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In this article we examine the role of satellite communications in future telecommunication networks and service provision. Lessons from the past indicate that satellites are successful as a result of their wide area coverage or speed to market for new services. Niche areas such as coverage of air and sea will persist, but for land masses convergence of fixed, mobile, and broadcasting will dictate that the only way forward for satellites is in an integrated format with terrestrial systems. We outline future ways forward for satellites, and discuss the research challenges and technology advances needed to facilitate this integrated approach.