framework Agreement with Danish Acquisition and Logistics Organization to Deliver Satcom Products and Services to Danish Armed Forces

iDirect Evolution platform enables interoperability between government and commercial satellites with ability to dynamically shift traffic based on demand

iDirect announced that it has signed a framework agreement with specialized procurement center and logistics authority Danish Acquisition and Logistics Organization (DALO) to deliver hardware, software, and services to the Danish Armed Forces. Using the iDirect defence portfolio, the Danish Armed Forces can ensure high quality support for multinational missions quickly and efficiently at all times and in any location. iDirect is a world leader in satellite-based IP communications technology.

In order to carry out a wide range of missions, the Danish Armed Forces require a communication system that can deliver secure, effective Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C4ISR). The iDirect Evolution portfolio enables the Danish Armed Forces to leverage the Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) program, along with partner nations defence satellites, and commercial satellites. The advanced Quality of Service (QoS) capabilities of the iDirect platform allows the Danish Armed Forces to dynamically balance traffic between operational and welfare requirements, and mobile and static deployments depending on the varying levels of priority.

iDirect’s TRANSEC capabilities will help to build added security into their networks, and the technical expertise of the 24/7 iDirect Technical Assistance Center (TAC) provides a high level of reliability to the Danish Armed Forces. The rollout of new products in the iDirect defence portfolio will provide the Danish Armed Forces with a highly efficient and resilient portfolio of remotes, designed to lower operating costs. Read More

Leadership in Maritime VSAT, Part Four: Three Years Ahead

Suffice it to say, predicting the future is never easy. But knowing where the market is headed and being able to project with confidence is another story.

In the previous blogs as part of iDirect’s Leadership in Maritime VSAT Series we have looked at future trends, new applications and specific market strategies.


Now we tie it all together and pose the question: How do you see the maritime end customer market evolving over the next 3 years?

First, here is a glimpse at what comsys is projecting for certain segments within maritime by 2018:

  • Commercial freight service revenues will most likely reach $506 million, accounting for approximately one-third of the total maritime market.
  • VSAT service revenues for oil rigs will top $285 million and reach $213 million for oil and gas maritime vessels, totaling $498 million.
  • The cruise market will be valued at $135 million in service revenues.

Smart Ships Tim Lajza, director of sales, maritime, Harris CapRock, sees a market where the end-customer market drives a need for cost-effective, unlimited bandwidth delivery mechanisms and services. Bandwidth requirements per site will grow significantly as high-definition video demand increases, the Internet of Things (IoT) enables continued operational productivity improvements, and social media further expands across the maritime market. He says, “For global maritime operating companies, they will continue balancing connectivity spending to business objectives and tangible measured results. These results can span from an improved guest satisfaction rating for a cruise line to improved operational efficiency or safety incident rate for an exploration and production operator in the energy market.”   Read More

SatHaul Optimization Suite Addresses Critical Network Challenges

Demand for 4G/LTE services is escalating around the globe. As mobile operators look to build out these networks, the need for a consistent user experience is oftentimes the most difficult factor to achieve—particularly when it comes to rural or remote locations.

Traditional terrestrial backhaul technologies may not be able to reach these remote areas or extend network coverage in a cost effective way. This is where satellite brings unique value, helping extend the network to places beyond the reach of terrestrial technologies. Advances in both space and satellite ground infrastructure continue to improve the user experience and efficiency of using the technology. The iDirect SatHaul™ solution is designed to provide the hardware and software to help mobile operators expand coverage in a smart and profitable way.

iDirect SatHaul Optimization

When it comes to 4G/LTE connectivity, the iDirect SatHaul Optimization Suite addresses unique network challenges to enable satellite to be a viable backhaul technology. Let’s take a look:


Challenge: A 4G subscriber expects a high quality connection with multi-megabit throughput capabilities to deliver things like streaming audio and video. When it comes to using satellite to backhaul TCP/IP traffic, one of the challenges that can impact throughput performance is the approximately 600ms delay that is introduced through the round trip time sending a signal to and from the satellite. Read More

Leadership in Maritime VSAT Part Three: Partners Share Their Strategy

According to comsys, an addressable VSAT maritime market that once stood at about 10,000 vessels has now eclipsed 51,000. This represents 71% of the total market—which means tremendous growth ahead.

Opportunity On Course

In previous blogs as part of iDirect’s Leadership in Maritime VSAT Series, we spoke with our partners about key trends and applications they believe will help drive the market. For part three, we get a glimpse into how they plan to address this particular market opportunity.

We turn the discussion to the question: What is your future strategy for delivering value to maritime service providers or end users?

Frequencies and Technologies

Malcolm McMaster, president, Globecomm Maritime, points to the fact that with so many service providers in the maritime market, most with access to the same space segment, the idea of simply selling bandwidth might not provide a sustainable business model for the long term. Instead, Globecomm’s philosophy is to continue investing in both technology and people in order to have the best possible offerings for customers. Read More

iDirect SatHaul™ Makes Rural Coverage Profitable

When mobile operators build out their network infrastructure to meet the expanding demand for voice and data services beyond urban and suburban areas, it generally becomes more expensive. For many operators, serving these customers has been a mandate tied to spectrum licenses or government funding. Despite the fact that the business model does not always support the expansion, an operator would take the loss in order to benefit other areas of their business.

iDirect SatHaul Cellular Backhaul Solution

But today, the landscape is changing. In particular, three advances in the technology are enabling operators to reach new subscribers and expand their networks into remote and rural areas in a smart, profitable way.

  • High Throughput Satellites: High Throughput Satellites (HTS) are bringing huge amounts of capacity to the enterprise market. This increased capacity is lowering the cost of the most expensive part of a rural connected site, satellite bandwidth.
  • Small Cells: The use of cost-effective small cells to provide targeted coverage, rather than using large macro cells, help operaors offload data traffic and provide coverage in specific areas. Based on their size, small cells are easier to deploy, require less energy and need less infrastructure at a site. As a result, small cells have changed the business case for rural connectivity.
  • Advanced Satellite Infrastructure: Advances in satellite ground infrastructure are enabling higher throughput capabilities at the edge of the network. The ground infrastructure is designed to take full advantage of HTS capacity, and improved digital processing capabilities can now be cost-effectively deployed at a cell site for optimization and content distribution.

Read More