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Even in challenging economic times, mobile operators face intense pressure to expand networks and win new subscribers. With most urban areas having high penetration rates and fierce competition many operators are beginning to build their networks outward and expand service in rural and remote areas to capture new opportunities. While expanding into new areas has many positives for the operator it presents challenges as these regions are less accessible, have smaller populations and generate less revenue with higher operating costs. For years this has limited the profitable expansion of mobile networks in these regions. The costs of terrestrial infrastructure like fiber and microwave were prohibitive and traditional satellite connectivity was the only option even if it was expensive and inefficient.
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