What is the Difference Between PRI and T1 Service?

Recently, you may have been hearing a lot about T1 PRI services, but what exactly are they? T1 PRI can be best explained by separating these two individual aspects.

The term PRI refers to Primary Rate Interface. This is provided by the ISDN, or Integrated Services Digital Network. ISDN provides two basic levels. The first, and most common, is known as BRI, or Basic Rate Interface. The second is known as PRI, or Primary Rate Interface. Both of these utilities are a method in which many voice and data transmissions can be sent and received over a single fiber-optic cable.

BRI provides 3 independent lines that can be used for voice or data. PRI is more robust and uses 24 channels to support individual threads, making it more geared towards businesses or other situations that require many voice lines or larger quantities of bandwidth to be delivered.

T1 service is actually not a service at all, but should be thought of more as hardware. This type of thread provides the necessary means for PRI service to be delivered to a location. In short, PRI is the actual service, while T1 is the hardware used for delivery.

A T1 line consists of 24 channels, which can each be used to serve a different purpose. All of them may be used to deliver 24 individual phone threads to a location, or may all be used to deliver bandwidth for data networks and Internet connections. Alternatively, the 24 channels may be split up and dedicated to voice or data in any combination, such as 12 lines of voice and 12 lines of bandwidth.

When used for bandwidth, each channel is capable of delivering 64 Kbps of data, meaning that a T1 line fully dedicated to bandwidth will provide 1.54 Mbps of data.

The real beauty of the utility is that the customer basically leases the T1 line itself. This means that the it is dedicated to this customer alone, providing reliable bandwidth for networking or Internet use at all times. This is as opposed to traditional methods of data delivery, in which lines are reused over and over and shared by several users, decreasing the quality of the connection. This is a process known as “switching” and can significantly decrease the quantity and quality of bandwidth being delivered.

Why IPTV And Things That Should Matter When Looking For A Service Provider

IPTV stands for Internet Protocol Television which is simply the delivery of TV content over the internet. It is different from the common channels where the same content is delivered using satellite, cable and terrestrial formats. IPTV offers users the ability to stream continuously and they can start playing any content instantly. It is a process referred to as streaming media. It is however important to note that IPTV is not limited to internet streaming only; it is also deployed in telecommunication networks that are subscriber based via set-top boxes for end users. It is also used to deliver media in private and corporate networks.

Why IPTV?

IPTV subscription offers viewers the advantage of being in control of programs they want to watch ay whatever time they want to watch. They are not obligated to watch live TV being aired as they can select programs randomly and this is something that is impossible with other TV media platforms.

It stores programming on servers making it easier for users to request whatever content they want over the internet at a time that is most convenient for them. With IPTV, there is no worrying that you will be late to catch up with your favorite show as you can replay it as soon as you get home at your convenience.

It also offers various options to users. They can decide to go for live television, time shifted which replays shows that have already been broadcast, or enjoy video on demand option depending on what media content they are interested in. The options have eliminated the boredom that comes with being limited to only one option.

Things to consider in an IPTV provider

Service cost should be considered when looking for IPTV services. Paid IPTV is not as expensive as many people think, but it helps to make comparisons so you can choose a provider with rates that are reasonable. Ensure there are no hidden charges, especially when dealing with providers with seemingly very low prices for the subscriptions.

Server stability largely determines the kind of viewership you get to enjoy considering that the television content is broadcast through servers. Choose a provider whose servers are stable enough to save you from freezing and stuttering when you are streaming.

The availability of your service provider matters because there is no telling when you might need assistance. A good provider should remain accessible round the clock so that you can have any matters arising handled promptly. There are providers who have great support with e-mail and ticketing systems that are available anytime any day so all customer queries and issues are dealt with as soon as they arise.

Compatibility is another aspect that should be considered. When you subscribe, you should be in a position to access the content from whatever operating system you are on. Check to see that your provider supports a number of systems, including iOS, Android and MAG and others.

Approvals For Setting Up an Indian Satellite System and Provision of Satellite Service in India

Approvals, Registrations and Authorizations Required for Setting up an Indian Satellite System and Provision of Satellite Services by Satellite Operators in India

In my previous articles on provision of satellite services in India, we analyzed the regulatory framework and the possible entry options available to foreign satellite operators to establish its business presence in India and provide satellite services in the Indian subcontinent. One of the entry option is setting up an Indian Satellite System (“ISS”) by the foreign satellite operator for providing satellite based services on a commercial basis in India and be eligible for all the preferential treatment accorded to such systems in service provisioning in India. For the purposes of establishing an ISS, the foreign satellite operator and/or domestic Indian company, as the case may be, (“Satellite Company”) would need to obtain various approvals and registrations with the Indian regulatory authorities.

Incorporation of the Indian Company

For the purposes of setting up of an ISS, Satellite Company would need to incorporate a company (“Newco”) under Indian laws. Under the Companies Act, 1956 of India, a company limited by shares may be incorporated either as a private company or as a public company. Under tax and other statutes and regulations, private and public companies are ordinarily treated similarly. Therefore, Satellite Company may consider incorporating Newco as a private company.

