"Mobility continues to gain traction in the market"
As we look forward to the holiday break and approach the closing of another successful year, I would like to take this opportunity to share with you some of the highlights in 2013 and provide a brief glimpse into what you can expect in 2014.
2013 has been an exciting yet challenging year for most of us on many counts. Amidst a string of successful satellite launches, SES-6 is perhaps the key for many of us; being the first SES satellite with dedicated mobility beams across the Atlantic Ocean. In addition, the launch of the world’s first constellation of MEO satellites is also a highlight and achievement for the O3b team. On top of these, we have brought much needed new Ku-band capacity for VSAT networks in West Africa on Astra 2F at 28.2° East. Co-located at the 28.2/ 28.5° East orbital arc is the newly launched ASTRA 2E, bringing us more FSS spot beam capacity over the Middle East to tap into the rising demand in the region. Before the year is out, we will be launching SES-8 which will be joining NSS-6 at 95° East, providing coverage over Asia.
Mobility continues to gain traction in the market. In 2013, the port of Rotterdam welcomed its first ship via the Artic (Northern Sea) route. It marks the opening of the new Carnival regional HQ in Singapore, created to oversee its expansion in Asia. 2013 also hails the debut of Queen Mary 2 sailing into Abu Dhabi as part of her World Voyage, providing significant boost to the region’s ambitions to be a premier cruise destination alongside Europe and North America. On the aeronautical side, United Airlines launched its 100th in-flight Wi-Fi-equipped aircraft and plans on having nearly 200 aircraft equipped with the service by the end of 2013, signifying the growing importance and coming of age of aeronautical mobility.
However, growth in Europe remains challenging and we see many customers seeking growth further afield, especially into emerging markets such as Latin America, Africa and Asia. Over the years, our foresight has meant that we have built up significant assets in the emerging markets and today, we have the satellites and the ground infrastructure in place, poised to deliver on our customers’ growth ambitions as they venture outside of Europe in search of growth.
Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to inform you about capacity which has recently become available on SES-6 mobility beams, enabling your coverage over the North Atlantic Ocean region. In addition, ASTRA 3B with its Ku-band spot beam over the Middle East, offering interconnect capability to Europe, also has new capacity at hand. So before we close the chapter on 2013, I would encourage you to contact your account manager at SES to find out more about how you can take advantage of this newly available capacity.
As we draw near to the end of the year, I hope you will have the chance to take a well-deserved break over the holiday season with friends and family, and I look forward to working with you in 2014!
Simon Gatty Saunt
Regional VP, Data & Mobility Services