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The Impact Of The Battle For C-Band On The Satellite Industry

There is a raging debate in the international and regional spectrum regulatory community on the issue of sharing Fixed Satellite Service (FSS) C-band downlink spectrum rights with the International Mobile Telecommunication Advanced (IMT-Advanced) service.

The spectrum is currently being used by satellite operators primarily for telecom and TV broadcasting services, whereas the mobile industry wants to access and use the same band for the IMT-Advanced service. 

IMT Advanced is a term coined by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) to define a terrestrial service that will be an all-IP based mobile broadband solution for smartphones and other mobile devices. 

Questions raised on the hotly debated issue include: Should C-band be shared? Would it cannibalize current spectrum allocation? What is the criteria for C-band sharing and how would it impact users, operators and regulators?

Over the last three years, various study groups at ITU have been discussing the topic of sharing criteria between the incumbent satellite service and IMT Advanced. The final decision on whether C-band spectrum can be used by IMT Advanced will be taken at the World Radio-communication Conference (WRC-15) in November this year. The WRC is held every three to four years and is the highest international treaty-level organization that decides on the international radio regulations governing the allocation and use of frequency spectrum.

Studies conducted by ITU study groups have confirmed that the introduction of IMT Advanced in C-band will interfere with satellite signals and severely degrade the quality of service. Other studies have shown that the spectrum requirements for IMT Advanced are over estimated, and the market data provided from the mobile industry is not correct.

As such, the satellite industry and a number of developing countries are rallying against the proposal of IMT Advanced using the C-band spectrum that is currently utilized for satellite communications. A key consideration is that developing and under developed countries are dependent on C-band for their critical connectivity requirements which includes a high reliance on solutions provided by satellite communications.

Worth noting is that WRC, which was held in 2007, also discussed the use of satellite C-band spectrum by IMT eight years prior and, even at that time, the studies conducted by the ITU Study Groups confirmed that it is not feasible for IMT Advanced to share the frequency band with satellite service. 

The Significance Of C-Band
C-band was the first frequency band to be allocated for use by the satellite communications industry for Fixed and Broadcasting Satellite Services. C-band frequencies have long been recognized to perform better under adverse weather conditions such as rain and snow fade in comparison with other satellite frequency ranges, such as Ku- and Ka-band. 

Although new frequencies have emerged over the years and are being used by the satellite industry, C-band still represents a highly significant portion of the total capacity currently supplied by satellites. Today, both C- and Ku-bands are nearly reaching congestion levels.

In order to meet requirements for reliable and uninterrupted communications for maritime, banking, defense and governments, C-band is often preferred over other higher frequency bands which are prone to rain fade. C-band also easily meets the stringent reliability requirements of service levels of over 99 percent of satellite operators.

Examples of how C-band is used in satellite communications include:

• Providing connectivity between multiple locations spread around a country
• Providing direct and backup international connectivity especially in landlocked countries and island communities. In some cases, satellite communications is the only means of connectivity with the outside world
• For use onboard shipping vessels
• Providing cellular backhaul services
• Broadcasting of TV signals including Direct-To-Home (DTH)  

While the terrestrial mobile community is looking to use C-band for Advanced IMT applications, the same band is used by them for backhauling mobile traffic from their own base stations. 

C-band is also used by other types of satellite systems, such as geostationary mobile satellite systems for their feeder link operations as well as for critical telemetry, tracking and command operations. Mobile satellite systems are increasingly used to support disaster and emergency communications because it is easy to use and deploy. Furthermore, it supports various mobility based communication requirements for the media, news gathering, maritime, government and defense sectors, among others. Therefore, C-band is the backbone of MSS systems which are the only available means of communication when other channels go down for one reason or another. 

To add fuel to the fire, there is an emerging trend among developing countries to launch their own national satellite systems to meet Universal Service Obligation requirements. This trend supports regional and sub-regional connectivity requirements, which will benefit users who will then have access to a wide selection of low-cost mobile devices. 

Satellite manufacturers are taking note by innovating and considering the introduction of multi-beam satellites in C-band, similar to those in the Ka-band to support higher speeds and throughputs.

As the debate rages on and new trends come to the forefront, it is of utmost importance is to protect the C-band spectrum for use by satellite operators in order to continue providing critical connectivity requirements. It is also crucial to ensure that C-band technology continues to evolve and grow to meet future trends in information-communication technologies.

