HISPASAT, the Spanish satellite telecommunications operator, has signed a new agreement with Altán in Mexico to significantly increase the cellular backhaul services for the extension of its mobile network agreed in the middle of the year. In this way, the Amazonas-5 satellite will provide Altán with Ka band coverage to connect 665 new base stations on its Red Compartida, in addition to the 65 initially proposed , which implies a total of approximately 4 Gbps of satellite connectivity. Thanks to this increase, which will take place between 2021 and 2023, it is expected to serve more than 3 million people who will benefit from the 4.5G LTE coverage provided by Altán La Red Compartida.
The deployment of the Red Compartida de Altán, which has recently completed its second phase of development and is expected to cover 85% of the Mexican population in January 2023, may be accelerated in underserved areas thanks to the agreement signed with HISPASAT, since In this way, you do not have to resort to a use of the terrestrial infrastructure that would imply very high costs or that would simply not be feasible due to orographic difficulties. Thanks to this, HISPASAT highlighted, Altán plans a significant increase in the number of base stations in rural areas in the coming years.
HISPASAT indicated that it has optimized the performance of the Gilat SkyEdge IIC platform for this service, which operates on the powerful Ka-band capacity of the Amazonas 5 satellite, to meet the demanding availability and latency requirements demanded by Altán. In addition to the provision of satellite capacity, HISPASAT offers Altán a comprehensive managed service that includes the equipment and installation, operation and maintenance of satellite links.
Ignacio Sanchis, HISPASAT Business Director, “I want to thank Altán for the trust placed in HISPASAT to jointly contribute to such an ambitious deployment of its Red Compartida. We are very proud to consolidate our commercial relationship in such a firm way and to contribute to reducing the digital divide in Mexico. This agreement reaffirms HISPASAT’s leadership in the satellite cellular backhaul market, which is so relevant to reducing the digital divide in Latin America ”.
Fernando Bellido, Altán’s Executive Director of Deployment, stated that “the work already carried out in more than fifty of our base stations has shown that HISPASAT’s complete and robust cellular backhaul solution is a guarantee option to accelerate the deployment of our Shared Network in the most underserved areas of Mexican territory in a more ambitious way and providing our users with the best experience. Currently, our social coverage has an advance of 56,360 towns with less than 5,000 inhabitants and we will continue working to reduce the digital divide in Mexico ”.
Cellular backhaul in Latin America
The agreement with Altán joins the new alliances and contract renewals related to the extension of mobile networks in America that HISPASAT has closed in recent months. Thus, by the end of 2020 the operator will already offer connectivity to more than 2,600 base stations, distributed in Mexico, the United States, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador and, for the first time in a few months, in Chile, Colombia and Argentina.
The cellular backhaul services, reported the operator, provided by satellites represent a solution of great interest for mobile telecommunications companies that want to extend their connectivity in areas where the deployment of terrestrial infrastructures presents geographical problems or is not profitable in terms economical. Thanks to a satellite connection, remote areas can be connected to the global mobile network, thus optimizing the economic investment and achieving the capillarity that this type of communication requires.
In addition, the introduction of 4G technology and the arrival of 5G augurs a growth in the demand for these backhaul services. Therefore, this type of satellite solution is especially suitable for regions such as Latin America, with very large countries, orographic difficulties and less development of terrestrial communication infrastructures in some areas. Specifically, market studies foresee that the demand for HTS capacity of geostationary satellites for backhaul services in the region will increase by 65% in the 2020-2029 period.
The Shared Network
The Altán Shared Network is a 20-year concession granted by the Mexican government to Altán Redes that aims to develop a wholesale, universal, continuous, neutral and non-discriminatory 4G LTE network that will cover 92.2% of the Mexican population, including 15% coverage in populations of less than 10,000 inhabitants. This ambitious deployment will contribute, among other things, to reducing the digital divide, facilitating the adoption of information technologies in urban and rural areas, promoting the creation of new telecommunications companies, encouraging greater investments in the sector, promoting new digital services such as IoT and, ultimately, guarantee better connectivity and higher speed to telecommunications services.