08 May Uganda: UCC ties up with Intelsat to accelerate 3G deployment
Intelsat has announced that Uganda’s Communications Commission (UCC) will use Intelsat satellite services and Gilat Satellite Network’s ground infrastructure to advance the deployment of 3G and expand high quality, affordable broadband access for businesses and communities in rural areas of Uganda. Under a pilot programme, the UCC will use IntelsatOne Mobile Reach Solar 3G satellite services delivered via the Intelsat 37e satellite and Gilat’s SkyEdge II-c multi-application platform to provide high-quality, resilient and affordable broadband connectivity to two communities – Bufundi in Rubanda and Kibuku in Ntoroko.
The improved performance, efficiency and lower total cost of ownership delivered by Intelsat 37e, the fifth of the Intelsat EpicNG satellites and one of three serving Africa, will enable Uganda to quickly and seamlessly extend broadband connectivity to rural areas of the country in a cost-efficient manner. The objective of the remote connectivity project is to demonstrate the ease of deploying the satellite solution and study the commercial viability and sustainability of the solution. This effort will be instrumental in helping to accelerate the Uganda government’s broadband strategy, particularly its goal of achieving minimum broadband speeds of 3 Mbps and coverage of 100 percent of Uganda’s rural areas by 2020.
Mobile Reach Solar 3G, part of the IntelsatOne portfolio of managed and terrestrial services, is an end-to-end, solar-powered managed solution powered by Gilat cellular solutions, for mobile network operators (MNOs) who want to expand their service footprint efficiently into ultra-rural regions where traditional network buildouts are uneconomical.
Under the partnership, Intelsat oversees the space segment, traffic configuration and project management, while Gilat Satellite Network supplies, installs, and maintains the ground network infrastructure. This results in a turnkey, solar-powered package that provides everything an MNO needs to expand 3G service over a 2.5-kilometer radius, including power supply, mono-pole, and all satellite and cellular equipment. For the pilot project, MTN Uganda will integrate the sites into the core network.