Zahid Zaheer is the Senior Director of GMPCS (Global Mobile Personal Communications Services) Affairs at Thuraya. Zahid has been with the company for 16 years and is responsible for market access and licensing, regulatory affairs, spectrum management and coordination. Prior to joining Thuraya, Zahid worked with PAKSAT satellite, Pakistan Telecom Authority. Zahid is an engineer by training, who holds an MSc in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California and a MBA in Finance & Accounting.

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Strengthening Partnerships and Breaking Barriers to Shape the Industry

It was all about “Breaking Barriers” at this year’s Thuraya Partner Conference (TPC), where we hosted more than 200 customers, Service Partners and developers at the iconic Waldorf Astoria Resort in Dubai, from 31 March to 1 April.

With the theme “Breaking Barriers”, we wanted to recognize the milestones we have achieved together with our Service Partners, and reaffirm our drive to continue disrupting the satellite industry. During the TPC, we outlined our strategy to strengthen our partnerships and stressed the significance of our indirect distribution model, ensuring that our customers get the best MSS solutions and support—and at the right prices.


Thuraya CEO, Samer Halawi opens the 13th annual Thuraya Partner Conference

We further reinforced Thuraya’s efforts to address the evolving needs of both traditional MSS segments and emerging market sectors. Bilal El-Hamoui, Chief Commercial Officer at Thuraya, highlighted 2014 as the Year of Great Growth, and expanded our aim to work closely with customers and partners to remain at the forefront of the mobile satellite sector.


Thuraya's Chief Commercial Officer, Bilal El Hamoui addresses the delegates.


Thuraya's Chief Strategy Officer, Jassem Nasser 

Apart from illustrating the significant investments made to serve maritime customers, we showcased our expanding pipeline of innovative equipment and services that satisfy the demanding needs of various market segments. We also announced the upcoming launch of our newest product offering, the Thuraya XT PRO, the world’s most advanced satellite mobile phone that is equipped with long battery life and ruggedized for professional users.


Our Guests

At the same time, Thuraya will strive to strengthen its retail strategy with the aim of breaking into the consumer market. Randy Roberts, Vice President of Innovation at Thuraya, shared his perspective on the potential of this untapped market, noting that mobile users are increasingly demanding to be connected anytime, anywhere.


Celebrated photojournalist, Martin Edstrom (right) relates how Thuraya satcom helped him reach out to the outside world from the jungles of Vietnam.

World-renowned BASE jumper and snow boarder Geraldine Fasnacht later took the stage and shared how the consumer-friendly features of Thuraya satellite phones enabled her to connect with family and friends as she travelled to remote locations for her adventures.


We'll meet again next year!

The TPC was a resounding success, thanks to the enthusiastic support and participation from our valued guests. We look forward to the next TPC as we continue delivering disruptive innovations that will shake the satellite industry.

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Innovating for the greater good: Thuraya and Etisalat deploy drones to fast track humanitarian assistance

“Every new thing creates two new questions and two new opportunities.” - Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO, Amazon

What drives the progress of humankind? The answer is simple: the extraordinary desire to innovate everyday existence. 

Countries like the United Arab Emirates are at the forefront in adapting innovative ideas and exciting technologies into practical solutions in order to improve people’s lives.  Great ideas can come from anyone, anywhere, anytime! 

To foster innovation and ingenuity, the UAE government instituted the Drones for Good Award in January this year, mobilizing creative minds to provide technological solutions using drones to modern day issues.

Launching the award program, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai stated: “We want to reach to people before they reach us. We want to save time, to shorten distances, to increase effectiveness and to make services easier.”


His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai at the Etisalat - Thuraya pavilion along with His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE and Minister of Presidency Affairs

For us, at Thuraya, innovation is not just a philosophy, but a way of life. We believe that innovation, social entrepreneurship and commitment go hand in hand. It was our pioneering spirit that drove us to spearhead space and satellite technology in the UAE.  This intrinsic need to innovate and excel is inexorably tied to the company’s overall purpose of Saving and Improving Lives.

Indeed, over the years, we have transformed the most sophisticated technologies into smart, simple and effective solutions to keep our customers connected, even in locations beyond the reach of terrestrial GSM networks.


Thuraya's satellite communications solutions are drone-compatible! 

Thuraya’s innovative spirit was on full display at the Drones for Good competition where we collaborated with Etisalat, the UAE’s ace telecom operator, and won the coveted award for the UAE Government Entities.  


