First commercial narrowband IoT-over-satellite launched
Written by: Richard Hook | Published:
Inmarsat satellite in orbit over Earth Inmarsat has developed a network of satellites over four decades (credit: Inmarsat)

Satellite-to-Earth communications software specialist Inmarsat has announced a partnership with California-based Skylo to develop what it claims will be the “world's first commercial narrowband Internet of Things(IoT)-over-satellite solution”.

The deal will pair Inmarsat's global satellite network with a Skylo IoT solution that the company claims “provides remotely located application users with real-time, actionable data to remove dead-area coverage gaps”.

Skylo will use existing Inmarsat satellites located in geostationary locations across 35,000 kilometers in space to provide lower-level network IoT functions including sending early storm warnings or ambulance call-outs.

Skylo co-founder Tarun Gupta said: “"Our software runs on satellites in the highest level in the atmosphere, the geostationary level.

"We provide a full-stack solution, starting from the CPU in the hardware device. We provide access to the network as well as the platform where the data resides. Our global partner, Inmarsat, provides that pipe connectivity to transport the data from, say, the middle of the ocean, back over satellite to where you want to go."

The partnership has already begun work in India with “expansion plans” reportedly to be announced later this year.

Skylo undertook a $103m funding round earlier this year, attracting investors including Japanese conglomerate Softbank and American airline giant Boeing.

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