Elon Musk's SpaceX could offer global Starlink satellite internet coverage by September, its president says

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Elon Musk's SpaceX could offer global Starlink satellite internet coverage by September, its president says
SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell. Screenshot/ TED
  • SpaceX could provide global satellite internet coverage as soon as September, its president said.
  • Gwynne Shotwell said SpaceX had launched 1,800 Starlink satellites, enough for global coverage.
  • Shotwell said SpaceX would need regulatory approval in a given country to offer Starlink.

SpaceX will be able to beam down Starlink satellite internet to the whole world by about September, the company's president, Gwynne Shotwell, said Tuesday.

"We've successfully deployed 1,800 or so satellites, and once all those satellites reach their operational orbit we will have continuous global coverage, so that should be like September timeframe," Shotwell said in a video conference with Macquarie Group, reported by Reuters.

SpaceX's end goal is to launch about 42,000 Starlink satellites into low-Earth orbit by mid-2027.

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SpaceX needs regulatory approval before operating in a given country, she said.

Starlink operates its beta in 11 countries, Shotwell said, including the US, Australia, New Zealand, and parts of Europe.

Global coverage of Starlink's service could allow more and more rural and underserved communities to get fast broadband.

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SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said in May that more than 500,000 people had placed an order for Starlink or put down a $99 deposit. Starlink currently costs $99 for a monthly subscription and a further $499 for the kit, which includes a tripod, WiFi router, and terminal to connect to the satellites.

Once the service is rolled out worldwide, users could expect internet speeds of up to 209.17 megabits per second, the fastest speed recorded by a beta-test subscriber.

In April, the Federal Communications Commission approved SpaceX's request to fly Starlink satellites at a lower orbit, meaning the company can lower its satellites to 550 kilometers from 1,100 kilometers.

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