Etisalat and Thuraya are the proud winners

About Drones & Satcom Technology     
Drone technology can be combined with Thuraya’s satellite system to save lives by linking remote, inaccessible locations, such as disasters areas, off-shore oil rigs or ocean vessels.


Thuraya's products and services save lives in the remotest outposts of the world

Connected through Thuraya network, the Etisalat drones deliver high-grade medical diagnostic tools to emergency sites, enabling non-medically trained individuals to administer basic medical procedures under real-time supervision by doctors connected wirelessly to the emergency site from hospitals, remotely executing life-saving decisions in real-time. Thuraya’s specialized solutions are used to track the drones’ whereabouts.

Thuraya is already active in remote regions to deliver humanitarian assistance during emergencies such as disasters and pandemics. We are committed to serving humanity through delivering the essential tools for optimal connectivity, never leaving anyone out of reach. 

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100 countries, 18 months, one determined man on the Goodwill Journey of a lifetime

Thuraya has been supporting Dubai-based entrepreneur Wissam Al Jayyoussi in his riding expeditions to raise funds for children located in war-torn countries in the Middle East. Al Jayyoussi tells us more about the role of mobile satellite technology in his journeys, and how it will facilitate his upcoming one.


The 2012 expedition saw Al Jayoussi travel through tough terrain as well as long stretches of road without any connectivity

Since 2010, Wissam Al Jayyoussi has covered more than 50 countries across Europe, the Middle East, and Asia on his motorcycle for Goodwill Journey: a charity initiative started by Al Jayyoussi himself to create awareness to the suffering and hardships of children in Middle Eastern war zones.

In March 2015, he will once again embark on an expedition - this time expanding his route to include 6 continents - which will take him through 100 countries around the world in 18 months. His goal? To raise $3 million to support the building of children’s hospitals and medical missions in the Middle East.

Given the precarious nature of his journeys, Al Jayyoussi relies heavily on satellite technology to ensure reliable connectivity even while traversing different continents. The Thuraya XT used in his previous expedition in 2012 served as a vital communication link to his family and the Goodwill Journey team, as well as a lifeline during emergencies regardless of how remotely he is located.


Al Jayyoussi used the Thuraya XT during his 2012 expedition to chart his journey across the Middle East and Asia

“What’s also great about the Thuraya XT is its robustness to withstand extreme riding conditions, such as exposure to dirt, water, and vibrations, and its long battery life to last me days on the road. More importantly, like other Thuraya equipment, it features GPS capabilities that allowed me to track my location, especially in areas where local networks were unstable,” he added.

For the upcoming journey around the world, Al Jayyoussi will be equipped with the Thuraya SatSleeve, which transforms his smartphone into a satellite phone.

“The Thuraya SatSleeve lets me stay connected with my family and colleagues, and ensures that I am a phone call away during emergency situations via my own personal device. It is also more convenient to access social media platforms - enabling me to post regular updates of my journey and ultimately raise greater awareness to its cause,” said Al Jayoussi.

The upcoming expedition, which covers 240,000 km, marks Al Jayyoussi’s biggest journey yet, as it will be his first time riding through North and South America as well as Africa - and will undoubtedly put his endurance to the test. As with previous journeys, Al Jayyoussi acknowledged that the road ahead will not be easy.

“In most parts of this journey, I will be travelling on rough, isolated terrains facing unpredictable weather conditions - mimicking the plight of refugee children,” he explained. ‘Despite potential difficulties, I look forward to riding for the sick and underprivileged children in the Middle East.”

GPS capabilities that allowed me to track my location, especially in areas where local networks were unstable,” he added.

“The Thuraya SatSleeve lets me stay connected with my family and colleagues, and ensures that I am a phone call away during emergency situations via my own personal device. It is also more convenient to access social media platforms - enabling me to post regular updates of my journey and ultimately raise greater awareness to its cause,” said Al Jayoussi.

We wish Al Jayyoussi all the best in his upcoming journey to create awareness and raise funds for the building of children’s hospitals and medical missions in the Middle East.

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Cementing a strong maritime partnership

The relationship between Thuraya and Addvalue Technologies Group of companies in Singapore goes back to the launch of the Thuraya-3 satellite in 2008 - and right up to date with the commercial availability of Thuraya’s latest maritime broadband terminal, Atlas IP.

