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Saturday, Dec 3, 2022
Mugglehead Magazine
Alternative investment news based in Vancouver, B.C.


Xplore leverages ongoing satellite deal with EchoStar to combat digital divide in Canada

This deal would be impossible if it weren’t for Xplore’s lifetime agreement with Hughes Network Systems, a subsidiary of EchoStar Corporation

Image via EchoStar

Xplore is doing its part to close the digital divide by giving residents and businesses in rural areas access to satellite based download speeds of up to 100 megabits per second, starting summer 2023.

This deal would be impossible if it weren’t for Xplore’s lifetime agreement with Hughes Network Systems, a subsidiary of EchoStar Corporation (NASDAQ: SATS). It gives access to enhanced Canadian satellite broadband capacity on Hughes JUPITER 3 Ultra High Density Satellite. It’s designed to provide coverage to 90 per cent of Canada’s population.

“At Hughes, we value our deep relationship with Xplore and look forward to supporting them in connecting rural Canadians with more high-throughput capacity from our JUPITER 3 satellite. Engineered for faster speeds and a more responsive internet experience, JUPITER 3 represents the leading edge of satellite innovation, from the Hughes engineers who created the category,” said Paul Gaske, executive vice president and general manager of the North American division for Hughes.

Founded in Woodstock, New Brunswick, Xplore branded itself Canada’s fibre and 5G company for rural living. It’s a facilities based telecommunications providers for residential and business customers. The combination with Hughes Network Systems gave them access to satellite and multi-transport tech and networks. The parent company, EchoStar Corporation, is also a satellite communication provider. It’s based out of Englewood, Colorado, and has been conducting business around the globe.

Read more: New foundation aims to stomp out digital divide

Read more: Cogeco Communications extends high speed connectivity to 37 new Ontario municipalities

Satellites and the digital divide

Xplore intends to help close the digital divide by giving customers in rural and remote areas access to internet download speeds of up to 100 Mbps. The digital divide is access disparity to digital technology, which includes smartphones, tablets, laptops and the internet. It’s a source of inequality around access to information and resources and one of the stumbling blocks of the information age.

Customers will have access to full-service professional installation and support from qualified technicians whenever its required. Beyond faster satellite service, Xplore is also building enhanced fibre and 5G fixed wireless networks to give Canadians the tools required to connect. The company launched Canada’s first 5G standalone network in 2021, and has since pushed fibre network projects in seven provinces. This is in addition to the provinces where the company is already in full operation. These provinces include Alberta, Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

“We are continually investing to enable the best broadband experiences for rural Canadians. In addition to Xplore’s ongoing fibre and fibre-powered 5G fixed wireless rollouts, adding this third JUPITER satellite to our network will deliver dramatically faster speeds to our customers, enabling them to more fully enjoy rural living,” said Allison Lenehan, president and CEO of Xplore.

Upon its launch in 2023, the satellite is anticipated to be the world’s largest commercial communications satellite.


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