Intelsat and Microsoft to demo private LTE and 5G network using global satellite and ground network

McLean, VA., & Redmond, WA., USA. 27 February, 2022 – Intelsat, operator of an integrated satellite and terrestrial network, reports the successful demonstration of a private cellular network said to be one of the first of its kind. The operator is collaborating with Microsoft Azure Private Multi-Access Edge Compute and FlexEnterprise using Intelsat’s satellite-based global connectivity service.

Held at Intelsat’s office in McLean, Virginia, the demonstration establishes a reference architecture for deploying secure, high-performance private LTE and 5G networks and other cloud services over satellite networks to enterprise locations virtually anywhere globally, including those in remote and austere environments.

The demonstration creates a private LTE service using Azure Private 5G Core deployed on an Azure Stack Edge device. Connectivity to the internet and Azure services is enabled by Intelsat’s FlexEnterprise. Via the private cellular network, users can access local enterprise resources via SIM-authenticated connections to the Azure Stack Edge and access remote resources through the FlexEnterprise connection, the IntelsatOne global network and Azure. Additionally, the LTE network powers a Wi-Fi access point and IoT applications.

“As enterprises look to private cellular networks to improve the reach, security, and quality-of-service over Wi-Fi-only local networks, the ability to support deployments at any site is crucial to creating a fully connected organisation,” says Jean-Philippe Gillet, SVP global sales media & networks, Intelsat. “The applications demonstrated here with Microsoft highlight the increased automation and standardisation of enterprise data processing services that globally-available private cellular networks will enable. Support for high-bandwidth, low-latency networks is central to Intelsat’s vision of an end-to-end ecosystem for a global software-defined 5G network.”

“At Microsoft, we are committed to enabling an ecosystem of satellite operators through collaborations such as this one with Intelsat. As the world continues to move to 5G, Microsoft’s Azure Orbital platform, together with our Azure hyper-scale computing platform, allows operators to deploy and maintain faster, easier, and more cost-effective solutions anytime and anywhere, ” says Tom Keane, corporate vice president, Mission Engineering.

Mobile Experts Inc. expects the global private LTE and 5G equipment and services market to grow at around 20% CAGR to about $10 billion (€8.91 billion) in 2025.

Intelsat is one of the trusted integrated space and ground satellite networks with a 50-year record of delivering seamless and secure coverage across 200+ countries. Intelsat is building a unified global 5G network that will support virtually any access technology, enabling the next generation of global mobility, Internet of Things (IoT), and 5G services. Merging software-defined technology and multiple networks and orbits, we bring the world a single, more powerful way to connect easily.

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