SpaceX StarLink satellite internet [UPDATES]


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DocM

8th landing for this booster, 75th booster landing,

53 Falcon 9 Block 5 launches, 107 total Falcon 9 launches.

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DocM

Doesn't sound like there'll be much of a change of policy WRT low Earth orbit communication satellite constellations like Starlink, OneWeb, etc.  

 

 

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DocM

Another military test of StarLink...

 

 

 

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DocM

The UK is very interested in Starlink...

 

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/03/22/elon-musks-spacex-starlink-in-talks-with-uks-project-gigabit.html

 

Quote

 

SpaceX’s Starlink satellite internet in talks for a place in the UK’s $6.9 billion ‘Project Gigabit’

 

KEY POINTS

 

• Elon Musk’s SpaceX is in talks with the United Kingdom for the company’s Starlink satellite division to potentially earn funding as a part of the government’s new $6.9 billion internet infrastructure program.

 

• U.K. Minister for Digital Infrastructure Matt Warman recently met with Starlink leadership, a person familiar with the talks told CNBC, as a part of discussions for the ‘Project Gigabit’ plan rolled out on Friday.

 

• SpaceX in October began rolling out early Starlink service in a public beta that now extends to customers in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Germany and New Zealand – with service priced at $99 a month in the U.S.

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Sky News first reported the talks, noting that U.K. Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden believes Starlink is one of the best options for delivering internet service to hard-to-reach areas across the country.

>

 

 

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DocM
Posted (edited)

StarLink factory the street from Tesla's Giga Texas 

 

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/03/02/spacex-building-starlink-manufacturing-factory-in-austin-texas.html

 

Quote

SpaceX is building a factory in Austin, Texas for Starlink satellite internet equipment

 

KEY POINTS

 

• SpaceX plans to build a new Starlink equipment factory in Austin, Texas, a company job posting revealed.

 

• Elon Musk’s company noted that the factory is designed for “high volume manufacturing,” specifically to make “millions of consumer facing devices.”

 

• Starlink is the company’s capital-intensive project to build an interconnected internet network with thousands of satellites.

---

SpaceX plans to build a new factory in Austin, Texas – adding another expansion to the region from one of Elon Musk’s companies after the billionaire founder moved there last year.

>

SpaceX noted that the factory is designed for “high volume manufacturing,” specifically to make “millions of consumer facing devices.” For its satellite internet network, those devices are known as the Starlink Kit and include the antenna (or dish) that connects to the satellites, Wi-Fi routers and antenna mounting hardware

>

 

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DocM

End of beta & mobile Starlink timing...

 

 

 

 

 

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DocM

FCC approves lower StarLink orbits...which drew many objections from the competition.

 

 

 

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DocM

StarLink + Google Cloud

 

(Been expecting this since Google & Fidelity invested $1B in 2015)

 

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/05/13/google-cloud-wins-spacex-deal-for-starlink-internet-connectivity.html

 

Quote

 

Google wins cloud deal from Elon Musk’s SpaceX for Starlink internet connectivity

 

KEY POINTS

 

• Google announced that its cloud unit has won a deal to supply computing and networking resources to Elon Musk’s SpaceX to help deliver internet service through the latter’s Starlink satellites.

 

• The Starlink satellite internet will rely on Google’s private fiber-optic network to quickly make connections to cloud services as part of a deal that could last seven years.

>

>

SpaceX will install ground stations at Google data centers that connect to SpaceX’s Starlink satellites, with an eye toward providing fast internet service to enterprises in the second half of this year.

 

The deal represents a victory for Google as it works to take share from Amazon and Microsoft in the fast-growing cloud computing market.

>

 

 

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DocM

Starlink adoption among Canada's First Nations...

 

https://www.kenoraminerandnews.com/news/local-news/elon-musks-starlink-set-up-for-schooling-in-five-more-first-nation-communities

 

Quote

 

Elon Musk’s Starlink set up for schooling in five more First Nation communities

 

The Anishinaabeg of Kabapikotawangag Resource Council (AKRC) has teamed up with Kenora’s FSET Information Technology to deliver high-speed internet access for educational purposes via Starlink to five different First Nations across northwestern Ontario.
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As a pilot program, the project was funded by Indigenous Services Canada and the door is open to additional phases, installations and partners in the future.

