Who’s ready for low-cost, high-performance internet from anywhere on Earth? That’s Elon Musk’s plan with Starlink and it would be online before 2021. Intrigued?
SpaceX is gearing up to implement a new space-based internet communication system and the constellation development project is currently underway. Recently there were 60 satellites launched into space to give us the trial period of raining down internet from the heavens. The goal is to have around 12,000 satellites all around the globe and the project was predicted to take until November 2027 to get all the satellites into orbit but now it won’t take nearly as long to start reaping the benefits.
This cheap and fast internet for mainly remote areas currently (along with airplanes, ships and other moving vehicles) could be ready to go in just one year from now instead of waiting 8 years. For this system to be economically viable, there would need to be around 1,000 satellites deployed. Now that’s a lot but its way less than 10,000 or 12,000. Musk is planning to launch around 1,000 satellites over the next 12 months, followed by another 1,000 every following year. You could even start to get service with just 400 in the sky according to Musk but at least 800 would give you more significant service.
These numbers are achievable and trying to become a major player in the overall orbit game shouldn’t take long considering SpaceX is planning to launch one Starlink mission every month. At present, there are around 2,000 operational satellites orbiting Earth, in addition to thousands of dead satellites. According to Musk, within 2 years the majority of the satellites in orbit will belong to SpaceX as long as things go well.
Each satellite launched will reportedly be capable of conveying around 1 terabit of functional bandwidth. Our friends over at Business Insider broke that down so we can better understand. 1 terabit is a sufficient enough amount to provide 4k streaming video to more than 1,000 people at the same time.