Satel­lite will lower PNG in­ter­net costs

Paradise - - Contents - – KEVIN McQUILLAN

Anew satel­lite is ex­pected to lower in­ter­net costs in Pa­pua New Guinea, par­tic­u­larly for in re­mote ar­eas. The Ka­cific-1 satel­lite will op­er­ate on a new set of high fre­quen­cies that de­liver a large amount of low-cost band­width to small and in­ex­pen­sive an­ten­nas, says Chris­tian Pa­touraux, chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of Sin­ga­pore-based Ka­cific Broad­band Satel­lites.

Us­ing the nextgen­er­a­tion of satel­lite, based on tech­nolo­gies that are al­ready suc­cess­fully op­er­at­ing in the US, Aus­tralia, Europe, Asia and the Mid­dle East, Ka­cific ex­pects to en­ter the Pa­cific mar­ket in 2019.

The com­pany is called Ka­cific, as its satel­lites will use the Ka-band fre­quency, and was in­spired by the need to bring bet­ter in­ter­net to the Pa­cific re­gion, Pa­touraux tells Par­adise.

“We think Ka­cific-1 will be of huge ben­e­fit to com­mu­ni­ties on PNG’s outer is­lands and in the High­lands, which are hard and costly to ac­cess us­ing fixed line, cable and cel­lu­lar com­mu­ni­ca­tions in­fra­struc­ture.

“With high-speed broad­band in­ter­net, health clin­ics will be able to ac­cess ex­pert doc­tors over video, schools will be able to ac­cess up-to-date on­line learn­ing re­sources and learn vi­tal IT skills, and small busi­nesses will be able to reach new cus­tomers on­line.”

Pa­touraux ex­pects small com­mu­ni­ties will share the in­ter­net ser­vice.

An an­tenna costs around $US300 and a user or house­hold will spend from $US5-$US10 for three to six gi­ga­bytes of data, which Ka­cific es­ti­mates an end user or a house­hold, shar­ing the an­tenna in a com­mu­nity, would use in a month.

Gov­ern­ments and telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions providers in three South-East Asian coun­tries and 11 Pa­cific Is­land coun­tries, in­clud­ing PNG, have signed up for Ka­cific’s ser­vices. ■

In or­bit … a new satel­lite will bring bet­ter in­ter­net to the Pa­cific. (Im­age in­dica­tive, not ac­tual satel­lite.)

Chris­tian Pa­touraux … says the new satel­lite will be of huge ben­e­fit to PNG’s outer is­lands.

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