Entel connects to Túpac Katari

Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 06-01-2014

Bolivia's public telco Entel has successfully connected to the recently launched national satellite, Túpac Katari.

Entel is the first company to contact the satellite, which should be fully operative in March, since it was launched in December 2013.

The public telco plans to launch various services through the new satellite, including a pay-TV direct-to-home (DTH) platform. The TV network will air this year and will have 30 standard definition (SD) channels with some high definition (HD) signals, targeting remote areas of the country which have no cable coverage.

Bolivia's pay-TV sector is growing, though it is still a small market compared to those in other Latin American countries. But Entel's move will bring competition to the market following Tigo Millicom's decision to enter the sector by buying cable company Multivision.

The national satellite intends to improve the country's telecom networks, specifically to bring Internet availability to rural areas.

Túpac Katari is a joint venture project between Bolivia and China and was launched from Xichang's launch centre on 20 December. Costing $300 million, it will be operative for 15 years.