24/02/20224 Minutes

Satellites and Mobile Communications

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has illustrated just how critical, and yet vulnerable, is the global supply chain infrastructure of planes, trains, trucks and ships. It has further illustrated the imperatives of establishing, maintaining, and expanding communications connectivity with all the modes of transportation which move our raw materials and manufactured goods around the world. Pandemic impact now aside, communications on the move (COTM) is a “have to have” in the business of global logistics.

Today’s panel comprising a GEO and a LEO satellite operator, a managed service provider, a data analytics services company, and one of the world’s largest international logistics providers, moderated by an expert in the business of connectivity, fully lived up to expectations in examining how satellite communications and transportation companies are working together.

With 232 registrations from 60 countries, the 70-minute dialogue opened with a discussion on the importance of data in helping customers achieve their goals and went on to cover such questions as how COVID-19 has changed the business of the data/logistics interface, what GEOs and LEOs respectively offer that the other type of system does not, new security risks arising from the accelerating pace of digitalisation, violations of data norms, analysing the nature of the “logistics void”, and the challenges of tracking cargoes, as opposed to tracking vehicles.

Additional moderator questions – for example, “What data would you like to have that you do not have now, what data service would you like to be able to offer that you cannot offer now? – were augmented by several audience questions. Of the latter, some remained unanswered at the end of the webinar and the panellists’ written responses to these appear on this page, together with a link/button to watch the webinar recording.

Q & A continued….

The following question was posed through the chat function during the panel but we ran out of time to respond in the live programme. Thank you to our audience for taking an active part by asking questions, and to our panellists for their time to answer them after the webinar ended…


1.  With such encouraging answer from panelists for Data consumption that demand will be there forever and technology improvements will be there. Then why there is consolidation in Satellite industry and why Satellite operators and service providers are struggling so much as Company?

Will Mudge (Speedcast): My opinion, its because of growth in the industry. More options, changes, regulatory, cost. New entrants like SpaceX and how to drive improvements in the industry.


2. Are there any unique challenges regarding continuous and dependable connectivity for the air segment versus maritime based on the sophistication and speed of airplanes versus container vessels?

Dr. Shay Har-Noy (Spire):For broadband connectivity key considerations are (1) the size of the antenna is much more limited on aircraft (2) elevation angles affect aircraft substantially as aircraft often bank and change altitude much more quickly and (3) the speed of travel (creates doppler effects) that needs to be handled.

Will Mudge (Speedcast): The unique aspect in my opinion are the terminals and certifications required to go aboard an airplane vs. a ship. Much different than the maritime environment.