Addvalue’s Chief Technology Officer and Chief Operating Officer Tan Khai Pang recalls his realisation seven years ago that the launch presented an opportunity to develop a low cost maritime terminal targeted at the huge and underserved market in Asia and China in particular.

“We could see this was a market with huge potential but it lacked a cost competitive, high quality product to serve it properly,” he says. Fast forward to 2015 and Addvalue is again helping Thuraya address an underserved market.

Atlas IP is Thuraya’s second dedicated maritime broadband terminal and it marks a move towards added value in more ways than one.

Designed to complement Thuraya’s first broadband terminal, Orion IP, by offering a fully-featured voice and data product with additional functionality built in, Atlas IP delivers superior performance compared to more highly-priced competitor terminals, but with a higher specification and at a lower cost.

“Our strategy has always been to work closely with mobile satellite operators such as Thuraya to identify market needs and build fit-for-purpose terminals that will sit well with the aspirations of the end users,” says Khai Pang. “Atlas IP is another good example of how Addvalue and Thuraya are able to work together to address unfulfilled needs in the maritime market.”

Atlas supports IP-based broadband communications at sea and coupled with Thuraya’s highly competitive airtime packages, is designed to fulfil multiple applications. Capable of standard data transfer at rates up to 444kbps, asymmetric streaming at 16kbps-384kbps and featuring circuit switched voice, Atlas IP brings exceptional quality of service to maritime users.

In addition to its voice and data capabilities, key features include a built-in firewall, Wi-Fi and a fleet tracking feature based on distance or time with accurate geo fencing. The terminal also has the ability to configure and limit data sessions by time or volume through a multi-lingual web interface. Corporate users wanting to take advantage of specific applications can choose a customization option to have their application embedded on its core module.

The terminal is also designed to support operational efficiency on-board ship through its Port Forwarding feature. This automatically forwards data from shipboard equipment and devices to support M2M reporting routines. In addition, land-based users can connect to the ship’s sensors remotely and receive data without the intervention of the crew.

“The tracking function gives shipmanagers and operators real time access to critical vessel information through a web-based interface, while the geo-fencing function provides a means to demarcate a zone and report any exceptions,” explains Khai Pang. “Circuit switched voice provides a complimentary service in case the data connection is lost and if the vessel is entering risky waters the terminal can automatically engage radio silence and resume transmission when leaving them.”

This combination of features makes Atlas IP the logical choice for maritime users who want to combine a high quality service with functionality that answers current needs and anticipates coming trends.

Atlas can be configured to provide a very cost-effective crew calling service, enabling seafarers to make affordable voice calls or use the internet-based data services that are becoming a core aspect of crew welfare at sea.

With the inexorable advance of the internet-of-things, users can leverage its M2M functionality to support a range of telemetric functions that can help increase the efficiency of vessel operations. Atlas IP is also an ideal terminal to act as a VSAT backup and provide a reliable link when the primary service is unavailable, providing the ship with a means of continuous communications at predictable speed over a reliable L-band connection.

For Khai Pang and Addvalue, Atlas IP is the latest step of an enduring partnership, in which a single-minded approach has paid dividends for maritime users in Asia and beyond.

Addvalue has, he says, always taken a holistic approach in defining its terminal functionalities and features. By understanding the strength of the Thuraya network, Addvalue has been able to build useful applications and user-friendly interface; something that would not be possible without Thuraya’s support.  

“In 2008, we went to Thuraya and presented to the management our vision of a product that could help them achieve their goals, leading to the strong partnership that we have today. Through the commercialisation of our visionary voice and narrowband data products, Thuraya has been able to capture a sizeable regional maritime market in East and South East Asia.

“Atlas IP continues that tradition; aligning the strengths of Thuraya and Addvalue in a voice and broadband data product which addresses the varying needs of the maritime market in Asia, where both companies are positioned to serve a market that is even bigger than it was seven years ago!”

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Mission to conquer Nanga Parbat

February is a special month for Italy’s Daniel Nardi, who is currently on a mission to conquer the world’s ninth highest peak, Nanga Parbat in the Himalayas.

One of the leading mountaineers in the country, Daniel’s satellite communications equipment is sponsored by our service partner, Intermatica. Daniel spoke to us about the goals for this trip and about reaching the peak through one of the most dangerous passes, Mummery Ridge.

Tell us more about your expedition and how long will it be?
Our expedition started from December 27th, 2014. It is hard to determine how long the journey will take, especially in winter. It usually takes between two to three months or even less than 50 days, depending on the weather and how difficult is the way up is and on your personal training.

