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Satellite internet could arrive next year

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Space X link: Elon Musk
Sky high service: A Starlink receiver and terminal (Image supplied)

An international tech company could bring satellite broadband service to Bermuda next year.

SpaceX – the company behind a series of recent rocket launches – has yet to launch its Starlink satellite internet service, but people who tried to sign up last week received a notification that it was hoped the service would cover the island next year.

The email notification said: “Starlink is targeting coverage in your area in 2022.

“The Starlink team will provide updates on availability and you will receive a notification once Starlink becomes available in your area.”

SpaceX did not respond by press time last night to questions on its plans for a Bermudian service.

But a spokeswoman for the Regulatory Authority said they had not yet got an application from Starlink to provide service to the island.

The spokeswoman added: “If and when they submit an application, it will be reviewed by the RA.”

The Starlink service was designed for rural areas where broadband internet is hard to access and uses a network of low orbit satellites to deliver a signal to household receivers.

SpaceX has already deployed about 1,800 satellites, with the ultimate goal of 42,000 low-orbit satellites in operation by mid-2027.

The benefit of low-orbit satellites is that they have a shorter lag, which could make Starlink a serious alternative to 5G and fibre internet services in remote areas.

Elon Musk announced on social media that SpaceX had already sent 100,000 Starlink terminals to customers in 14 countries and received more than 500,000 orders.

Customers need to purchase a starter kit, including a terminal, for $499 and pay a $99 a month fee.

A public beta test for Starlink started last October and Mr Musk said earlier this year it was expected the service would have 500,000 users by the middle of next year.

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Published September 09, 2021 at 7:54 am (Updated September 09, 2021 at 7:50 am)

Satellite internet could arrive next year

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