The Abu Dhabi satellite operator YahSat today announced the launch of YahClick, a broadband service offering an alternative to existing internet providers Etisalat and du.
The YahClick service will be distributed in the UAE by SkyStream and Safa Telecom, who both plan to announce a range of subscription packages over the next few months, according to a statement.
The satellite-internet service is already accessible in 10 other countries across the Middle East, Africa and South West Asia regions.
YahClick is beamed through Yahsat’s Y1B satellite, which launched in April 2012. It is designed to provide high-speed internet to businesses as well as boost connectivity in remote locations.
“The big advantage of the service is that you don’t have to build infrastructure on the ground, because the satellite covers the entire country,” Shawkat Ahmed, the chief commercial officer of Yahsat, told Al Arabiya.
The service will provide broadband speeds of up to 15 megabits per second (mbps), Ahmed said.
Ahmed said UAE business customers will pay around Dh635 per month for the basic internet packages. Corporate clients are the main focus, but individual consumers will also be able to subscribe, he said.
YahClick aims to have “at least 10 to 20 percent of the target customer base on board [in the coming months],” Ahmed added.
YahClick recently launched services in Yemen, and has plans to launch in Turkey, Pakistan, Oman, Saudi Arabia and Jordan in upcoming months, with a focus on the emerging markets, Ahmed said.
The announcement comes after the Google-backed O3b networks last month launched its first four satellites, which will offer a similar broadband service to millions in the Middle East region, reported Al Arabiya last month.
O3b stands for the ‘other 3 billion,’ referring to the number of people living in under-developed countries lacking internet access.