Could you share with us your goals for this expedition?
My ultimate goal is to reach the top of Nanga Parbat at 8,125m in winter. What makes it special is that no one has done it before. My personal goal is made up of two parts. First is to conquer Mummery Ridge, which was identified as one of the hardest peaks by Albert Frederick Mummery. Since 1953, it has yet to be conquered by any mountaineer, regardless of weather conditions. I would like to get to the peak of Nanga Prabat directly through Mummery Ridge. It will be a tough climb but if that is not achievable because of the elements, I would go through Kinshofer's route instead. That is my second goal.

What are the 10 most important things that you need on your journey?
1. Good communication by radio and satellite that is managed by my team in Italy
2. Good food to replenish our energies at base camp
3. Strong tents to protect us from the wind
4. Efficient down suits to protect us from the cold and the wind
5. Ice axes and durable performance crampons for the very hard ice of the mountain wall – Nanga Prabat is nothing like on the Alps
6. High quality glasses and masks to protect our eyes from the cold, the wind and the ultra violet rays
7. Music is essential to motivate myself and to feel as if I have a close friend with me
8. Great climbing partners to spur each other on
9. Good trip planning and organization to support all our efforts during the expedition
10. Family, for they have to support us, without them nothing is possible.

What role does satellite communications play on this journey?
A satellite modem and phone are essential for good communication with base camp and with our team in Italy. The equipment helps us obtain weather forecasts so that we can plan the best routes for climbing safely, the weather changes rapidly during the day and we need to be ready for anything. It becomes crucial to communicate where we are at all times of the expedition to allow our team to monitor our progress and to enable our fans to follow our journey online. A direct benefit of keeping in touch with our fans is that thousands of kids have signed my High Human Rights Flag in respect of the international Youth for Human Rights campaign – this has further motivated my climb. The support that we’ve gathered is fantastic, I can feel this energy on my skin! Without Intermatica and Thuraya’s satellite technology, this challenge would not be possible.

What is your communications set-up like?
This year I have the best set up ever, both at base camp and in high altitude. I am using an antenna scan and the Thuraya IP satellite broadband terminal as well as two computers that are used for communication and editing of our videos. I also have two Thuraya satellite handsets to communicate from the high altitude camp and during situations where it will be hard to set up the terminal and computers. The Thuraya IP has been working well and is perfect for communications by Skype with our family and our fans. It is great! I would like to thank Thuraya and Intermatica for the safe and reliable equipment they have provided me on this journey.

 

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Martin Edstrom: The changing approach towards news delivery

Over the years, Thuraya has been proud to work with leading journalists to help them break stories while staying safe as they work from the world’s toughest conflict zones. In 2015, we are proud to be working with Swedish journalist, Martin Edstrom, who is changing the way news is delivered with immersive stories though unique 360° reports. Martin shares with us the exciting work that he’s doing


The man himself!

Let us know more about what you do that makes your work unique
I work in a very new and emerging field within journalism, photography and communication: immersive and interactive storytelling. These digital experiences rely on images photographed in 360 degrees, letting the reader explore the whole setting of an image instead of just one selected frame. By using an intuitive interface, the reader can move around inside the reportage, from location to location while hearing the ambient sound of each location and reading the accompanying piece.

Interactive storytelling brings additional dimensions to linear storytelling which is consumed from point A to B. Interactive storytelling is largely non-linear; the user has an active role in how the story is told and experienced. The user/reader actively explores these reportages and stories, by navigating through the story. This way, we create immersive content that touches readers in a new way, triggering different interactions or level of response, similar to computer games.


The team

How does interactive storytelling impact your work?
Since interactive storytelling is a rather new field within journalism and communication, there are endless possibilities to explore. We’ve only scratched the surface of how interactive stories can be used. In 2014, I produced 360 reports for clients like The Guardian and also used the same approach to create interactive online experiences for the United Nations Development Program and the International Rescue Committee. Immersive stories give organizations a new way of presenting stories to their readers - letting people explore stories and projects as if they were there, on the ground themselves.

How do you view the changing landscape of the media?
I believe there are many things that have to change. First of all, print is dead. There will soon be no (or almost no) paper publications. That does not mean we have to let go of the high quality standards of newspaper journalism - quite the opposite – however, we must also adopt a new kind of thinking. What is most apparent to me is the new divide between breaking news and deeper perspective journalism pieces. They both used to fit in the same newspaper, but today they require very different channels - and attract different readers. Attract the attention towards the latter, deeper perspective journalism is a challenge. We need new ways to engage people, especially the younger generation, to read and learn about important issues.