>

“It’s a feel-good moment to know that Starlink, FSET and AKRC can support our First Nations and their education,” Katic said. “It’s not just a gamechanger, but life-changing for First Nations people.”

 

 

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DocM

 

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DocM

StarLink v1.5 w/laser links soon,  v2 next year

 

https://www.cnbc.com/2021/06/29/elon-musk-.html

 

Quote

 

Elon Musk says SpaceX’s Starlink internet service possibly on track for 500,000 users in one year

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“The latency for the Starlink system is similar to latency for ground-based fiber and 5G, so we’re expecting to get latency down under 20 milliseconds,” Musk said.

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We’re getting close to launching satellite 1.5, which has laser inter-satellite links, and that’ll be used especially for continuous connectivity over the Arctic and Antarctic regions,” Musk said. “Next year we’ll start launching version two of our satellite, which will be significantly more capable.”

>

 

 

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cacoe

I was interested until I recieved an email with the setup cost and monthly price...

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+spikey_richie
53 minutes ago, cacoe said:

I was interested until I recieved an email with the setup cost and monthly price...

That's steep! Especially considering it's running at around 50-150Mbps

 

image.png.a3f436da8b8a4a898af4ef9f92eec58f.png

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cacoe
53 minutes ago, spikey_richie said:

That's steep! Especially considering it's running at around 50-150Mbps

 

image.png.a3f436da8b8a4a898af4ef9f92eec58f.png

They'd have to half the price of the hardware and knock off 20 quid p/m before I even considered it. I know their costs are high but that doesn't make it an attractive proposition. I think even people in rural areas will think twice, it's rare there isn't at least one other option they can take up.

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bguy_1986
9 hours ago, cacoe said:

They'd have to half the price of the hardware and knock off 20 quid p/m before I even considered it. I know their costs are high but that doesn't make it an attractive proposition. I think even people in rural areas will think twice, it's rare there isn't at least one other option they can take up.

I know a few users at work that have horrible internet connections and no other options.  One lives in the mountains (and is currently using another satellite provider) and the other lives outside a major city using DSL I believe but isn't all that close to it.  It might be worth it for them... especially if the company would pay for it.

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DocM
Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, cacoe said:

They'd have to half the price of the hardware and knock off 20 quid p/m before I even considered it. I know their costs are high but that doesn't make it an attractive proposition. I think even people in rural areas will think twice, it's rare there isn't at least one other option they can take up.

 

Soon they'll be launching satellites with laser inter-satellite links to allow direct hops without the packets hitting ground stations, then next year the version 2 satellites start going up on Starship 300-400 at a time. Version 2 will multiply throughput and expand coverage to ships and aircraft. FCC filings estimate service in the gigabit range (1000 Mbps).

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IsItPluggedIn
16 hours ago, cacoe said:

They'd have to half the price of the hardware and knock off 20 quid p/m before I even considered it. I know their costs are high but that doesn't make it an attractive proposition. I think even people in rural areas will think twice, it's rare there isn't at least one other option they can take up.

The target market is people who currently have no option, or the currently available offering is not adequate. This means most of Europe is not their target market, as they provide most of their counties with decent internet. 

A lot of rural people in larger counties ie Canada/USA/Australia etc are currently relying on satellite services or ADSL1 which are the same price or more expensive with worse speed.

There is also a lot of people who would move to rural areas if they had the ability to have a decent connection.

Other markets are, moving services, Planes/trains/boats etc which existing services dont service very well. As well as quick popup/tear down deployments, ie construction sites/army bases/disaster relief etc.

 

These sorts of users are the target market, and will provide the initial bulk of users until they can bring down costs. They will never be a massive provider for city/suburban users as the density just doesn't work.

