Elon Musk expects to launch Starlink broadband internet to the world as soon as August

jsilva

Posts: 171   +1
Staff
Something to look forward to: Elon Musk, who is known for overly optimistic promises and claims, made some bold statements regarding the future of Starlink at MWC 2021. Tesla's CEO not only expects Starlink to become available worldwide in August, but also hopes it will have over 500,000 users in the first 12 months after launch.

Although it's still in open beta, SpaceX's Starlink has close to 70,000 users using the broadband Internet service, but that should increase significantly starting August. By then, the company's CEO expects to launch all 72 orbital planes that will provide worldwide coverage, except for the polar regions, which should "take another 6 months."

During MWC 2021, Elon Musk shared his predictions on the number of Starlink users, claiming the internet service will have "possibly over 500,000 users within 12 months." Looking at it from another perspective, Starlink "just" has to sign 430,000 customers by August 2022.

Starlink is currently available in 11 countries and costs $99 per month, but users still have to pay for the hardware bundle (Starlink dish + Wi-Fi router) priced at $500. According to Musk, the bundle costs over $1,000 to manufacture, but next-gen terminals will be less costly to make, therefore cheaper to customers at about $250-300.

To see Elon Musk plans come to fruition, Starlink will need approval from regional telcos and take care of the regulatory paperwork before expanding to other countries. The company's CEO stated SpaceX has already partnered with two "major country" telcos but didn't specify which ones. Elon also mentioned SpaceX's Starship system during an interview, where he said that the first orbital Starship test should be launched in the next few months.

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Dimitriid

Posts: 936   +1,728
Coverage is pretty ambitious and early reports point at fairly reasonable latency, but what I've still haven't read about is their plans: Satellite internet is just about the worst thing you can get for internet and it's 99% because of the ridiculous usage plans: most plans would banish all of a month's bandwidth in less than a day of something like youtube 1080p videos, probably minutes if you do 4k

So if Musk can offer it and keep it without bandwidth caps then maybe some of us tech heads could consider moving out into the boonies more.
 

Aranarth

Posts: 115   +100
Coverage is pretty ambitious and early reports point at fairly reasonable latency, but what I've still haven't read about is their plans: Satellite internet is just about the worst thing you can get for internet and it's 99% because of the ridiculous usage plans: most plans would banish all of a month's bandwidth in less than a day of something like youtube 1080p videos, probably minutes if you do 4k

So if Musk can offer it and keep it without bandwidth caps then maybe some of us tech heads could consider moving out into the boonies more.

So far no limits and they have said they have no plans to add limits.

See: https://www.starlink.com/faq
Second question down.

Other commentary about plans after beta have said the same thing.


 

Dimitriid

Posts: 936   +1,728
So far no limits and they have said they have no plans to add limits.

See: https://www.starlink.com/faq
Second question down.

Other commentary about plans after beta have said the same thing.
That is indeed far better than existing satellite services, we just need to know how long it can both

1) Expand so much
2) Keep the plan prices reasonable
3) Maintain a decent service level

I am slightly skeptical they can keep up with 1 through 3 without any issues but hey, if anyone has enough money to lose truckloads of for years before it can turn a profit it's Musk.
 

Burty117

Posts: 4,192   +2,211
I am intrigued by the resiliency of their network once they get a decent amount of users on it. Early beta testers all seem to have really good latency and speeds. If they can keep that up consistently, Hell I'd be tempted, can finally leave BT VDSL ancient crap behind.
 

mbrowne5061

Posts: 1,904   +1,105
That is indeed far better than existing satellite services, we just need to know how long it can both

1) Expand so much
2) Keep the plan prices reasonable
3) Maintain a decent service level

I am slightly skeptical they can keep up with 1 through 3 without any issues but hey, if anyone has enough money to lose truckloads of for years before it can turn a profit it's Musk.
If Tesla is any indication for the quality of products from 'Musk' companies over time, I am also skeptical. They went from high-tech, high-quality, to 'maybe everything will be bolted down correctly' and quietly removing features while acting like they are doing you a favor.

I'm sure the first people into Starlink will have excellent service at spectacular prices. The Musk fanbois will spread the word for free. Then, once enough market share has been captured out in the boonies, the quality will slowly be reduced until you have something comparable to DSL in terms of speed, bandwidth, response times, and data caps - and people will stick with it because, by that point, the other satellite competitors will have died out.
 
