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Hughes innovations make billions of connections possible
In its latest Visual Networking Index Report, Cisco predicts that global IP traffic will reach an annual run rate of 3.3 zettabytes, with 25.5 billion networked devices by the year 2022. This unprecedented growth in connectivity is unbounded by borders or geography and calls for corresponding growth in network capacity and availability to meet the demand. This is what Hughes is all about: Delivering world-class technologies and services that power the connected experience for consumers, enterprises and governments around the world.
Connecting People No Matter Where
Across the Americas, Hughes is bringing high-speed Internet service to ever more people no matter where they live or work, with over 1.3 million HughesNet® subscribers in the U.S., Brazil, and Colombia. According to a recent survey of HughesNet subscribers in Brazil, as many as one-third are having their first experience with Internet service in their homes, connecting with friends, streaming movies, running businesses, and participating in the global economy. This expansion to bridge the digital divide continues in Peru, Ecuador, and Chile, where Hughes is letting people know that if “you can see the sky, you can get HughesNet.”
Even in markets where the HughesNet name is new, consumers quickly learn that they can be confident of a world-class service experience, as the FCC has ranked HughesNet #1 among all ISPs in the U.S.—including cable, fiber, satellite and DSL providers—for delivering on advertised download speeds four years in a row.
Connecting Enterprises Large and Small
For all enterprises, no matter the size, having high-performance broadband connectivity is critical to doing business. Yet with technology changing rapidly and an ever expanding online digital world, IT teams can struggle to keep up with the myriad of initiatives they face daily— including cloud, mobility, security, Wi-Fi, data analytics, and network optimization—to name a few. Even just the deployment of a new enterprise app at one site can impede performance and raise security risk significantly.
Enter HughesON™ Managed Network Services, a comprehensive suite of turnkey solutions including SD-WAN (Software-Defined Wide Area Networking). Designed to optimize broadband performance across entire networks and mitigate risks, HughesON ensures enterprises of high-performing, feature-rich environments for their networks and their customers, offloading day-to-day running of their networks so they can focus on running their business.
Enabling the Internet of Things
A major driver of global connectivity growth is the IoT (Internet of Things) revolution. Satellite technology in particular plays a critical role by offering ubiquitous coverage to carry traffic between sensors/devices from virtually anywhere on the planet to data processing or concentration locations—whether directly or via a combined terrestrial/satellite access network.
In one example, Hughes supports Machine-to-Machine (M2M) connectivity for energy transportation (gas and liquid pipelines) in the U.S. More than 5,000 remote terminal units and programmable logic controllers transmit monitoring data, which delivers customers realtime information about their energy operations—to track performance and safety issues, identify and troubleshoot problems—no matter how remote the locations.
In another example, remote terminals connect seismic monitoring devices in more than 200 sites to a cloud server, which stores and analyzes seismic data in near real-time to help warn of potential earthquakes.
Across all these scenarios and many more, it’s clear that Hughes will play a major role in meeting the enormous challenge posed by the tsunami of 25.5 billion devices coming at us in just a few years—and in so doing, help power a connected future.
Ecuador and Chile gain access to affordable, high-speed satellite Internet service
Building on its success in the U.S. and expansion during the past two years in Brazil, Colombia, and Peru, HughesNet® service was launched recently in Ecuador and Chile, making it far and away the #1 choice in high-speed satellite Internet service for consumers and businesses across the Americas.
Operating over the Hughes 63 West High-Throughput Satellite (HTS) payload, HughesNet coverage reaches more than 90% of homes throughout Ecuador and over 98% throughout Chile, including areas unserved or underserved by terrestrial providers. According to figures from the Ecuador National Institute of Statistics and Census, though Internet penetration is over 50% in urban areas, 61% of people in rural areas do not have access to the Internet. In Chile, the Subsecretería de Telecomunicaciones (SUBTEL) estimates that nearly half of Chilean households either have no broadband Internet access or their service is slower than 5 Mbps.
“We are committed to bringing affordable Internet service to people and businesses everywhere in the world to help promote education, social well-being and economic development,” said Pradman Kaul, president of Hughes. “Following our successful launch of HughesNet service in Brazil, Colombia, and Peru, we take pride in bringing our signature high-speed satellite Internet to Ecuador and Chile to help connect the unconnected and bridge the digital divide.”
