State-run satellite operator Turksat unveiled a new service on Wednesday that enables internet connections in areas inaccessible for internet infrastructure. With the help of a small antenna, people in remote villages in mountainous regions, workers in mines meters below the ground or people in any other remote location will be able to go online for monthly fees starting from TL 100.
Turksat Net will use Turksat 4B satellite's K band launched into orbit last year and will cover an area from Turkey to Southwest Asia.The new service will prove vital, especially during disasters when infrastructure is devastated, as it is only dependent on a satellite for operating. It will also help communications in mines or construction sites far from residential areas. For other users, it means an end to the common sight of locals in any given remote village who have to climb hills or trees for better cellphone reception. The lowest speed is 6 Mbps with a quota of 10 GBs per month.
Turksat General Manager Cenk Şen said that the service is based on VSAT (very small aperture terminal), a two-way satellite ground station with a dish antenna that offers low-cost, portable capabilities for telecommunications. He said it was already employed by the Ministry of National Education, which uses it in thousands of schools in remote villages. Şen said that the service would also mark a milestone for the broadcasting industry and that satellite trucks would be replaced with smaller vehicles thanks to the small size of internet terminals.
At the launch of the service, Turksat officials told the media about the production status of the country's first domestic-made satellite - Turksat 6A. Officials said component designs were underway for the satellite, and they planned a 2019 launch. Before that, Turksat plans to launch 5A and 5B satellites later this year and in 2019. Currently, Turkish-owned satellites cover an area with a population of 3 billion people in 118 countries.