SpaceX keeps forging ahead with its myriad plans around space exploration and offering improved internet services.
Within the last week, 60 more Starlink satellites were successfully launched into space, and the NASA and JAXA astronaut crew that just spend the last six months on the ISS landed safely back down to Earth in a historic nighttime splashdown aboard SpaceX's Dragon capsule.
And it doesn't stop there. Reuters reported that Elon Musk said on Tuesday, May 4, that 500,000 pre-orders for SpaceX's Starlink satellite systems have already been put in place. People are ready for that high-speed internet Starlink promises to deliver.
Given SpaceX won the FCC's approval on April 28 to fly its Starlink satellite constellation lower in orbit, it would be hard for that internet not to be up to par. And if, for whatever reason, that fails — although it would be very hard for it to do so — that satellite constellation may serve as a bright tool that enables aliens to find us mere Earthlings someday.
For the time being, however, the focus is still on simply providing high-speed internet connection to remote and underserved regions of the world.
Those 500,000 pre-orders are for SpaceX's Starlink Kit, which includes a Starlink, Wi-Fi router, power supply, cables, and a mounting tripod, per Starlink's page. This equipment transmits and receives signals from SpaceX's Starlink satellites in orbit, enabling people to have stable and strong internet service.
So far, Starlink is offering beta service domestically and internationally, with the aim of offering coverage to anyone anywhere by the end of the year. During its initial beta stage, Starlink says that its customers can expect varying data speeds from 50Mb/s to 150 Mb/s latency, and from 20ms to 40ms in most of these locations. These numbers are set to vastly improve by the time all 12,000 planned satellites create a full constellation.