To date, more than 1.3 million consumer and business subscribers in the Americas enjoy the many benefits of highspeed Internet access with HughesNet. Service plans offered in Latin America come with built-in Wi-Fi and include speeds of up to 50 Mbps download/5 Mbps upload.
HughesNet is powered by the latest generation of the Hughes JUPITER™ System, the world’s most widely deployed satellite broadband platform, which employs the DVB-S2X standard for highly efficient use of satellite bandwidth. The JUPITER System supports a wide range of applications, from broadband Internet/ Intranet access, to community Wi-Fi hotspots, cellular backhaul, digital signage and mobility, including airborne services.
President of Hughes
In this issue, we explore how Hughes continued strong performance consolidates its leadership position and global market share.
Q. Hughes had a great year in 2018. What were some of the company’s major accomplishments?
A. It was a great year on several fronts reflected by continued positive growth in both revenue and net earnings, which were up 16% and 27% respectively over 2017. Major accomplishments include that we ended the year with more than 1.3 million HughesNet® subscribers, representing 69% market leadership in the U.S. and cementing our position as the largest satellite Internet service provider in the world. In the latest FCC’s Measuring Broadband America report, HughesNet was ranked number one among all ISPs in meeting or exceeding advertised download speeds for the fourth consecutive year.
On the enterprise side, we continued our successful expansion of HughesON™ Managed Network Services globally, enabling optimized network and application performance across multiple locations—with now more than 425,000 points of presence including satellite and terrestrial across a wide range of industries and government organizations. More than 30,000 of these are HughesON Managed SD-WAN sites, making us a leader in this large and important category of enterprise solutions. Overall we continue to be the number one global VSAT provider with approximately 50% market share powering satellite systems around the world.
Q. Service expansion across the Americas made news, not to mention the Yahsat JV service in Africa/Middle East. What is the formula for success?
A. The successful launch of the Hughes 63 West hosted payload in July set the stage for us to add substantial capacity and expand HughesNet consumer service in South America. The new payload helps us build on the existing service in Brazil where we have operated in primarily the enterprise and government sectors for over a decade, and expand by reaching 90% of people in Colombia, Chile, Ecuador and Peru. On the other side of the globe, we commenced a joint venture with Yahsat to provide satellite services across Africa and the Middle East. The newly formed company is now operational and bringing services to market.
Our formula for success is to leverage the infrastructure, knowledge, and experience from our service business operations in North America and adapt it as necessary to each new region or country, but utilizing proven processes and practices as a solid foundation for smart deployment. An equally important element is finding and working with suitable partners that bring local market know-how and distribution capabilities to the table. As in the case of our JV with Yahsat, we are strengthening a position in the existing market to bring new services to Africa and the Middle East. Q. Can you speak to the ways in which the JUPITER™ platform is enabling growth across all market segments, from consumer to government, mobility and enterprises?
A. A key to our business strategy is to maximize deployment globally of a single technologically proven and flexible broadband platform, namely our JUPITER System. No matter if we own and operate the service or supply it to power those of a provider customer, the same core JUPITER platform with appropriate versions is used for all market segments—consumer, enterprise and government. The advantages are that as we continue to innovate, enhancements for one segment become available to the benefit of others, and total volumes of scale drive manufacturing costs down for all. For example, our aeronautical mobility terminal is based on common JUPITER technology that enables both residential and enterprise applications. From a technology perspective, JUPITER innovations encompass key worldwide standards for satellite broadband service, including wideband DVB-S2X, yielding very high overall efficiency, fast packet processing and data throughput. It should be noted that some of our competitors talk about having this advanced type of system in the near future. We have it today!
Q. Hughes has effectively penetrated the emerging market of community Wi-Fi. Where is this application helping to bridge the digital divide?
A. Community Wi-Fi is an approach to providing public Internet access over a Wi-Fi Hotspot, powered by satellite backhaul, where anyone can get connected using any Wi-Fi enabled device. These hotspots can be implemented in different ways to meet operator, government or community needs. For example, we recently launched a partnership with Facebook to provide HughesNet Wi-Fi Hotspots in villages and towns across Brazil and Mexico, whereby a local merchant can sell Internet access on their premises to the public at an affordable, per-use price. Governments, sometimes in partnership with local telecom companies, are bridging the digital divide by delivering Community Wi-Fi at government sponsored locations (e.g., schools, libraries, health centers, community centers), offering it to the public for free or at reduced cost.
