Most Satcom firms have suffered enormously from the crisis of COVID-19. Many have fallen victim to the infection, with tension on those representing the aero industry in particular, whilst others were able to pursue new market prospects in the obscurity of the coronavirus. The epidemic has also made it difficult for participants in the sector to understand and shape the implications of Satcom, limiting the conventional conferences as well as seminars. Nevertheless, considering the many challenges of 2020, this year was not all negative for Satcom. Going into 2021, three causes for hope are here:

Boom of Smallsat

For the sector, the growth of smallsats was indeed a spark of hope. The satellites deployed have reached a record, estimates from the Euroconsult indicate, with approximately 1,100 spacecraft sent to orbit in the year 2020. This has led the Low-Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite industry to grow, as well as the market is expected to hit $51 billion by the end of 2020s, upwards of four times its current value of the last decade, as per Euroconsult. The growth in this market is driven by the emergence of emerging technology that allows a growing array of small use cases; from Earth as well as space observation and the environmental conservation, to security and networks reasons for the Internet of Things (IoT).

Satellite Industry Reignites the Public Sector

Governments and public agencies, drawn by global reach, have begun taking advantage of the existing satellite networks. The public sector is increasingly involved in data facilities for sharing photographs and videos, but there is also a growth in the usage of leased satellite power. Such innovations have also become silver linings for Satcom business components. Commercial satellite imaging market size is estimated to be around $3.09 billion last year. It has been forecast to hit $5.75 billion by the year 2025, as per an analysis by ResearchAndMarkets, mainly led by government funding, e.g., the Australian government committing $260 million in the advancement of satellite technology and employment creation in the Australian satellite industry.

Battleground with Big Tech Cloud networks are commonly used in the terrestrial programs, and today, as satellite-to-cloud systems gain traction, cloud services are practically expanding into the sky. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approved Microsoft early this year to run testing linking its cloud storage service dubbed Azure, to the ground stations. Microsoft is ready to strengthen Amazon Web Services (AWS) with the modern satellite-to-cloud technology, called Azure Orbital, which already provides cloud connectivity via satellite. Satellite-to-ultimate cloud’s goal is to allow users to complete control of satellite communications, downlinks, and satellite data processing. In this way, satellite data is accessible via cloud providers. Without buying or contracting ground station facilities, data centres can house websites, manage software, and efficiently automate their operations.

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By Adam