AT&T has signed a strategic agreement with OneWeb, the low Earth orbit (LEO) satellite communications company, to harness the capabilities of satellite technology to improve access for AT&T business customers in remote and challenging geographic locations. The new connectivity will complement existing AT&T access technologies.
AT&T's business fiber network enables high-speed connections to over 2.5 million U.S. business customer locations. Nationwide, more than 9 million business customer locations are within 1,000 feet of AT&T fiber. However, there are still remote areas that existing networks can't reach with the high-speed, low-latency broadband essential to business operations.
AT&T will use this technology to enhance connectivity when connecting to its enterprise, small and medium-sized business and government customers as well as hard-to-reach cell towers.
The AT&T service will be supported by OneWeb's network of satellites. OneWeb has launched 288 satellites and expects to attain global coverage with a total fleet of 648 satellites by the end of 2022. AT&T business and government customers in Alaska and northern U.S. states will be covered later this year.
"Working with OneWeb, we'll be able to enhance high-speed connectivity in places that we don't serve today and meet our customers wherever they are," said Scott Mair, President, Network Engineering and Operations, AT&T. "We're expanding our network with one more option to help ensure that our business customers have the high-speed, low-latency connectivity they need to thrive as the nation recovers from COVID-19."
"OneWeb's enterprise-grade network has a unique capability to serve hard-to-reach businesses and communities. Our work with AT&T will focus on how satellite technology can support improved capacity and coverage in remote, rural and challenging geographic locations," said Neil Masterson, OneWeb Chief Executive Officer. "Today's agreement with AT&T demonstrates OneWeb's execution momentum and the confidence customers such as AT&T have in its services and offering."