To date, Hughes and our partners have deployed over 32,000 VSAT-enabled hotspots in Brazil, Mexico, Russia, and Indonesia, and we’re looking beyond our current operations in the U.S., India, Brazil, South America and Europe to grow this emerging addressable market. It’s a win-win opportunity, as existing cellular and Wi-Fi providers can justify expanding their footprints in areas where terrestrial backhaul whether using fiber or cable is prohibitively expensive.
Q. Hughes Aero IFC business is also making great strides. Can you talk about key milestones, as well as the importance of our partners?
A. We continue to make good progress in the Aero IFC business. Our Global Eagle partner now has over 1,100 aircraft outfitted with the Hughes Aero Solution, which includes onboard satellite terminals and connectivity. In the fourth quarter, SES ordered additional gateways and some of our JUPITER capacity over Mexico to initiate service for routes over Mexico and the North Atlantic, expanding the Thales In-Flight footprint. With these and prior expansions, the range of our JUPITER aeronautical platform has now increased significantly and covers routes from Mexico to Canada, the North Atlantic, Europe, and Russia. Based on its success, we expect both coverage and the number of JUPITER equipped aircraft deployments will continue to grow in the years to come.
Q. Before we close, can you talk a bit about what’s ahead for Hughes?
A. Satellite technology is evolving at an amazing rate with new services and apps launching daily. Indeed let’s not forget that we’ve gone beyond geostationary satellites on which we’ve primarily built our success—including SPACEWAY, JUPITER 1/EchoStar XVII, JUPITER 2/ EchoStar XIX, and in 2 years JUPITER 3 Ultra-High Density satellite—and have completed development and shipped the first gateways to support OneWeb’s Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite constellation, a very complex and challenging engineering program.
It’s clear that connectivity demand worldwide is continuing unabated, and that hybrid solutions of satellite and terrestrial networks will satisfy this need universally in the most cost-efficient way. Hughes stands well-positioned as a leader in both technology and service delivery, with significant coverage through our own operations and combined with our service partners spans over 100 countries on 6 continents. And we’re in that enviable position because of our people and their ongoing drive to innovate. It’s because of them and the rapidly growing global market we work in that I am confident of our continued leadership and business success.
Hughes was recently certified as a Verifone Managed Network Services Provider (MNSP), enabling it to offer point-of-sale (POS) retail customers an easy and seamless transition to PCI-compliant solutions. Now available under the company’s comprehensive suite of HughesON™ Managed Network Services, it ensures compatibility with outdoor Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) chip-card readers, replacing Verifone’s discontinued Enhanced Zone Router (EZR). Since outdoor POS options are critical for retail petroleum operations, it is imperative that these EZR customers work with a Verifone-certified MNSP like Hughes to transition their store networks.
“Retail petroleum customers can’t afford any downtime on their POS systems,” said Dan Rasmussen, senior vice president, North America Sales and Marketing, Hughes. “Achieving this certification required a rigorous vetting process with Verifone to ensure existing and new HughesON Managed Services customers can transition easily to a PCI-compliant solution and replace the discontinued EZR—with the assurance that it will work seamlessly and affordably with their existing infrastructure.”
As part of the turnkey offerings, new or existing HughesON customers can now mark the end of EZR while enjoying the many benefits of one-stop service, including installation and ongoing support.
Hughes innovator recognized by Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers for pioneering satellite research and advancing industry standards
Dr. Lin-Nan Lee, vice president of Advanced Development at Hughes and Life Fellow at IEEE, was recognized by IEEE with a “Distinguished Contributions to Satellite Communications” award. The IEEE, the world’s largest professional organization for the advancement of technology, presents this prestigious award to one industry leader each year to commend outstanding contributions to the advancement of science, technology and applications in communications.
“Dr. Lin-Nan Lee has had a profound impact on the field of satellite communications for many years,” said Dr. Matthew Valenti, IEEE Fellow and Professor in the Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering at West Virginia University. “He has been a pioneer in the use of several ground-breaking technologies, including turbo and low-density parity-check coding, interference cancellation, adaptive modulation, and faster-than-Nyquist signaling. Dr. Lee’s work has shaped many of the most commonly used satellite and cellular standards we use today.”
