|HTS is something we have talked about for years and it continued to be the missing component every time KVH announced something. Remember miniVsat 2.0? What a disappointment. I was thinking back then that we would see HTS hardware. It turned out to be a marketing gimmick that introduced aggressive open market pricing plans. It was creative and it slowed the bleeding but everyone was looking for an answer to Inmarsat FX. Then there was CaaS. It removed the very big upfront barriers but was still relying on a very old hardware and network. Now, FINALLY, after several years, there is a product and a service that matches the hype. Is it the broad portfolio that I believe would explode the market wide open with extravagant growth? I don’t think so. But it’s definitely the product and the service that will return us to sustainable double digit growth over a prolonged multi year period.|
I was a little surprised by MKVHs comment about fleet sales. It’s strange to me that he believed the commercial market was going to forgo their conservative approach toward fleet rollouts. It’s similar to consumers moving from Verizon or AT&T to T-mobile. The no contracts plans T-mobile introduced had a buildup of momentum. It wasn’t instantaneous. People needed to come off their old contracts, as well. It’s the same with no contract vsat. We will see increasing momentum and if KVH is smart, they will keep adding products and services in advance of competitive threats. The T-mobile business model has been brilliant. I also think his suggestion of fleet delays has much more to do with the lack of HTS in the original CaaS rollout.
My thoughts on the 1 meter market have changed. I think the 1 meter vsat market will become much more specialized and an increasing smaller piece of the marketplace now that ku-band is almost global and HTS is finally live. KVH went from covering probably 90% of shipping traffic to closer to 98% in ku-band. If I’m going to look at a 1 meter solution under a CaaS model, why not consider the redundancy of two V7HTS’ or the cheapest L-band backup I can find instead? What happens when the rest of the pacific is covered late next year? Also, I’m curious how the 2nd unlimited channel on the same dish works. Is it truly a 2nd dedicated channel? Is there possibly a tie-in with future ip-mobilecast services? Just thinking there might be more to this 2nd unlimited channel than meets the eye? Also, I still think there’s a dual band c/ku opportunity at 80cm because of size and weight improvements.