iDirect is a leading provider of satellite communications infrastructure. Their platform is used to provide rural and remote connectivity to mobile operators looking to extend the reach of their network. They have served the mobile industry for a number of years providing backhaul services for traditional macro cell sites. Over the past few years with the acceptance of small cells, they have seen expanding interest for connecting remote and rural sites using small cell technology.
Recent developments in satellite technology make it cost effective to deliver IP broadband at data rates of tens or even hundreds of Mbits/s. The throughput capabilities and cost modeling for satellite connectivity for cellular backhaul is changing. It is no longer a solution of last resort, but one that can now be profitably deployed to solve the connectivity needs for mobile operators in both developing and developed markets.
Traditionally, satellite was used for connecting basic voice calls because the expensive use of satellite bandwidth and the high cost of macro cells limited the ability to cost effectively reach remote and rural sites. iDirect is helping change these dynamics by offering a range of ground infrastructure products that are designed to support the next generation satellites being launched offering higher capacity at lower costs, and working closely with the key small cell vendors to deliver a seamless solution for voice and data services in remote and rural areas.
iDirect equipment is used in a number of different vertical markets and small cell related services can be used in the following markets.
- Cellular backhaul: addressing remote and rural areas with easily accessible and rapidly deployable connectivity
- Maritime: Connecting cruise liners, commercial shipping vessels, and oil and gas rigs and support vessels
- Aircraft: Providing connectivity for In-flight entertainment systems and on-board cellular service
More information on iDirect satellite cellular backhaul solution, including a white paper on satellite backhaul for rural small cells, can be found on their website.
iDirect is a subsiduary of VT Systems, itself a subsiduary of ST Engineering (with $6 Billion annual revenues), the company dominates the satellite broadband equipment sector and is #1 in maritime, oil/gas and government sectors. With over 250,000 remote ground stations installed worldwide, the company boasts over 60% hub market share. Founded in 1994, the company pioneered the use of VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminals) to provide IP Broadband service over satellite. The company does not own or operate satellites, instead focussing on ground station equipment compatible with many global network providers.