In his 25+ years at Hughes, Dr. Lee has played a prominent role at both a company and an industry level in developing international satellite communications standards. He contributed to over 30 published journal and conference papers, while helping secure more than 60 of the 300+ U.S. patents held by Hughes, including development of the DVB-S2 and DVB-S2X global satellite standards.
“It’s truly a great honor to be recognized by our distinguished peers from the IEEE,” said Dr. Lee. “I would like to thank the entire Engineering and Advanced Development team at Hughes as they share in this recognition of accomplishments over the past 25 years, which reflects the collaboration and dedication of an extremely talented group of innovative professionals.”
Dr. Lee holds a Bachelor of Science degree from National Taiwan University and a Master of Science and Ph.D. from the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana. His research at Hughes spans many fundamental communications disciplines such as channel coding, modulation, multiple access, signal processing, and data compression.
New FCC report finds HughesNet top among all ISPs in delivering advertised download speeds
For the fourth consecutive year, HughesNet® earned top rankings in the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Measuring Broadband America report. The newest report examines actuals versus advertised speeds of fixed broadband services nationwide and found HughesNet ranked No. 1 among all ISPs in meeting or exceeding advertised download speeds, four years in a row (2014-17), and for three of those years in meeting or exceeding both download and upload advertised speeds.
“Once again, HughesNet is at the top of the list of all types of Internet providers–including satellite, DSL, cable and fiber–confirming our commitment to doing what we say we will do and providing the best possible service to our customers,” said Peter Gulla, senior vice president, Marketing, Hughes.
OneWeb Launches First LEO Satellites
On February 27, OneWeb launched the first six of its planned 600 Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites that will form its initial constellation. Hughes is developing the ground system that will enable OneWeb to deliver services around the globe and is an investor in the business.
The Arianespace launcher carried a total payload of approximately 886.2 kg (147.7 kg each) from the Soyuz Zone (ZLS) of the Arianespace Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. The nominal duration of the mission (from lift off to first separation of the satellites) took 1 hour 22 minutes and 30 seconds; initial altitude reached 1,000 km and will rise to 1,200 km over the coming months.
First Gateways Shipped
Hughes is the exclusive system gateway developer for the OneWeb constellation and in March shipped its first set of specially designed gateways. Each gateway features multiple tracking antennas to support operation and handoff of high speed user traffic to and from the LEO satellites, as well as a custom switching complex, outdoor modems, and power amplifiers. Gateway performance includes an unprecedented 10,000 terminal hand offs per second, a technological and engineering breakthrough. This shipment is the first of many key operational milestones of the Hughes-OneWeb partnership.
Increased network complexity and demand drive migration to new solutions
A recent study reveals how retailers and other multisite enterprises are looking to managed services and Software-Defined Wide Area Networks (SD-WAN) to keep up with rising demand for more bandwidth, higher security, and availability. Hughes commissioned the study by Forrester Consulting to explore the challenges of distributed networks and related investment plans of enterprises with 200 or more locations, including big box, apparel, and specialty retailers. Findings show they are reaching a tipping point, with increased network complexity and demand driving migration to new solutions.
Applications Strain Network Resources
Survey respondents confirm that conventional networks struggle to handle a rapidly growing volume of store applications and technologies:
Current Networks Struggle to Keep up
Store operators are less than satisfied with current network solutions. According to the study:
Retailers Seek Solutions
Though 64% of survey participants report that internal IT personnel manage their networks, only one-third prefer that model for their business future. Nearly half would rather employ a mix of internal IT and external support. Twenty-one percent would prefer to migrate fully to a third-party managed service provider within two years. While only 30% are employing SD-WAN, more than half intend to test SD-WAN in the next year or adopt the solution within two years, making SD-WAN the dominant networking solution for these enterprises by 2020.
“This study unveils the critical performance and security challenges faced by enterprises in a dynamic period of the industry, fueled by the ever-increasing need for connectivity and bandwidth,” said Mike Tippets, vice president, Enterprise Marketing, Hughes. “In the face of this technology ‘arms race,’ businesses would be wise to work with a trusted partner offering a comprehensive and experienced approach to network services—easing their burden on internal resources and freeing them to focus on succeeding in the marketplace.”
