The fundamental question the participants of one of the main events of the global satellite communications industry, Satellite 2018 (Washington, USA), are asking themselves is: what is in store for the satellite industry in the era of global Internet of Things (IoT) and online communications, and do satellite operators need to retreat into applications?
That said, what may well be the number one issue for satellite technology in IoT is how close they can get to the sensors. Otherwise, the satellite will be relegated to the role of the data highway from the aggregation center that processes data from the sensors.
There is noticeable evolution of the themes to be discussed at the plenary session of the conference. While only three or four years ago the debates centered on satellites and launch vehicles, today the main discussion focuses on satellite communications as an inseparable part of the global network and their integration with terrestrial wireless technologies.
The main issue for primary satellite operators is how to make money in the era of low capacity pricing and pressure from customers expecting the benefits of cheap capacity of LEO / MEO / HTS constellations. The forum participants agree that in the context of uneven global distribution of demand and capacity, it is very important for the operator to have an efficiently configured network, complete with competently allocated assets.
In the context of geographic expansion failing to bring the coveted results, the keynote of the Conference is where to find the demand for the huge capacity of the GEO satellites that are up and flying. Should the players focus on applications, mergers and inter-operator partnerships for the sake of the future and IoT? Where are the areas of growth?