How do people consume the news today, as opposed to say five years ago?
News is consumed in two ways. Through breaking news that come through social media and news aggregation apps and through newspapers and magazines that present more complementary, in-depth pieces. The downside to this is that people have shorter attention spans, they want shorter pieces in favor of in-depth journalism.

What role does satellite communications play in your line of work?
Traveling to remote parts of the Middle East or in the wilderness of Nepal sometimes gets you away from mobile coverage. Satellite communications is that extra life-line that makes sure you can always reach who you need to reach, wherever you are. In many places there can also be times (hours or days) when GSM or 3G simply goes down, but the satellites are still up there. I feel safer traveling with my satellite phone, knowing I always have the means to communicate.


IP+ in action

What types of projects will you be working on in 2015?
Well, 2015 starts off in a big way! I am going on my first mission with National Geographic, to make an interactive reportage about the world's largest cave: Son Doong in Vietnam. It's a major expedition over the course of a week, where my seven person team and I will descend into the cave and work tirelessly to capture the whole place in 360 degrees. It's going to be an extremely interesting trip - exploring both the cave and the new storytelling format together with National Geographic.


Getting ready

To follow Martin and his team on their Son Doong expedition, check out their blog, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

 

 

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Creating opportunities through innovation

Thuraya’s CEO Samer Halawi presented at the recent Thuraya Product Development Forum (PDF) in Dubai, which took place on November 4 and 5, about how together, the company and its world-class product developers are disrupting the mobile satellite industry. The company’s product highlights in 2014 included the launch of the SatSleeve for Android, the introduction of two maritime broadband terminals, Orion IP and Atlas IP which provide maritime users with a high-value, high-quality offer, and the launch of Thuraya’s comms-on-the-move terminals, IP Voyager and IP Commander


CEO Samer Halawi elaborated on Thuraya's Purpose of saving and improving lives.

The forum also showcased ground-breaking product innovations in the pipeline for 2015. It included the unveiling of the world’s best value satellite phone, Thuraya XT-LITE. The new satellite phone builds on the success of Thuraya’s flagship satphone, Thuraya XT, by addressing an untapped market segment looking for a cost-effective, yet good quality device. 


Introducing Thuraya XT-LITE - the world's best-value satellite phone

Thuraya’s product innovation strategy was led by Randy Roberts, VP of Innovation, who shared his vision and forecast on the future of mobile connectivity. Randy spoke about the important role that satellite plays in this space, whether it involves supporting M2M, providing connected car services or powering IoT applications. 2015 will be yet another exciting year for Thuraya, as the company continues to push the envelope to disrupt the mobile satellite industry. 


VP of Innovation, Randy Roberts shared his thoughts on the future of mobile connectivity.

With record-breaking attendance from its worldwide product developers, the PDF was the perfect setting to brainstorm ideas and look at better ways of collaborating to continue serving customers in the government, energy, media, and maritime sectors.

 

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Thuraya wins Telecom Review’s Satellite Operator of the Year Award

November 26, 2014 was a night to remember as Thuraya was honored by Telecom Review, winning its Satellite Operator of the Year award. The award was presented to our CEO, Samer Halawi at Telecom Review’s its fifth annual It’s All About Networking Summit in Dubai.


Our CEO, Samer Halawi, receiving the award

Thuraya was awarded the recognition as a result of our success in delivering innovative mobile satellite solutions. A pioneer responsible for disrupting the satellite industry through its focus on innovation and convergence, Thuraya is responsible for delivering high-quality products with flexible airtime that meet the demands of users across sectors such as energy, maritime, media, government, M2M and relief.


We thank Telecom Review for the honor and the award


Honoring the night’s winners 

Thuraya is the first satellite operator to deliver BYOD to users through its game-changing SatSleeve. The company’s innovation strategy further extends to its distribution channels where it has announced agreements with leading Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) including SoftBank Mobile in Japan, ChungHwa Telecom in Taiwan and Airtel Africa. The company leads the convergence of satellite and terrestrial communications by enabling MNOs to offer 100% geographic coverage and provide cutting-edge mobile satellite solutions to their customers. 


Awards handed out during the night

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