As a case in point, more than 30,000 enterprise sites globally enjoy the benefits of HughesON™ Managed SD-WAN solutions across big box, department store, specialty retail, and grocery stores with single deployments of up to 3,500 sites. The HughesON solution is enabling these retailers to realize key benefits: innovative technologies that optimize network traffic for improved performance; next-generation firewall and unified threat management capabilities to address privacy and security concerns; a solution that integrates into any WAN transport type; plus expert services to manage the network and alleviate the hassles.
4-H STEM Lab now offers more free, online activities to inspire future engineers
HughesNet® and National 4-H Council announced the availability of two new hands-on projects as part of their popular 4-H STEM Lab. STEM Lab is a free, online resource designed to spark kids’ interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM).
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that by 2026, the economy will require nearly 140,000 new engineering jobs to be filled in the U.S. To help meet the current and projected demand for graduates in STEM careers, HughesNet and 4-H are working together to inspire and empower the next generation of leaders through 4-H STEM Lab’s hands-on, fun projects for youth ages 4 to 16. Since its launch in May 2018, 4-H STEM Lab has generated more than 60,000 page views and thousands of activity downloads. The newest projects, “Building Bridges” and “Parachute Away,” teach principals of physics, civil and mechanical engineering and are designed to help youth become excited about STEM and engineering careers. Building Bridges teaches children about bridge design, construction and the mechanics at work as they build their own bridges. Parachute Away brings physics to life, showing kids how air resistance affects the speed of falling objects and how to construct a safe delivery system for fragile cargo. As with prior activities, they come with easy-to-follow instructions, explanations of foundational STEM concepts, discussion questions, and supply lists (usually basic household items).
“Through our sponsorship of 4-H, we’re making STEM education accessible to all kids, no matter where they live,” said Peter Gulla, senior vice president, Marketing, Hughes. “Hughes employs some of the world’s most talented engineers, creating advanced satellite communications and networking technologies, and we are committed to encouraging the next generation of engineers and scientists who will shape our future.”
“4-H has been inspiring future engineers for over 100 years. We’re excited to help more youth learn about the wonders of engineering through the 4-H STEM Lab,” said Jennifer Sirangelo, president and CEO, National 4-H Council. “4-H youth, compared to their peers, are two times more likely to pursue STEM careers. Through STEM Lab we are ensuring that more kids have access to the hands-on STEM learning they need to explore future career pathways in engineering.” Know some kids who would like to dive into STEM activities? Encourage them to visit www.4-H.org/STEMLab.
Under contracts signed in 2018, India’s three major state-owned oil companies selected Hughes India and its JUPITER™ System to automate their retail networking nationwide. Indian Oil Corporation (IOCL), Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd. (BPCL), and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd. (HPCL) will each rely on a HughesON™ Managed Services Solution with the JUPITER System to upgrade connectivity across 19,000 locations collectively to increase the speed of transactions and deliver accurate, real-time data across their retail operations.
“We are very proud to have been awarded these important projects by Indian Oil majors, IOCL, BPCL and HPCL,” said Partho Banerjee, president and managing director, Hughes Communications India, Ltd. “In addition to driving cost savings, our Hughes technology and managed services will help these companies take control over applications such as monitoring tank levels at petrol pump outlets, checking and reducing pilferage, and ensuring updated pricing across all retail outlets on a daily basis. It will also facilitate loyalty card administration, web-based applications and banking transactions, thereby enhancing customer satisfaction and achieving transparency in their operations.”
The comprehensive HughesON Managed Network Solution encompasses end-to-end implementation and support of the JUPITER System, including VSAT (very small aperture terminal) rentals for 5 years. The world’s most widely deployed broadband satellite platform, the JUPITER System is designed with a wide range of advancements, including high-density gateways with lights-out operation, wideband DVB-S2X/ACM modulation for efficient bandwidth utilization, web acceleration/ caching, advanced compression and hardware security.
Centralized management by Hughes ensures high availability and uptime with 24/7 support and monitoring, relieving the oil companies from network issues while giving them immediate access to important data and remote operations.
In addition to the JUPITER System, BPCL selected the HughesON Managed SD-WAN solution for applicationlevel diversity. Employing both satellite and 4G cellular connectivity, it provides a scalable, high-availability network for high-availability data collection of credit card transactions and loyalty and discount programs.
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