BICS, Skylo to deliver NB-IoT connectivity via GEO satellites

BICS, Skylo to deliver NB-IoT connectivity via GEO satellites

Business news |
By Jean-Pierre Joosting

International connectivity enabler, BICS, has announced an NB-IoT partnership with Skylo, a non-terrestrial network (NTN) operator, to connect anything, anywhere in the world, via seamless satellite connections across over the BICS IPX network.

The partnership will allow BICS to leverage Skylo for its network made up of geostationary satellites covering 13.7 million square miles of land and sea, for direct NB-IoT-to-satellite connectivity for its enterprise customers. Skylo will also use BICS’ IPX offering to reach a telco audience, delivering IoT NTN connectivity to enterprise customers of partner mobile operators and MVNOs.

The number of connected IoT devices around the world is expected to nearly double by 2030, growing from 15.14 billion this year to 29.42 billion in the next seven years. Requiring only short bursts of power to connect, IoT devices such as trackers and sensors, deliver data, like location, temperature, or a simple message. The major industry verticals responsible for more than 100 million connected IoT devices are utilities, retail & wholesale, transportation & storage, and government, but more important than that are the mission critical applications IoT is used for, such as search and rescue operations.

The partnership enables customers across the enterprise and telco markets to benefit from a 3GPP-compliant plug-and-play IoT solution with unrivalled connectivity and the ability to roam outside the device’s home country. SIM for Things from BICS enables enterprises to easily launch, manage, and monetize international IoT applications, via one SIM and one platform, across its global IoT network. The two companies are already integrated, with traffic flowing in both directions successfully over Skylo’s live, commercial network.

“As we move further into 2024, IoT innovation will continue to grow, and the demands on the technology to deliver seamless connectivity will push telcos to look upwards,” says Tarun Gupta, CPO and Co-Founder of Skylo. “Satellite connections have proven themselves when it comes to reliability: less susceptible to failure from weather, natural disaster, or war, than other types of connectivity, and they provide ubiquitous coverage to 99% of the world’s surface. Together with BICS’ IPX network, we now offer a one-stop-shop for telcos and enterprises looking to roll out IoT solutions to their customers.”

Luc Vidal-Madjar, Head of IoT and M2M business at BICS adds: “Working with Skylo, the only operator with persistent coverage over existing geostationary satellites, gives us a faster route to global coverage, while needing fewer satellites which last longer in orbit than their low-orbit counterparts. Together, we are further bridging the digital divide, connecting the world, and creating opportunities for both network operators and enterprises.”

ABI Research has calculated that the global 5G NTN service revenue will witness a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 59% between 2024 and 2031, propelling revenue to hit $18 billion, and connections projected to reach over 200 million.

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