Jupiter-3 Soars Beyond Expectations, Boosts EchoStar's Reach

The Jupiter-3 broadband satellite, touted as the world’s heaviest commercial communications satellite at over nine metric tons, is exceeding expectations.

In a remarkable achievement for EchoStar, the Jupiter-3 broadband satellite, touted as the world’s heaviest commercial communications satellite at over nine metric tons, is exceeding expectations. Mark Wymer, Senior Vice President at EchoStar’s Hughes services subsidiary, revealed that the giant satellite successfully entered service on December 19, five months after its launch aboard a Falcon Heavy rocket.

Early customers are already reaping the benefits of the advanced technology, experiencing download speeds of up to 100 megabits per second (Mbps). Wymer expressed satisfaction with the initial performance, stating, “We’re seeing a really good experience for the small number of customers that we’ve placed on it so far in these early stages.”

EchoStar’s Jupiter-3 is generating significant interest from existing customers seeking to upgrade their broadband experience. Customers currently on the Jupiter-2, launched in 2017 and offering 25 Mbps broadband speeds, are looking to transition to the new satellite for more expensive plans offering speeds ranging from 50 to 100 Mbps.

The massive satellite, boasting 500 gigabits per second of capacity over the Americas, is expected to alleviate bandwidth constraints that have previously impacted revenues. EchoStar is actively seeking to attract new customers to fill Jupiter-3’s impressive capacity.

While the identities of customers who have signed up for Jupiter-3 services remain undisclosed, the company is set to provide an update on subscriber numbers in its upcoming earnings report around mid-February. As of November 6, EchoStar reported approximately 1,063,000 Hughes broadband subscribers, with the majority still relying on the Jupiter-2 satellite for their connectivity needs.

The recent merger between EchoStar and sister company Dish Network, a TV broadcaster and terrestrial wireless provider, has opened up new opportunities for bundling diverse services for customers. While the companies had previously collaborated closely, the merger enhances visibility into their respective businesses, enabling more efficient cross-selling.

Mark Wymer emphasized the synergy resulting from the merger, stating that joining forces allows for a more comprehensive understanding of both businesses, creating a platform for strategic cross-selling initiatives. This collaboration not only strengthens EchoStar‘s position in the broadband satellite market but also facilitates the integration of different services to enhance the overall customer experience.

In a recent development, EchoStar announced on January 10 that it had enlisted the services of financial adviser Houlihan Lokey and legal adviser White & Case to evaluate potential strategic alternatives following the merger. This move suggests the company’s commitment to exploring new opportunities and optimizing its position in the evolving satellite communication landscape.

As EchoStar’s Jupiter-3 continues to deliver impressive broadband capabilities, the company is poised to play a pivotal role in advancing connectivity across the Americas. With the potential for higher download speeds and increased capacity, the giant satellite represents a significant leap forward in the pursuit of efficient and high-performance satellite communication technologies.