Australian telco firms Vocus and Field Solutions Holdings (FSG) have secured distribution deals with global satellite internet broadband company OneWeb for its Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite services.
UK-headquartered OneWeb plans to launch a network of some 650 LEO satellites to power its broadband internet services globally, particularly in rural and remote areas. The company has since sent out 394 satellites in orbit as of December 2021.
Vocus was OneWeb’s first distribution partner in Australia, announced on 20 December 2021, followed by FSG announced earlier this week.
Vocus said the satellite services would augment its own GEO satellite and microwave connectivity offerings, aiming to cover various industries across Australia, including government, mining, oil and gas, utilities, construction and community services.
OneWeb chief executive Neil Masterson said the Vocus partnership was “a truly historic moment” for OneWeb.
“This is the culmination of months of positive momentum with over 50% of our constellation in the sky, increased investment from our global partners, and the rapid onboarding of new customers. We are incredibly excited to start delivering high-speed, low-latency connectivity, first in the Arctic region, and soon across Australia and the Asia Pacific,” Masterson said.
“Thanks to the Vocus team who have joined us on this journey and are instrumental to making OneWeb’s mission a success.”
FSG said the deal would bolster its regional and rural connectivity offerings, targeting government, enterprise, agribusiness, mining and resources customers. The company is also set to start trials in Queensland and the Northern Territory.
OneWeb regional director for Asia-Pacific David Thorn said of FSG’s partnership, “OneWeb’s enterprise-grade network has a unique capability to serve hard-to-reach businesses and communities. Our work with FSG will focus on how satellite technology can support improved capacity and coverage in remote, rural, and challenging geographic locations.”
“Today’s agreement with FSG demonstrates OneWeb’s execution momentum and our goal to reach remote communities in Australia with fibre-like services.”
Vocus CEO Kevin Russell said the distribution deal would help the company provide more opportunity for customers to access the high-quality connectivity they require, particularly in remote and regional operations.
“Vocus is very excited by the many advantages that OneWeb’s LEO services will bring to our growing LEO portfolio,” he said.
“It’s great to be playing an important role in bringing this new age of satellite connectivity and services to life for customers.”
FSG chief executive Andrew Roberts called the OneWeb partnership an “important milestone” for rural and regional connectivity.
“OneWeb’s technology will help us further extend our reach across underserviced regions of Australia with ‘fibre like’ connectivity to the most out of reach places, accelerating our ability to deliver technologies such as 5G and IoT anywhere,” he said.
“We’re very excited to partner with OneWeb to pioneer and deploy these new technologies, which further help to close the digital divide between metropolitan areas and rural and remote areas in Australia, faster and more cost effectively.”