Channel Islands-based satellite broadband provider O3b Networks has announced that a raft of clients, including Digicel and Palau Telecoms have now gone live on O3b’s ‘Fiber in the Sky’ satellite network. In recent years O3b has positioned itself as a reliable alternative to expensive undersea fibre for island nations in the Pacific, and the company’s total capacity contracted in the Pacific region is now 5Gbps. Today, O3b connects as many Pacific islands as fibre, and it is anticipated it will outstrip fibre for international connectivity to individual countries in the region by the end of 2015. The company’s clients in the Pacific region include: Digicel PNG, Digicel Samoa, Norfolk Island Telecom, Palau National Communications Corporation (PNCC), Palau Telecoms, Federated States of Micronesia Telecommunications Corporation (FSMTC), Telecom Cook Islands and Timor Telecom.
The most recent O3b launches have been confirmed this month by Norfolk Telecom, which is based on Norfolk Island, a self-governing territory situated halfway between Australia and New Zealand, and Palau National Communications Corporation (PNCC); Palau’s population of around 21,000 is spread across 250 islands and currently lacks undersea cable access. TeleGeography notes that in January 2014 Palau Telecoms signed a letter of intent with Xtera Communications for the supply of a submarine cable to connect Palau to Guam. The cable system is due for completion in mid-2015.