A number of different technologies are required to achieve universal coverage and satellite services continue to be a vital solution to deliver connectivity to unconnected areas of the world, according to Laurence Delpy, general manager at Eutelsat Group’s video business unit.

“As connectivity needs and solutions evolve, we see increasing demand for consistent, reliable and redundant connectivity solutions. This is only to be achieved by using multiple solutions and leveraging the best of each technology,” Delpy commented.

At the same time, while non-terrestrial networks (NTN) are complementary to terrestrial networks, they can also be “genuine and reliable alternatives”.

Speaking ahead of the Satellite and NTN Summit, Delpy gave the example of how Eutelsat OneWeb helped restore connectivity to communities after ice damaged a subsea fibre-optic cable in the Arctic Ocean.

She also noted that even in domestic markets, an estimated 2 per cent to 5 per cent of the population lives in areas without proper terrestrial connectivity. In emerging markets, the share of population without connectivity is much higher.

“There may be geographic limitations that prevent the use of terrestrial networks such as mountainous or rural areas or low population densities that make the economics of deploying a terrestrial network cost prohibitive,” she said.

Overall, as a B2B business, “we believe the best approach is seeing our services integrated with our partners’ connectivity solutions”, she said.

Eutelsat partners with telcos and ISPs to enable them to extend the reach of their networks using the group’s GEO fleet and the low-earth orbit constellation it acquired with OneWeb.

“We believe that, ultimately, competition and allowing for choice in purchasing is good for customers and will benefit the industry,” Delpy said.