Eutelsat Launches Broadband Satellite Internet In Europe

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News Posted: Wed, Jun 1 2011 12:53 PM
In America, there's HughesNet. It's usually a last-resort for people seeking high-speed internet, mostly for two reasons. For one, it's crazy expensive. Two, it's really slow, at least on the uplink. But satellite-based internet is still useful in rural places where no other broadband is available, and evidently those same demands are also present in Europe. Eutelsat has just launched satellite internet across Europe, and it's being called the most powerful satellite in the entire world. It just went into service this week, giving broadband speeds to over a million homes in Europe that are currently doing without.

The KA-SAT was launched at the end of 2010, and just now went into service. It's set to provide consumers up to 10Mb/sec download and 4Mb/sec upload rates, and it will also provide an enterprise service of up to 50Mb/sec. Based on reports, there are 13 million homes across Europe that are "too remote" to get normal high-speed internet, and there's another 17 million that cannot get services greater than 2Mb/sec. The E.U. is currently trying to give broadband access to every citizen by 2013, and launching a satellite like this definitely moves them in the right direction.

It cost around 350 million Euros to get it online, and there's no plans now to launch a second. We're still waiting to hear how much this service will cost on a per-home basis, but for those who have had no internet at all, anything reasonable will likely be seen as acceptable. One step closer to global 'net access -- we'll take it!
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Those are pretty impressive speeds for satellite internet. Historically it has been like 56kbps modem speeds on the upload.

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