SpaceX seeks Starlink beta testers

Posted on Wednesday, Jun 17 2020 @ 12:41 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
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With over 500 Starlink satellites in orbit, SpaceX is now starting to invite the general public to beta test its broadband Internet service. ZD Net reports users can sign up on the Starlink site to receive news and updates. The website doesn't mention anything yet about a beta test, but users who sign up receive the following e-mail:
Starlink is designed to deliver high-speed broadband internet to locations where access has been unreliable, expensive, or completely unavailable. Private beta testing is expected to begin later this summer, followed by public beta testing, starting with higher latitudes.

If you provided us with your zip code, you will be notified via email if beta testing opportunities become available in your area. In the meantime, we will continue to share with you updates about general service availability and upcoming Starlink launches.
Starlink is the first operational satellite Intenet service that offers both a high bandwidth and low latency. The Starlink satellites orbit the Earth in a low orbit, which results in low latency, but this also means that thousands of these mini satellites are needed to provide global coverage.

The beta is expected to open late summer or early fall. Users selected to beta test the service will receive a user terminal with a flat disc antenna, which measures 48cm in diameter. Starlink promises up to a gigabit per second of bandwidth and a latency from 25ms to 35ms. It's unknown whether the service will have an equally impressive upload speed.

SpaceX founder Elon Musk previously indicated Starlink isn't planning on competing with traditional broadband Internet providers. At least at first, the goal is to offer high-speed Internet to locations where access has been unreliable, too expensive, or unavailable. Initially, the service will be rolled out in North America but eventually it will be offered around the globe.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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