Saving and Improving People’s Lives

The 2nd Global Forum on Emergency Telecommunications (GET-2016) was held in Kuwait from 26- 28 January. The forum was organized by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), the United Nations specialized agency for telecommunications and Information Communications Technology (ICT) in collaboration with the Government of Kuwait.

The event was attended by telecom ministers, ICT regulators and policymakers, national disaster management stakeholders, private sector companies including major satellite operators, and NGOs, from all over the world. The Thuraya exhibition stand at the event was jointly managed by Thuraya and the National Satellite Telecommunications Services, (Thuraya’s Service Partner in Kuwait) and was frequently visited by high level dignitaries and potential customers.

The forum provided an opportunity for telecom regulators, policymakers and thought leaders to find a way of mobilizing new technologies to not only save lives, but to improve people’s lives.

The ITU launched two new initiatives at the forum – the ‘Network of Volunteers for Emergency Telecommunications’ and the ‘Global Emergency Fund for Rapid Response.’ The global ICT community were encouraged to step forward and take an active part in these two new initiatives.

The ITU Secretary General, the Director of the Telecom Development Bureau, and other senior officials of the ITU, highlighted the importance of its agreement with Thuraya to continue its support of emergency telecommunications while praising the effective role Thuraya terminals play when deployed as a response to emergency situations and disasters.

The forum also focused on a number of issues, trends and emerging technological innovations, financing mechanisms, case studies, as well as the challenges in deploying telecommunications/ICT for disaster response.

Christian Cull, Thuraya’s Vice-President of Marketing & Communications participated in two panel discussions which focused on the challenges and opportunities as a result of the effective use of ICTs. In both, the Leaders’ Dialogue discussion and the Role of the Private Sector and other non-state stakeholders’ panel, he focused on the importance of contributing to public safety and ensuring resilience, better preparedness, and timely intervention when disaster strikes.

Thuraya’s active participation in the work of the ITU’s Smart Sustainable Development Model (SSDM) initiative was also highlighted and well received. Our CEO, Samer Halawi, is a Board Member of the SSDM Initiative. The SSDM model focuses on optimizing the use of ICTs for socio-economic development and for disaster management leading to sustainable development.

Thuraya has worked with the ITU for ten years now, and is pleased to have made a difference in places around the world where help was needed most. It is a privilege to be able to save and improve lives, and we intend to work together for many years to come.

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Zahid Zaheer
Senior Director, GMPCS Affairs

Welcome to the New!

A website is not a one-off event. It is a flexible, dynamic communications platform that should adapt with new browsing technologies and changing user behavior.

The project was by no means an easy task, but we pulled the trigger on Monday, January 11 with Phase I of our website redesign.  It involved the launch of three new sections:  the Home page, our new Developer Zone and a new section dedicated to M2M in the Products area. We rolled out a soft launch to allow us the time to work through any issues that might materialize moving from our staging environment to live. We have worked out the kinks and are happy to share with you the new features we believe will be a huge benefit to all.

Home Page

Our new home page features a cascade layout with exclusive sections on products, sectors, campaigns, CSR program, blogs and feeds from Twitter. It is graphics-rich with parallax scrolling that provides a more immersive user experience. This cool effect uses multiple backgrounds which seem to move at different speeds to create a sensation of depth (creating a faux-3D effect) and an interesting browsing experience.

A major advancement from the 2013 version is that we are now more socially connected, and have a unified look for all device types including desktops, smartphones and tablets. This brings consistency to Thuraya’s presence in the digital spectrum.

Developer Zone

It’s a question we get all the time. “We love your technology. Is there ANY way we could join hands with you to disrupt the satellite communications industry? Do you have an affiliate/developer program?”

The answer is “YES!” We are building a strong developer program that provides hardware and software platforms that make it easy for our partners to develop devices and applications.  Our objective is to quickly expand our portfolio of solutions via our partners while maintaining the quality of our services and products. We are excited to partner with innovative developers who want to associate themselves with Thuraya and our brand to bring ground-breaking solutions to market. See more.

We are also hard at work to expand this section of our website. So stay tuned! There is more to come.


M2M technologies are providing big growth opportunities for satcoms targeting specific vertical markets. The Internet of Things (IoT) is quickly applying those technologies to more consumer oriented applications.  The new M2M section on unveils our strategy for addressing this growing market, our key differentiators and a list of the market segments we are focusing on initially. What’s more, we describe our first M2M platform for development in order to recruit developers who specialize in developing market-specific M2M solutions. See more.

A Better Mobile Experience

There have been a lot of changes in the last couple of years in responsive design and mobile website experience. The new is fully responsive and mobile-friendly. We hope you enjoy comfortably navigating the site no matter what platform, screen size, or device you happen to be using.

It’s NOT Over Yet

We’ve streamlined the new site to load on browsers as quickly as possible resulting in a much faster site. Phase II will be rolled out in March and will include a major upgrade to content – more on that in a later update.

Redesigning, reorganizing and updating the site has truly been a team effort, not just internally – but externally as well, with our service partner community rallying behind us with their feedback. We hope you enjoy the new pages and look forward to any comments or suggestions you may have for us! Do email us at

EGNOS for safer skies


The European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS) is the first pan-European satellite navigation system. It augments the US GPS satellite navigation system and makes it suitable for safety critical applications such as flying aircraft.

EGNOS is a joint project of ESA, the European Commission and Eurocontrol, the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation.

It is Europe’s first activity in the field of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) and is a precursor to Galileo, the full global satellite navigation system being currently built in Europe. 

EGNOS operations are now managed by the European Commission through a contract with an operator based in France, the European Satellite Services Provider.

The EGNOS Safety of Live service has been officially declared available for aviation in 2011.  

This video, produced by the European Global Navigation Satellite Systems Agency, explains the interest of EGNOS and the recent improvements for landing procedures.