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UAE’s Yahsat Introduces Smartphone-To-Satellite Connectivity

The service also allows seamless connectivity for IoT (Internet of Things) devices, and works irrespective of geographical location.

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uae's yahsat introduces smartphone to satellite connectivity

Yahsat, a satellite services firm based in Abu Dhabi, has initiated a groundbreaking service known as “direct-2-device”, enabling seamless connectivity for smartphones and IoT (Internet of Things) devices, irrespective of geographical location.

In its initial phase, Yahsat aims to provide voice and messaging services within the current year, with plans to expand its offerings to include texting and IoT functionalities on smartphones by 2025, utilizing the forthcoming Yahsat Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO) satellites, slated for launch later in the year.

A subsequent phase, dubbed Project BlueStar, is set to facilitate comprehensive direct-to-device connectivity through an adaptable satellite network.

This two-phase deployment encompasses voice, messaging, and data. Yahsat is set to provide a sneak peek of its D2D portfolio at the Mobile World Congress 2024 in Barcelona later this month.

The integration of satellite-linked features into mobile devices is gaining traction. Owners of Apple’s iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Pro, iPhone 15, or iPhone 15 Pro can already connect to satellites for emergency texting services, and similar connectivity may soon become a standard smartphone feature.

ali al hashemi yahsat group ceo

“We are excited to launch our D2D strategy to revolutionize our industry by providing billions of people, organizations and businesses across various sectors with seamless, reliable and efficient access to connectivity,” said Ali Al Hashemi, Group CEO.

“This strategy is a critical and significant part of Yahsat’s wider growth strategy. We developed our D2D strategy – Project SKY, by carefully examining our strengths and capabilities and leveraging our expertise to capitalize on evolving market conditions,” he added.

Also Read: Introducing ChatGPT’s New Feature: Conversation Recall

Yahsat’s five satellites currently cover over 80% of the global population and deliver C, Ku, Ka, and L-band satellite communication solutions to consumers, governments, and businesses across various land, maritime, and aerospace platforms.

In 2020, Yahsat commenced the construction of Thuraya 4, an advanced telecommunications system for Thuraya, scheduled for launch in 2024 and operational by 2025. Additionally, construction began last year on two ‘software-defined’ telecommunication satellites, Al Yah 4 and Al Yah 5, anticipated to be launched in 2027 and 2028, respectively.

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Hamad International Wins 2024 Skytrax World Airport Awards

The Qatar airport also won “World’s Best Airport Shopping” for the 2nd time, and “Best Airport in the Middle East” for the 10th year.

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hamad international wins 2024 skytrax world airport awards

Hamad International Airport (DOH) in Doha, Qatar, has once again won the “World’s Best Airport” title at the Skytrax World Airport Awards. The award ceremony, held at the Passenger Terminal Expo 2024 in Frankfurt, Germany, also saw Hamad clinch the accolade of “World’s Best Airport Shopping” for the 2nd time in a row and “Best Airport in the Middle East” for an impressive 10th consecutive year.

Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive Officer, Eng. Badr Mohammed Al-Meer, who played a key role in the airport’s development over the past decade, said: “This is a remarkable achievement for Hamad International Airport, as it celebrates its 10th anniversary of operational excellence, connecting passengers seamlessly from all around the world. It is a testament to the dedication of our team and partners, who have contributed to providing passengers with the finest travel experience”.

hamad international airport doha qatar

Al-Meer emphasized the importance of understanding changing travel trends and the needs of modern air passengers: “At the heart of our growth strategy lies the passengers’ journey, their evolving needs, and our commitment to meeting and exceeding their expectations. We have introduced a diverse range of experiences at the airport, including Souq Al Matar, which brings Qatari hospitality and culture closer to travelers, “Orchard”, the ideal place for relaxation and rejuvenation between flights, and an array of high-end lounges”.

Also Read: Top E-Commerce Websites In The Middle East In 2024

Hamad International Airport saw a massive 31% surge in passenger traffic during 2023, with the transport hub now serving over 45 million passengers annually. The airport is now home to prestigious airlines, including Vistara, Iberia, Xiamen Airlines, Garuda Indonesia, and Japan Airlines, serving 250+ destinations for passenger and cargo flights.

The uptick in traffic is no doubt due to the completion of the first phase of an extensive expansion project. Hamad’s management intends to radically update the airport’s facilities over the coming years in a bid to create the “airport of the future”. The expansion features a unique and calming environment of lush greenery and several contemporary dining and shopping concepts among the already well-equipped leisure facilities.

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