Thanks to major providers like Viasat (NASDAQ: VSAT ), Avanti, YahSat, SpaceX, OneWeb, Geespace, Telesat (TSX: TSAT.TO ) and Amazon.
Early Market Growth
In the past few years, players in the satellite Wi-Fi market have seen steady growth, especially in developing countries as the adoption of satellite services has increased. For example, Viasat’s revenue increased by 24% compared to 2021. a sign of market growth.
Market potential for connectivity
Although connectivity is ubiquitous, the distribution of Internet access around the world remains highly uneven. In fact, billions of people globally are not connected to the Internet, and less than 1 in 5 people in the least developed countries are connected. This is known as the digital divide.
An increasingly urgent and fundamental reason for the digital divide is the inability of the energy infrastructure to provide reliable connectivity. Although electrical infrastructure exists in urban areas, the grid is increasingly unreliable and expensive to maintain. Even more than in urban centers, inadequate energy infrastructure poses a challenge to deploying connectivity in rural areas, as the grid is often outdated and massive infrastructure upgrades cost billions of dollars.
The Role of Clean, Smart Technology
As a result, Viasat (NASDAQ
Smart solar can now offer lower costs and higher reliability than traditional off-grid systems. Smart technology uses energy forecasting, remote control, and smart analytics to optimize the performance of off-grid energy systems. Smart technology will thus provide the low-cost energy solution required to expand satellite Wi-Fi systems in rural areas, which will play an important role in bringing communities online and unlocking their economic potential.
Satellite Internet and the Boom for Clean Tech
Using satellite Wi-Fi to boost connectivity is already in place. However, it has yet to reach the regions with the most significant unconnected populations. For example, Space X’s Starlink currently serves customers in North America and Europe, but has yet to reach its full potential by expanding to the most unconnected regions.
Well, what does it matter? The fact is that the satellite Wi-Fi market is on the verge of a huge boom. By 2020, 41% of the world’s population is still not connected to the Internet. According to a 2020 report by the World Economic Forum, most of the world’s unconnected population lives in rural areas in Africa, South America and South Asia. The Covid-19 pandemic has spurred universal internet connectivity, meaning there is a huge market opportunity to bring millions of unconnected people online via satellite. These satellites will be equipped with smart clean technology in places where new power lines are simply not possible.
Smart, clean technology can thus provide the low-cost energy infrastructure needed to support satellite communications where network infrastructure is weak and expensive to upgrade. As satellite Wi-Fi providers such as Viasat (NASDAQ: VSAT ), Avanti and SpaceX look to expand service to developing countries and take advantage of this market opportunity, they will undoubtedly look to clean technology to power these deployments.
Satellite internet is the future. If we are to unlock the enormous socio-economic benefits of connectivity for all, satellites must play an integral role. The satellite Wi-Fi industry is poised to bring millions of people online, and huge growth is predicted for all involved. Off-grid energy technology will be a key enabler of this application, providing the energy infrastructure required to make rural connectivity sustainable and scalable.