The ground segment was one of the sectors of the space business hit the hardest by COVID, according to a consultant with NSR. He says deployments and new deals were halted due to travel restrictions, challenges with the value chain, and caution with expenditures. Revenues fell by more than 18 percent in 2020 to under $3.
The rate of technological change in connectivity including software-defined satellite is picking up, suggesting that adaptation points to revenue growth over the long term. The reduced costs of launch represent a key factor in the trend of increasing technology as reusable launch vehicles, NSR commented on these developments..
Since then, cloud players have emerged as a key segment to watch out for in the satellite business, first through direct peering partnerships such as Azure ExpressRoute and IBM Direct Link, and more recently, through high profile dedicated business units as in the case of AWS Aerospace and Satellite Solutions and Azure Space.