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Algérie Telecom Satellite to Offer Broadband and VOD on ALCOMSAT-1 Later in 2018

A Long March 3B space launch vehicle launches Algeria’s AlSatCom-1 communications satellite. Photograph courtesy of China Great Wall Industry Corporation.

Algérie Telecom Satellite (ATS), a subsidiary of Algérie Telecom, plans to introduce a triple play service to provide customers with broadband Internet, telephone, and video-on-demand (VOD) via the ALCOMSAT-1  communications satellite.

ATS will offer the services that include a digital demodulator loaded with TV channels, high speed internet, and telephone and VOD features.

The services will be delivered in partnership with two public companies, the National Enterprise of Electronic Industries (ENIE) and the Algerian Industry of Telephony (INATEL). ATS is also considering local production of the digital demodulators in order to reduce costs.

ATS President and Chief Executive Officer, Mohamed Anouar Benabdelouahad, said that ATS is in disciussions with ENIE and INATEL about the manufacturing of the digital device that would include an antenna, modem, and satellite receiver.

“This project aims to provide a service dedicated to individuals through the recently launched Algerian telecommunications satellite, Alcomsat-1. The acquisition of a pack of ATS allows the consumer to have only one antenna with added value,” said Benabdelouhad.

ALSATCOM-1’s Ka-band capacity will coverage for parts of Algeria that are either poorly served, or not served at all, by terrestrial telecommunications. ATS also indicated that it is developing the option to link up with other satellites to meet customer demand until the launch of ALSATCOM-2.

The announcement is an effort by ATS to take commercial advantage of ALSATCOM-1 in order to boost revenues and expand its business. At present, ATS provides VSAT, geolocation, and maritime communication services.

In 2017, ATS reported a turnover of 6,007 billion dinars (U.S.$52,861,600), against 3,378 billion dinars (U.S.$29,726,400) in 2016. The company recently posted a net profit of 1,002 billion dinars (U.S.$ 8,817,600).

“2017 was the best business year for ATS since its creation in 2006,” said Benabdelouahad.

For 2018, ATS hopes to clear 7 billion dinars (U.S.$61,600,000) in turnover, and the triple play service offering is a key part of this ambition.

ALSATCOM-1 is capable of broadcasting 20 Mb/s-broadband Internet on the Ka-band across the entirety of Algeria as well as coverage of other African countries through its Ku-band capabilities.

ALSATCOM-1 was built and launched by China in December 2017 and is expected to be operational by May 2018 to provide telecommunications, satellite television broadcasting, and broadband Internet services. ALSATCOM-1 possesses 33 transponders, nine of which are for satellite television and digital radio broadcasting.

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