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O3b and SpeedCast to Improve Connectivity for the Republic of Kiribati

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Satellite broadband provider, O3b Networks has announced an agreement to provide connectivity to the Republic of Kiribati, which has a population of about 100,000 living on 33 atolls and islands, across 3.5 million square km of ocean.

The dispersed geography makes laying undersea fiber cables unreasonably expensive and time-consuming, hence the recourse to satellite based services.

Kiribati is in the final stages of testing the O3b link, and will first deploy the service to Tarawa, the largest island in the country. The multi-year agreement provides flexibility to expand capacity where required.

O3b's Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) satellites orbit at 8,062km above the Earth and have a latency of less than 150 msec -- a quarter of that of the geostationary (GEO) satellite systems currently connecting Kiribati. .

"SpeedCast is happy to partner with ATHKL and O3b to quickly and cost-effectively provide the people of Kiribati cutting-edge technology, enabling economic growth and access to all forms of e-commerce, education and health," said Pierre-Jean Beylier, CEO of SpeedCast. "ATHKL will first bring their world-class internet connectivity to the people of Tarawa, and, in time, to the rest of the country."

This announcement follows the expansion of SpeedCast's O3b-based infrastructure in the Pacific, with customers in Port Moresby and Lae, PNG; Christmas Island, Australia; and Solomon Islands.

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Tags: o3b networks  Kiribati