ViaSat-1 Satellite Pings WildBlue Network Gateway: Faster Sat Internet Is Coming
Once in-orbit testing is complete (planned for mid-December), satellite manufacturer Space Systems/Loral will hand over operation of the 140 Gbps capacity satellite to ViaSat and partner Telesat. ViaSat will then begin the final phase of integration with the network of 20 SurfBeam 2 ground stations that connect the satellite to the Internet backbone. Commercial service is expected to begin prior to the end of calendar year 2011.
"We have advanced satellite technology to the point that satellite can now be a better alternative for broadband Internet than DSL, and 3G / 4G wireless offerings for fixed home use - an enormous leap for satellite broadband technology," said Mark Dankberg, chairman and CEO of ViaSat. "The ViaSat-1 satellite will help bridge the 'digital divide' in the U.S., and we're confident that this new service has been designed in a way where it will be attractive to a large segment of the U.S. population - delivering both speed and value to the underserved."
The ViaSat-1 high-capacity Ka-band spot beam satellite includes coverage over North America and Hawaii, enabling a variety of new, high-speed broadband services for WildBlue in the U.S., Xplornet in Canada, and JetBlue Airways on its domestic U.S. fleet.