Start-up Paradise Mobile continued to build its footprint, signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a commercial high-altitude platform station (HAPS) outfit to deliver mobile connectivity services across remote areas of Bermuda and the surrounding archipelago.

The MoU with Airbus subsidiary Aalto HAPS targets employing an aircraft to provide connectivity when Paradise Mobile launches commercial services, which is now expected to take place in 2024.

Aalto HAPS provides a “tower in the sky” from a solar-powered aircraft, which it states provides low-latency, and direct-to-device 4G and 5G services for operators and enterprises.

The company said its Zephyr craft can fly for several months in the stratosphere at around 70,000 feet, above inclement weather and conventional air traffic. It has a coverage area of 7,500 square kilometres, the equivalent of up to 250 terrestrial towers.

Aalto HAPS claims latency of less than 10 milliseconds is on-par with terrestrial infrastructure and lower than satellites. It provides 5G connectivity without requiring user-terminals, satellite dishes or physical tower infrastructure on the ground.

CEO Samer Halawi previously served as EVP and COO at Intelsat.

The Paradise Mobile deal adds to partnerships Aalto HAPS signed this year with stc group and NTT joint venture Space Compass.