There is a need. Small communities, not just isolated residences, all over the U.S. are hoping this works. I have a property in northern AZ I spend half a year at, in a valley with almost zero coverage and about 1500 year round residents living in it. IF...IF...IF costs are fair and reasonable, signal quality sits at 12-15 Mbps, latency issues don't pop up and people start to trust Musk THEN 500,000 is a minimal number, and that's just in the U.S. alone. But that's a lot of IFs.
 

Carlos GarPov

Posts: 92   +43
Coverage is pretty ambitious and early reports point at fairly reasonable latency, but what I've still haven't read about is their plans: Satellite internet is just about the worst thing you can get for internet and it's 99% because of the ridiculous usage plans: most plans would banish all of a month's bandwidth in less than a day of something like youtube 1080p videos, probably minutes if you do 4k

So if Musk can offer it and keep it without bandwidth caps then maybe some of us tech heads could consider moving out into the boonies more.

There are no data caps in Starlink. My average speed is 200mbs. I see everything in 4k now
 

Dimitriid

Posts: 936   +1,728
There are no data caps in Starlink. My average speed is 200mbs. I see everything in 4k now
To clarify I was mostly talking about satellite internet competitors and how those plans are basically as good as useless as anything but backup for emergencies.
 

zulu53

Posts: 45   +14
And sell it just before nothing gets delivered as promised.
Well thats not what happened to Tesla Stock, and they have the same parent company and leader. Telsa had delivery issues, but eventually did deliver. The stock price did not react to the issues. Buy Space-X stock IF it ever becomes available was the comment. If it does become available buy it and don't sell when nothing INITIALLY gets delivered as promised
 

captaincranky

Posts: 17,180   +5,928
Well, could certainly open up options for working remotely far away from urban areas...
I can't wait til this gets up and running. I'll finally be able to take that camping trip to Antarctica. I been meaning to do that for years. Just think, crystal clear night skies, why you'll probably be able to see Musk's space junk float by with nothing more than a pair of binoculars.

While we're on the subject of Starlink, didn't Muskie say this would be "low cost". I must be out of touch, is $100.00 a month considered "cheap" nowadays? :confused:
 

zulu53

Posts: 45   +14
I can't wait til this gets up and running. I'll finally be able to take that camping trip to Antarctica. I been meaning to do that for years. Just think, crystal clear night skies, why you'll probably be able to see Musk's space junk float by with nothing more than a pair of binoculars.

While we're on the subject of Starlink, didn't Muskie say this would be "low cost". I must be out of touch, is $100.00 a month considered "cheap" nowadays? :confused:
In answer to your questions. Yes, for the majority of the area and population covered by this ISP, $100 is very cheap, relatively and also absolutely (with a shared connection). Sure there are specific, very small, areas within their coverage where this would not be considered cheap, but of course this can be said of every ISP out there. Out of touch? Yes is sounds like it, but perhaps you are not accounting for the travel restrictions and there impact on your ability to keep in touch. I am sure that when you get to travel again you will be "back in touch" - hang in there and be safe.
 

Aranarth

Posts: 115   +100
To clarify I was mostly talking about satellite internet competitors and how those plans are basically as good as useless as anything but backup for emergencies.
This is satellite internet unless you mean the difference between LEO and GEO.
 

NeoMorpheus

Posts: 879   +1,642
I am willing to pick one of these up for my relatives.

they live in the Caribbean and our government corruption is so bad, that a couple of fat cats have absolute control of the pipes entering the country and for some weird reason, are keeping the max speed at around 25mbps.

Mind you, only some can get that speed, the rest are averaging 1 to 5 mpbs.

Whats crazier is, middle of nowhere are getting fiber deployments...for cable tv and no internet.

Really bizarre situation.

If I can get this and decent speed higher than 25mbps, its a win for me.
 
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wiyosaya

Posts: 6,376   +4,700
I can't wait til this gets up and running. I'll finally be able to take that camping trip to Antarctica. I been meaning to do that for years. Just think, crystal clear night skies, why you'll probably be able to see Musk's space junk float by with nothing more than a pair of binoculars.

While we're on the subject of Starlink, didn't Muskie say this would be "low cost". I must be out of touch, is $100.00 a month considered "cheap" nowadays? :confused:
Cheap? Hah! IMO, that more describes Musky himself. :laughing:

Anyway, this guy apparently could not leave home without Starlink - https://www.cnbc.com/2021/07/02/chp-tickets-driver-with-apparent-spacex-starlink-dish-on-hood.html Some people must just love kissing Musky's behind. šŸ¤£