Key considerations when selecting a High Throughput Satellite (HTS) provider

Thursday 16, May 2019

The high throughput satellite (HTS) provider you choose can make or break your ability to capitalise on the growing demands and customised, differentiated solutions required by your end-users. As you evaluate your solution options, it is important to consider the following:

Expansion support: Make sure your provider can give you the reach and support you need as part of an enterprise-grade managed service. Consider a solution built on an open-architecture network, which is modular by design and backwards and forwards compatible, so that you do not have to retrofit or replace your current investments to take advantage of new innovations.

Guaranteed availability: Relying on a single satellite for a given region carries significant risk in the event of outages or demand increases. Ensure your provider offers multiple layers of capacity to address spikes in demand. Ideally, your provider should deliver wide beam coverage as well as continually add HTS spot beams to address high-traffic areas.

Ability to scale and shift capacity: The last thing you want is to get stuck paying for capacity you do not use. Make sure the provider you choose offers a guaranteed volume of Mbps within the region of your choice and that the bandwidth you purchase has portability to meet changing geographic requirements and real-world demand.

Accommodations for unpredictable traffic: When end terminals are on the move, contracting capacity across mobile users in the right locations and quantity to maintain Committed Information Rates (CIR’s) or Service Level Agreements (SLA’s) can be challenging. Depending on the sector, needs can be unpredictable and service commitments for these applications can create financial risk, especially with irregular beam utilisation. Find out how your prospective provider addresses less predictable or volatile traffic and ask about guaranteed CIR’s and SLA’s within predefined zones made up of wide beams and spot beams.

Network and risk management: Depending on your business, the applications served and seasonality, you may be faced with an ever-more-complex inventory of bandwidth that may sit idle at times. That can be a complicated – not to mention risk – proposition to manage. Ask your prospective provider about how they simplify network management and minimise the risk that comes with maintaining an inventory of bandwidth that may be difficult to monetise if end-users all show up in certain beams and vacate others.

Network security: The weakest link in your security chain puts your entire network at risk, so it is critical to partner with a satellite operator who can offer third-party validation of its security posture. Before signing on the dotted line, make sure you understand how security is factored into your provider’s solution, from the technology design and engineering all the way through to customer support.