Registration with CAISS

In the year 1997-1998, the Government of India (“GoI”) announced the Satellite Communication Policy Framework (“SatCom Policy”) and formulated the norms, guidelines, and procedure for registration of Indian satellite systems by private Indian companies and allowed limited use of foreign satellites (i.e., uplink from India) in special circumstances provided the satellites were coordinated with the INSAT satellites. Pursuant to the SatCom Policy, the GoI authorized Indian Space Research Organization (“ISRO”) to set up a Committee for Authorizing the establishment and operation of Indian Satellite Systems (“CAISS”), with its Secretariat at the Satellite Communication Programs Office at ISRO Headquarters at Bangalore.

For the purposes of registration with CAISS, Newco would need to submit a detailed project proposal to CAISS stating details of its project including the aims, objectives and background of Newco including its equity structure; the satellite proposed to be launched or leased, spacecraft description, manufacturing and launch details of the satellite, capabilities of all payloads and system, network description and characteristics, orbit spectrum requirements, spacecraft launch vehicle; data and location of satellite launches proposed by Newco, etc.

The Satellite Coordination Programme Office, which serves as the Secretariat of CAISS, reviews and examines the application in light of the SatCom Policy and the norms and guidelines and procedures approved by the GoI. The Secretariat will, thereafter, put up the application for CAISS’ consideration.

In terms of DoS’s Internal Rules for the approval process, the applicant company is required to provide its orbit-spectrum requirements with alternate choices indicating priority and the applicant company must have an orbital slot prior to submitting an application to CAISS.

Once CAISS grants its approval for operating the satellite system, Newco will need to coordinate with Wireless Planning & Coordination Wing to initiate inter-system co-ordination and issue authorization to operate the satellite in accordance with the ITU Radio Regulations. The GoI may also authorize Newco to directly co-ordinate with other satellite systems operators on technical aspects. The ISS implementation status would continue to be monitored by CAISS.

Foreign Investment Approval

GoI’s foreign direct investment (“FDI”) policy in Indian companies either by setting up of wholly owned subsidiaries or joint ventures is regulated by the Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999, and the Foreign Exchange Management (Transfer or Issue of Security by a person resident outside India) Regulations, 2000 (“FDI Regulations”). In terms of the FDI Regulations, FDI is allowed on an automatic basis in almost all sectors except where the proposal (i) requires an industrial license; or (ii) falls outside notified sectoral policy/caps or under sectors in which FDI is not permitted; etc.

Proposals which do not satisfy the parameters prescribed for automatic approval, require prior approval from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (“FIPB”) which is a competent body functioning under the Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, to consider and recommend FDI. The FIPB consists of members from the Department of Economic Affairs, Department for Industrial Policy & Promotion, Department of Commerce, Ministry of External Affairs, amongst others.

In terms of the FDI Regulations, an Indian company can receive foreign equity investment upto 74 percent to establish and operate Indian satellite systems subject to obtaining prior FIPB approval. Once FIBP approval is obtained, the Indian company can directly receive funds through banks authorized to deal in foreign exchange and issue shares to foreign investor subject to submitting prescribed reports with the Reserve Bank of India (“RBI”) within 30 days from receipt of the share consideration amount and issue of shares to the foreign investors.

Satellite Company will need to submit a detailed application with the FIPB for obtaining its approval for foreign investment. The application would need to be supported by documents including the brochures and profiles of Satellite Company or its affiliates, business plan/project report, memorandum and association of articles of Newco (if Newco has already been incorporated), etc.

Submission of Report to the RBI

Once Satellite Company obtains FIPB approval, Newco would need to receive funds from Satellite Company by way of inward remittances through banking channels and submit a report with the RBI with in 30 days from the receipt of the amount of consideration.

Upon receipt of the funds, Newco can issue shares to Satellite Company and submit a report (in the prescribed form) together with an appropriate certificate from the company secretary of Newco. The price of shares to be issued by Newco to Satellite Company would need to be not less than the fair valuation of shares done by a chartered accountant as per the guidelines issued by the erstwhile Controller of Capital Issues.

Miscellaneous Licenses and Registrations

Newco would need to obtain additional registrations and licenses including a permanent account number and tax deduction account number under the Income Tax Act, 1961, registration under the Shops and Establishments Act, and trade tax and professional tax registrations depending on the State in which Newco is registered/incorporated. The operating licenses for services to be provided by the ISS (in addition to being a satellite operator, if any), will need to be obtained separately from the concerned administrative departments like the Department of Telecommunication for telecom services and the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for TV and radio broadcasting.

There is presently only one ISS in India, which is Agrani (Zee Group/Dish TV venture). Agrani has however so far not been able to set up a satellite system even though it has entered into a long term collaboration with ProtoStar I Ltd. for lease/purchase of transponder capacity. No other application is presently pending before the CAISS for its consideration for setting up an ISS.

My next article on the subject will deal with the procedure and costs involved for registration of Newco as an ISS with CAISS in India.

Seema Jhingan