 

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DocM

Desperate, they are.  LEO constellation's like SpaceX's StarLink & Amazon's Kuiper are a huge threat to ViaSat, Hughes, etc. business models. 

 

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2021/07/spacex-wins-court-ruling-that-lets-it-continue-launching-starlink-satellites/

 

Quote

 

Judges reject Viasat’s plea to stop SpaceX Starlink satellite launches

 

SpaceX can keep launching broadband satellites despite a lawsuit filed by Viasat, a federal appeals court ruled Tuesday.

 

Viasat sued the Federal Communications Commission in May and asked judges for a stay that would halt SpaceX's ongoing launches of low Earth orbit (LEO) satellites that power Starlink Internet service. To get a stay, Viasat had to show that it is likely to win its lawsuit alleging that the FCC improperly approved the satellite launches.

 

A three-judge panel at the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit was not persuaded, saying in a short order that "Viasat has not satisfied the stringent requirements for a stay pending court review." The judges did grant a motion to expedite the appeal, however, so the case should move faster than normal.

>

 

 

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FloatingFatMan
On 01/07/2021 at 02:22, IsItPluggedIn said:

The target market is people who currently have no option, or the currently available offering is not adequate. This means most of Europe is not their target market, as they provide most of their counties with decent internet. 

A lot of rural people in larger counties ie Canada/USA/Australia etc are currently relying on satellite services or ADSL1 which are the same price or more expensive with worse speed.

There is also a lot of people who would move to rural areas if they had the ability to have a decent connection.

Other markets are, moving services, Planes/trains/boats etc which existing services dont service very well. As well as quick popup/tear down deployments, ie construction sites/army bases/disaster relief etc.

 

These sorts of users are the target market, and will provide the initial bulk of users until they can bring down costs. They will never be a massive provider for city/suburban users as the density just doesn't work.

 

I'm not convinced as to how viable their market is... I mean, that's only a tiny percentage of the population they're aiming at and the costs involved to provide services to that tiny market are... extreme.  If the market grows, and it will as they increase in popularity, they're going to quickly run into bandwidth issues in areas of higher population density unless they actively refuse customers and I don't even see how they can practically reach their desired satellite count considering they have to be replaced after 5 years...

 

I know his ultimate plans for Starlink are for serving an Earth/Moon/Mars linkup, but that's not happening anytime soon and if he TRULY wants to bring internet to rural areas, it's probably cheaper to start a cellphone company and build masts.

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SteveL
On 23/07/2021 at 08:48, FloatingFatMan said:

I'm not convinced as to how viable their market is... I mean, that's only a tiny percentage of the population they're aiming at and the costs involved to provide services to that tiny market are... extreme.....

Maybe this is the problem between us and him. We can't see what he sees. He is a bi-millionaire, we (or rather me) not even close to the first million. Seriously, I have some doubts too.

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DocM
On 23/07/2021 at 02:48, FloatingFatMan said:

I'm not convinced as to how viable their market is... I mean, that's only a tiny percentage of the population they're aiming at and the costs involved to provide services to that tiny market are... extreme.  

 

Serving the un-/under-served, such as the rural US, Australia, Canada, India, etc. is why governments subsidize such service. It's cheaper than running 50 miles of optical cable to serve a few small communities, and Starlink can also serve local 5G and other networks. Stick a receiver (not necessarily Dishy), solar panel, big battery, and wireless transmitter on a pole or building and you can serve a whole remote village.

 

Aside from that are the major customers; governments, military, airlines, ships at sea, polar service, financial networks, agricultural, scientific, etc. Long damned list. 

 

Quote

I don't even see how they can practically reach their desired satellite count considering they have to be replaced after 5 years...

They're reopening their pad at Vandenberg Space Force Base to help with Falcon 9 Starlink launches so 3 pads for that at 60/launch, plus once Starship goes into service it'll be able to launch 300-400 per flight.

