We have been covering SpaceX's many missions to send Starlink satellites into orbit and it looks like it was worth their efforts as Starlink internet service has now become available to select customers in the UK. The service was already available to some residents in Canada and Northern United States.
The goal of Starlink internet is to provide a connection to those areas too remote to be connected otherwise. It currently has approximately 960 satellites in orbit.
If you go to the Starlink website, you will see the following message: "to see if your location is eligible for participation in Starlink's 'Better Than Nothing' Beta program, enter your email and service address below." Who will be the lucky few who qualify?
The Better Than Nothing Program costs £439 ($600) for the router and £89 ($121) for the monthly subscription. Customers can expect speeds of between 50Mb/s to 150Mb/s.
"With performance that far surpasses that of traditional satellite internet, and a global network unbounded by ground infrastructure limitations, Starlink will deliver high speed broadband internet to locations where access has been unreliable, expensive, or completely unavailable," also states the website.
"Starlink is targeting service in the Northern U.S. and Canada in 2020, rapidly expanding to near global coverage of the populated world by 2021."
Keeping space clean
SpaceX also states that its satellites will continue to keep space clean. When the satellites' lives end, they will use their onboard propulsion system to deorbit over the course of a few months. If that can not be achieved, the satellites will then burn up in Earth’s atmosphere within 1-5 years.
It seems like SpaceX's internet service is a win-win for all. It brings service to disconnected areas without polluting or damaging the space environment. One question still remains: When will this service be available to all?