Inmarsat has launched a new 176kbps streaming rate for its award-winning BGAN service.
The new mid-range streaming capability is suitable for talking head shots, low movement scenes and relatively static backgrounds.
It is compatible with existing video codec solutions and accessible through the existing BGAN hardware that many news crews are already equipped with: the Hughes HNS9201 and the Thrane & Thrane Explorer 700.
"The 176kbps streaming rate is an entry-level service for broadcasters who want to try live video streaming," said Drew Brandy, Inmarsat director of land mobile services.
"It provides smaller broadcasters with similar broadcast capabilities to those enjoyed by the major international networks. With 176kbps streaming, the more budget-conscious broadcaster can still deliver decent quality video to their viewers at a lower price point."
Launched last year, BGAN X-Stream, is the world's fastest on-demand streaming service. It offers a streaming IP data rate of at least 384kbps, with an estimated top end of 450kbps.
It has been used for hundreds of live video reports in the harshest and most remote locations on the planet - from the depths of the Amazon to the top of Everest.
"Local broadcasters and network affiliates tell us that they love the BGAN X-Stream service, but it's not suitable for their needs, either because they're unlikely to get full use from a streaming service, or they are constrained by budget, or because their technology infrastructure is not capable of supporting a service like BGAN X-Stream," said Drew.
"So, in addition to our new 176kbps streaming rate, we are introducing new and innovative ways to access streaming on BGAN."
Inmarsat has developed three new propositions with its distribution partners and solution vendors:
- A "low capex" proposition that gives the broadcaster access to low-cost versions of the hardware and software needed to stream video.
- A "low opex" pay-as-you-go option which does not require a long-term commitment, and can be activated on a monthly basis.
- A "content delivery" proposition that provides a fully-managed end-to-end solution.
The propositions can be combined with a customer's existing infrastructure to enhance its value; or if that does not exist, there are options for last mile connectivity, which delivers content into the studio.
"This is a very important market for us, and we keep innovating to deliver the range of services that broadcasters need," said Drew.
"With BGAN X-Stream, and now with the 176kbps streaming service and our new business model propositions, we have shown that Inmarsat is working hard to be the most highly-valued mobile satellite communications provider to the global broadcast industry."