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Canadian Regulator Investigates Use of Satellites for Rural Telecoms

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Canada's telecoms regulator is launching an investigation into the use of satellites to provide telecoms services in northern and remote communities in Canada.

In a previous report last year, the CRTC identified a digital divide between communities that receive these services over terrestrial facilities and those that are served solely by satellite.

This inquiry will examine the impact reliance on satellites have on the quality of the services and on the costs to service providers to offer telecommunications services to these communities.

Some of the issues that will be considered in this inquiry include: the current and future availability of satellite capacity needed for transport services, pricing of satellite services, and the competitive options available to telecommunications service providers that rely on such technologies to provide telecommunications services to Canadians.

The inquiry will also consider aspects of the costs, including ancillary equipment such as ground stations, associated with the use of satellite transport services that are available to telecommunications service providers in the North and other remote communities.

"This inquiry will help us better understand the state of satellite services used to provide telecommunications services to certain communities and further help achieve an important goal: provide Canadians in remote regions with access to telecommunications services that are comparable to those available in the rest of the country." CRTC Chairman Jean-Pierre Blais noted.

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Tags: satellites  ctrc  Canada