New Delhi: The Minister of State for Communications, Shri Manoj Sinha has launched BSNL’s satellite phone service that will be offered to government agencies in phase one and later opened for others in phased manner.
Launching the new service, the Minister said that BSNL works there also where no one (network) is present. BSNL has played an important role in spreading communication network across the country.
Global satellite phone service is modern satellite phone service. In the first phase agencies handling a disaster, State police, railways, Border security forces and other government agencies will be given in the first phase. Later people while travelling in flight and on ships will be able to use it. The services will be provided by INMARSAT which has a constellation of 14 satellites.
The satellite and connecting gateway have been set up by UK-based satellite services provider Inmarsat, in Ghaziabad and services from the satellite will be available on satellite phones that are imported into the country. The gateway is the fourth such in the world.
Presently Inmarsat offers 5,500 connections in India with Tata Communications, which will be phased out by June and moved to BSNL. Enabling local gateway will cut the voice call costs by half to around Rs 30-35 a minute, and are care of security concerns by allowing monitoring by local law enforcement agencies, and the government will benefit from license fee and spectrum usage charge.
In the second phase, data services are expected to be launched on satellite and will be opened up for common users.
“Phase two will be opened up for all users and we hope that connectivity can be given for airlines as well. India and North Korea are the only two countries that don’t offer in-flight connectivity, we hope that BSNL and DoT are able to get the second phase going within a couple of months”, said Gautam Sharma, MD of Inmarsat India.
Anupam Shrivastava, MD of BSNL said, “Tariffs for common people will be decided soon, adding that the charges will be affordable. He added that services for airlines can be given within the first phase.”
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