According to analysts’ industry, executives, legal experts the entry of India’s top telecom company Reliance Jio InfoComm in the satellite communications (Satcom) on the heels of Bharti Group which is backed by OneWeb may have lent a new dimension to the emerging broadband-from-space services market in India.
Reliance Jio InfoComm’s recently formed satellite unit and applied to the Department of Telecommunications (Dot) for global mobile personal communication by satellite services (GMPCS) license. After Bharti Airtel, Jio becomes the second telecom company to fight in the arena of Indian Satcom.
Now Bharti Airtel and Reliance jio are going to battle in the Satcom market in the future.
JSCL’s battle with telcos
The knock of Reliance Jio surprised the existing Indian telcos by offering very low-cost mobile services, free data, and free voice calling. Jio Satellite Communications Ltd (JSCL) is ready to compete with big companies of the world like Elon Musk’s Starlink, Amazon’s Project Kuiper, Bharti Group backed-OneWeb, Tata-Telesat, and more.
However, as usual, Jio might have another surprise stored in the company’s bag for the market. Although the JSCL is incorporated only a few months before. Reliance Jio president Mathew Oommen said that Jio would aim to deliver affordable connectivity.
Satcom an Expensive Affair for telcos
Satcom is an expensive segment because it requires massive investments. over $100 a month approximately paid internationally for satellite broadband services. It is expected to generate more than $1 billion annual revenue in India. And India’s satellite service market would grow to $4.7 billion by 2025
After the GMPCS license, Jio plans to offer its services as early as possible soon, But Jio is not planning to offer satellite broadband services like Starlink plans to. Following the publication’s report, Jio is probably to lease or resell the satellite bandwidth capacity for offering services in the remote and rural areas of India.
JSCL may also be offering satellite broadband services to other industries such as aviation and maritime. It is like business to business (B2B) plan. And similarly, Bharti owned OneWeb would do the same.
Meanwhile, OneWeb also applied for a GMPCS license, which is yet to be final for the same. So OneWeb will work in association with Hughes Communications India Pvt Limited, a JV between Airtel and Hughes. And Starlink had plans of providing services in India from April 2022.
If more competitors such as Amazon’s Kuiper, SpaceX owned Starlink, and more enter the market aggressively, which may cause to the prices go down. Jio continues to spread out fiber-based connectivity and FTTH business and invest in 5G, the new joint venture with SES will further speed up the growth of multi-gigabit broadband.
With extra coverage and capacity offered by satellite communications services, Jio will be able to connect the remote towns and villages, enterprises, government establishments, and consumers to new Digital India, said Akash Ambani, Jio director.