 

 

Edited by DocM
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IsItPluggedIn
On 23/07/2021 at 16:48, FloatingFatMan said:

I'm not convinced as to how viable their market is... I mean, that's only a tiny percentage of the population they're aiming at and the costs involved to provide services to that tiny market are... extreme.  If the market grows, and it will as they increase in popularity, they're going to quickly run into bandwidth issues in areas of higher population density unless they actively refuse customers and I don't even see how they can practically reach their desired satellite count considering they have to be replaced after 5 years...

 

I know his ultimate plans for Starlink are for serving an Earth/Moon/Mars linkup, but that's not happening anytime soon and if he TRULY wants to bring internet to rural areas, it's probably cheaper to start a cellphone company and build masts.

The target market is people who currently have no option, or the currently available offering is not adequate. This means most of Europe is not their target market, as they provide most of their counties with decent internet. 

A lot of rural people in larger counties ie Canada/USA/Australia etc are currently relying on satellite services or ADSL1 which are the same price or more expensive with worse speed.

There is also a lot of people who would move to rural areas if they had the ability to have a decent connection.

Other markets are: moving services, Planes/trains/boats etc which existing services dont service very well. As well as quick popup/tear down deployments, ie construction sites/army bases/disaster relief etc.

 

These sorts of users are the target market, and will provide the initial bulk of users until they can bring down costs. They will never be a massive provider for city/suburban users as the density just doesn't work.

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Emn1ty
On 22/07/2021 at 23:48, FloatingFatMan said:

I'm not convinced as to how viable their market is... I mean, that's only a tiny percentage of the population they're aiming at and the costs involved to provide services to that tiny market are... extreme.  If the market grows, and it will as they increase in popularity, they're going to quickly run into bandwidth issues in areas of higher population density unless they actively refuse customers 

The economics will make sense with government subsidy and paying customers over time. Especially as they can in some cases hitch-hike on other missions to deliver replace satellites the cost to maintain it will continue to fall along with the cost of launching their rockets.

 

Being in a position where you can refuse customers is actually a good point for a business as long as they have a balanced checkbook. There's nothing wrong with defining a niche market if the math works out. Now as far as bandiwdth goes, I don't know enough about the bandwidth limitations of their satellite arrays to make projections on what will saturate their network.

On 22/07/2021 at 23:48, FloatingFatMan said:

and I don't even see how they can practically reach their desired satellite count considering they have to be replaced after 5 years...

With how fast Space X is turning out rockets, they could easily keep up with that, at least in my opinion.

On 22/07/2021 at 23:48, FloatingFatMan said:

I know his ultimate plans for Starlink are for serving an Earth/Moon/Mars linkup, but that's not happening anytime soon and if he TRULY wants to bring internet to rural areas, it's probably cheaper to start a cellphone company and build masts.

It's actually not, depending on the areas... you're dealing with tons of regulations, tons of infrastructure that doesn't exist, etc. There's a reason why these places are still alienated from modern internet access - the labor involved and costs involved far outweigh the benefit. With Starlink, SpaceX gets a service they can sell AND a service they can use for LEO communications. It's a win-win, and likely would have been deployed anyways to support Musk's rapid launch endeavors.

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bguy_1986
On 22/07/2021 at 21:14, DocM said:

Desperate, they are.  LEO constellation's like SpaceX's StarLink & Amazon's Kuiper are a huge threat to ViaSat, Hughes, etc. business models. 

 

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2021/07/spacex-wins-court-ruling-that-lets-it-continue-launching-starlink-satellites/

 

 

Don't blame them though.  I don't know much about the company but my assumptions are that they cannot make their own satellites, and the cost to launch them is enormous.  They had to really be on the ball to beat SpaceX at this...  but I'm making a lot of assumptions and did little research.

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bguy_1986
On 23/07/2021 at 02:48, FloatingFatMan said:

I'm not convinced as to how viable their market is... I mean, that's only a tiny percentage of the population they're aiming at and the costs involved to provide services to that tiny market are... extreme.

I know of 3 people in around my ~200 person company that need this... I'm sure there are more but they just come into the office instead of working from home.  One employee has already signed up for the service.  I'm curious to see how it works, however... but I'm in town and will likely never need the service.

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