The media coverage received by the launch of the Starlink internet connectivity service in SA by Elon Musk’s SpaceX corporation, has focused attention on this exciting technology and driven a reappraisal of its role in the world’s connectivity mix.

While Starlink coverage remains unconfirmed in Africa – and therefore essentially unavailable for now – in Q-KON’s Twoobii offering, the continent already boasts a solution with a track record of over a decade of success in connecting people and businesses. Twoobii leverages the global Intelsat constellation to deliver world-class service at an excellent price point, combined with the advantages of local termination and service delivery.

“We welcome the buzz surrounding Starlink, and we are confident that it will translate into a desire among businesses to look closer to home for fast, reliable satellite business broadband for facilities ranging from lodges to mines and farms,” commented Dawie de Wet, CEO of Q-KON, the company behind Twoobii. “Satellite broadband technology has advanced in leaps and bounds over the last decade, and we are now at the cutting-edge of connectivity across Africa,” he added.

Twoobii offers ‘off-grid’ business broadband connectivity across Africa. This locally supported satellite solution has been available since 2018 and has leveraged world-class Intelsat technology platforms and Q-KON’s excellence in satellite engineering, to consistently debunk the legacy myths that still occasionally crop up in conversations around satellite internet.

Aimed at businesses, resellers and ICT integrators, Twoobii offers consistently fast upload (3Mbps) and download (20Mbps) speeds without latency or connectivity issues. Tailormade, fixed-fee bundles allow end-users to choose their data rates and service packages. Pay-per-use billing adds to the cost-effectiveness of Twoobii’s value proposition, while ‘always-on’ connectivity delivers exceptional reliability.

The speed of Twoobii’s broadband signal means that it can be used to seamlessly transmit and receive voice, data and video, while its compatibility with solar power sources further underlines its remote location and sustainability credentials.

Twoobii plays a vital role in connecting ‘off-grid’ locations to existing networks via compact base units that can be easily installed almost anywhere. In addition to being able to operate completely independently, Twoobii has been engineered for easy compatibility with other connectivity systems and is proving its worth as a complementary system in multi-prong approaches.

The unique characteristics of broadband satellite connectivity make it ideally suited in the following roles:

  • Primary service – Twoobii offers fixed-cost billing models and ‘available anywhere’ coverage, making it second only to fibre in terms of suitability in this role. It becomes the natural first-choice primary service in remote locations such as extractive or agricultural sites.
  • Back-up service – excels in this role due to its continent-wide coverage and flexible, on-demand costing which means that clients only pay for the data they use.
  • High-availability – Twoobii’s reliable connectivity makes it an excellent choice for applications such as point of sale (POS) and ATMs where uptime is everything.
  • SD-WAN Secondary – the service works particularly well in combination with fibre as the primary service, thanks again to its fixed-cost billing model.
  • On-demand – no other connectivity technology can match Twoobii’s suitability as an on-demand option for events or to provide network redundancy cover. Twoobii can be installed and connected with ease, and again, the on-demand billing offers excellent value.

Modern systems engineers are a taking a more holistic view of network architecture, and this has led to a greater realisation of the ease with which satellite business broadband solutions like Twoobii can be integrated to provide fast, reliable internet connectivity in ‘off-the-grid’ scenarios and as a back-up to other systems.

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