Intelsat joins GSMA

09 January 2019 | James Pearce

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Satellite operator Intelsat has become the latest member of the GSMA – an association that looks after the interests of the mobile industry worldwide.

Intelsat said is becoming a fully-fledged member of the GSMA, which runs Mobile World Congress every year, to promote the role of satellite in mobile technologies, such as 5G.

The GSMA counts more than 750 operators worldwide in its membership, along with over 350 handset and device makers, vendors and internet companies.

With growing demand for connectivity, Intelsat claims satellites offer a complementary service to terrestrial mobile networks in order to offer ubiquitous, seamless and cost-effective connections to end users. Most notably, a number of mobile firms work with satellite partners to provide connectivity and backup services in remote and rural regions.

As the GSMA and the mobile industry focusses more on the growing opportunity around the internet of things, hybrid satellite and terrestrial networks will prove “essential” to meeting demand in a cost-effective manner, Intelsat claims in its reasoning for signing up to the GSMA.

“As 5G comes to market, we must capitalize on the strengths of multiple delivery technologies to satiate the connectivity demands of businesses and communities around the world,” said Jean-Philippe Gillet, Intelsat’s vice president and general manager of Networks.

“By joining the GSMA, we will continue to forge new working relationships and develop business models that accelerate the expansion of more powerful mobile networks. We will collaborate even more closely with companies across the mobile ecosystem and build innovative partnerships that incorporate the complementary strengths of satellite and terrestrial technologies and create the hybrid networks that advance the cost-effective deployment of mobile connectivity around the world.”