Growth Period Ahead For Indian Satellite Market: NSR

NSR, an international market research and consulting firm specialising in satellite and wireless technology and applications, has released its latest report titled, ‘Indian Satellite Markets’. Focused exclusively on the emerging Indian economy and specifically on the market for satellite capacity and services in the country, the report reviews major industries such as Video Broadcasting, VSATs and Direct-to-Home contributing to demand for domestic and international satellite capacity across this South Asian country.

The success of the Indian Space Research Organisation as the country's space agency is unquestionable, but despite ambitious plans, the INSAT fleet has consistently fallen short of meeting domestic demand. For international operators, revenues from leasing satellite transponders remain hard to come by as they have to contend with preferential treatment to the domestic fleet, regulated pricing and short term contracts from service providers. However, the overall demand for Ku-band and C-band bandwidth is expected to grow at a healthy rate of about 1.5 to 2 percent and maintain levels that will not be met by domestic supply alone. This presents windows of opportunity for both experienced industry players and emerging operators to satisfy the demand for services like Direct-to-Home, VSAT and rural connectivity across the country.

Video broadcasting has been a major contributor to demand for C-band capacity over the past decade, and continued additions to the 300+ TV channels in the country will maintain the attraction for this segment of the market.

The market attracting the most interest from regional satellite operators has been Direct-to-Home in the Ku-band. At a subscriber base of seven million and growth expected of 20 percent year-on-year, it is not surprising there are already five DTH operators vying for a piece of this action with a sixth waiting in the wings. The projected surge in demand for digital television distribution is also expected to spill over into C-band with Headend-in-the-Sky platforms for digital cable distribution.

NSR has devoted special attention to the VSAT industry which, with its majority of deployments and revenues from the banking and financial services vertical, is poised to grow to more than 175,000 sites by 2013. Though banks, ATMs and stock broking houses will remain leaders in deployments, emerging applications such as rural connectivity for e-governance, digital cinema and cellular backhaul are cumulatively estimated to reach the scale of their early-adoptive counterparts over a five-year period.

"A drive from the city out into the Indian countryside provides visual evidence of the growth of the satellite industry in this country of contradictions," stated Prashant Butani, India-based analyst for NSR and author of the report. "An endless array of DTH antennas dots urban rooftops, as expected. But what is truly surprising is that an equal, if not greater, penetration is found in the smaller towns as the landscape turns to rural. It is hard not to find an ATM without a 1.2 meter Ku-band antenna pointed to the sky."

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Updated Date: Jan 31, 2017 01:54:15 IST