Infosat Communications, a subsidiary of Telesat Canada and BCE, announced the availability of a satellite-based Internet service that breaks down the two biggest barriers to deploying high-speed Internet service in rural Canada: accessibility and connection speed.

Called High Speed Enterprise (HSe), the service uses Telesat’s new Anik F2 satellite to offer customers – anywhere in Canada – speeds comparable to those commonly found with cable modems and Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) services available from local cableco and telco providers. Businesses and residences in non-networked areas can now access download speeds of up to 1Mbps.

“Infosat’s HSe is a boon to rural Canadians needing business-class, high-speed Internet access,” says John Robertson, president and CEO of Infosat. “No longer do Internet users in ‘off-net’ communities have to settle for a combination of low-speed dial-up service and expensive wireless options.”

Because HSe is satellite-based, even areas that lack traditional phone service can have business-grade access to the Internet. Infosat’s HSe provides an “always on” connection, using only a small 67 cm satellite mini-dish and a satellite modem that connects to a PC over an Ethernet connection. Monthly data transmission with HSe is unlimited.

HSe service works by sending signals from the user’s satellite mini-dish to the Anik F2 satellite, which constantly canvases all of Canada’s 9,976,000 km2 land area. From there, the signals are sent directly to a gateway on the ground and connected to the Internet.

HSe, is the first service to offer speeds of 1Mbps over such a small satellite dish. Previously, services offering half the bandwidth of HSe required satellite dishes of nearly four to twelve times the area of Infosat’s mini-dish.

HSe business-grade service is available immediately for $89.95 per month from Infosat dealers across the country.