Sensor to satellite sows new IoT seeds for agriculture

14 December 2021

Alastair Williamson, CEO at Wyld Networks looks at why agriculture is turning to the IoT for help and the role of satellite comms

According to a recent UN report on the State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World, between 720 and 811 million people in the world went hungry in 2020. Using a different indicator that tracks year-round access to adequate food, the UN says that nearly 2.37 billion people - or 30% of the global population lacked access to adequate food in 2020 – a rise of 320 million in just one year.

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What role will 5G play in delivering critical communications?

10 December 2021

Jason Johur, TCCA board member and chair, TCCA’s Broadband Industry Group

Jason Johur, TCCA board member and chair, TCCA’s Broadband Industry Group

5G networks promise greater capabilities to critical users but further specification work is needed to ensure their unique requirements are met. A new white paper from TCCA, the global organisation for the advancement of standardised critical communications technologies, says that ultimately, 5G will enable cooperation between critical users to become more efficient and effective. As a result, the safety of first responders and the communities they protect will be enhanced.

The white paper addresses a number of key questions raised by the critical communications community on the role of 5G, including how it compares to 4G LTE, the initial use cases, the expected impacts on user operations and the likely market availability of such solutions.

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Satellite Orbits to 2022… Looks back at 2021

08 December 2021

Martin Jarrold, chief of international programme development, GVF

Martin Jarrold, chief of international programme development, GVF

Since the Covid-19 pandemic came to necessitate international travel restrictions and the postponement of satellite industry conference events, GVF has been setting a much-lauded high standard for virtual discussion fora.

On 18th November our programme brought together a panel comprising Dr Vagan Shakhgildian, president, Comtech Satellite Network Technologies Commercial Group; Dr Onur Karabey, founder & CEO, Alcan Systems; Tony Taylor, chairman & CEO, Global Invacom Group; and Dr Leslie Klein, President & CEO, C-COM Satellite Systems, and moderated by Jose Del Rosario, consultant with Northern Sky Research to discuss ‘Ground Segment: All Change for a New Satcoms Era’. The dialogue was a continuation of GVF’s long-standing webinar series examination of the satellite communications ground segment. The premise upon which the event was founded is that the ground segment has for too long been considered the less interesting, non-identical twin, to the satellites we place into orbit. Launches and the orbiting of spacecraft are major, attention grabbing, spectacles; outdoor and indoor units of equipment down here on Earth do not offer the same visual excitement. The question is, isn’t this all this is changing, as reflected in the industry having already coined the name “New Ground” to parallel and complement the now familiar term “New Space”?

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Embracing hybrid networks to serve Africa’s digital economy

08 December 2021

Fueled by a young tech savvy population Africa is the fastest growing continent on the planet and the focus of increased attention from foreign investors. As the only place with a birth rate certain to stay above replacement for a generation the continent is set to have a growing amount of young people as consumers and workers, a point not missed by its telecoms sector which has gained a reputation as a 21st century African success story.

While there’s a great deal of optimism in the region, infrastructure remains a challenge for telecom operators looking at opportunities for revenue growth. With mobile penetration at 44% the focus is on connecting the remaining 600 million+ people without mobile connections. However, in a region that covers such a vast geographic area, this challenge is no mean feat, and demands that network operators are smart in their technology choices if they’re to see a timely return on their investments. Connectivity on the continent is and should be a multi-generation affair where we utilise existing network generations, continue to upgrade to LTE, and focus on creating more agile core networks that provide seamless user experience, switching back and forth between network generations. This will drive revenue while creating a sustainable roadmap towards 5G evolution.

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