Starlink is a broadband internet service by Elon Musk’s SpaceX that utilizes low orbit satellites. It is exciting for RVer’s because Starlink will deliver high-speed broadband internet to locations where access has been unreliable, expensive, or completely unavailable. Starlink just opened its public beta and released its pricing and it is shockingly competitive.
The upfront cost of SpaceX Starlink Beta will be $499 for the satellite dish, tripod, and router to connect to the Starlink satellites. The monthly fee was listed as $99. That is surprisingly cheap for what you get. It is less than the price of a new iPhone and monthly service fee from any cell carrier for unlimited internet.
Don’t get too excited yet though! The public beta invite was only sent to those who live in the very northern states. This is because of the need for more SpaceX satellites to ensure 24×7 coverage of the remaining US before it is made available. There have been 895 Starlink satellites launched into low Earth orbit already with approximately 120 new ones launched each month. That means that we should have total coverage sometime in 2021.
Better Than Nothing Beta
Before you start getting too jealous of those selected for the SpaceX Starlink Beta that live in the northern states, you should know that this beta is nicknamed the “Better Than Nothing Beta”. In SpaceX’s announcement, they tried to lower expectations of the initial service and said “Expect to see data speeds vary from 50Mb/s to 150Mb/s and latency from 20ms to 40ms over the next several months as we enhance the Starlink system. There will also be brief periods of no connectivity at all.”
Overall we are excited by this announcement and the progress of Starlink. What do you think? Too Expensive? Not going to work? Let us know in the comments below!