The German operator has signed an agreement to make use of Eutelsat’s Konnect satellite to help reach rural customers from the end of 2021
It has been a busy week for Eutelsat, who, in addition to investing an additional $165 million investment in OneWeb, have now announced a new partnership with German operator Deutsche Telekom.
The deal will see Deutsche Telekom make use of Eutelsat’s Konnect satellite, which came into service back in November 2020, to provide broadband coverage to customers in rural Germany.
The satellite has a capacity of 75 Gbps and can deliver speeds of up to 100 Mbps. Currently, its coverage includes Germany and 14 additional European countries.
Eutelsat notes that it already has similar agreements in place with Orange in France and TIM in Italy.
"This type of agreement illustrates the confidence of major telecommunications operators in our offer; it further highlights the relevance of satellite as a cost-effective and reliable infrastructure, enabling them to extend their reach beyond the scope of terrestrial networks and assure ubiquitous coverage of a territory,” said Eutelsat’s CEO Rodolphe Belmer.
An initial pilot for the satellite broadband service is being rolled out in Heimerzheim, a town just outside Bonn that was badly affected by the immense flooding Germany experienced earlier this year. A wireless local area network has been set up to help serve relief workers and affected residents, who can use the internet at no charge.
Deutsche Telekom said it hopes to make the satellite connectivity available to rural customers throughout Germany by the end of 2021.
“Our ambition is to be the leader in both fixed and mobile communications. Our fibre roll-out remains one of the key building blocks for digitization in Germany. The cooperation with Eutelsat is a perfect complement of our portfolio in the coming years to offer highspeed broadband via satellite in regions where we have no high speed currently and for remote areas,” said André Almeida, Deutsche Telekom’s managing director of private customers.
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