Elon Musk’s Satellite-Internet Speed Will Be 300 Mbps; India, Global Launch By This Date!
Elon Musk tweeted on 22 Feb that his satellite internet project Starlink will see its internet speed doubling to 300 Mbps and latency drop to 20ms later this year. The goal of this program is to serve technologically challenged areas.
The Current Picture
The current figures are 50-150mbps. 960 Starlink satellites are currently in orbit, launched on SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rockets in batches of 60 at a time. 12,000 satellites is the goal to reach so that it can provide high speed internet for cheap to millions of users around the world.
The project is expected to reach coverage of the entire planet by year-end, after which it will focus on densifying coverage.
He also directed attention to the fact that cellular internet trumps satellite in populated urban areas, whereas satellite internet shines in low to medium population density areas.
The beta phase of Starlink service is offered on a first come first serve basis. It comes at a fully refundable price of $ 99. The cost covers satellite dish, a tripod and a Wi-Fi router.
Upon entering an Indian address in the official website, we learn that “Starlink is targeting coverage in your area in 2022. Availability is limited.”
Access is currently enjoyed by customers in the UK, US and Canada
Competition and Future Prospects
Musk then spoke about his future plans of Starlink filing its IPO but only after reaching the expected amount of cash flow deemed to be “reasonably well”.
Starlink currently faces competition from cellular internet which is more feasible than the costly fiber optic cable which cannot be laid in remote and rural areas. Cellular internet however is forging ahead with the imminent launch of 5G, with several attempts by companies like Facebook to provide internet access to unserved areas.
India stands to gain from this as there are still many places where even wired broadband is absent and where it is present, network coverage is inconsistent at best, owing to distance or terrain.